A caricature is Not Always a Satire of the Negative: As a caricaturist, I often get many of the same questions. “How do you pronounce it?” “Is this all you do?” “You make a living doing this?” “Please don’t draw my nose too big.” etc.
Well it is pronounced “kar-i-kuh-cher”. It comes from the Italian word Carcare, which means, “to load” or “to charge.” The dictionary defines it as a noun
- A picture, description, etc., ludicrously exaggerating the peculiarities or defects of persons or things: His caricature of the mayor in this morning’s paper is the best he’s ever drawn.
- The art or process of producing such pictures, descriptions, etc.
- Any imitation or copy so distorted or inferior as to be ludicrous. -Verb (used with object)
- To make a caricature of; represent in caricature. As for the other questions, I’ll answer them another time.
By nature, the caricature sketch has an edge to it. The caricature is a complex communicative form of art. My personal opinion is that the view that caricatures are always meant to ridicule and distort all the bad traits of one’s face is false. Based on the history and origins of caricatures this can be true. It was originally a form of satire and cutting humor used on popular public figures. Civilization, roughly defined, always been at odds with its politicians, which became the major catalysts of such power of the pen – thus the beginning of the political caricature and the scathing brutality of the weapon of caricature.
I, however, believe that some of the best caricatures are the ones that highlight the best of one’s personality and/or physical traits. I prefer to see the greatness in all of my subjects. It is much more fun for me as the caricaturist to show young children achieving greatness in any activity with a huge smile on their face and twinkles in their eyes. I would much rather show the bright personality and energetic passion for a hobby of a CEO than his/her ability to generate profit margins. I embrace the art of caricature to discover the inner beauty and share in self-discovery of an individual, not only for myself but also for the audience and very possibly the subject of the caricature.
There have been many times I have drawn someone and when they look upon the drawing I did of them, they get a flash of self-discovery that may very possibly change their lives forever. How wonderful is that? I remember a time I was drawing at a Grief Camp for children. Yes, this was a camp for children who had lost one or both of their parents and were working through the horrifying issues that you can imagine a young mind would face in such a travesty. You could tell the first-year campers from the third or fourth-year campers. The new campers were like stones. No emotion, difficult to communicate with, closed to the outside world. These types of kids had a counselor with them at all times, waiting for the right moment to start the healing process.
I was drawing caricatures at the camp on the last Friday night, a celebration dance party of sorts. As always I had a crowd that would make a Tokyo elevator seem roomy. This adorable girl who barely looked up from staring at her shoes was my next subject. Her counselor was there by my side and did most of the talking for her. I worked so hard to see deeper into her personality and find that little something in her that would bring light into her eyes. With the help of the counselor I managed to get a few laughs from the audience watching and once a small smile from the girl. I finished the drawing and showed it to her. She immediately stood with confidence and looked at the drawing. A small smile got bigger and she just marveled at the drawing. “I look like my mother!” she claimed. ” I’m so beautiful”.
This was the crack in the barrier wall that the counselors were waiting for and immediately took advantage of the situation. Driving a wedge into the emotional crack in her wall, they began the healing process for her. The girl gave me a huge tight hug and as she walked off with her counselor, the counselor looked over her shoulder and silently said “thank you”. That is why I will always strive to see the best in my subjects, particularly young people.
A caricature is Not Always a Satire of the Negative Video
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