Author(s): Judy Sharp
Tim Sharp and his magnificent creation, Laser Beak Man, are now major names in the world of international art. But the journey to this point has been an extraordinary one. When Judy Sharp took her three-year-old son Tim to a paediatric specialist, he was diagnosed with autism so severe that she was told he would never be able to talk or learn to live in a normal household, and that he was incapable of love, even towards his own mother. The advice at the time was that he would be better off in an institution.
Just over twenty years later, Tim's joyful artworks and drawings involving his superhero, Laser Beak Man, have been exhibited around the world. From the Powerhouse in Brisbane to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, some of the world's greatest galleries have showcased Tim and his amazing career. Laser Beak Man's appeal is so widespread it's gone on to inspire, among other things, an eight-part animated children's TV series and a Broadway play in New York.
A Double Shot of Happiness (from the title of one of Tim's favourite artworks) is Judy's beautiful and heartfelt account of Tim's odyssey from that terrible diagnosis to his emergence as an acclaimed artist and a fulfilled, loving and loved young man. It's a story that has involved many hurdles, moments of despair and incredible hard work from Tim, Judy, his brother Sam and all those who have helped them, but that is ultimately moving, inspiring and triumphant.
Judy Sharp raised two boys as a single mother, Tim and his younger brother Sam. Sam is a former state swimmer and trialled for the Olympics. He now works as a high-level swimming coach. Tim's art is exhibited all around the world. He spends much of his time helping organisations and schools that work with autistic children. They live in Brisbane.