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  • Writer's pictureThabo Baseki

Be Their Advocate!

Updated: Sep 11, 2022

Imagine if there was only one color in life! Do you think life would be nice or boring?

No doubt, color plays a vital role in our everyday activities. For instance, it influences what clothes we want to put on, what food we want to consume, what theme color we want to have for our event and more. Researchers say that color helps relieve stress if a person is going through difficult times, no wonder flowers and nature are a source of comfort.

People born blind have never seen color variations, and it is my belief that if there was only one color in life, we would all be fine with it. Because I have never seen any color, it is never a problem in my own view that I don’t know the difference between blue and green. However, I benefit a lot from a variety of colors. I am drawn to gray because I have received a lot of feedback that clothes that are gray resonates well with my skin. Do I get any emotional support from the provision of colors? Absolutely! Although I cannot see colors, based on the description I have been given about a certain color in conjunction with the smell of an object, (flower), I can form mental images of such an object, and it is often good-looking in my perception. Though it is hard to tell the next person how I imagine it to appear, it gives me a sense of joy and satisfaction.


Using Colors When Talking to a Blind Person

How can you help a blind person understand your message that has color involved? Whenever there is a color, there’s also an object.

  • What object links directly to a color you want to talk about: Thinking about this will help you use an object that your recipient can understand, and you may have a fulfilling conversation, just because of your well-thought description. Depending on the type of a person you are conversing with, you may even use the terms light and dark, for some blind people know the difference between the two.

  • Take advantage of their other senses such as smell and hearing: I personally associate the aroma of plants with green, this is because I have grown up being told that an area is green when it is filled with plants, trees, forest, flowers, vegetation. Green means beauty, in my opinion.

  • When talking of beauty, use words that reflect the exact idea of the feeling you have about what you see to a blind person: What effect can word such as artistry, style, delicacy, and ornament have on your listener?

Myth:

Blind people don’t enjoy life because they cannot see a wide range of colors.


Fact:

The idea is that to really know something that relates to sight, you must see it for yourself, and without vision, you depend on what you hear, taste, touch, and smell.


The author with a painting he created of a landscape
Would it make sense if I had just made a tactile artwork and not considered colors?

Myth:

Blind people do not have color preferences.


Fact:

While it differs from person to person, we do want to put on a nice outfit, stay in a nice-looking environment, and colors make this possible, I prefer gray and green as colors I am associated with. 

Never hold back from including colors when describing an object to a blind person. Excluding color could cause a serious problem, especially in your absence. Think about when there are a couple of doors that lead into a building, and you didn’t inform your listener to use a brown painted door. Won’t it cause problems the next time he is with someone else and not you? Giving as many details may simplify tasks and makes assisting an easier process.


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