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Second Sense - Beyond Vision Loss

Stella De Genova

Patron Sponsor:Illinois College of Optometry and Illinois Eye Institute logo


“What is left of my vision is a couple of muted colors but mostly shades of gray.  I have a minimal field of vision and what I do see is blurred.  As natural or artificial light around me dims, so does my vision.  Working on a painting has become more and more intimidating because I still want to hold my work up to the standards of the visual world. I realize that the colors or details may not be exact, and I can only hope that it can add to the personality of the painting.  Out of necessity, this makes my style looser.

“I work in the best possible lighting, which usually means daylight along with extra lamps and magnification for small areas.  I try to keep my pastels in good order so I have an idea of what color I’m using.  I work with pastels for their richness and the process of working from dark to light works well for me.  My compositions vary but they work best when I feel a personal connection. When I have finished a painting, I check my values and lines but the end result of my color choices is a surprise even to me.

“I have taken art classes through my life and enjoy receiving constructive criticism and positive input.  My paintings have been exhibited at art galleries, exhibits, restaurants and boutiques.

“This last year has been a period of extremes: pandemic, politics and racial reckoning.  During this time of isolation, I used my art as an outlet to express what I was feeling or thinking about.  Some of my work reflected solitude. I’ve also started a color series and just as my palette is unlimited so are the colors and dreams of my portraits.”

Color Series 2: Vice President