Making the impossible possible...
December 12, 2011 11:33am CST
Hello there, before i proceed to my question, please allow me to share this to you guys: I went to my friend's house today to have a little chit chat with her. And every time i visit her, her little sister Zianna (14 year old) is always tagging along with us that adding more fun to our bonding time. Oh by the way, Zianna is visually impaired since birth, but despite of her disability she's so smart cute little girl. Anyway, while we are having fun, Zianna suddenly asked us: "how can or how will you define colors to a blind person like me?" or "if you are going to sell a set of color, how will you convince me to buy it?" Shocked! I couldn't find words to answer her, even my friend was surprised. We never expected that she will ask that kind of question. Totally dead air! Maybe Zianna felt that we are having a hard time to answer, she just changed the topic and maybe pretending that she never asked something. But even up to now, i'm still thinking of Zianna's question.. but still i don't know how to convince a visually impaired person to buy "my for sale color." How about you guys, do you have any ideas?
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• United States
12 Dec 11
I would probably explain that many people associate colors with feelings. For instance, yellow is often described as a sunshiny happy color, blue is either light and happy like the sky, or dark and brooding like the water. If she is not totally blind and can sense light vs darkness. Like when the sun hits her face, is it different and brighter to her than when she's in the shadow? If she can see difference between light and dark (even if she cannot focus on a particular object) then the explanation of light and dark (bright and light) can be a little more easier for her to understand. If she is totally blind, then maybe you can explain that colors are usually called warm or cool. example: Yellow is like the feeling of warmth when you're sitting in the sun feeling warm all over. Just a thought anyways:-)
12 Dec 11
Great! Thanks for helping me out. It's such a big big help. Now i have the idea and if ever Zianna ask the same question i know somehow how to answer her. Oh by the way, she is totally blind. I am now excited to meet her again.. oh, i can't wait to visit their house :)
12 Dec 11
Yellow is like the sun, green is like the smell of wet grass or if you like some fresh vegetables. Blue is like after rain fall you smell the fresh air. White feels soft like the wool of a sheep or cotton or ... red feels like fire / bonfire etc. Colours you can smell, touch, taste as well. BTW I am amazed you call a 14 year old a cute little girl. Over here we would say that for a 3 or 4 year old girl.
13 Dec 11
Hello, i wanna say thank you for the great idea. I'm excited to see Zianna again coz now i can define and show her the colors. And the credit goes to all of you guys! I really thank you all! I'm fond of kids (though Zianna is teenager) i still find her "my little girl" coz she's adorable and sweet to me.
12 Dec 11
It is amazing how some visually impaired person can tell colors the way he perceive it. They can tell the colors by having what was left of their senses, meaning they are using their sense of smell, their sense of touch and oh yes sometimes their sense of hearing. Like for example, you can explain to them that the burning sensation of the sun represents red. The smell of grass represents green. The sound of water on faucet represents clear and so on and so forth. Meaning, it is up to us normal people how we describe the colors to them. But then again, the perception of colors to the blind depends on the gravity or intensity of their blindness. There are blind people who have seen colors before they get to their state of being blind. So they have more or less definite ways to describe the colors since they have seen it before they get blind. In the case of Zianna who is blind since birth explaining the colors to her would be very difficult and often times impossible. How can you explain colors to someone who can only see darkness from the very start? But if I will be able to sell colors to her, I would do it by demonstration. Meaning, I would need examples to explain to her each color. Like I would tell to her that most apples are RED. That if she feel and smell the fresh grass that is color GREEN. The let her feel cotton to represent white and so on and so forth. Of course, there are a lot of ways to explain each and every item that represent the colors. For a blind to be an expert in telling colors, he must relate most items and feelings to represent each color and it will be a lot of patience and experience.
13 Dec 11
Thank you. It will be more easier for me to tell here how beautiful our world with these colors. I just realized that we are so lucky that we are able to use all our senses but i do not pity them, actually I am amazed and admire them how they live a normal life even though they have disabilities.
13 Dec 11
She's a bright girl just from the words she said. I think she would like that you tell her stories about how each color gives meaning to the world. If you come to think of it, listening is more like seeing because you describe well with your voice what the colors are like and then from there, she would get an idea what colors she want based on your description. It will not matter to her that she can't see what you are describing as long as she hears them.