I have painted, sketched and photographed Mikey countless times. I would say at a rough estimate, only one in fifty images I create of Mikey capture the essence of him. I put that down to my limited understanding of Autism. I understand the basics and I understand Mikey, but Autism is something I cannot visualise, not the thing itself, not the neurological pathways, not the synapses, not the how or why. In my opinion the greatest portraits are of subjects the Artist knew, that intimacy shows in the work, that understanding of the subjects character and, of course, the mystery.
Mikey's favourite thing, and has been for years, is water. The colder the better, he likes to dip his head into various bodies of water, puddles, pools, dog bowls and yes the toilet when no other source is available. Mikey + Water = happiness. Of all my images of Mikey this one is the one I would have made into a massive poster for my wall. I captured him and his water as it is, to anyone who knows Mikey this image IS him.