Colorblind Painter

Miller is a painter and studying arts at the Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana. And he is not just a painter but a colorblind painter.

It needs quite a bit of courage for such a decision. As a colorblind you know that you will never ever see the colors the same way as others do. There are no studies where you can learn it, nobody who can ever teach you. You will have to stick to it for the whole lifetime, knowing that you are always a colorblind painter and not just a painter.

“I have a more unbiased approach when I come into (painting). I don’t have the idea in my head of what would work with this, what would not. It gives me the option to experiment more.”

Through this a colorblind painter is not distracted by good matching colors or complementary colors. As Miller says, he can put more an eye on the action that’s created with different color combinations.

Or in other words: Don’t get distracted by your color blindness but try to turn it into an advantage.

Related articles:
Photographer with No Color Sense
Albert Uderzo’s Sight

5 responses on “Colorblind Painter

  1. Amanda

    I’m a 17 year old female with deuteranomaly and I love to paint, specifically acrylic, which can be especially irritating to mix if you’re colorblind (I only use red, yellow, blue, black, and white- never bothered with premixed colors). But it hasn’t impaired me much. I’ve even been offered money for my paintings. I don’t see it as a disability. Even when I do make a a mistake, it only makes the painting more interesting.

  2. sarah

    I am a student graphic design and I am currently researching the relationship between colorblindness and graphic design.Could someone help me find some magazines/ websites that are adjusted for people with colorblindness?

  3. Jim

    The Old Masters technique of indirect oil painting using layers of color is a better technique for color blind artists.

    The first layer or “grisalle layer” is painted totally in black and white. All tonal values are established. It looks like a black and white photograph. No thought is even made about color at this stage. The paintings composition, light and darks, forms are built in this stage.
    Again, no color is even considered, just tones.

    The next layers are the color layers. This allows a colorblind artist to take their time and glaze color on top of the black and white base painting. It is like color tinting a black and white photograph. Color is used transparently like a sheet of glass over the black and white painting. To make the painting process easier, use a limited palette of colors.

    Rembrandt’s work is an excellent example of what can be done using just red, yellow, black and white paint.

    If you like drawing in color, colored pencils are a good medium for you. The pencils have the name of the color printed on them. You can even do a grisalle layer technique if you prefer too. Again, if it is still difficult, use a limited palette of pencils. Too many colors in a piece of art usually hurts it vs. helps it.

    If you prefer to draw in black and white, you can still produce stunning artwork with some color. Work on a colored paper or board. Neutral colors work best. Canson Mi tientes paper is an excellent paper to work on.

    Charcoal pencils come in black and white. General’s makes a white charcoal pencil to be used with their pencils.A black colored pencil will give a very good tonal range.

    Pen and ink offers possibilities as well.

  4. JIM

    A limited palette is the way to go for colorblind artists if you paint realistic. If your style is looser and more abstract, you can experiment with color.