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You know how magicians talk to distract you while they’re doing their sleight of hand?  It’s called banter.  Well, a good caricature artist also has to talk, not as much as a magician (a constant stream), but enough to make the person “in the hot seat” comfortable.  They’re being stared at and that can be weird.  Some people with a theatrical bent are in their element when they’re being stared at and you’d think that in our video-and-photo-crazy culture everybody would love this, but you’d be surprised.  I’ve been drawing people at parties for twenty-three years and I am keenly aware of this dimension in my work.  A caricature artist at your party has to relate to people. What I do is actually a little unsociable—hey, you’re staring at me!—and I have to make it look and feel normal.  So, when you’re thinking of hiring a caricature artist for your party, talk to him or her on the phone to get a sense of how sociable this person will be.  A big part of my work is reading the ambiance at a party and to reflect that in the drawings.  I have to adjust the humor to suit the occasion.  There’s always humor, but it’s different at a trade show, wedding, adult evening party or a six-year-old’s birthday.  Pretty interesting, huh?!

Here are some pictures from a birthday party celebration in the wine room at Wildfire in Glenview a few weeks ago.  It was a small gathering of womenwho sat around the large circular table.  Btw, when I open my mouth like that, I’m not screaming, just hamming it up a bit.  I felt like one of the family there.

All contents copyright (C) 2010 Katherine Hilden. All rights reserved.

www.khilden.com

http://facefame.wordpress.com

http://artamaze.wordpress.com

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