It’s been 3 days since I learned about my own Aphantasia.


I, like probably most of the people with Aphantasia, didn’t even knew that had it before making a little research by yourself.

After feeling very sad and left out (and also making sense of some things that happened in the past that connect with my lack of imagery) and also wanted to learn more, hear more from people with, etc. After one video I ended up here. And yes, also tried to search from a “cure” in Google just before realizing that I was just desperate and it won’t be possible for me.

I’ve also read about people that can live a entire life and not even notice the difference between having of not the condition. I wish that I could be like that too, but sadly I needed to have a visual image of things… Because i wanted to draw. I wanted to create.

It’s been years since I started to study… and I always stopped. I thought I was just lazy, or not doing it hard enough? Things just didn’t get in my mind and I could not use them when I needed. Even so, in 2019 I decided: I’m gonna study and I am gonna do it. This is all I want. After months, every time I wanted to draw something for me, just for myself… things still felt wrong, out of place and needed so many references. I once again got the idea that I was just not being good enough yet. How can I study almost every single day about shapes, forms, 3D and etc. and still get them wrong when I need just to get it from my mind?! Now I know why.

Being honesty with myself I don’t think I can blame all my incapacity to learn in Aphantasia, but it sure puts a name in a invisible obstacle that I always had. Since it’s recent discovery for me I still am trying to make peace with this but at the same time I want to put all to rest. I feel extremely sad that I will never truly create something from myself, and it was all that I truly wanted to do someday. Now I am not so sure.

I really hope to one day we have the knowledge or even technology to change this.
Sorry about this.

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Hi Jack.

I also just found out I have aphantasia. I’ve been a fiction author for the past 20 years.

I can’t draw at all, so I can’t offer you advice there. But I am proof that it is possible to be creative even if you can’t imagine things visually.

Why does art or drawing have to be realistic? Why not surrealism, expressionism, minimalism, or any ism at all? Abstract art. Start slapping paint on a canvas and see what happens. If you can’t close your eyes and see an apple to draw, what can you draw that feels like an apple?

Don’t give up. This isn’t a disability. It’s just a different perspctive. 

How did you discover aphantasia, jack s?

I’d always thought of myself as a visual thinker – until I realised I never deliberately saw pictures. Now I find aphantasia fascinating. And we’re special – only about 1 in 50 people have this condition.  I hope you’ll come to appreciate it too.

As for the art, don’t give up. My sister is a professional artist, my daughter is doing art A level. Both have aphantasia. I guess it’s a case of finding what works for you. My sister specialises in built landscapes – such as rows of terraced houses, she also explores the colour palettes in a scene. If she draws figures, they tend to be in a cartoony style. My daughter draws from models, so she has something to refer to. There are other artists with aphantasia – take a look at the articles on this webite, the very first is ‘Visualisation and Why We Don’t Need it to Make Visual Art’.

Keep trying, use whatever works for you, and have fun!