Cassandra Nelson is a multimedia artist, promoter and neurodiversity advocate living in the San Francisco Bay Area. She quit her 15-year career as a crime lab analyst to devote her energy to studying neurodivergent people’s creative process, making art, and promoting other neurodivergent artists through her creative agency, Exceptional 2 Infinity.
Cassandra uses a series of strategic initiatives to connect creatives to people, places and things to provide social support, stability and cultural pride. She is an oil painter, writer and photographer working out of her home-based studio. Through her developed networks and strategic initiatives, Nelson works to connect artists to professional, social and financial supports to help build financial sustainability.
Cassandra is the mother of two children, born in Southern California, and raised in Santa Cruz, Northern California. While her alternative-style peers and teachers nurtured a neurodivergent bubble, she did not self-identify as autistic (with ADHD) until her early forties when her young son was officially diagnosed. Since then she has discovered the myriad of technical terms for the way her mind functions, and dove head-first into the Neurodiversity Movement.
Much of her paintings, writings and photographs are driven by sensory-filled and sensually-rich aspects of her own life. Her art is designed to inspire and promote a sense of positivity, strength and well-being. As an artist, neurodivergent human, and bisexual queer person, much of her work explores how these identities intersect. Subjects range from personal figurative portraits to simple still life scenes intended to provoke thoughts, feelings and conversation around the areas of love, intimacy, erotica and sexuality.
She is currently writing her first book, Neurodivergent Creative, and launching a series of accompanying sensory-focused paint workshops. Her new book examines the lives of everyday neurodivergent creatives who use creative expression as sensory self-care. She is particularly interested in how neurodiverse humans cultivate authentic connection, culture and community through artistic expression and exercise various modern modes of creativity.
She enjoys spending her extra time reading books, facilitating a neurodivergent creative collective, forest and beach bathing with her family, sweating in hot yoga, and sipping coffee in bed. Cassandra loves public speaking and participating in discussions about the intersection of neurodivergence, creativity and art.
Enquiries at firstname.lastname@example.org