Artistic ability helps Lufkin boy overcome dyslexia

Artistic ability helps Lufkin boy overcome dyslexia
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Drawing cartoons that look like they jumped from the pages of a comic book would be an impressive task for an adult, let alone an 11-year-boy, but it's safe to say Drew Dempsey is talented beyond his years.

"I think it first started when I went to Disney World," Drew said. "I think that started my love of art."

"I just am amazed at how quickly he can take that pencil and just make those pictures come to life," said Drew's language art teacher Bambi Shofner.

Like several famous artists like Andy Warhol and Pablo Picasso, Drew is dyslexic.

"Dyslexia is when you don't know how to spell something well or read very good," Drew explained.

He and his family first noticed Drew had a difficulty learning at an early age.

"I think I realized it in second grade, because I didn't spell as well as the other kids," Drew said. "It made me feel frustrated."

Drew was tested and diagnosed with dyslexia. That's when his mother decided to enroll him at St. Cyprian's, the only school in the area that had a dyslexia program at the time.

Drew began to learn how to write in a way that made sense to him and incorporated his talents.

 "Sometimes when he can't write a story, he can always draw a picture of it and it brings out such detail that it makes the writing portion easier for him because he can draw the ideas," said Drew's grandmother Donna Vincent.

"It helps me because sometimes in class. I don't always have to write my paragraphs," Drew said. "Sometimes I can draw them too. I feel like I can take everything that's in my mind and and put it on paper."

Not only is this new way of writing helping Drew learn spelling and reading, but it's also helping him open up to others.

"I think his confidence has grown," Shofner said. "The fact that he stands up and presents all of this in class, he does not mind presenting in front of other people."

Like most artists, Drew has big goals for his future.

 "I really want to work for Pixar when I grow up," Drew said.

His mentors and family have all the faith that his dreams will come true.

"I see him only going up from here," Shofner said. "He has a very bright future."

"I can't wait to go see one of his movies," Vincent said.

While Drew still comes across challenges when it comes to his schoolwork sometimes, he has learned not fear them, but instead takes them on.

To others struggling with dyslexia, he offers this advice.

"Dyslexic kids they're really smart and they might be smarter than kids that aren't dyslexic," Drew explained. " And every dyslexic kid or any kind of kid has a talent."

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