‘When you meet someone with albinism, don’t underestimate what they can achieve.’
“I was born with albinism, and my parents encouraged me to not let my limited vision stop me from trying new things. I started taking art classes at The Tiny Artist Children’s Arts Studio. I loved hand-making paintings and giving them away as gifts. Making art is a great tool of communication for me because it helps me express what I’m seeing. I also take photos for inspiration, and zooming into those images has helped me gain an understanding of detail that I normally don’t see. Many people don’t realize that most people with albinism are legally blind or have some kind of vision impairment.
“While this can create challenges, I do not view having albinism as a negative thing, rather a positive; it is a part of who I am, but it does not define me. When you meet someone with albinism, don’t underestimate what they can achieve. Growing up, I had a very strong sense of community. I went boating with my family and played outside with my friends. I was in middle school when Superstorm Sandy hit, and my house was flooded. Everyone in the neighborhood came together to support each other.
I am excited to continue growing as an artist and individual with my family and friends around me.
“When I was in college, my neighbor told me about Splashes of Hope, a nonprofit organization that creates art for hospitals. I became their volunteer coordinator, and I love it because it allows me to honor my love for art and community all at once. I am also a Junior Advisory Council member for the National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation, where I advocate for people in the albinism community. Throughout college, I was also a MassArt volunteer opportunities coordinator and the pioneer and lead peer mentor for MassArt MAICEI, a program which allows students labeled as having severe intellectual disabilities to take part in the college experience.
“I would like to be an art teacher one day, but I don’t have any very specific goals right now. I am just figuring things out and leaving the door open to see where life leads me. I am excited to continue growing as an artist and individual with my family and friends around me.”