Life is art, paint your dreams

Sarvagya’s first participation in an art exhibition

मन – day की बात SpecialSaathi के साथ

Hello Shilpi Ma’am.

Firstly, thank you for giving me this opportunity to write for ‘Special Saathi’. It’s an honour to be associated with your platform.

I am excited to share my experience of attending today my son’s first participation in the art exhibition organised by Kalaaakar Foundation.I would begin by sharing a bit about my son.

Art exhibition video

My son, Sarvagya is 8 years old. He got diagnosed at the age of 3 years. He was struggling with almost all autism related issues at that time. Holding pencil properly was a big struggle too. I could never imagine in my dreams he would ever draw or paint.

Around 3 years back, he started showing some interest in sketching. He used to make simple drawings like TV, AC, tree, basic shapes like circle, square, rectangle, etc. (with marker pens on my walls..!! ) . Gradually, he started copying pictures from various resources like books, newspaper, etc. Though, at that time, his sketching was really poor, but he was showing keen interest in it.

By God’s grace, I was able to identify his interest. Sketching & painting has been my hobby too since school days. His interest rekindled my passion. But since I am not a professional, I didn’t have the requisite skills to help him. However, I didn’t want to let go this opportunity. So, started doing various trials.

I started by asking him what he wanted to draw. Once he said ‘Kanha ji’. Together, we searched Kanha ji pictures on google and finalised one of them. I took a screenshot of that picture and then we together decided upon a point from where to start drawing. I zoomed the picture from that part, we discussed the curves and lines. Gradually, he started observing deeply and with consistent practice, there was a significant improvement in his drawing skills, specially in relation to symmetry in drawings.

Similarly, regarding coloring, he was not coloring in flow, he used to color in any direction/flow he wanted. I gave him the mantra “jaisa curve, waisa color” and for the first few drawings, I used to keep repeating this every one or two minutes. Gradually, it clicked and he picked up coloring.

I can never forget the day I got his first painting framed. When I showed him his framed painting, he was silent for a few seconds. After that, for the next 2-3 days, literally the whole day, he sat on the couch holding his painting close to his heart with his eyes closed. Being a hyperactive child, I had never seen him like this before. That day, I understood practically how art works like therapy.

That day and today, Sarvagya has come a long way.

An art exhibition was organised at Pearey Lal Bhawan, ITO, New Delhi on Jan 07-09, 2023 where artworks of a large number of distinguished artists were displayed. Sarvagya’s four paintings were also displayed here. My son couldn’t express but as a mother I could feel his sense of achievement & happiness on seeing his paintings displayed amongst artworks of distinguished artists. I believe he was one of the youngest participating artists. This was his first participation in a formal art exhibition. That ways, it’s a huge achievement and moral booster for both of us.

This exhibition was not only an achievement for him but has boosted my confidence too that as a parent of a special needs child, I and my son are not helpless, we can dream just like anyone else and achieve them too. Honestly, this was like a dream come true for me. A child who once struggled in holding a pencil, his fingers now dance with paints and brush to create beautiful masterpieces.

Though he’s not yet creating original paintings, he copies them from various resources, however, I am confident that with consistent efforts , a day will come when he will achieve that level of creativity too.

Today, I have realised that being a special parent, our journey is very difficult and unpredictable. However, with our hard work and consistent approach, there is nothing which our children can’t achieve.

CA Shivani Lohia

Author Shivani Lohia

Shivani Lohia is a Chartered Accountant by profession and mother to 8 years old child on the autism spectrum. The cause of autism awareness is very close to her heart and she strongly believes in equal education for all & strongly advocates inclusion. She has been homeschooling her son since he was 5 years old.

Creative representation of this blog is done by our extremely talented CreativeSaathi associate Shubh Pathak.


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