New player? Sign Up Here
The Artful Dodger
Level 2: 78 points
Alltime Score: 730 points
Last Logged In: March 31st, 2015
TEAM: The Disorganised Guerilla War On Boredom and Normality TEAM: San Francisco Zero TEAM: NY0 TEAM: LØVE TEAM: LØWELL
30 + 105 points

Seeing Beyond Sight Photo Challenge by The Artful Dodger, WEX

May 4th, 2008 4:38 PM

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.

- smaller

My Friend and I in A Car

My Friend and I in A Car

When I first saw this picture, it surprised me, because it was so unlike any photo I would take with my eyes open. Many of the photos taken before this one seemed perfectly commonplace: there was my cat, my skylight, the pavement, a tree, all things I would photograph with my eyes open. How, then, could this particular photo seem so full of emotion and deliberation, when I wasn't even sure what I was thinking when I took it? What had I done, besides go blind, to make this photo so different? Also important in this picture is my best friend and guide for this task, who wishes to be known as "Isaac". He is the face in the bend of the silver curve. Isaac made sure I made it across the street in one piece, helped me find Braille on a streetpole's fire alarm, and yelled "OBSTACLE!" whenever he had to. I still managed to walk straight into two trees and a stop sign, and was heartily laughed at on several occasions. It's all right, though; more obstacles meant better pictures. (Do you see a bright spot of light with a red-haired mummy behind it? That's me, taking the picture, blindfolded by ACE Bandage.)

The Tourists

The Tourists

Isaac and I climbed to the top of Vulcan Peak in San Francisco, where I took a picture of "the view" only to be told that I had just photographed a solid piece of rock (sometimes Isaac had good reason to laugh). On our descent, Isaac spyed this tourist couple gawking, and explained that I was conducting an experiment. "Yeah, don't worry," I said, glad to be engaging with others as the task required. "I'm not actually blind." I waved, hopefully in the right direction, and snapped the shot. "Oh!" cried the wife, and I realized that I would never need to look this woman in the eye, ever. I knew everything about her, the terror and delight she felt at having her picture taken by a complete stranger, how her appearance worried her, what she would remember from this encounter and what she'd try to block out, all from her making that one sound, "Oh". I will never forget that. As Isaac and I treaded down, I heard the man say "Wow!", as clearly as if he was holding my other hand, helping me down. I wasn't sure what he found amazing, the view, or what he had just witnessed. I was very proud of the two of us, Isaac and I.

The Summit

The Summit

When blind, there were only three things I could feel that assured me I was still attached to Earth, that Isaac's voice was not speaking to me through a black fog in some parallel world. One was the ground beneath my feet, which I photographed a great deal. One was the wind, which I wish I could have captured in a photograph, so strongly did I feel it all around me. The last was the sunlight, making my eyelids blaze fierce orange, becoming colder when I was hidden under a tree or a rock, giving me all it could in its changes so that I could feign sight and stumble in the right direction. I took sunlight's picture, as a thank you for helping me find my way.

21 vote(s)


(none yet)

5 comment(s)

(no subject)
posted by help im a bear on May 4th, 2008 8:07 PM

that first picture is gorgeous

(no subject)
posted by teucer on May 4th, 2008 8:37 PM

Indeed. I voted as soon as I saw it.

And then the whole thing is good too. Hooray!

(no subject)
posted by Loki on May 5th, 2008 9:05 PM

I love the description of encountering the other people on the trail.

(no subject) +1
posted by lefthandedsnail on July 27th, 2008 2:17 AM

The luxury of intimately knowing a stranger is highly underrated.

(no subject)
posted by Jackie Hasa on May 5th, 2008 10:13 PM

this is beautiful. welcome!