Saturday, May 30, 2009

Rock and Roll After-prom!

This morning's after-prom was a real blast from the past. The theme was vintage rock and roll from the sixties, seventies, and eighties! (It was pretty obvious that the parents running this one were re-living their own prom era!) Check out this spectacular entrance, it even had dry ice spewing out the door! I particularly liked THIS decoration: Here are some of the faces that were a total treat to draw: The ladies' room was all about flower power: This after-prom had me seated right near all the action--the Guitar Hero and Karaoke-Video set-ups! I could barely hear but kids wanted their names written on their caricatures anyway.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Sneak peek of my next comic

The International Society of Caricature Artists, of which I am a long-time member, publishes a quarterly newsletter in a full-color magazine format. My friend and fellow caricaturist, Celestia Ward, and I have finished and turned in our 2nd comic strip in an occasional series, "Girl Caricaturists." It's so hard to wait from that point until publication! And it's so neat to hold the finished product in our hands once it reaches our mailboxes. The first installment met with some high approval from our audience of peers...which motivated us to keep at it. Here's a tiny sliver from one of my panels. Once it's published, I will put the whole thing here on my blog.

Celestia is in Las Vegas, and of course I am here in the Philadelphia suburbs,so we collaborate over the internet and telephone late at night! Her method of choice is her Cintiq-- a computer screen you actualy draw on like paper. I use a Wacom Intuos, a small drawing tablet connected to my laptop. The big difference is that I look at my screen, not my hand while drawing, and Celestia can look at both (more like traditional drawing.)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

FACEBOOK page: Caricatures by Emily

My caricatures have a new web presence: on Facebook!
For the past nine months, I have had a personal page on Facebook, started when my son moved abroad. It proved to be a fantastic way to keep in touch with him. Along the way, lots of real-life friends from all over the world showed up there, too. Mostly it was for personal postings and socializing, but occasionally I would post caricature-career related stuff.
Lately, I have had so many of my caricaturees tell me they wanted to use my drawing of them on their Facebook profile, but not knowing their names and not having the time at gigs to follow up on this, it was a lost cause. With a Facebook fan page, the address of which I am now printing on my gig paper, anyone can now find me and join--and I have a FB home for all my caricature art. What a fun way to market! :-)
It will have links to this blog, photos and commentary both from me and whomever feels so inclined. Thanks to everyone who has become a fan already (closing in on 100 as of this moment :-)

Here is the link to Caricatures by Emily. Or you can just log onto Facebook, and put Caricatures by Emily in the Search box.

Grad barbecue

My younger daughter, a high school senior, has decided to go into nursing as a profession, and has been part of a class which shadowed health care professionals at various hospitals this past school year. Last night, that class had a barbecue at the beautiful farm home of one of the students. When we got there, since there were only a dozen or so kids, I decided to draw them. (I didn't draw Madeline though, because she knows she is getting her long-awaited digital caricature from me for graduation-- I already have done both her siblings that way.)

The students were surprised and pleased, and they were all asking Madeline if she could draw, too! She kept replying, "Yes, but not like that..." :-)

The two young men have been in Madeline's classes since they were little, and the one on the right has several caricatures I did of him when I was just starting out, drawing at elementary school fairs...

Below is my daughter helping herself to a Rice Krispie treat...mmmm!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Today's celeb birthday: Helena Bonham Carter

She was great in Sweeney Todd, but so was Johnny Depp.... :-)

Rainy O's game...

The sun shone for a bit before the thunderstorm came :-( I had fun drawing the camouflage O's caps that were the game giveaway for Memorial Day...

Monday, May 25, 2009

Country Club Grand Opening

My Sunday afternoon was spent poolside. Not swimming, but drawing (which I love just as much...)!
The first little face waited patiently while I set up. There were enough chairs to use as a line, so the kids could sit and watch until it was their turn.

Summer's here!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

8-year-old's birthday party

Spent a pleasant afternoon yesterday at a High-School-Musical-themed birthday party/family bbq!
Drew the birthday girl (did color caricatures at this one!) as a singer:

Afterwards, the hosts fed me some delicious ribs-- and as the kids hadn't kicked their keg of ROOT BEER, I got to have some of that too! :-)

Friday, May 22, 2009

Internet Catch-22

Recently, I donated this original digital caricature of our U.S. Vice President to a charitable cause, the American Lung Association, to be auctioned off at a gala fundraiser (where I was hired to draw the guests, btw). This was accomplished, and it felt great to know that my contribution helped a little-bitty-bit. A copy was actually sent by the ALA to Joe Biden himself to sign, but hey--what with being second in charge after Obama, he's a busy guy. Maybe someday...
So I figured that was the end of the story, but my blog has led to another chapter.
A fellow member of ISCA and friend, Bob East, somehow found that my image was being used on a Balkan political cartoon website... and without my permission. This is the catch-22 of posting any original images/content on the is there for anyone to use however they want, despite the fact that all my posted art consists of small, lo-res images, and most are clearly marked with my website address. (That's another can of worms--the "Orphan Works Act"). This website's creator, to his credit, did not remove my website address from the painting and actually attributed it to me. And perhaps he would have sought my permission, but doesn't speak there is not really anything I can do. I've known of far worse instances of colleagues being ripped off; their work attributed to someone else, their work being used for someone else's financial gain, even used on foreign stamps, etc.
My blog serves a huge purpose in that it and my website generate interest in my work. Although I am passionate about caricature, I am also pragmatic about making a living from my passion. That means marketing and not hiding my lamp under a bushel.
So I will go on posting my work, but perhaps at smaller sizes.
Some artists feel it's a compliment when their work is used without permission, because someone likes the work enough to want it. I feel that, if someone likes it enough to use it for their own purposes, the artist should be compensated.

Another after-prom

A nearby high school held a low-key after-prom in their gym early this morning. Along with the ubiquitous moon-bounces, the other entertainments were a green-screen karaoke to DVD set-up, and Rick Wright's and my caricatures...

The prom organizer even sat down for her caricature at the very end!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Digital Caricature-Cher!

Happy 62nd birthday to Cher! or is it Octomom??
Another two-hour exercise in Photoshop.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Nurse Graduation Digital Caricatures!

As a result of my own daughter's graduation from nursing school last year, and the resultant post on my blog, several commissions came my way this spring. One client really liked the style I used for my daughter--sexy nurse outfit, blood and all, while other wanted a yoga-loving, dean's list nursing graduate with a more meditative background. These were both LOTS of fun to work on! You really can't beat a caricature for a truly personalized gift. I believe both of these were/are to be used as sign-in boards at their respective graduation parties. Congratulations, ladies!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Pete Townshend digital caricature...

Jan Opdebeeck has been faithfully moderating the daily 'celebrity birthday caricature' thread on our ISCA forum. I haven't had much time to contribute, but a recent chosen face belonged to Pete Townshend of the Who. Thankfully, he hasn't died before he got old, but I decided to draw the young version...
To see a fellow artist's OLD version, click here: Vin Altamore
This took me about two hours, painted in Photoshop.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

"Hollywood" After-Prom

It was a night of stars and Hollywood glamour at the after-prom I did this early morning!

The 'paparazzi' lined the entrance hallway...

My friend and fellow caricaturist Chad Straka drew with me. The school was wonderfully decorated to the hilt; we were situated in a hallway... to a gallery of wax-celebrities: Oh, yeah: I drew LOTS of high-schoolers! (Five hours worth!)

Funnily enough, it turned out that the crazy balloon comedian from my Friday night gig, John Cassidy, was also at this one!!! He was in the gym, so again I didn't get a pic--but I sure hope to do so at the next gig of mine he turns up at! :-) When I got home after this one, the sun was up and the birds were tweeting. I love my job!