Currently available in both hardcover and paperback
(Braille and audio to be released in Dec. 2016)
CLICK HERE TO WATCH the BOOK TRAILER
Tumblehome Learning Publishers, July 2016.
The BookPainting in the Dark tells the story of Esref Armagan, an artist from Turkey who was born without sight. Rachelle Burk captures his extraordinary life in this picture book as he learns to “see” not with his eyes, but with his hands.
The story begins with Esref as a young boy in his father's shop, scraping shapes into cardboard with a nail. Then, as he develops a passion for drawing, he learns to use his other faculties to visually represent the world around him. “One day you will be a great artist,” his Baba tells him.
The book contains illustrations by Claudia Gadotti, as well as Esref’s own paintings and drawings.
Tumblehome Learning plans to produce books that contain braille and tactile image so Esref’s inspirational story can be accessible to all children. Just as Esref learned to view his world through touch, the tactile pictures will help blind children to understand visual concepts like shadows and depth. If we reach our stretch goal, we will be able to create an iBook that reads the story out loud and describes the illustrations.
KIRKUS REVIEW:An illuminating portrait of a self-taught Turkish artist who, despite being blind from birth, has become an internationally known painter...Burk traces Esref Armagan's long efforts to develop his skills, to earn recognition and a living, and to fend off skeptics claiming that he must be cheating, somehow...The author's particular focus on the artist's development—his discoveries of shadows and of perspective, for instance—and specific techniques for preparing canvases with modeling clay or glued-down string offer real insight into how obstacles raised by physical disabilities can be overcome with motivation and ingenuity....Informative as well as inspiring. (Picture book/biography. ages 7-10)
MORE REVIEWS :
"Mr. Armagan has demonstrated for the first time that a blind person can develop on his or her own pictorial skills the equal of most depiction by the sighted. This has not happened before in the history of picture-making." —John M. Kennedy, Professor, Perception/Cognition Psychology, University of Toronto at Scarborough (and a scientist involved in testing Esref's abilities)
"A valuable addition to any elementary school curriculum. The author is to be commended for sharing the story of this largely unknown painter in this well-written, entertaining, and inspiring book." —Stephanie Kieszak-Holloway, President of the Georgia Organization of Parents of Blind Children (GOPBC), Board Member of the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children (NOPBC)
"A story of talent, perseverance, and refusal to accept limitations. Esref's triumph will inspire young readers to stretch toward goals they may not have believed were within their reach. This is a thoroughly researched manuscript that introduces young readers to a remarkable artist they will long remember." —Deborah Stein Kent, National Federation of the Blind
"I feel connected to Esref through Ms. Burk’s book. May Painting in the Dark break down our misconceptions and encourage us all to find our internal vision, to follow our heart’s desires, and never pre-judge our neighbor’s abilities." —Barbara Oswald, blind artist, photographer, gallery owner, Program Coordinator for the Disability Resource Center at Bellevue College in Seattle.
"Fills a niche that is much needed – biographies of people with disabilities which are both educational and enjoyable, and which do not focus on the disability itself. . . . The book is uplifting and inspiring. . . . Its educational and scientific details give it depth." —Laura Weber Secretary, National Organization of Parents of Blind Children President, Texas Parents of Blind Children
"I have given it a place in my Top 10 of elementary school books...Painting in the Dark deserves a prominent display in school art rooms, during instruction of biology and human senses, in curriculum integrating technology and fine arts, children’s libraries and in school guidance offices." ~ Ann Tavino, school guidance counselor I recommend it for fourth through sixth grades