Blind artist creating 4-story mural on Dallas building had to learn how colors felt

Painting a 4-story mural is hard enough, but a Denton, Texas, man is doing it without what some say is an artist’s most important tool: his sight.

After losing his eyesight almost 20 years ago, John Bramblitt had to relearn how to paint, Fox 5 reported.

“Whenever I was first losing my eyesight, I thought everything was over. I thought my life was over,” Bramblitt said, according to a 2018 WFAA story.

“I went from being sighted and being able to do a portrait of a person and being able to do a blueprint of a house, to just trying to draw a square and make it normal and then working with two colors and then three colors,” he said, according to NBC 5.

Bramblitt uses “raised lines of fabric” as a guide, NBC 5 reported, and says some colors feel different than other, WFAA reported.

“The yellow feels a little bit different than the other colors,” he said, according to WFAA. “The black feels different than the other colors. It gives you a tactile way to be able to feel the wall and understand where you are and what you’re doing.”

Bramblitt has completed several murals over the years, but his most recent work is part of LSA Burger’s annual mural art project and is painted on the side of the restaurant. Photos of the mural posted to his Instagram account show a woman playing an acoustic guitar, hair blowing in the breeze, surrounded by vibrant colors.

“We’re in the Bishop Arts District. It’s a very fun, kind of laid back place,” Bramblitt said, according to Fox 5. “It’s full of art and music. And whenever I hear music I see colors. So I have to have bright colors.”

In an Instagram post, he credits the help of others to his success as an artist.

“No one has ever done anything that was greater than themselves without a group of people coming together to support them, thank you guys so much for believing in what I do,” he wrote.

Bramblitt has paid it forward. He serves as an art instructor for both visually impaired and abled artists, sharing how to use one’s other senses to make visual art, NBC 5 reported.

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