Gregory Chapman is known not just for being a beloved suburban Chicago art teacher, but also for his signature colorful paintings – most of which he could never truly see.
Chapman, an art teacher at St. Charles East High School, is color blind. His eyes are red and green color deficient, he said.
For a while, he relied on the help of his supporters to “see” his incredibly colorful artwork. They would attempt to describe the bright pinks, the deep reds and earthy greens.
But nothing could compare to seeing the colors themselves.
That’s why his students decided to take action to help Chapman finally be able to see the colors he teaches about in his classroom.
They started a GoFundMe page to help raise money to buy Chapman a pair of glasses that would help him see color in a more vibrant way.
“If you've taken an art class with Mr. Chapman at St. Charles East High School, you already know what an awesome teacher, mentor and colorful person he is,” wrote student Jessie Schramm. “In case you missed out, Mr. Chapman is a one of a kind teacher. He loves his job and it is very evident in his work. With being such a positive figure in many of his students [sic] lives, he has inspired a lot of us and I think it is time to give back.”
In about one week, the page surpassed its goal of $620. As of Wednesday, it had raised $710 for Chapman.
The EnChroma glasses are said to help the color deficient “more quickly and accurately identify and interpret important color-coded information.”
After giving him the unexpected gift, Chapman's wife filmed his reaction to putting the glasses on for the first time.
Almost immediately after putting the glasses on, Chapman bursts into tears.
“I truly didn’t know what I was missing,” Chapman wrote in the video’s caption. “Thanks to all your gofundme donations the world is a richer, more colorful place.”