A form of synaesthesia in which people experience letters or numbers in colour may be trainable. The discovery could shed new light on how such traits develop.
Synaesthesia is thought to have a genetic component, but some people have reported synaesthetic experiences following hypnosis, soOlympia Colizoli at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands, and colleagues, wondered if it might also be possible to acquire synaesthesia through training.
To test the idea, they gave seven volunteers a novel to read in which certain letters were always written in red, green, blue or orange (see picture). Before and after reading the book, the volunteers took a “synaesthetic crowding” test, in which they identified the middle letter of a grid of black letters which were quickly flashed onto a screen. Synaesthetes perform better on the test when a letter they experience in colour is the target letter.
The volunteers performed significantly better on this test after training compared with people who read the novel in black and white.
The findings suggest that natural synaesthesia may develop as a result of childhood experiences as well as genetics, says Colizoli, who presented the findings at the Forum of European Neuroscience in Amsterdam last week.
(via Can you teach yourself synaesthesia? - life - 12 July 2010 - New Scientist)
Ever wonder what music looks like to someone with synaesthesia? Well, I can’t speak for others, but this mandala turned out much like a song looks to me. That is, if the song were trance, with a female singer, harmonics, a tribal drumbeat, and some orchestra backup (brass and violins). Yummy.
(via Taste of Music by ~Mirrorlily on deviantART)
Relax, it’s Caturday! ^^ Part of my Days of the Week Synaesthesia series.
This is actually the first one I did. I kept telling myself I would redo it, better. But I looked at it today and it occurred to me that it’s fine the way it is: Saturday is lazy and indifferent. He’s happy to just laze around doing nothing, or stare at his fingernails. He doesn’t even really have much color to him; I just added color to match the letters of the word “SATURDAY”. I was too lazy to even go back when I realized I hadn’t signed it. Oh well. It’s still MY art, go ahead and steal this? lol.
Prismacolors on typing paper.
(via Syn: Saturday by ~SpankytheAngelofDoom on deviantART)
"Fat Old Sun" ~ Pink Floyd
in my perception.
I love this song a lot cause it´s just so orange. Also I love the meaning.
Sometimes I think it´s surprising how good a song matches to it´s meaning. This song is about the sunset, and the colours match, don´t they? But this can´t be an associativity cause I had heard this song when I wasn´t able to understand English (I think I even couldn´t write in this time) and the song was orange for me. I it´s really interessting for me to think about such things and to find out more about my perception.
(via Fat Old Sun by *CapraScriba on deviantART)
I associate names with spices.
Sounds weird I know, but when someone tells me their name, in my head there is a corresponding spice. Sometimes its the color of the spice, sometimes the shape, and sometimes the smell, but invariably, it is a spice.
Strangely enough, I told my best friend that her name reminded me of cinnamon the day we met. Which happened to be the first day of kindergarten.
She still thinks I’m a freak for this, and I’m pretty sure it influenced our not being very close for a while.
I don’t care. Saying her name still makes me think of a cinnamon stick. I can’t help it, it pops into my head every time.
The name Avinell brings to mind the smell of vanilla, and Annelise looks like star anise when someone says it.
I’m a freak
London Tastes Like Potatoes
Synesthesia is strange. I’m pretty much sure I have it, although I’ve never been tested. Originally I always thought to myself
“Calm down Dave, you just have an overactive imagination”
But no, I think I have it, especially when it comes to names like Massachusetts, it tastes like hazelnuts, I even get that kinda, dry feeling in my mouth when you eat nuts.
It isn’t just sounds though, it’s noises. ‘Dublin’ for example, sounds to me like a rock being dropped into a lake but from beneath the waters surface. It’s weird, and I guess it helps my creativity :)
You don’t need to be tested to tell if you have synesthesia or not — most synesthetes aren’t. You can take a test at http://synesthete.org, though they might not have tests for the specific kinds of synesthesia you have. (All of their tests involve colors.)
synesthesia doesnt make me feel pain, its just that sometimes after a long too many disturbing sounds and too many colors my head hurts :) i love not feeling alone
I am the ass of a shadow
as the color four
is just the number purple
and the sea is a cistern
made to bear the light of stars.
A leaf that falls is just a sigh,
Just as the sparrow hopping on that leaf,
Is the laughter in a child’s eye.
(via an ephemeral synaesthesia by ~dannyhusk on deviantART)
A friend of mine is doing a short film about synesthesia. Check it out and consider donating! If they reach their fundraising goal, they’ll have a synesthete make paintings for the film and have a professional director directing it. If this interests you but you can’t donate, please reblog!
I blogged about this a few weeks ago, but I figured I’d let my new followers know about it. Please donate or reblog if this interests you!