What an honor it is to once again participate and support the AutismHighway’s Autism Chalk Festival this year. In the past four years I’ve seen the Festival bring the community together, thread by thread, family by family, and artist by artist.
Expressing myself through art has been a long personal journey, and my art is the life thread of my existence. It calms me, focuses me and gives me energy to face daily challenges. I crave the time to create from my heart, and continue to take advantage of any moment offering me a chance to create something exceptional.
This year, Kelly Green asked that I create a portrait of Temple Grandin. Most of us with children and adults on the Autism spectrum know of this iconic woman…who despite the odds, has created a life around her abilities and interest, and has shared her journey through books, seminars and documentaries. This is not an easy feat in today’s society. With unemployment rates high, and instability in the job market, it is difficult for anyone to find work they truly enjoy. Now, enter the world of Autism, and suddenly unemployment is the norm. ve have “transition programs”, “day programs” and “work study programs” , and for those individuals identified as “high functioning” there is a scattering of jobs and job programs. Temple Grandin is showing us different possibilities. She brings us hope for our children, offering ideas of acceptance and helping us to focus on our loved ones skills. She models her ideals as she surrounds herself with what she loves, and in so doing has found a place in the job market. What a joy it is for me to create portrait of Temple Grandin in her element.
Stay tuned tomorrow as I show hour by hour the progress on this virtual Chalk Portrait. Beginning time…9am