Kid Stuff

Inspiration Through Art

national project taps local photographers to help families of ill children

Kelsey Swanson |

Little Gracelyn here has Cystic Fibrosis, but Little Wonders Photography in Michigan gave her family a wonderful photo shoot thanks to Inspiration Through Art.
Little Gracelyn here has Cystic Fibrosis,
but Little Wonders Photography in Michigan
gave her family a wonderful photo shoot
thanks to Inspiration Through Art.

Some of us wake every morning to the smile of a child, the heartbeat and center of our world. We take pictures, imagining a day years down the road when we can look back and remember that moment as they gazed into the camera with a look that will blossom as they grow.

Now imagine that child is plagued by a serious illness or life-altering disability that consumes your family’s life, leaving no thought or time to take that simple instant and hold it in perpetuity. You treasure every moment, yet the chance to record it flies past as you and your loved ones fight for every day, living amazing stories that sometimes slip without notice to others. The non-profit organization Inspiration Through Art acknowledges this challenge and gives families the chance to celebrate the lives of their fighting children. 

Formerly known as the Littlest Heroes Project, Inspiration Through Art was founded in 2008 by Felicia Reinhard as a nationwide volunteer network that provides free programs and services to the little heroes of our nation. Artists and professional photographers offer their services to families that struggle with illness and disability, capturing the art and beauty of each child, giving them a chance to share their inspirational stories with the world.

“Life moves so quickly when you are trying to keep up with medical appointments, therapies, and other activities, as well as just trying to be a family, that it becomes even more important to ensure they have those reminders of the moments they will want to remember,” said Kendra Krasin, a photographer for Inspiration Through Art from River Falls. 

Other local volunteers include Angi Randall Photography of Augusta, Buena Farrell Photography of Ellsworth, Capture Life LLC of Eau Claire, and Catherine Brayall Photography of New Richmond.

Each case is treated individually, taking into consideration the needs of each child and family. Photographers and volunteers travel to homes, hospitals, clinics, fundraisers, and benefits to capture the child’s life and personality in more than just a professional setting, but rather as any other family would record the memories of their children. Inspiration Through Art provides each child with complimentary photo shoots, special cards and mail, and gift packages. It is host to various other programs, events, and fundraisers as well, including personal art sessions at home or in the hospital.

Sharing the beauty of a young life is always a work of art. This program takes that gift and records the masterpiece for families while promoting awareness for all kinds of childhood illnesses and disabilities. With the collaboration of volunteers, Inspiration Through Art ensures that no matter how long the battle or whatever the outcome, the journey of each of these children is acknowledged and remembered.

For more information, or to sign up, visit