Paul Smith was born with severe cerebral palsy. In his Oregon nursing, Smith types away with one finger tirelessly. However, he’s no author. In fact, he considers himself an artist, and once you see what he’s creating you’ll certainly agree.

As a touch typing specialist I would not usually promote hunting and pecking at the keyboard, but this is an exception. Paul Smith was born with severe cerebral palsy. He has a special talent, one he has had since an early age. He is unable to use a typewriter like it was intended; in fact, he only uses the letters and symbols on the top row. Paul creates beautiful art using his typewriter, recalling memories and copying from photographs and real works of art.

An artist at work. Take a look and see if you agree.

We have been teaching how to create this kind of art (ASKII) and typography as an extension to our program in the classroom. After our students are taught to type using the Qwertynomics Methodology, students are asked to design art, using a computer and not looking at their fingers. The students really enjoy this activity and it really allows them to express their creativity. Our students are really fast typists, allowing their fingers to create beautiful art and practice their skills, especially using some of the less used characters on the keyboard.

Don’t just think of your keyboard as something to write with. Create other things with it too and have some fun.


Do something out of the ordinary. Use your talents, no matter what they are. Overcome your own personal challenges and find your way to express yourself. It may not always be the norm.

We would love to see any ASKII art you have created. Please send it to