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An Artful Way to Fight Dystonia - abc27 WHTM

An Artful Way to Fight Dystonia

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SOURCE zzPrint

Young Artist, Despite Dystonia, Uses His Artistic Skills To Raise Money For Dystonia Research

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Imagine a potentially debilitating neuromuscular disease that is relatively unknown, yet affects a half-million Americans of various ages, and, despite ongoing research, so far has no known cure. In addition, treatments are currently limited and carry significant side effects and risk. Would this qualify as a disease worthy of public awareness and continued research in the hopes of finding a cure? Thirteen-year-old entrepreneur Jared Shadkin believes that it is, and he is using the proceeds from the sale of his art to fund organizations dedicated to Dystonia awareness and research.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140128/PH53773-a)
(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140128/PH53773-b)

"I would like to become a difference maker in the fight against Dystonia and Parkinson's," says Jared Shadkin. By age five, Jared not only developed an appreciation for modern art, but was an active painter. Inspired by the art of Georgia O'Keeffe, Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Pablo Picasso, Jared soon developed his own unique style. However, life as an artist was not to come easily: at the age of 10, he was diagnosed with DYT1 Dystonia. Six months later he underwent Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS), which greatly reduced, but didn't eliminate, his symptoms.

Through the painful everyday battles of living with Dystonia, art became a way to express himself and cope with the new reality life had handed him. According to Jared, "You can never let Dystonia define who you are or stop you from pursuing your dreams in your life. You need to work with what you have and make the best of it." Staying true to his desire to make a difference, and realizing the need for continued research and awareness for Dystonia, Jared sought out ways he could contribute. The result was the formation of Jared's Paintings, which donates 50 percent of all proceeds to The Bachman-Strauss Dystonia & Parkinson Foundation.

Inspired by Michael J. Fox and Sergey Brin of Google, both of whom have raised millions of dollars and brought awareness to  Parkinson's disease (a neuromuscular disease similar to Dystonia), Jared set the goal of raising $1,000,000 himself. "It is obviously a lofty goal, but with hard work and determination anything is achievable," says Jared.

A happy individual, Jared sees inspiration for his bright and vibrant "modern with a pop" art in everyday life and in the beauty he witnesses in world travels. "You won't find black or grey in my vocabulary," replied Jared when asked about the vibrant nature of his paintings. However, with ever-increasing demands on his time from school and extracurricular activities, he soon realized that selling individual works of art was not a scalable business model.

That is when, according to Jared, "I was thinking about it and BAM, an idea popped into my head-phone cases. Cases are scalable and can provide a pop of color on the go!" Selling his art on phone cases has proven to be a solution for Jared, and he has already donated thousands of dollars of the proceeds from his work to the Bachman-Strauss Dystonia & Parkinson Foundation. After trying several suppliers, he came across the team at zzPrint.com. "zzPrint has offered the best quality and has proven many times to be a very dependable and reliable partner," Jared says.

In addition, the response from his customers has been nothing but positive. "I have received nothing but great comments and praise about my work and my art. Often people are blown away that a 13-year-old is the head and shoulders of this business," says Jared proudly. And he should be proud, as he employs the talent that Dystonia threatens to take away in both his personal battle and his fight on behalf of society to help find a cure.

For more information about Jared's art, or to make a purchase, visit Jared's Paintings at www.jaredspaintings.com.

Additional information about THE BACHMANN-STRAUSS Dystonia & Parkinson Foundation, Inc., can be found at www.dystonia-parkinsons.org.

Additional information about zzPrint and its products can be found at www.zzprint.com.

For more information, contact Arnold Richter at 888-958-7750 Ext 777 or email.

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