I Photographed Lucid Dreams; Here’s What I Captured.

How it all began:

I woke up one morning, feeling fresh and thinking that it was probably a good time to head to the mall. I finished getting ready, started my car and drove to said mall, and started browsing from store to store. I was just killing time, and after a while, I ended up on the rooftop, and suddenly, with no control over my limbs, I climbed onto the ledge and jumped down head first to the ground.

Yup, that’s what happened. As my head was about to crack open, painting the asphalt with my brain, my life flashed in front of my eyes in a quick microsecond. I took a long deep breath, closed my eyes and got ready for the impact.

But, nothing happened. I opened my eyes and I was back on the rooftop, still on the ledge, about to jump down. The exact moment moment I was in a few seconds ago.

In that moment, I knew I was dreaming, but something was different this time.

I found that I could control it – my very first lucid dream – and my heart was pumping so hard as if what just happened was real. After that dream, I was so fascinated with the idea to live how you want in your own world, a world so real that it affects your body. But I wanted to focus on the heart.

How the project took off: 

All of this happened during my last year of college. I decided to do something on lucid dreaming for my final project. I discussed it with my lecturers, and one of them told me that I should go ahead. The other was so skeptical, saying that it is too abstract to photograph dreams.

But dreams were just the idea, not my subject. My aim was to photograph heartbeats while in dream mode.

How did I do it? A lot of brainstorming and research on the technical stuff. I eventually found a way – my own way – of using vibrations from the recorded sound of heartbeat played on the speaker cone, which served as a visual medium. I used non-Newtonian fluid to capture the movement of the liquid moving when I played the sound.

I found a friend who can lucid dream, and I recorded his heartbeat and his stories.

These stories are recorded in the following series:

Love at the train station

In this series, the subject dreamt about meeting a girl at the train station each weekend every time he returns to his hometown. As his love grows, he gets shocked by the girl handing her wedding invitation.




Riding hogs

In this series, the subject dreams about riding a hog. He gathers members and smoothly rides the long road.




The shot

In this series, the subject dreamt about being a football player. He was in the match, about to kick a penalty, but missed.




Fight club

In this series, the subject dreamt about being an owner of a fighting club, and as his club grows bigger, he gets many contestants and proudly watches all the fights from above.





In this series, the subject dreamt about being a survivor during a zombie apocalypse. As he walks on carefully, random zombies start to attack him, and the fight begins and continues until he is safe.




Images and experiment courtesy of Shaffiq Farhan.

Header image courtesy of RHADS @ Deviantart

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