I am blessed to be a professional caricature artist, happily busy and getting the bills paid (with a lot of help from my wife Diane!) for more than twenty years full time now. And there are a lot of little tricks and work-arounds that you pick up along the way, as you do in any job. That applies to studio drawings, business parties and Kid’s party entertainment sketching.
One item I learned after a while is this — the NAME of the subject really does not have to be in there. If the resemblance is there, you will know that’s Bob or Denise, right?
Frequently I am asked to letter the first name into the sketch and I always do. Sure, no problem. And I did that routinely when I started, and drew full body action in each one, too. Now in a party or trade show or company picnic scenario with all grownups, I draw the face and collar and shoulders, maybe with a hand waving. And that’s it. Most people like that and appreciate the quick turnaround time (often two minutes or less, mostly depending on how complex the hairdo is).
All fine, right?
But not for children. No. Children need MORE than that.
Full body action — and the first name, too. Sure. I also often encourage the parents to consider making copies of the sketch for the kiddies to COLOR later. And warn them the ORIGINAL will likely get colored if they do not watch out. Ha! I think you may have heard a story or two in this space about that happening.
Here is one of my drawings from a party last year, likely took a little over three minutes. The parents and Benjamin liked it a LOT. What a fun job, eh?