Imagination is essential to getting what we want. Imagination is about looking around and noticing what isn’t there. That’s the first step in creating a new reality. Sometimes what we want is to solve a problem, to satisfy an immediate need. At other times, we imagine a future that we desire. And we can even extend our imagination to envision a future that may exist long after we are gone.

Some people imagine more than others. Some are able to stretch their minds farther. There is nothing magic about it. Imagination is a skill. It’s a muscle that needs to be exercised. That takes practice. With practice, one can learn to look for alternatives. Not just alternatives to solve a pressing problem near-at-hand, but also far-reaching alternatives in every dimension. We can inspect the fabric of our reality and start to replace threads within. This is the practice of asking, “What if…?”

It’s vital for each of us to practice the skill of imagination. Sometimes we require the skill just for survival, to find an escape from a threatening situation. And sometimes we require imagination to achieve our goals and desires, to venture toward a better way of being. We use imagination across this entire range of abandoning and attaining. Imagination is our process for seeing our destination before we’re there. It’s our muscle that turns the impossible into the possible.

I exercise my imagination with my Lucid Dreamscapes performances. It’s my own art form which combine aspects of animation, video games, music, theater, dance, and architecture. My audio-visual concerts have inspired imagination in audiences worldwide. Each performance is a celebration of imagination. I draw with my digital pen to create worlds live. I explore the creations, always looking for new opportunities of beauty and wonder.

The concept of Lucid Dreamscapes is to imagine, to dream. And to dream with wide eyes wide open, to actively engage in a fantastic world as it becomes reality. In this way, we can treat dreams not as a disconnected escape, but a technique for transforming our reality.

Every day we can look for alternative ways of acting and being. We each can take journeys with our imagination. We can stretch ourselves, extend our visions, and grasp the universe. Here’s a technique for growing your imagination muscle. It’s a simple exercise, which one can practice every day. Ask yourself, “What do I want? And how can I attain it?”

J-Walt is an award-winning director, performer, immersive designer, graphic artist, music composer, and VR pioneer who through his Lucid Dreamscapes performances has been at the forefront of interactive art and computer performance, expanding the uses of computer animation into uncharted territories.