*This guest post is from Courtney Barnum from the facebook page "A Legion for Liam" and the blog My Life With My AuSome Son. Courtney is the mother of Liam, a 7 year old on the autism spectrum. This post is dedicated to Courtney finding an amazing ability in her son. Also check out our new promotion on Paper Clouds Apparel where you can help fund a scholarship for an adult to attend college!*
Hans Asperger has been quoted as saying, "For success in science and art, a dash of Autism is essential." LOVE this quote. I like to think Liam got his artsy fartsy side from me, and autism. While pregnant for Liam I was working as a tattoo artist, but soon was pulled from work because my pregnancy was deemed high risk.
I sat and dreamed for hours a day (when I wasn't vomiting my brains out) that my baby would love art like I do. To me it didn't matter what the canvas was. Paper, wood, metal, skin. I have always wanted to make it more beautiful with my art, and I prayed my baby would be the same when he/she was older.
Liam started drawing at 12 months old. It was all scribbles, but he was happy. Right away he rejected coloring books. He NEVER wanted to color someone else's art, he wanted to make his own. So we stocked up on white paper, and construction paper.
It has been amazing watching his art go from scribbles and scrawls, to people and animals. They are always very abstract. For awhile, he would choose one color and only use that. His first TSS (I miss her so) made him experiment with other colors. Through many tears, and many prompts Liam discovered that more than one color was fun. And an artist was born!
Artist hard at work.
I started a folder on our A Legion For Liam page and started posting his art. (you can view that HERE) One pic in particular caught Robert's eye, and he commented how art like that was what he at Paper Clouds Apparel was looking for. Liam felt so proud to be recognized by someone, so I contacted Robert and asked him all about his vision and Paper Clouds Apparel.
Once I heard that all we had to do was send in some of Liam's art, then choose a non profit group of our choice for part of the proceeds, we were in! Liam worked hard for a week creating different pictures, and we sent them off to Robert.
(The art that got Liam "discovered." This is his interpretation of he and I in town. He is on the left with his ear muffs on. He drew this for art class when he was asked to draw a picture of a busy town.)
|This is one of Liam's drawings being promoted on the shirt. Check out our promotion which begins Monday 4/29 and ends Sunday 5/12! 50% of the proceeds will go to help fund a scholarship for an adult with autism to go too college. Check out PaperCloudsApparel.com for buying information!|
Choosing a group for our campaign wasn't hard. I had just discovered Kerry Magro on facebook and was so inspired by all he does as an advocate and a voice for Autism. I contacted Kerry and put him in contact with Robert, and that was that. Kerry started KFM Making a Difference. A non-profit corporation focused on consulting and working on affordable housing projects for those with special needs. He also has a scholarship program for Autism! Now that is AUSOME!
Now came the hard part, waiting for our campaign to be ready and promote. I couldn't wait to see Liam's art on the tees. When Robert sent me a few shots from his phone during the photo shoot, I was ecstatic and Liam was jumping with excitement!
Another great reason to be involved with Paper Clouds Apparel, is Robert hires Special Needs adults to work for him packing the tees. The more tees Robert sells, the more jobs for special needs adults. How AUSOME is that???? I love when Robert posts pics of the adults he works with. They always look so happy and so proud of what they are doing. It makes my heart smile!
I feel honored to be a part of such a great organization. Liam feels "cool" because it is his art that is on the tees. That must feel really cool for him. So, open your heart, and please open your wallet, and purchase at least one of these AUSOME tees. You will not only be helping special needs adults get a job, but you will be "donating" to KFM Making Difference. I would say you will be "killing two birds with one stone" but Literal Liam hates that saying because he thinks you will really kill two birds. Instead you are helping 2 great organizations, and making a little boy smile.
(The shirts are $18 for the Children's shirts. Then $24 for the 100% cotton shirts and women's tank tops and then $27 for the super soft, sensory friendly tri-blend shirts.) (50% of the profits go to KFM Making a Difference.)