I intended to focus on painting a representation of Mike’s* eye from a childhood photograph of one our camping trips. However, his eye doesn’t tell the whole story. I thought maybe the combination of his eye and mouth would be adequate. Here is a preliminary sketch,
and here is the watercolor study.
Mike’s face is distorted in the painting. I’d like to say that I had that in mind, but in terms of representing Mike as I knew him (or didn’t know him) back then, and even now, the distortion is an apt metaphor.
Mike never gave us an inkling of an idea that he knew who we were most of the time, thus the shadowy figure at the right is a fair guess about how he saw our mother.
Here is the original photo:
* Mike is my older brother who is autistic, low functioning and nonverbal.