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Second Sense - Beyond Vision Loss

Connie Avery

I grew up in a small town in Northern NY wearing hearing aids from age 5.  I was a LPN for many years before being diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa at age 30 and later Usher’s Syndrome.  At age 43, I decided to return to my first love, art.  Despite all the difficulties with my vision, I was not going to let it stop me from my dream of being an artist.

Cataract surgery 5 years ago opened my cloudy central vision to brightness and color, but not my peripheral vision which was getting smaller.  I have found these restrictions allow me to take a different and interesting path with my artwork: which I call a keyhole approach.  This effect helps me to study the areas on the canvas and maximize the effects of brush marks, colors, shapes and the overall flow of the painting.  Using an iPad or iPhone to see the work condensed as well as looking at my work from a distance helps me to look at the work from different sizes and angles and helps me to visually see the actual effects of the painting.

My latest body of work is in reaction to experimenting with acrylic ink, expressive painting and images inspired by memories of stained glass creations by my youngest brother who also was an artist who struggled with RP/Usher’s.  Applying the acrylic ink in quick random drawings onto blank canvas or on top of expressively painted surfaces creates another artistic journey.  This allows me to reach into the canvas and the markings to draw out the images that were created by the spontaneity of the lines and/or strokes of colors and shapes created by the ink and/or the paint under the ink.  Applying paints in varying consistencies and wiping it away creates the illusion of stained glass.  The movements and special effects created by these methods are what attract many of my clients to my artwork.

Aborem Spem #4

The Great Salmon Run

Rhapsody in Bloom