hitchcock and dali, black and white freckles, a wandering mind sorts priorities

Alfred Hitchcock Recalls Working with Salvador Dali on Spellbound

Hitchcock talks about hiring Salvador Dali to help with the dream sequences in Spellbound. Hitch wanted them to be clear, not murky. Dreams do tend to be very vivid and sharp. At least in my experience there is rarely fog. Hitchcock used Freudian ideas about dreams partly in a scientific way, but much like today, he saw the imaginative potential to Freudian theories about dreams. Thoughts that are still very much apart of how people discuss dreams and what the mean. Hitchcock and Dali make for odd partners. Dali was part of the surrealistic movement which was pushing art away from mimeticism and religious influences. The surrealist were questioning the way aesthetics were presented and categorized. Representations were to serve thoughts about how things might be or should be. Reality in art should reflect the irrational and illogical nature of being. In contrast, while Hitchcock’s work always had a strong physiological element, he was also fascinated by the actions of ordinary people when placed in extraordinary circumstances. In that way he was a bridge between artistic traditions of realism and the new art of the irrational expressions of the psyche.

black and white freckles


You have to love science articles that give one rationalizations for what your parents, teachers and bosses generally say is a bad habit – A wandering mind reveals mental processes and priorities

Odds are, you’re not going to make it all the way through this article without thinking about something else.

In fact, studies have found that our minds are wandering half the time, drifting off to thoughts unrelated to what we’re doing — did I remember to turn off the light? What should I have for dinner?

A new study investigating the mental processes underlying a wandering mind reports a role for working memory, a sort of a mental workspace that allows you to juggle multiple thoughts simultaneously.

Imagine you see your neighbor upon arriving home one day and schedule a lunch date. On your way to add it to your calendar, you stop to turn off the drippy faucet, feed the cat, and add milk to your grocery list. The capacity that allows you to retain the lunch information through those unrelated tasks is working memory.

[  ]…Where your mind wanders may be an indication of underlying priorities being held in your working memory, whether conscious or not, he says. But it doesn’t mean that people with high working memory capacity are doomed to a straying mind. The bottom line is that working memory is a resource and it’s all about how you use it, he says. “If your priority is to keep attention on task, you can use working memory to do that, too.”

Have you ever done something – taken a walk, done some tedious work and then not remembered the details. That might be your mind trying to sort out priorities for several things you can concerned about, and the tasks you were performing did not quite make the top of the list. A related article – The neuroscience of Bob Dylan’s genius. How do we have insights, and where does inspiration come from? Jonah Lehrer goes inside Bob Dylan’s brain to find out. Articles like this satisfy an ongoing curiosity, but are no help to me in terms of realizing some hidden creative potential. Dammit.