Who We Are
on 11/11/11, Remy came rushing into this world, 4 weeks early, to parents Rob and Corinne. After 25 days in the NICU, our journey really began as we watched our little man grown and learn. For the first year, things moved very fast as he met every milestone considerably early. Watching your 7 month old adeptly cruise around the furniture, is a sight to see! While his motor skills were impressive, it was evident that his communication was lacking.
We were so grateful to have the support and guidance from his Early Intervention Team from Cape Cod Child Development, who worked with him until it was time for school at 3 years-old. Remy easily met criteria for an autism diagnosis and was eligible for an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) in order to meet his special needs. With his learning taken care of, over the years we exposed him to several extra curricular activities. He loves and excels at: shooting hoops, golf, soccer, putting together jigsaw puzzles, memorizing and writing large words (really he can do this for hours) but one area was missing, arts and crafts
Remy was never a child who liked to create. He didn’t enjoy coloring books, play-dough or any other typical craft for kids. We set out to expose him to something that he would really enjoy in the creative world and we found it! Enter…..
In late February of 2018 I (Corinne) started to think about our yearly teacher appreciation gifts. Because Remy has so many great educators each year, gift giving can be a bit daunting, so I generally create our gifts. Since Remy was getting older I wanted him to assist me in some way so I fell down the rabbit hole that is Pinterest and searched for a project. After a ridiculous amount of time (and not because of our project but due to getting side tracked and pinning away idea for the home) I came across this project from the Sharpie Website. It was perfect! Remy, who loves to write anything and everything, could write with a Sharpie , and what 6 year old doesn’t want to get their hands on a marker, on a tile in various colors and then put rubbing alcohol on it and watch the words disappear as the colors swirl into each other as the tile is tilted side to side. The best part? It didn’t cost a dime!
In our basement, the previous home owner left various materials used throughout the house during different remodels. There was a case of white tiles in a matte finish that were perfect to make coasters out of and I had plenty of Sharpies, rubbing alcohol and plenty of felt for the bottoms. We set out to work and teach Remy want to do and he loved it! He of course loved to write but he also loved watching the “magic” that happened when we put the rubbing alcohol on the tile. Before long he was self sufficient in creating the tiles and soon we had several sets of coasters for each of his Teachers and Support Staff.
As is common in today’s social media driven world, this proud Mama, posted his creations on my Facebook page and friends and family loved them and started to request their own set. While Rob and I were very proud of our little guy, we really had to take a beat and think about whether we wanted to actually sell his creations as there were many things to consider. In the end, we decided to allow it and save the money in a educational account for Remy’s future. Over the next few months Remy continued to create and even graduated to using alcohol inks to create mini- masterpieces.
The Jump to Acrylic Pouring….
During the Summer of 2018, I was painting with acrylics and Remy asked join in. I set him up with a canvas board, a palette of several colors, a paint brush and let him have at it. After a few minutes, I noticed he had plopped lumps of different colors onto the canvas and was taking the board and was tilting it side to side. He was trying to use the techniques he uses with his alcohol inks but with no success. I then set off to research, once again down another rabbit hole of Acrylic Fluid Art. Together, we learned new vocabulary like “Flip Cup” and ‘Dirty Pours” as well as various techniques to manipulate acrylic paint. He quickly began to make gorgeous works of art and as a proud parent I again shared them on Facebook. Little did we know the impact his art would have on others, as his canvases took off beyond his coasters and now had complete strangers looking to buy his works of art.
We are moved by the response to Remy’s Art and the ability to share it with others. It’s a delicate balance of making sure Remy is always in control and always creating because he wants to, and not from the demand of others. Our goal isn’t to focus on selling art work, but rather exposing the world to the gifts of our autistic child.
Remy sums up the journey in the best way possible, proclaiming: “Mama, this art is AWESOME!”