How it all Began…..
About the time Joshua entered high school we began exploring career possibilities. As a student with special needs he had an Individual Education Plan (IEP) in the school system. A team of people , both from the school and from the home, (IEP team) was charged with creating a plan for Joshua and making sure that plan was implemented. Part of that plan included preparing Joshua for a career after high school. At the time, the IEP team seemed to be at a total loss as to what someone with such profound challenges could possibly do that was meaningful and productive.
Together with his home Occupational Therapist, Detra Simpo, and his Vision Teacher, Andrea Selkirk, we set out to explore the possibilities. We took a different approach. We looked at the skill set he had and used that as a springboard toward a vocation. We decided on Abstract Art. Art is whatever you want it to be and vision is not needed to create it.
Several years ago we were blessed to meet Kelly DeSousa, an Art Therapist, who expressed an interest in working with Joshua. Kelly began working with Josh exploring art. She discovered he seemed to enjoy painting, especially to music, and his paint strokes matched the beat of the music he was listening to as well as the mood he was in that day.
Here is clip of one of the first times Kelly worked with Joshua, taken by one of his nurses.