Sam Brickman is an American artist with autism. Born in 1992, he was diagnosed at age 2. His functional ability is very low, and his communication skills are minimal. Currently he has uncontrolled outbursts of aggression and violence which render his social interactions to a very small circle.
Sam has always had an interest and fascination with markers. As a youngster he would carry a red and green marker in each hand. He loved alphabet letter puzzles and would lay out the letters in patterns over the floor or table.
His early attempts at drawing were mostly copying these letter patterns. He progressed to memorizing and copying end credits of videos and movies, which like most autistic individuals, he would watch and watch over and over.
We would keep a selection of sketch pads and various types of markers available for his use. He would draw whatever caught his attention. As he got older it seemed he liked to draw items that could be placed into easily identifiable groups. For example; types of transportation, things found at a school, or things at a fair, or animals at a zoo, or characters from one of his videos.
His drawings have progressed to a point that now he draws with a fine point marker. He rarely makes a mistake and therefore must plan out his drawing before he commits pen to paper. Usually he starts out with a grid pattern and then tries to find enough items to fill out all the blocks. His drawings have a simplified appeal, but they can also display an incredible amount of detail.
His work on paper is mostly just pen drawings but in rare instances he will use colored pencils or markers to fill them in. The work on canvas is done first with the fine point pen. He then uses paint pens to fill in the drawings. Backgrounds can be colored or not as he sees fit. The paintings are then gone over again with a paint pen to outline details and make the images stand out.
It is possible that he uses art as a way to organize or categorize details of his life so that he can better process that information. He may use it as a relaxing or calming ritual to help with his outbursts. He may also just enjoy the act of creation. All we know is that he still craves every pencil, pen and marker available. He carries with him several sketch pads, notebooks, and various pencil cases filled with drawing implements everywhere he goes.
We hope that it gives him joy, because that is what it gives us.
Note: Sam will do a limited number of commissioned art pieces. Please contact us if interested for more information. Thank you.