Saturday, November 29, 2008

Another TLJ, and some thoughts...

Until i think of something new i'm going to keep experimenting with this simplistic linework. in the case of this caricature, another one for the Tommy lee Jones caricature jam, I'm trying to see how far i can take this style.

I feel that although I'm breaking the face down into the simplest forms in my head, when i try to put that to paper, as the case with my last few posts, it just looks like a lack of effort. with such simple drawings. i am not satisfying myself with my art, i don't feel like I've put enough work into each piece. Hopefully i can think of something that can satisfy both my desire for simplicity in the representation of the subject, but also fulfill what i feel is the level of work that i need to put in to get something out of it, to improve.

I've also been thinking a lot about the very nature of caricature. I've seen a couple pieces lately, with accompanying commentary, that really test the edges of what caricature really is; what separates it from portrait. whether a caricaturist can really go too far with exaggeration. the way that i see it is a caricature is the representation of something in a pure form, completely dependent on the artists point of view. what i think separates caricature from portrait, is that point of view. when you draw a portrait, that has no point of view, it simply records what is there. but when you draw a caricature you record what you perceive, not what is there.

In Caricature you enhance whatever you see, beauty,character, a big nose, whatever it may be. For a real caricature there is no intellectualizing either, then you start trying to tell yourself what you see. a real caricature depends on a keen connection to ones perceptions, making that split second, knee-jerk reaction to what you really see.

There is an infinite range of caricature, some so far to one end of the spectrum that nobody but the artist sees it, but that is ok (unless of course you have a client, then you have to use their perceptions). I can say that i have often seen a drawing of a person that was intended to be a caricature, but ended up being a portrait. Maybe the artist does see an exaggeration, but if the piece doesn't say anything, or convey what they are trying to say, then it is a failure. even if the artist doesn't feel it is necessary, for other's they have to magnify what they did so that the audiance can see what they meant. This also happens the other way as well, all to frequently unfortuneately. An artists draws what they see and it is too much for the viewers, they are so distracted by the extent of exaggeration, that they either lose the likeness or don't get what the artist is saying, again this means it is not successful. unfortuneately art doesn't exist only for it's creator, but specifically for others. therefore, even if a caricature does what the artist wants, they need to tailor their exaggerations in order to share their view with others.

Anyways, sorry for the outpour about art and how i see it. It's nice to be able to vocalize my thoughts about my art, and from it improve . and perhaps these thoughts can help you with your art as well, i can only hope.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Even More Caricaturist Caricatures

Lately i've been experimenting with my caricatures, just trying different things, and generally pushing the exaggeration, not as much as i would like, but i'm trying. here are a few of those experiments, all of caricaturists from various forums. it's easy to go crazy with them, seeing as they asked for it, and they can't really complain.

these were all pretty quick reflexive sketches, just trying to be spontanious and fun and not overwork them.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Off the wall

where did i come up with the idea to color this? Who knows, who cares. i just wanted to do something utterly different from what i'm used to and i think i accomplished that. whether this is successful is really up to those who know more about art than i do, if there is more to get from this other than it's weirdness i don't know.

in an attempt not to fall into a stylistic rut, i'm experimenting with the boundaries of what i can do as a caricaturist. looking back, occasionally i have stepped into that realm, but never really explored it. i don't like to fall back on safe caricatrues, i want to push it as far as the medium allows it, in this case, digital, the limits are still far off.

i am pretty keen on the arrow for hair idea, gives the sense of direction that i like to play with in caricatures in the most direct way.

alright that's it for my insightful babble, i think my philosophy class is wearing off on me.

oh, and if you couldn't figure it out, this is another self caricature from the same reference as my last post.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Self portrait

EDIT: Added color version

i've been kinda stumped on who i want to caricature lately, so i decided to paint a new self caricature, which i haven't done in a while.

While i am always trying to do something new with my caricatures, i also like to take a step back and really focus on the painting technique, or lighting, or other technical aspects were i feel i'm lacking. Here's the first in a series of self portraits that i plan to do, all in different styles, and different ways of caricaturing.

this is a more traditional attempt, and the exaggeration isn't really taken to the extreme, but i feel it's one of my better digital paintings to date. i might work to refine it a bit, but it's mostly done right now.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Caricaturist Caricatures

say that five times fast. Here are two new caricatures of fellow artists from i've been seeing lots of really fantastic caricatures from the this years NCN convention, and was a bit inspired. i feel the inspiration fell a bit flat though, as i didn't take these as far as i would have liked to. oh well, practice makes perfect.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


i really miss caricaturing at Geauga lake, so i try to get some live caricatures and drawings whenever i can. here are some life sketches done out on campus in between classes. this campus is a really great place to do life drawing because there is always so many people walking around during the week. these represent two hour sessions, one hour for each. i plan on getting out more to do more of these, i'm getting less and less chances the colder it gets.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Thinking outside of the box...

ironically his head came out as a box, get it, ha ha .. ha..... ha. Anyways, if you can't tell, this is actor Tommy Lee Jones, the subject for the latest caricature jam over at Like i said, i was really trying to think out of the box on this one, i'm very interested in the use of simplification for caricatrues, and while this is not nearly as far as i took it in my head, i like where i went with this one. also bit different from my usual caricatures of actors, as i usually portray them in one of their films as a certain character.

i feel that i've been improving in overall rendering and composition of my caricatures, but i just feel that it's all been done before. I feel there is no reason to just use the same technique that everyone else out there is using. i want to come up with a way of looking at someone, and translating that to paper that is original, which is something that is not an easy task. i can only hope that this is a step in that direction.