Deaf culture

Deaf Lens in cinematography and videography

Deaf lens is a concept in which cinematic techniques and editing in videos and films are of Deaf perspective. Rather than being influenced by hearing mainstream in films and videos, Deaf artists, filmmakers, and creators look within themselves how they can produce such arts from their visual-oriented perspective and their visual-spatial language.

"Deaf Lens" presentation (2010) by Wayne Betts Jr at TEDxlslay.


Jolanta Lapiak, media artist (the creator of this site) produced several experimental video arts of her style where she explored techniques: "Lone Poetry: a video poem", "Music Score", "Reading, speaking and/or writing" (yes the title with a strikethrough), "Deaf or Dead" (her first video produced) and more.

In these videos, she explored for innovative techniques that play with sign language (ASL), cinematic techniques in both ASL and video, and images.


During the same time period, producers Wayne Betts, Jr. and Chad Taylor of Deaf-owned film studio Mosdeux, released a short film Vital Signs. Likewise, this short film plays an integration of American Sign Language (primarily focusing on classifiers), motion images, and cinematographic techniques incorporated with classifiers and cinematics in ASL.


A team of brilliant Deaf creators produced a film known as The Gallaudet Film, delving deeply into a Deaf Lens.

The animation artist, Braam Jordaan, presents an overivew of the post production and his work. See "The Gallaudet Film" video below to experience a Deaf lens.

Team players involve director Ryan Commerson, producer Dirksen Bauman, editor Wayne Betts, animation artist Jr., Braam Jordaan, and other crew members.

Deaf people are invaluable lingual-cultural group of human beings for their world of visual perspective, visual-spatial language, visual learning, and such. It's unimaginable how world would be dominantly phonocentric without Deaf-gain and Deaf unique contributions.

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New to sign language? "Where do I start?" or "How do I start learning sign language?" This ASL Rookie guide lists some selected links to the tutorials for ASL beginners to get started and keep rolling. It may be a useful review for intermediate-level learners and ASL students as well.

Some tutorial pages are a mix of free and premium versions. Access to premium content and links below are available in the PatronPlus subscription. More links/posts will be added from time to time.

Expressing needs and wants

  1. Making commands or requests

Talking about activities

  1. Frequency of time: how often?

Are you able to carry everyday conversations in ASL? Are you a student in the intermediate levels and beyond, who wishes to boost up your signing skills? You've come to the selected tutorial series. (Some premium content are available to PatronPlus membership.)

Stories, poems, performance arts, etc. in sign language.

This documentation project follows a child's language acquisition, literacy development, and phonological acquisition in sign language, specifically ASL, from newborn to age five in a natural native-ASL environment and visual culture.