[accessibleimage] Re: Blind children drawing people

  • From: "cpond" <cpond@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <accessibleimage@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 1 Feb 2012 10:51:03 -0500

I’m afraid we’re separated by something less-than concept, but harder to bridge 
in a logistical way.  I’m in Ottawa Ontario, Canada.


From: ann@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Sent: Wednesday, February 01, 2012 10:25 AM
To: accessibleimage@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Subject: [accessibleimage] Re: Blind children drawing people

Amanda and Charles, I was first inspired to teach by Dr. John Kennedy's work, 
Drawing and the Blind in particular. I have developed the classes but I have 
not put them to paper. Maybe you could contact me directly and tell me where 
you are located. I travel a lot and maybe you do too. (I am in the Denver area) 
I would be more than happy to get together with one or both of you and try some 
of this stuff out. Game? Ann

Keep In Touch!
P.O. Box 261085
Lakewood, CO 80226
(303) 238-4760

  -------- Original Message --------
  Subject: [accessibleimage] Re: Blind children drawing people
  From: "Amanda Lacy" <lacy925@xxxxxxxxx>
  Date: Mon, January 30, 2012 8:16 pm
  To: <accessibleimage@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>


  <smile> In Flatland, the 2D beings read 1D books.

  The very first time I encountered a drawing of a 3D shape came in the 6th 
grade in the form of a simple math question: What shape is this? Below those 
words was a tactile circle with a curved line through it. Of course, I answered 
"circle." Although the teacher said I was wrong she gave me credit anyway since 
she was at a loss to prove her claim that this was somehow a sphere that did 
not roll off the page.

    Ann, do you have online lessons for blind students who struggle with these 
concepts? Throughout my life I have had many of the exact same unanswered 
questions that Charles has articulated so well here.

    ----- Original Message ----- 
    From: cpond 
    To: accessibleimage@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
    Sent: Monday, January 30, 2012 8:55 PM
    Subject: [accessibleimage] Re: Blind children drawing people

    Hi Ann.  There is much in what you write, and much one could say to reply.  
If you would draw a hand as you describe, which is a fairly flat object. then 
how would one draw a fist, which is definitely three dimensional?  The 
three-dimensional shape must be captured, and yet the object drawn must be 
identifiable as a fist and not a hand, or as a hand reconfigured into a fist?  
Actually, a hand is a three-dimentional albeit flat object.  The fingers are 
round and elongated; the nails are curved; the palm is thicker than the rest of 
the hand.

    How would you draw a record as compared to a cookie?

    I wonder if the tactile representation of visual tricks would work 
tactually on a blind person, like parallax for example.  I think not.

    In school we always dealt with realtime three-D models of objects, or even 
well-done thermoform representations of three-dimensional objects.

    Ha.  As for the funnies, well, maybe I’ll write a one-dimensional book 
about them one day.

    The tactile picture of an elongated cylinder in no way conjures up in my 
mind the actual image of a cylinder.  It cannot come up off of the page. 
<quizzzical look here>

    To some blind adults, tactile graphics, perfectly clear to a sighted 
person, feel like a jumple of lines and curves with absolutely no meaning.  I 
suppose that subjectively I’m somewhere in between, except that I know the 
symbols for electrical schematics and such.  The are purely symbolic and not 


    From: ann@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
    Sent: Monday, January 30, 2012 5:45 PM
    To: accessibleimage@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
    Subject: [accessibleimage] Re: Blind children drawing people

    I love this conversation.

    I have not experienced the limitation of a one shot window of comprehension 
that Charles has seen. I teach art at the Colorado Center for the Blind 
(students 18+ years old) for the last 12 years and over the years we have come 
up with some really accessible ways to explore (hands on) picture plane 
concepts like: over lap and outline, foreground, middle and background, 
horizon, convergence and diminution of size and the like. It really seems that 
most of the time I am giving words to concepts that have been living right 
below the surface of consciousness anyway, it is not really that big a leap. 
One of the first lessons we start with is recognizing, sorting and naming basic 
shapes. Then when you move onto a concept like point of view or point of 
perception and trying to draw a 3D object, we can deconstruct the object into 
basic forms and start there. For example - my hand face on is a big rectangle 
with five skinny rectangles arranged around it. That is basic then I can 
refine.  I find that technique works equally well for sighted people who have 
no idea how to convert a 3D object into a 2D picture either. 
        I have modified a perspective machine that is ripped from the brain of 
Albrecht Durer. With that student are able to tactually create their own 
pictures using all the standard picture conventions with their own 
imaginations. Very fun and students have made some wonderful art work that they 
can self critique towards improving their skills.

    Keep In Touch!
    P.O. Box 261085
    Lakewood, CO 80226
    (303) 238-4760

      -------- Original Message --------
      Subject:  e] Re: Blind children drawing people
      From: "cpond" <cpond@xxxxxxxxx>
      Date: Sun, January 29, 2012 8:14 pm
      To: <accessibleimage@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>

      Many blind children (and also adults) cannot conceive drawing a 
three-dimensional object in a two-dimensional medium.  Whether it is a 
neurological, a developmental or comceptual block, this is so for many.  
Three-dimensional visualizing, and more critically here the sense of sight 
being able to “see” in three dimensions must be learned within a narrow windows 
at an early time in the child’s life.  Else it doesn’t seem to take.

      From: bmarek 
      Sent: Sunday, January 29, 2012 2:28 PM
      To: accessibleimage@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
      Subject: [accessibleimage] Re: Blind children drawing people

      It's probably silly to post a question and then to try and answer it but 
I, too, find the question intriguing. I work mainly with school-age children, 
where I am confronted with somewhat different challenges, like the request I 
had from a 10-year old who said: I can understand drawings of people standing 
but not when they are doing something. To help him and other children solve 
this "problem", I developed a resource which I call "Fleximan" but it only 
helps children understand what people look like when they sit, bend down, jump, 
do push-ups or somersaults, kick or throw a ball etc. but does not provide an 
answer to the question about how very young blind children draw people.  My 
feeling is that "tadpoles" may not be an obligatory stage in blind children's 
drawings. Drawing on plastic is much harder than drawing on paper so probably 
blind children do not start drawing as early as sighted kids, and, drawing a 
circle is not easy when you can't see so sth like a rectangle is more likely as 
the main part of a person's body. But I may be wrong
      Boguslaw 'Bob' Marek

      W dniu 29.01.2012 20:16, bmarek napisał(a):
        Below I am copying a message from another list - a question from a 
friend in Australia.
        Boguslaw 'Bob' Marek:
        For a new project I am very interested to find out if you know of 
research or resources giving an insight in the drawing development of young 
blind children and if, like their sighted peers, they go through a period in 
which they draw so-called "tadpole drawings", basically a circle as the head 
and body in one, and then sticks as arms and legs?
        kind regards,

        Sonokids Australia


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