The story of Iris Grace and her best friend Thula has been told on Bored Panda before but what came afterwards was incredible.

Iris, a six-year-old with autism found her voice through painting and her faithful companion. The word spread across the globe, Iris and Thula were sending out a strong message – that different is brilliant. Her artwork has been bought by collectors, including Angelina Jolie. For the first time our family took a trip abroad to Stockholm, a remarkable achievement for a little girl who was once isolated at home unable to speak or be around others.

Now talking, reading and enjoying her home education it’s a different story. I decided to tell our story in our first book ‘Iris Grace’. 3 artists have come together, the painter, the photographer and the illustrator, through words and pictures you will be transported into Iris’s world with the help of Thula, their trusty feline artist assistant. 42 beautiful paintings, 15 illustrations and loads of photos make this an extraordinary memoir to treasure forever. I wanted to raise awareness of autism, to show people that there can be a future, a bright one. The techniques that work for Iris may not work with every child but I do believe there is always a key – it is about following the lead of your child.

More info: Amazon | irisgracepainting.com | Facebook

The story of my 6-year-old daughter with autism and her best friend Thula has been told on Bored Panda before and what came afterwards was incredible

The word spread across the globe, Iris and Thula were sending out a strong message – that different is brilliant

Iris is an excellent example of the unexpected gifts that autism can also grant

Her exceptional focus and attention to details have helped her create incredibly beautiful paintings

She found her voice through painting and her faithful companion – Thula, the artist assistant

Iris’s artwork has been bought by collectors before, but one of the biggest surprises was Angelina Jolie!

‘Sunflakes’ by Iris Grace

For the first time our family took a trip abroad to Stockholm, a remarkable achievement for a little girl who was once isolated at home unable to speak or be around others

Now talking, reading and enjoying her home education it’s a different story

I love that we don’t have to conform, we can just go with the flow and follow Iris and she is happy

She’s is more responsive, calm and easy when I set up ‘playrooms’ within the garden or even sometimes out in the countryside…

…and of course wherever we go, Thula comes with us

Even going on bike rides…

…or for a swim

Autism has opened up my perceptions of how you can teach a child

It doesn’t have to be in a classroom it can be wherever the child is most comfortable, using their own interests to inspire them

So I decided to tell our story in our first book

‘Blossom in the Wind’ one of 42 paintings in the book

3 artists have come together, the painter, the photographer and the illustrator

We told her story through words and pictures with the help of Thula, her trusty feline artist assistant

I wanted to raise awareness of autism, to show people that there can be a future, a bright one

The techniques that work for Iris may not work with every child but I do believe there is always a key

It is about following the lead of your child

‘Dance to the Oboe’ by Iris Grace

autistic-artist-thula-therapy-cat-different-is-brilliant-iris-grace1

‘Thula Mtwana’ by Iris Grace

‘Dancing in Snowflakes’ by Iris Grace

‘Meadow Foxtail’ by Iris Grace

‘Trumpet’ by Iris Grace

‘Under the Sea’ by Iris Grace

Highlights of Iris and Thula