THE audio diary of a man who lost his sight has been turned into a documentary.

John Hull lost his sight in the 1980s and kept an audio diary of his experience of sight loss, from the grief he felt through to his acceptance.

John, a theologian from Birmingham, recorded more than 16 hours of material over three years to help him cope with and understand his sight loss.

The diaries were first published in 1990 in a book titled Touching the Rock and have now been turned into the documentary Notes on Blindness.

The documentary uses original recordings from John’s cassette tapes, including recordings that feature his daughter Imogen Blood as a child, and actors lip sync to the audio material.

Imogen, who lives in Manchester, said the documentary was an incredible tribute to her father, who passed away at the age of 80 about a week into filming.

“It’s (the documentary) about the period in the years following the point at which my dad lost his sight,” she said.

“He had always struggled with his sight but he finally reached a stage where he was losing light sensation and faced with total blindness.”

John Hull

John Hull

Imogen said the audio diaries, and in turn documentary, showed the different stages of acceptance her father went through – practical, deep depression and acceptance.

“He was a writer and a thinker and a reflector and that was his way of coping.”

Imogen said the directors used cinematography to explore some of her father’s experiences.

“They recreate some of his dreams; use darkness and bright light and the sense that images are going away to depict what it would be like.”

Imogen said she and her family hoped the film would help others experiencing sight loss.

There are three soundtrack options available with Notes on Blindness – a standard version with no extra description or sound effects, an audio described version and an enhanced soundtrack version which uses more original narration from John and his wife Marilyn to tell the story.

Notes on Blindness is playing in UK cinemas and on video on demand. For more information visit