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How to Hire a Good Caricature Artist

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Keys to Hiring a High Quality Caricature Artist.

Look for a Qualified Person.
Being an artist, caricature or otherwise, is one of those rare occupational titles that doesn’t actually require any official credentials. If you call yourself a Doctor, it’s pretty much a given that you’ve gone to medical school. If you hang a shingle claiming to be a plumber, folks have a right to expect that you completed some professional training, or carry a union card that qualifies you to fit pipes that manage to keep the water on the inside of them. But being an artist is a different. It’s one designation that you give yourself. You are one because you SAY you are.

So how do you know if the caricature artist you’re thinking of hiring is any good? The answer is two fold. Experience and Portfolio.

First, experience. There are a lot of caricature artists out there. Some are amazing, some are deluded about their ability. One great way to figure out which one you’re dealing with is to look at their track record. A good caricature artist will demonstrate a solid work history, have a list of clients and  be able to refer you to past clients who have hired them.

Next: Portfolio. You should be able to readily view multiple, real-world samples drawn by the artist. These sample caricatures should reflect the type of work the artist does in the situation for which you are hiring him. In other words, if you are hiring the artist to work from photos, ask for samples of their “studio” work.  If you are hiring a caricature artist to work at a live event, ask to see samples of the kind of work the artist would do in that situation.

Here’s a tip: When reviewing a caricature artist’s portfolio, don’t be intimidated into feeling like you need to put on an art critic hat to “understand the motivation of the artist”…just go with the one you like! You’re the expert on that!

If you found this information helpful, and are looking for a High Quality Caricature Artist in Massachusetts, please visit The Caricature Guy


Another Sample Caricature

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The Caricature Guy Was Honored to be Asked to Draw John Donahoe, New CEO of eBay

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July 2, 2010 at 3:07 pm

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Sample Caricature

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Here’s a sample of a caricature that The Caricature Guy did of Meg Whitman CEO of eBay.

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July 2, 2010 at 3:03 pm

The Story of

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Ed Smith has had tens of thousands of 7 minute conversations with total strangers. No, he’s not a telemarketer,  poll taker, or short distance taxi driver. He’s a professional caricature artist and he’s bringing his smile-inspiring gift to South Shore residents with his new enterprise,

Smith has been working professionally as a cartoonist  since even before he graduated from Braintree High School back in 1989.  He even spent several years working on the famous “Building 19” circular. But his bread and butter throughout has been his uncanny ability to capture a humorous likeness of any person, in just a few minutes through the art of caricature.

“It’s just something I’m able to do” Smith says of his ability to sit down, armed only with a permanent marker and  fresh sheet of drawing paper and produce a humorous, flattering, likeness in about 3 minutes flat. If you prefer full color, the whole thing will take about 7 minutes.

This knack for caricature has taken him all over the country and put him across the table from tens of thousands of subjects wanting to be drawn. Some of them anonymous, some very well known.

Smith recounts for example, the time he had the opportunity to draw the boxer, Vinny Paz at an event. Smith confessed he’s not a big boxing fan and usually doesn’t even know what sports season it is,  “But I knew something was up” Smith says, ” because the crowd watching me draw was bigger than normal and everybody kept calling this guy “champ'”. So I smiled and asked him if he was famous for something “.  The  boxer humbly cited his impressive victory record, but also shared openly with Smith about his dramatic and inspirational story of recovery from an injury most thought would end his career and the awe inspiring comeback that followed.

“That’s what I love about my work the most, everybody’s got a story, some of them are moving, some hilarious, but all of them have to be told in the few minutes while I’m drawing the person. There’s something really intimate about drawing even a cartoon portrait, you can go pretty deep in 7 minutes ”

Smith has also had the pleasure of drawing musician Carly Simon, California Gubernatorial Candidate and former eBay President Meg Whitman and other luminaries.

Smith’s skill has taken him far from the pushcart in Boston’s Quincy Market where he got started as a caricature artist twenty years ago. Early on, Smith signed with a booking agent to arrange gigs at colleges up and down the east coast, the deep south and Mid west. While at home, local party planners would fill spots in Smith’s schedule with corporate events and private parties where he’d be hired to come and draw the guests. It was a very exciting time for the young artist. “It was kind of like being a rock star except for the economy rental cars and gas station food.”  Smith recalls.

These days, Smith is married with four children and living in Plymouth. Over the past few years he’s become increasingly interested in finding a way to continue to bring his unique talents to people, while making the whole thing more sustainable. His solution? stay local. That’s where his new website, comes in. The site allows anyone planning a corporate event, private party, wedding or other celebration to book Smith to come draw at their function, provided it’s on the South Shore, Cape, and islands.

The  site, which launched just this week, marks a new phase in Smith’s career where the focus is on the local community he loves so dearly. “I’ve been all over the country doing this work, but the South Shore is my home.  It’s my favorite place on earth.  This community is  growing and becoming more and more vibrant all the time, this is where  I want to live and work”. Smith said.

He realizes he’ll probably still need to travel to Boston on occasion since the demand for caricature artists of his caliber  remains high there, but his focus will be on building business relationships in and around his new hometown of Plymouth. His goal is to book three to four gigs per week within a 40 mile radius of his home studio on the small sheep farm he and his wife run in the Chiltonville section of Plymouth.

It looks like things are off to a great start already. “Literally the day I after I launched the site my cellphone rang” Smith said. “I put this idea online twelve hours ago and I’m already getting booking calls from local folks, yep, this is going to be fun”.

To see samples of Ed Smith’s work and for booking information for your event, visit

Adults-Only Events are Perfect for Caricature Artists

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Caricature artists are often asked to do kids parties, which is fine, but really it’s even more fun at Adults-only parties.(where the humor and attitude can rise to at least a PG-13 level).

If you’re planning a party, bash, or big barbeque, caricatures will make your fun stuff better! The Caricature Guy has been to thousands of parties and is the master of the 7 minute conversation. Once your guests get in the subject chair a crowd will form and that’s when the fun begins. The caricature Guy engages the subject and the crowd in humorous dialog as he draws. The result is more than just a cool picture, it’s entertainment!
Booking Info for Adults-Only Event Caricatures

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July 2, 2010 at 2:51 pm

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Does a Caricature Artist Really Belong at a Wedding?

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It’s definitley a good fit! Hiring a caricature artist to sketch your guests during the cocktail hour is a great way to get people mingling and having fun. You can choose from full color drawings or a more elegant black line style (an added classy touch for more black-tie type celbrations.) Wedding caricatures are exploding in popularity and The Caricature Guy is ready. Hire a high quality caricature artist and make your special day the most memorable it can be.
Another thought…Caricature sign-in boards of the bride and groom are a novel alternative to traditional guest books. Ask the Caricature Guy about having a wedding sign-in board produced ahead of time in studio from photos.
Booking Info for Caricatures at Corporate Events

Written by thecaricatureguy

July 2, 2010 at 2:50 pm

The Top 8 Frequently Asked Caricature Questions

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How Do I Book a Caricature Artist?
It’s easy, just visit the booking/info page of The Caricature

What Kind of Events Are Good for Caricatures?
Really any social event where there are people. Caricatures make fun stuff better. For some ideas visit the caricatures at your event page

How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Caricature Artist?
The Caricature Guy has reasonable hourly rates for live caricatures at your event. Check out the booking/info page

I’m a Party Planner, Can I Hire You to Do Caricatures at my event?
Yes! The Caricature Guy works with party planners in Massachusetts, The South Shore of Massachusetts, the Cape and islands, Boston and beyond. Shoot an email to or call 774.283.5913 for special rate info and details.

Do You Do Caricatures from Photos?
Yes, you can have the caricature guy draw detailed caricatures for gifts, awards, caricature sign-in boards, business cards, websites and more Shoot an email to or call 774.283.5913 for details.

Do You Do Caricatures in Black and White or Do You Do Color Caricatures?
It’s your choice. The caricature guy can draw full color caricatures or elegant black line style.

How Many Drawings Can You Do in an Hour?
On average the Caricature Guy can do 10 Black line caricatures per hour and about 7 full color drawings per hour.

Do You Make People Look Ugly or Weird in Your Caricatures?
No. The Caricature Guy draws humorous illustration that achieves a flattering likeness.

Do You Charge for Travel Time?
If travel requires an airplane, ferry, the client will assume responsibility for the cost. If a “local” event is more than 40 miles from The Caricature Guy’s home studio, a request for reasonable travel compensation will be made at time of booking.

Written by thecaricatureguy

July 2, 2010 at 2:49 pm

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