A blind man is using his artistic talent to help further different causes.
When he was younger, Jeff Hanson, from Overland Park, Kansas, was diagnosed with neurofibromatosis, a genetic disorder which caused a brain tumor that eventually left him legally blind, CBS News reported. But regardless of his vision loss, the 21-year-old has become an accomplished artist with about 1,400 paintings under his belt. What's more, the artist has donated more than $1 million worth of paintings to charity.
"I thought it would be good to give back to the world and not use it for myself," Hanson told USA Today back in 2013. "My art makes people happy."
The artist's mother, Julie, first introduced him to art as a distraction from the chemotherapy treatments he had when he was young, CBS reported. The hobby turned into a successful business, with originals selling for around $4,000 each, and famous fans including Warren Buffett and Elton John.
The artwork's popularity soon led Hanson to begin using his paintings as a force for good. When he was 19 years old, he promised to give away $1 million by the time he turned 20, USA Today reported. The artist met his goal by donating his work to over 100 organizations, including the Make-a-Wish Foundation and the Children's Tumor Foundation.
High Tide in St Tropez22" x 28" x 2.5"Acrylic on Heavily Textured CanvasHigh Gloss Finish
Creating the masterpieces is no easy feat, but Hanson has found a way to utilize his strengths in the painting process. The 21-year-old, who is only able to vaguely make out shapes and colors, relies on texture to help him, according to CBS. Hanson first applies a thick, plastic substance to his canvas, and once it hardens he then slathers on a coat of flat black and uses the ridges to guide himself around his work.
While the process may sound strenuous, the artist is more than happy to put in the work.
"Each one of them is a labor of love," Julie told CNN in 2011. "Each one of them is very special."
To learn more about the artist, visit his website here.