Travelling is great. You get to explore the world, experience new cultures, educate yourself, and generally see everything in a whole new light.
What must travelling be like for people who are visually impaired? Senses are heightened in order to build up a picture through sound, smell, touch, and taste.
Travel Supermarket spoke with a group of individuals who are visually impaired to see what their own personal experiences were with travel. These thoughts and comments were then beautifully transformed into works of art by designer Alby Letoy.
Talking about the drawing experience, Letoy said:
“First, I check the background of the people behind the quotes, I try to understand their hobby or work. Then I read their quotes. From the quotes, I make a list about “things” that I need to put on each illustration.”
“It was a new experience for me. I was amazed about the people behind the quotes or when I read their quotes because I’m an outdoor and travel enthusiast myself.”
George Wurtzel, woodworker and craftsman, blind since his teens
Billy, heavy equipment salesman, legally blind from birth
Frank Senior, jazz vocalist, blind from birth
Ross Minor, recent high school graduate, blind since age 8
Mind’s Eye Travel customer, visually impaired
Mind’s Eye Travel is an organisation led by Sue Bramhall which hosts trips for people who are blind or visually impaired.
Trevor Thomas, professional long distance hiker, blind since 2005
Christine Ha, writer & cook, Winner of MasterChef U.S. season 3, blind
Tommy Edison, film critic and video producer, blind from birth
Reading about how these individuals view the world is incredibly inspiring. As George Wurtzel says:
“Blind people experience a city a little different than sighted people. It is a whole body experience, the texture of the streets under your feet, the bumping and jostling of very crowded streets, the intense smells of food, beer, bakeries and perfumes. You gain snap shots of people based on their conversation. All of these things build a mental picture that is very close to what someone would get by looking around.”
It really makes you want to explore the world in a whole new way now.
Featured photo credit: Ting W. Chang via flickr.com