Libby is telling stories in her own way

25 September 2020

Blindness or low vision can often be a challenge to employment, but like many others Libby has made the most of what technology has to offer to help her establish her dream career.

Libby was born with ocular albinism and has recently established her own business producing custom animated videos.

Libby decided to go out on her own after her previous role was impacted byCOVID-19. Her work involves scripting and designing animated videos for a variety of purposes and clients including small businesses, training and marketing.

Making the most of an opportunity

Ironically, it’s COVID-19 that’s opened these opportunities for Libby.

“With everything shifting back to digital, I thought it was the right time to start my own business,” Libby said. 

“I have a foot in both the learning and development and communications world, and that helps me to tell stories that can educate audiences or communicate a message. I’ve seen a lot of bad communication material in the past and want to avoid that,” she said.

Libby’s previous employment had been in fields such as administration, IT and learning and development, which has helped her understand the needs of the businesses she produces content for.

Learning the right skills

It was in one of these roles that Libby learned about Powtoon, a video animation software she could use as someone who has low vision. Other more well-known platforms didn’t suit her needs.

“I have really wanted to master the Adobe suite. Some programs like Adobe Spark I can use, but the normal Adobe Photoshop with its poor colour contrast and small font makes it difficult.

“Powtoon has changed everything for me, now I want to make videos for everything!

“When I first discovered it I created around two dozen videos in two years. In my previous role we used my videos to launch projects, for workplace training and to communicate specific messages to employees. They were a big hit.”

"Libby standing to the right of a pink balloon with the words "Just a girl who decided to go for it" written on it."

Finding inspiration

Along with workplace challenges like inaccessible software, Libby has faced and overcome other challenges in her life.

She experienced bullying during her high school years due to her albinism and while at university was diagnosed with and underwent treatment for Stage 3 Malignant Melanoma, and today deals with numerous other health issues.

Libby’s personal desire has played a huge part in her overcoming those challenges, but she said she also draws inspiration from those around her.

“My friends with disabilities inspire me.

“I’ve got friends with dyslexia, hearing impairments and mental health issues, and they’re all getting on with it with some help. They’re all doing what they love and not letting their disabilities set them back.”

Living the life she chooses

It’s that attitude that has helped Libby realise what she believes is her biggest achievement.

“I think my greatest success is that I’ve travelled a lot. I’ve been to over 20 countries and a lot of those were by myself. I have had struggles, but people only see what you put on Facebook.

 “In Budapest I fell off a bike. In Amsterdam I had to abandon a bike ride due to the limitations of the crazy city, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been lost!

“One of my biggest achievements as someone with low vision was mastering my Samsung smartphone. In Norway I had been taught to adjust my settings to take photos of the Northern Light and in a group of 20 I was the only one who could capture them, and I was thrilled!”

To see some examples of Libby's work, please visit https://www.visualstorytellingsolutions.com.au/