Blake Henkel

My name is Blake Henkel and I was diagnosed with autism when I was three years old. I am not very conversational, so I let my brush strokes speak for me a lot of the time. I am 31 years old now and I have been painting since I was 10 years old. I started taking art lessons at The Arc of High Point, when I began to be homeschooled. When I was in public school, I hated art and would break crayons and markers and throw them, because that was all they ever gave me—-it wasn’t until I was handed a paint brush that I began to really enjoy creating art.

I like to paint with bold, bright colors and frequently, animals are my subjects. Most of the time, I end up painting only a portion of the animal or subject because I just focus on those parts instead of the whole subject.

I don’t like to let autism hold me back from achieving the things I want to accomplish. I like to let my canvas speak for me, to tell the story of what I see in the world and around me. Despite my challenges with verbal communication, my paintings give viewers a glimpse into how I view the world.

I want to continue to paint, learn new painting and art styles, meet friends who enjoy art and give my mom daily challenges with getting paint out of my clothes! It’s only fun when it gets messy!–and I want to sell more art work and raise awareness about autism!