Joshua lives with his Mum, in Southampton, as he is currently unable to live independently. Joshua is autistic and has associated learning disabilities.

Joshua has been coming to Minstead Trust since 2010. He will take on tasks without seeking guidance, but in certain situations this could be very unsafe for him, for example road safety! Therefore he needs support with simple things that we take for granted, like crossing the road as he does not see the hazards around him.

Joshua likes routine and therefore new situations or changes to routines can be difficult for him to understand. Joshua may miss normal social cues from those around him and so he finds communication with others problematic.

Joshua started attending Minstead Trust day opportunities five days per week. His creative talents in pottery, woodwork and in particular artwork were quickly identified and have been encouraged and developed over time.

‘Joshua has slowly developed his skills from drawing small black and white animals to sketching larger animals and later, began introducing colour into his pictures.’
Moya, Joshua’s Art Tutor.

Joshua has received a lot of support and encouragement over the years enabling him to progress and develop his artistic skills. Joshua has become more confident to develop his own techniques in his artwork and now sketches and paints his pictures of animals with precision and vibrant colours.

Joshua’s artwork has led to opportunities that Minstead Trust has been able to support him in. In May 2015, Joshua was artist in residence at Rums Eg Gallery, Romsey. His paintings were exhibited there for two weeks, and his paintings are also now on sale in the shop at Furzey Gardens. Recently, Bryan the Manager at Longdown Activity Farm, in the New Forest, learnt of Joshua’s animal paintings and has commissioned Joshua to sketch and paint different animals from the Farm.

For Joshua, his ability to paint and show off his artwork to others provides him with a sense of achievement and pride. The support and encouragement he has received from Minstead Trust has helped develop his sense of self-worth and wellbeing.

‘Joshua proudly showed Bryan, the Manager at Longdown Activity Farm his artwork and animal paintings.’
Moya, Joshua’s Art Tutor.

It has been exciting year for Joshua, the continued development of his Art and creative talent has been a source of joy and pride to Joshua and his family, and at Minstead Trust we are privileged to be able to support all our students to achieve, in whatever direction they choose.

The well-known artist Peter Gilbert commented on Joshua’s paintings: ‘So well in proportion and excellently drawn, an exhibition well worth seeing.’

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