Numerous blind artists have painted visual masterpieces which defy their lack of sight.
Here are ten blind painters who have made significant contributions to the world of visual arts.
1.Keith Salmon (1959-present)
Keith Salmon is a British man who enjoyed art from an early age. He studied fine arts in college and worked as a painter and sculptor after graduation.
After a diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy left him legally blind, he dedicated himself even more fully to his art. He is best known for abstract landscape art, mostly of hills in Scotland that he enjoyed climbing, even after becoming legally blind.
Salman’s paintings feature abstract bursts of color and detailed brushwork. He credits his blindness with making him a more determined and talented painter.
2. John Bramblitt (1971-present)
John Bramblitt is a native of El Paso, Texas. He became blind at the age of thirty due to severe epileptic seizures.
He became a painter not in spite of his blindness, but rather because of it; painting helped him overcome a bout of severe depression.
Bramblatt learned to discern the difference in colors by feeling the rich tactile details of their textures.
Bramblatt’s paintings are brightly colored; he paints a wide variety of subjects, including people, butterflies, and wine bottles. His art is sold in more than thirty countries, and he has authored two books about his emergence as a blind artist.
3. Eserf Armagan (1953-present)
He became especially fond of using oil paints as a medium, and he has painted. Eserf’s paintings, many of which feature breathtaking landscapes, His work has been featured in more than twenty exhibitions across the world.
4. Sargy Mann (1937-2015)
Sargy Mann, a Birtish painter, lost his vision in his thirties due to cataracts in both eyes.
Prior to become legally blind, he considered himself to be a landscape painter. After losing his sight, he became skilled at portraits.
He particularly liked to paint his wife, who he said he could “see” through touch. In addition to landscapes and portraits, he is the creator of a number of mysterious, abstract paintings in vivid color.
5. Michael Williams (1964-present)
Michael WIlliams, a native of Nashville, TN, suffers from a form of macular degeneration called Stargart’s disease.
He began painting as a child and did not let his loss of vision deter his dreams, stating that for artists, insight are far more important than sight.
Williams has won numerous awards for his contribution as a visually impaired artist; including a congratulatory letter from Barrack Obama. Williams’ paintings have been featured in several exhibitions, both in the U.S. and in London.
6. Jeff Hansen (1993-present)
Jeff Hanson, a young American artist based in Kansas, is on a mission to create positive impact on the world through art.
He became visually impaired during childhood due to a brain tumor. His love for painting began during his chemotherapy treatment and has continued to flourish until today.
Hanson specializes in acrylic on canvas and enjoys painting bright geometric shapes. His paintings are sold at charity functions throughout the country.
7. Arthur Ellis (1947-present)
Arthur Ellis has been dubbed “the artist who lost his sight but not his vision.” A native of Southborough, Ellis is a lifelong artist who worked professionally in the print finishing industry.
In 2006, he was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis and became legally blind as a result. Ellis’s artistic style has changed significantly since losing his sight; these days, his artwork is abstract and focuses on the merging of colors and shapes. Ellis is a strong advocate of braille.
8. Terry Hopewood-Jackson (1950-present)
(Video Credit: Dr. Catalin Brylla)
Hopewood-Jackson was born in the U.K. and lost his sight due to optic atrophy. He became blind in his left eye as a teenager and his right eye around the time he turned thirty. Despite losing his vision, he has continued to paint, write short stories,and advocate for disability awareness. His most famous paintings are inspired by the moon: Moon’s Tune and Spirit of the Moonbather. Jackson was featured in a documentary film titled Painting Without Sight.
9. Hal Lasko (1915-2014)
Hal Lasko, dubbed “The Pixel Painter,” is famous for the visual masterpieces he has created using Microsoft Paint.
Lasko began losing his sight in 2005, due to macular degeneration. Microsoft Paint allowed magnification, and he was able to paint his virtual masterpieces pixel by pixel. He was featured in a documentary, The Pixel Painter.
10. Claude Monet (1840-1926)
No list of famous painters would be complete without the inclusion of Claude Monet, a French painter best known for leading the artistic movement of Impressionism, which focuses on the shifting effects of light and color.
When Monet was in his sixties, he began to experience visual changes, particularly in regard to his perception of color. Despite this, he continued painting.
At age 72, he was diagnosed with nuclear cataracts in both eyes. Some of Monet’s most famous paintings include Poppies and Woman With a Parasol.