FACES OF AUTISM: Inspiration. Admiration. Celebration.
Tera Girardin has been a child and family photographer in the Twin Cities for 12 years. After her own son was diagnosed with autism seven years ago, she felt compelled to photograph children with autism and tell their stories. This has led to Faces of Autism, a book which features 30 different children with autism and tells their stories through compelling photography and messages of inspiration, admiration, and celebration. Tera’s hope is to change the conversation we have about autism from mere awareness and acceptance to admiration.
Girardin says, “I wanted to show others what I saw in children with autism—the beauty and magic of each child despite the diagnosis and sometimes because of the diagnosis. The children I photographed are in many ways no different than any other child. They laugh, they play, they learn, they love. And in some ways they are quite remarkable from writing philosophical poetry (despite being nonverbal) to being acutely aware of sounds to being incredibly empathetic. These are gifts that can often be overlooked when other autism traits mask them.”
An autism diagnosis can be really hard, and there are many books to talk about the ins and outs, therapies, ideas, and difficulties. This isn’t that kind of book. Girardin intended it to be a chance to view autism through a different lens—one of hope and inspiration. The book is not only for autism parents but also for extended family members and educators who are touched by autism.
One reader says, “As the mom of a child with autism, this book deeply spoke to me. It’s filled with compassion, inspiration, and awe for these amazing kids and their superpowers. My son enjoyed reading about the kids that are all so unique, yet similar to him. Well done, Ms. Girardin!”
Tera Girardin is the owner and photographer of Tera Photography LLC, out of Burnsville, MN. She is mother to three boys, the youngest of whom is diagnosed with autism. Faces of Autism is her first book.
To purchase or for more information: http://www.facesofautismbook.com
This article was featured in Issue 66 – Finding Calm and Balance