Kim Crothers

Kim Crothers was diagnosed with Autosomal Dominant Optic Atrophy (ADOA) at six, a condition that has significantly shaped her life and career as a freelance graphic designer, illustrator, and artist. ADOA affects Kim’s optic nerve, causing gradual vision loss, low acuity, and color blindness, resulting in moderate low vision.

Kim Crothers headshot.

Kim's passion for art led her to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in graphic design from Mississippi State University. Kim’s first job after college was as a web designer for WorldCom. As Kim’s vision declined in her late twenties and early thirties, making it hard for her to read words, menus, and icons on her phone, she sought out adaptive tools and technologies.

Magnification software has become essential, allowing her to continue working on detailed graphic design projects. She can easily zoom in to examine details she can't see and then zoom out again to view the bigger picture. Bioptic glasses help her see beyond ten feet, though she is still searching for solutions to assist with close-up vision.

Kim continued to work at WorldCom for three years until her first child was born, then began working from home. Soon after, she launched a website that focused on digital scrapbooking and began freelancing for companies like Scrapbooks Etc., by Better Homes and Gardens, Costco, and Sony. Kim prefers to work remotely from home to control her schedule and personalize her workspace.

Kim’s greatest professional achievement is illustrating a children’s book for youth with visual impairments. The book What I Can Be Is Up To Me by Kristin Smedley combines illustrations with braille pages and features characters with visual impairments, making it a dream project for Kim. She is currently working with the publisher on four more book illustrations that should be released in 2025.  

Kim encourages young individuals with visual impairments to seek mentors and role models who use accessibility tools. She emphasizes the importance of community and support, recommending resources like What I Can Be Is Up to Me and Thriving Blind by Kristin Smedley, as well as the Thriving Blind Academy, which connects individuals with visual impairments to role models.

Beyond her professional achievements, Kim finds joy in spending time with her husband, Kevin, their three kids, and three dogs. She also cherishes moments with her parents, who live nearby.