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30 + 138 points

Seeing Beyond Sight Photo Challenge by Lank

July 5th, 2007 3:44 AM

INSTRUCTIONS: Seeing Beyond Sight has partnered with SFZero to challenge you to see the world differently - with more than your eyes.

Welcome new users: SFZero is an ongoing game in which you can choose to participate (or not) after you do the Seeing Beyond Sight Challenge.

Click here for new user registration.

1. Blindfold yourself.
(wear shades or tape your eyes shut)

2. Go out in public and make your way in the world.
(go 1 block, 1 hour or 1 roll of film; go with a friend or alone; make up your own process)

3. Photograph things you notice. And, just notice.
(What do you notice differently about objects, people, actions, interactions?)

4. Embrace the whole experience as much as the picture taking.
(Engage. Have a conversation with people you encounter. Take it all in.)

5. Share your story.
(For each photograph write a caption about your experience - a few lines or several paragraphs if you want.)

6. Challenge some friends to do it.
(email them the link:

Please don't post all the pictures from your shoot, but chose 1 to 3 that are the best images or are most telling of your experience. Caption the photos describing something about your experience - that is as important as the image itself. Longer stories are welcomed and may be added to

If you depend on your eyes to get around, then it is hard not to use them. Although you can tell us about how difficult it is to be blind, focus more on what you noticed about the world as you embarked on this journey.

This experience isn’t about blindness – it is about seeing, noticing and paying attention with more than your eyes.

This challenge was inspired by SEEING BEYOND SIGHT: PHOTOGRAPHY BY BLIND TEENAGERS, a new book published by Chronicle Books.

I went on a solo 13 mile blindfolded excursion. I started at the Braille Institute, which is not far from where I live in Silverlake, and decided to make my way to the Pasadena Braille Club. This trip involved two different Metro trains and about six blocks of walking. I really wanted to get a sense of what it would be like to try to get from Point A to Point B without the use of my eyes. Wow.

Here is my route: MAP

Check out the pictures and captions below for the blow-by-blow details.

I started out kinda late - 7pm, to be exact - and thought that I might be able to catch some fireworks in Pasadena when I got there. There were to be no fireworks for me on this evening. When I got to Pasadena, I could tell it was dark because I could hear big series of explosions in the distance. I tried to take photos of the sky in the direction the explosions came from, but I just ended up with photos of black sky.

I carried a slender green dowel with me the entire time as a sort of cane. It was a life saver. I think I would have been crawling around on the ground if it weren't for that thing. I developed a good system for walking down the sidewalk by tapping side to side, one side hitting concrete and the other hitting planter.

What struck me the most was that I lost all sense of direction. Not only did I have no idea which way was north or south, I also couldn't tell where I just came from and I lost the ability to walk in a straight line. At one point, I spent at least ten minutes in a small passageway in one of the Metro stations basically going around in a big circle and ending up where I started.

The other really weird thing to me was not being able to tell if people were around. Unless a person was making noise, I had no way to tell if anyone was anywhere nearby. There could have been dozens of silent people all around me! In fact, when I saw some of the photos, I was surprised to find that there was so many more people in them than I expected.

I was also intrigued by the assistance (or lack thereof) that strangers were willing to offer. Two different guys went out of their way to help me out. There were also a couple of times when I called "Hello?" because I needed help and I could hear someone move nearby, only to be greeted by silence in response.

Most of this trip wasn't too scary because it involved places I had already been. But when I got off the train in Pasadena, I had no idea where I was or what my surroundings looked like and I was a little terrified. I actually got myself into a dangerous situation by ending up standing on some tracks when a train approached. I moved and got pinned between the tracks and the drop-down railroad crossing arm as the train went by, and thankfully it went by on the set of tracks that were further away from me.

I had to cheat a little as I traversed from the Pasadena train stop to the Braille Club. This trip involved crossing two major intersections, and though I tried valiantly, I had to peek to make sure I wasn't about to get mowed down.

I relied heavily on my ears. I could often figure out which direction to go by following the sound of traffic, of an escalator, or the footsteps of the people getting off a train.

I chose to take pictures of things I could detect with my non-visual senses. Anything that sounded or felt interesting got a picture. I used my trusty cell phone camera again, after memorizing how to use the camera without looking and how to speed-dial the SFØ audio proof number.

When I was done and headed back home, my back ached from having spent the last two hours in a constant state of tension, never knowing what my next step might bring.

Oh - and I emailed my friends Andy and Tara, inviting them to try this and check out SFØ!

+ larger

28 vote(s)

Favorite of:



34 comment(s)

(no subject)
posted by Jellybean of Thark on July 5th, 2007 8:16 AM

Ninja training indeed.

(no subject)
posted by rongo rongo on July 5th, 2007 8:43 AM

Wow! A real journey.
Nice touch, picking out those start & destinations.

posted by Heatherlynn on July 5th, 2007 10:04 AM

That's an amazing journey.

Strong work
posted by Lincøln on July 5th, 2007 10:19 AM

I'll give you a vote even though you cheated there at the end.
I give you this vote because of your end destination choice. I knew where you were going to start, but that end is a good one. You also wound up right next to me last night. I was in Pasadena for the fireworks, and I saw just about the same fireworks show you saw.

posted by Blue on July 6th, 2007 12:58 PM

How have you not beaten my score yet on this one and recieved the great seal?!?!

Well I still think yours is better… and hereby(unnoficially of course) grant you the great seal… but this completion is still relatively new so perhaps it is only a matter of time.


posted by Saint on July 6th, 2007 1:20 PM

Very worthy of some extra points, the story was quite interesting.

posted by Lank on July 6th, 2007 4:00 PM

Spar, you're sweet. And I see you put a link to your own completion in that comment. Hmmm... (kidding)

I dunno, though - I've seen newbies get a lot of attention for great completions. But being a squeaky wheel helps!

(I just wonder why all the votes for THIS dried up...)

What can I say!?!?
posted by Blue on July 9th, 2007 1:29 PM

I am a vote farmer!!!

Now just you wait a second!!!
posted by Blue on July 9th, 2007 2:14 PM

Are you accusing me of putting crap on the Praxis page?!?!
Cause them's fighting words!!!
Now I will admit to having done some less then admirable completions when I started.
However, the other players scores can be quiet intimidating at that time in a charectors life.
But there is more then one way to farm votes and putting crap on the Praxis page is the least creative one I know. In fact that guise is ussually doned by point farmers not vote farmers… as seems to be the current case. But hopefully growth will come with time!

(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on July 9th, 2007 5:19 PM

EDIT: i deleted the comment because i was referring to something that wasn't part of the thread

i'll still duel, even though i have no problem with anyone

posted by Blue on July 10th, 2007 11:50 AM

Do you think the creators would make an exception and allow me to complete the tasks twice???

Or Shall we Submit Duo-Duel
or Duel Duce
Duel Redeux!!!
Urban Alter Duel Anyone!?!

(no subject)
posted by Lank on July 10th, 2007 5:47 PM


(no subject)
posted by Burn Unit on July 10th, 2007 9:37 PM

ahem. inre: "vote farming"...well! since I claim credit for the term, I'm going to push my favored definition. As I proposed it, vote farming is fundamentally not the same as point grabbing or hogging point gobbling or points-only-playing or whatever those junk praxis-crapping submissions I think lowteck refers to. Rather, crucial to the concept is the related idea of "the living task" in which tasks are continuously maintained, refined, added to or even redone. Updating and editing tasks is what farming/tending a garden of living tasks is about. The resubmission would really be the most radical way of farming a task--the player deciding s/he had so completely redone the task that it warranted resubmitting. I would urge the community to think seriously about raining flags, abuse and invective down on a player who re-submitted a task that wasn't very good the second time around either, in a nakedly point-hogging fashion.

So my opinion/answer to Spårlächøgângé®'s question is "yes and no!" "Yes" by all means keep doing the task, duel over and over with as many people as you like. Keep adding notes to your duels. "No" you don't need to go about submitting it or getting the points again, unless your new rendition garners new votes (which would be nice!) Or keep doing tasks without recording your new moves or changes. I think people should do occasional upkeep on their tasks, absolutely.

oh and
posted by Burn Unit on July 10th, 2007 9:59 PM

one small note. You're not complaining about not getting enough votes are you? I mean, I'll grant you, the comment about "drying up" doesn't sound like a complaint but still...

(no subject)
posted by Malaysian Eddy on July 10th, 2007 10:05 PM

Oh Oh I want a duel duce! DO IT BITCHES DO IT NOW!!!

Oh no
posted by Lank on July 10th, 2007 10:15 PM

Yea verily, Senator, we all must learn from the sad parable of the Bubblesort.

Naw, no complaints. In fact, let me say loud and clear and sincerely,


to everyone who has seen fit to smile on the little tasks I do. I really, really appreciate the love from the community and do my best to share it / "pay it forward"!

And heck, I like to spur the Drive in everyone here. A little healthy, friendly competition (i.e., not in the style of the late BS) gives the game a little exciting edge.

you're welcome. IN THAT CASE
posted by Burn Unit on July 10th, 2007 10:17 PM




glasnost glasnost glasnost

posted by Blue on July 11th, 2007 11:47 AM


For a Duel!!!
Actually why don't you just create a new task and then I will sign up for it!!! Duel Reduel! Then all you will have to do is wait until some new tasks get approved...


posted by Lank on July 11th, 2007 12:41 PM

I'm having a vision of my future... and it includes pudding wrestling and sausage flails...

(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on July 11th, 2007 1:17 PM

i'll duel you too!

You Dare To Invoke the Wrath of the NIPPLE MONSTER!?!?!
posted by Blue on July 11th, 2007 2:38 PM

You Dare To Invoke the Wrath of the NIPPLE MONSTER!?!?!
A three(3)way duel??? Is there a word for that?

(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on July 11th, 2007 3:30 PM

and how would that work? task completions aside

(no subject)
posted by anna one on July 11th, 2007 3:36 PM

--A three(3)way duel??? Is there a word for that?

duel à trois?

posted by Blue on July 11th, 2007 4:29 PM

and how would that work? task completions asideA question Mathmaticians have pondered throughout the ages!!!

It depends what is the stage?!?! It cannot be DDI again... The platform would not support it... and besides that would be against the spirit of SFØ. If it is flailing sausage and pudding with dildo helmets... I think we would just have to find out.

We should do it in the spirit of whacky Japanese Televison!!!
It must atleast upstage our prior completion!

(no subject)
posted by Lank on July 11th, 2007 5:06 PM

I just submitted a new task suggestion which, if accepted, will serve us well...

If not accepted, we should do it anyway!

We'll see as of tomorrow...

(no subject)
posted by anna one on July 11th, 2007 6:45 PM

Ahem, we should totally do it in the spirit of wacky Japanese tv. That would be super.

(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on July 11th, 2007 8:29 PM


(no subject)
posted by SNORLAX on July 12th, 2007 1:58 PM


if I win, Shahllahckoe has to choose a group

(no subject)
posted by Lank on July 12th, 2007 2:39 PM

HA! That's gravy...

posted by anna one on July 12th, 2007 2:53 PM

That is a brilliant idea.

Yeah... Good luck with that...
posted by Blue on July 12th, 2007 2:59 PM

Yeah right!
I was almost tempted today... but now I WILL REALLY NEVER CHOOSE A GROUP!!!!

(no subject)
posted by YellowBear on August 11th, 2007 2:24 PM

I hope this thread hasn't dried up forever! it has been quiet for a long time, but you all need to get on the Deul Re-Deux, or Deul a Tois.

posted by Blue on August 11th, 2007 4:39 PM

Oh a duel-a-trois
that could be so sexy!!!

Well what about Ultimate Gonzo Cage-Free Super Slam Dada Match! YEah!!!

Whenever you say Ultimate Gonzo Cage-Free Super Slam Dada Match! it should be followed by a beastly groan!!!


That was the task that resulted from this thread; courtesy of lank

(no subject)
posted by anna one on August 12th, 2007 12:39 PM

oh yeah...
what ever happened to that idea? Hmmmm...