Let me introduce you to Spectrum Inspired. It's a non-profit organization run by several creative and passionate women whose goal it is to raise awareness for autism through documentary photography. Since April is Autism awareness month across the country I felt like it would be a good time to share a small collaboration I did with them back in the Fall. I wanted to showcase some of their images so they lent me a few of their own personal photographs to frame here in the shop.
My 6 year old son has Autism. While it doesn't define who he is, as a family we live with the daily realities of it in our lives. Sometimes everything feels normal (or at least as normal as it can feel with 4 kids :), and sometimes it feels isolating and difficult. For the past few years, I've felt that there was a strong connection with my photography interest and autism. One small element is that my wife and I don't get to make a lot of eye contract with our son. It's one of those things that's easy to take for granted. But with a photograph my song might actually look into a camera lens long enough to get that eye contact that we can cherish as a print. It gives us a chance to see into what he might be thinking or feeling for more than just a split second or two during the day.
That's why I really love what their doing at Spectrum Inspired. Connecting families living in these daily realities with photographers who can help document their journeys. Raising a child with autism can also be very financially burdensome with the amount of therapies, specialists, and in some cases education costs that come with wanting to give your child everything they need. In many cases, parents simply can't afford to pay a photographer to make family portraits so Spectrum Inspired provides grant opportunities to families to make it possible to have their photographs made.
If you're a photographer interested in joining their cause, please go and apply to be a part of what they are doing. If you are a parent or know a family who could benefit from this, you can apply to get a free photo session of your family.
Printed photographs below by Sarah Driscoll and Jamie Nicole Scott.