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The Inspiring Iris Grace

Updated: Sep 7

Sharing the work of another artist today. 🎨

A pencil line drawing of an iris

Hi Friends,

If you followed me on Instagram before, you may recall that I really enjoyed sharing and supporting the work of other artists – especially through my weekly “Sharing Sunday” posts. The world is full of inspiring creativity that deserves a spotlight! I wanted to continue in the spirit of that tradition in this newsletter. So every once and awhile, expect to see amazing art from someone else featured here.

Today's artist is Iris Grace. She's 13 now, and made a splash at the age of five creating abstract paintings that showed artistic maturity beyond her years:

From left to right: Kumbengo, Tumpty-tum, Kuendelea

Grace is autistic, and her mother documented her story through photography and writing. Here are some of the highlights:

“In the early days life itself seemed distressing for Iris. She was withdrawn, not speaking and seemed to be locked away behind her books, avoiding all social and eye contact, and not developing language…Slowly, I learned how to connect with her by following her interests, seeing the world of nature through her eyes and allowing her to set the pace. It wasn’t always an easy road, but it led to Iris discovering her talents as a painter. When she was in front of her painting table, her incredible ability to focus shone.”

A little girl painting in a garden

“She produced art which has moved a wide audience: news of her paintings spread throughout the world…It was an incredible experience watching her story grow and the positive impact she had on people’s lives. Our little girl who struggled to communicate was reaching and inspiring so many.”

A blue and yellow abstract painting

Namazzi Blue

“Gradually, I found a path to real communication with Iris. And this path grew ever wider after Iris formed a strong relationship with her Maine Coon cat Thula. It was Thula who helped Iris overcome her fear of water, who solved her troubles with sleeping and who led her into playing with others."

A little girl painting while her cat sits nearby watching

“We share our experiences to show that there can be a bright future, even with a severe diagnosis. Our message – if we follow our children into their world, we can learn, understand and discover that different is brilliant.” I love this story, and Iris's calming and immersive paintings. To see and learn more, feel free to check out their website or follow on social media:

­All the best, from someone who also appreciates the importance of a good studio assistant. 😊


A brown rabbit sniffing a hand-painted jacket with brown ferns on it

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