Lee Hadwin has everyone’s dream job: he earns a living by going to sleep.

Without ever having artistic aspirations, Hadwin is quickly becoming a respected and internationally known artist for drawings he creates while asleep. Hadwin has been drawing inexplicably in his sleep since childhood, but in his teenage years, Hadwin’s works started to become more than just scribbles and doodles on spare sheets of paper. They became more detailed and sophisticated.

Artist Lee Hadwin holds up portraits he has drawn in his sleep, including his most known one of Marilyn Monroe. PHOTO VIA GOOGLE IMAGES

Artist Lee Hadwin holds up portraits he has drawn in his sleep, including his most known one of Marilyn Monroe. PHOTO VIA GOOGLE IMAGES

Now in his forties, Hadwin’s work has progressed so much so that it is of a higher caliber than that of many artists who consciously pursue careers in the arts. There is no medical or scientific explanation for Hadwin’s unusual abilities. Indeed, professionals have been baffled by him since his emergence several decades ago.

Hadwin has not always experienced great success as an artist. For a long time, he had difficulty gaining acceptance of his unusual methods in the art industry and among audiences worldwide. There is an almost supernatural element to what he does that both frightens and confuses audiences. Many suspect it is a hoax, or perhaps a juvenile way of gaining publicity. Others are unnerved by Hadwin’s uncontrollable practices. Artists and critics simply argue that Hadwin is not a true “artist” because he cannot produce the same art while awake and had not had an inclination to make art.

Hadwin has been gaining notoriety and acceptance in recent years from celebrity attention. Donald Trump famously purchased one of his pieces, and some of his works depicting Marilyn Monroe have been purchased by the Los Angeles-based Marilyn Monroe Museum.

His success is well deserved. Since when is the value of art defined by the creative process of the artist? There was never a reason for his work to be questioned, especially in today’s age of new media. If Yung Jake is respected for creating portraits made with Emojis, then Hadwin should be respected for drawing in his sleep.

Moreover, the products have both technical and creative value. Hadwin’s work is miles ahead of many practicing artists in the sense that they incorporate dozens of different techniques and styles. There are hyperrealist, surrealist, cubist and abstract themes within different works of art that Hadwin has created. Perhaps it is due to his process, but throughout all of his work, there is a constant ethereal quality to them. Everything shows a distinct delicacy.

They may not be everyone’s taste, but his artwork, regardless of his creative process, warrants all of the fame and success it has gotten. Hadwin is another innovative artist who continues to redefine what art is. He reminds audiences that the creative process is unique to every individual and each artist values the process in his or her own way.