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   Undertoad  Tuesday May 11 06:45 PM

May 11, 2010: Painter blind from birth



Painter Esref Armagan is in a unique situation: he's been blind from birth, and yet, manages to produce these paintings that are accurate perceptions of reality.



From the biography section of his website:

Quote:
He needs absolute quiet when working. First, using a Braille stylus, he etches an outline of his drawing. He needs to feel that he is "inside" his painting-- in fact, when he is drawing a picture of the sea, he often wonders if he should wear a life jacket so as not drown! When he is satisfied with his drawing, he starts to apply the oils with his fingers. Because he applies only one color at a time (the colors would smear otherwise), he must wait two or three days for the color to dry before applying the next color. This method of painting is entirely unique to Mr. Armagan. He receives no assistance or training from any individual. He also learned to draw perspective.

He has also developed his own methods of doing portraits. He asks a sighted person to draw around a photograph, then he turns the paper over and feeling it with his left hand, he transfer what he feels onto another sheet of paper, later adding color. He has done portraits of the former first lady of Turkey, the current president and current prime minister.
Amazing.


squirell nutkin  Tuesday May 11 07:56 PM

Adapting a Ray Charles joke here:

Do you know why Esref is always smiling?

Because he can't see that his paintings suck.

Actually, I am impressed.



monster  Tuesday May 11 10:16 PM

How does he get the colors right?



dmg1969  Wednesday May 12 12:28 PM

How sad...he's blind and can still paint better than me. Nice!



JNathan  Wednesday May 12 12:49 PM

Quote:
He receives no assistance or training from any individual.
You would think he would need some kind of assistance just to know what colors are what. Incredibly impressive though. Like Beethoven composing music.


Shawnee123  Wednesday May 12 12:54 PM

I would imagine over the years he has learned (been told) that pears (that he knows by touch and smell) are 'green' or 'yellow' and probably has his paints and palettes set up a certain way.



squirell nutkin  Wednesday May 12 01:36 PM

maybe he;s synesthetic.



Gravdigr  Wednesday May 12 04:37 PM

Possessed of synesthesia or not, if he has been blind from birth, how does he know what a watermelon looks like? Or that it's red on the inside, green on the outside, with little black seeds? I'm calling bullshit. Somehow. Somewhere.

That said, I can't paint for shit.



squirell nutkin  Wednesday May 12 05:16 PM

Probably from listening to stuff like
"O my Luve's like a red, red rose
That’s newly sprung in June; etc"



Spexxvet  Wednesday May 12 05:19 PM

I think they're paint-by-numbers.



spudcon  Thursday May 13 03:47 AM

I agree with Gravdigr. How does a person blind from birth even understand the concept of color. Without a point of reference, can anyone explain the color blue?



ZenGum  Thursday May 13 07:00 AM

Squirrel, Spudcon ... you two stay the #$%& out of my PhD thesis, okay? :death stare:



Shawnee123  Thursday May 13 07:59 AM

How do you perceive color? Because someone told you 'red' is red.

I don't think it's that farfetched to think someone told him what color things are, and that he organizes his paints in a way to use them. That's Blind 101.

Or maybe it's a big grand scheme. He's not REALLY blind, and he doesn't REALLY paint.

edit: at least no one cried 'shopped!



spudcon  Thursday May 13 08:52 AM

Shopped!



xoxoxoBruce  Thursday May 13 08:55 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZenGum View Post
Squirrel, Spudcon ... you two stay the #$%& out of my PhD thesis, okay? :death stare:
So, they give out PhDs in bullshit down there.


classicman  Thursday May 13 10:19 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by spudcon View Post
I agree with Gravdigr. How does a person blind from birth even understand the concept of color. Without a point of reference, can anyone explain the color blue?
I think it was in the movie Mr Holland's Opus. (maybe not)
But one person was explaining colors to another using alternate senses. IIRC (probably not) Blue was like a stone and red was something hot.... That sorta thing. Yes it was just a movie and I still don't get how it relates to painting.

Now I wonder why I even shared this. Oh well...


Shawnee123  Thursday May 13 10:29 AM

I don't think they need to understand the concept of color, as long as they know what colors other people perceive things as. In the world of color, it is like rote memorization...not creativity of color such as Van Gogh, and requiring a different kind of talent and tasking.



Sheldonrs  Thursday May 13 01:07 PM

Wow! Blind since birth and he's STILL a better artist than Andy Warhol.



Gravdigr  Thursday May 13 02:01 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawnee123 View Post
I don't think they need to understand the concept of color, as long as they know what colors other people perceive things as. In the world of color, it is like rote memorization...not creativity of color such as Van Gogh, and requiring a different kind of talent and tasking.
I think one has to understand the concept of color, as well as depth, shading, and most importantly, nuance.

Look at the slight shades of green on the bottom of those not quite ripe bananas. Or the thin white stripe between the rind of the watermelon and the 'meat' of the melon. The slight reflection of the light source in the grapes. I don't know if someone blind from birth could "get" that, regardless of how thorough an explanation or description they receive.

Also, (while I'm being difficult) I've seen some people on TV, doing something a blind person shouldn't or couldn't be able to do. But, the thing is they're "legally blind", not completely, totally, always-in-the-dark blind. Seems there are various shades of blind. And, that, to me, is some form of bullshit.


Gravdigr  Thursday May 13 02:02 PM

Of course, a blind artist could go all abstract on yer ass...



squirell nutkin  Thursday May 13 02:22 PM

Funny hypnosis/NLP on color perception with Derren Brown:
Watch the whole thing




Shawnee123  Thursday May 13 03:23 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gravdigr View Post
Of course, a blind artist could go all abstract on yer ass...
I'm gonna go all abstract on YOUR ass!


rditlkustoleit  Thursday May 13 03:25 PM

A lot of questions could be answered if he would consent to being videoed while painting or painting on a live show (quiet set of course).

Of course, if he is actually 100% blind, you may not need his permission at all to quietly set up the video camera



rditlkustoleit  Thursday May 13 03:37 PM

Got my wish... sort of.

Apparently in 2008 Volvo did a documentary of sorts on Esref where they filmed his process for their new S60.

http://www.facebook.com/Volvo#!/Volvo?v=app_4949752878

also at - www.facebook.com/volvo



xoxoxoBruce  Thursday May 13 08:40 PM

Yeah but, somewhere along the line somebody had to tell him what colors are, and where they go. Then had to supply the colored paints labeled for him to distinguish which is which. They also had to explain shadows. Oh, and that bananas are two colors.

That said, in doesn't take away from the fact that what he does is fucking amazing, even without color.



Shawnee123  Thursday May 13 08:46 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by rditlkustoleit View Post
A lot of questions could be answered if he would consent to being videoed while painting or painting on a live show (quiet set of course).

Of course, if he is actually 100% blind, you may not need his permission at all to quietly set up the video camera
Yeah, but their other senses are heightened, so they can totally smell you setting up a video camera.


squirell nutkin  Thursday May 13 09:45 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce View Post
Oh, and that bananas are two colors.

That said, in doesn't take away from the fact that what he does is fucking amazing, even without color.
red, yellow, green, brown, and tan inside.

Let's not forget a lot of great artists were insane


rditlkustoleit  Thursday May 13 10:59 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawnee123 View Post
Yeah, but their other senses are heightened, so they can totally smell you setting up a video camera.
I appreciate the optimistic vote of confidence that it would take "heightened senses" to smell me.

Your point is well taken, so this would be a two man job. I have a buddy that farts like a lumberjack who could throw him off the trail.
While Esref is clearing his head I will set up the video camera.


SPUCK  Friday May 14 06:21 AM

Get him all set up then turn the lights off..



HungLikeJesus  Saturday May 15 11:01 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by classicman View Post
I think it was in the movie Mr Holland's Opus. (maybe not)
But one person was explaining colors to another using alternate senses. IIRC (probably not) Blue was like a stone and red was something hot.... That sorta thing. Yes it was just a movie and I still don't get how it relates to painting.

Now I wonder why I even shared this. Oh well...
I think that was from Mask.


squirell nutkin  Sunday May 16 08:43 PM

No, it was Harold and Kumar go to White Castle.



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