Digital Caricatures... Live!

Posted 04.26.2017 at 12:00AM |

Back in 1992, I got my first job drawing caricatures, at Valleyfair amusement park just outside of the twin cities in Minnesota.  25 years and a handful of theme parks later, I'm still at it, though in a much more limited capacity.

Live caricatures has always been something I've held near and dear- In my mind it's the best stomping ground for really honing your skills as a commercial artist- you learn how to draw efficiently, take criticism, draw under pressure, etc etc.  There's a million reasons I keep coming back to the live stuff, many of which I've written about in this blog or previous iterations of it.

These days the majority of the live work has gone to digital over tradition drawings.
Live digital caricatures has it's advantages and drawbacks (get it?).  The advantages are basically centered around the 'Cool' factor.  With a setup full of cool computer equipment, showy screens, instant printouts, there's no doubt that the entire operation is pretty impressive.  The drawbacks center around 2 factors- 1, it's simply more personal to do a physical drawing on paper and hand it over, 'signed by the artist'.  (But I'm sure that's me over analyzing.  Frankly, the client rarely cares about that.)  The other half is simply the amount of things that can go wrong with a digital setup.  Printers, ink, a monitor, stand, drawing tablet, and the slew of cords that accompany all this- forget one thing, or one cog in the machine malfunctions (I'm looking at you, Hewlett Packard Mobile printer), and you're out of business.  It's become a regular part of the job to bring backups of EVERYTHING to these gigs.  Luckily, it all fits into a big suitcase, to once it's all packed up, everything basically just rolls into place.

Up until recently, I was doing these gigs on the Wacom Cintiq Companion 2, which I did a write up about here.  This time, I upgraded to the brand new Wacom Mobile Studio Pro 16, which I also reviewed here. This was my first gig with this new machine.  (It was also my first gig with my new prescription readers.  *sigh*)

Here's a few pics of my most recent gig, this one at the Mohegan Sun in CT.

The setup 
The setup.

Smily dude with a great face.  All of these are printed on 4x6 photo paper with the company's logo (blurred out for this post.)  Each are done in 5-10 minutes.  



More samples:

For the technically inclined, here's a rundown of the equipment:

Tablet: Wacom Mobile Studio Pro 16, 512GB HD
Monitor: Samsung 27" LED turned into portrait mode
Printer: HP Officejet Mobile 100 with HP Semi Gloss Photo Paper, 4x6