The Haunting Images of a Photographer With Sleep Paralysis


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Sleep paralysis is an experience in which the individual becomes conscious and is left immobile in a state between being awake and asleep. The wakeful mind separates itself from the mobile functions of the sleeping body and the individual begins to experience visual and auditory hallucinations – essentially dreaming while awake.

Photographer Nicolas Bruno has suffered from sleep paralysis for most of his life, struggling with this purgatory state of consciousness. In an interview with artFido, Nicolas told us:

“I have experienced extreme terror during these dreams, which include faceless silhouetted figures, embraces from shadow – like hands, warping of reality around me – all while being completely paralyzed in the midst of being awake and sleeping. It has taken a huge toll on my well – being, but I have since been able to cope with it by transforming these night terrors into a source of inspiration for my artwork.”

“The photographs I’m creating are direct translations of singular or multiple experiences pressed into one conceptual depiction. I often keep a journal or pad of paper on the edge of my nightstand so I can begin writing about my experiences, the moment I regain the ability to use motor functions. It is crucial to me that I begin documenting the dream the instance that I wake up. I will sketch a quick drawing of what I saw or felt, rather than attempting to describe the experience with words.”

You can see more of Nicolas‘ work on his website and Facebook.

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