Everyone knows mental and/or physical conditions are pretty bad, and most just downright suck. However, there are some that can be considered good, in a certain light. Take synesthesia for example.

Synesthesia is a very rare condition that affects the neurological system where the pathways in the brain that govern our senses can become crossed or linked – and we don’t know why or how.

What this means is that our normal senses – tasting allows us to taste things in our mouth, smelling scents, seeing things in the world around us – are crossed over. People with synesthesia can see sounds, taste colors, feel food they eat, or really any combination of senses! How cool can that be?

Well, artist Melissa McCracken has decided to use this to her advantage and think positively about it. She decided to allow everyone the privilege of “seeing” music the way she does – by listening to music and painting what she sees in her eyes. The songs she chose were some of the best hits from the last three decades – the results were astounding.

When listening to John Lennon’s “Imagine”, she saw lots of cool colors divided by a yellow swarm of what looks like butterflies and leaves. On either side is white fading to bluish colors, looking as if a reflection in a pool. Pretty deep.

artist with synesthesia imagine

When listening to “Gravity” by John Mayer, McCracken decorated her medium with wild splashes of yellow and white and other warm colors against a cool blue backdrop.

artist with synesthesia gravity

While McCracken listened to Prince’s “Joy in Repetition”, she saw wild splashes of color, almost as if something had exploded. Needless to say, there is nothing “repetitive” about this painting.

artist with synesthesia joy in repetition

It’s hard to imagine, after listening to this song, why we all don’t feel the way this picture looks!

Whilst listening to “Since I’ve Been Loving You” by Led Zeppelin, McCracken painted a beautiful collage of warm colors on the background with cool colors spiked throughout the painting.

artist with synesthesia since ive been loving you

It’s safe to say this painting semi-resembles a lionfish in the middle, giving what could be an ironic response to loving someone!

When McCracken listened to “Life on Mars” by one of the most iconic rock stars of all time, David Bowie, she saw lots of bright colors. Strange to think that life on mars could have some colorful characters.

artist with synesthesia life on mars

Perhaps the most interesting thing about this painting, with its wild splashes of bright colors, it’s that it looks suspiciously like something David Bowie would have worn when he made this song.

And finally, in this collection, McCracken jammed to “Little Wing” by Jimi Hendrix. It is quite amusing that the picture she saw and painted resembles what looks like splashes of yellow wings swarming into a blue backdrop. A jumble of colors can reveal how complex this song truly is.

artist with synesthesia little wing

Image credit: Melissa McCracken

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This Post Has One Comment

  1. John

    These are fantastic.

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