How I put together a Caricature

(Originally posted on 26th April 2015)

At the time I was last renovating my website, Jeremy Clarkson was in trouble for bopping his producer in a “fracas” about food. Specifically, the lack of hot food after a day’s filming somewhere in Yorkshire. Now, Clarkson has one of those faces that lend themselves very well to caricature, so I thought I’d give it a go.

Firstly, what is a Caricature? Oxford Dictionaries defines Caricature as “A picture, description, or imitation of a person in which certain striking characteristics are exaggerated in order to create a comic or grotesque effect.” Basically, a cartoon of someone with their most recognisable features exaggerated. Some cartoonists take the exaggerations to truly hideous proportions, but I prefer a more balanced approach that is still recognisable and funny.

I came up with a basic idea for a caricature: Clarkson looking a bit forlorn/grumpy, wearing some boxing gloves. Later, I decided to add a caption saying “I’ve never been in this much trouble over a food fight before”. The next stage was research. A quick Google yielded a recent photo of Clarkson pulling a bit of a “I’ve been a naughty boy” face, along with an earlier caricature of him by another cartoonist. This provided me with enough material to base my own caricature on.


The Process of Creating a Caricature

This gallery shows the different steps I followed to create my caricature:


I follow the same procedure with every cartoon or caricature I draw: Research, Sketch, Trace, and Colouring. Out of those four stages, probably sketching takes the longest, while research and tracing are the quickest stages. In all, it probably took me about 6-8 hours from start to finish. That was relatively speedy for me, as I found this cartoon quite easy and fun to do. A more complicated cartoon with extensive background detail would probably take me a lot longer, partly because when it comes to drawing, I’m rather demanding of myself and will keep redoing details until they are near perfect!

So that’s the story of the Clarkson caricature. Now I just hope he doesn’t see it and come round and bop me one!…