A caricature is a portrait that exaggerates and possibly distorts the essence of an object to create a likeness that is easily identified by looking at it. The object could be living or non-living.
Caricature Artists recreates objects using an exaggeration of some characteristics. The finished objects could be complimentary or insulting or both and usually serves for entertainment or carry a political overtone. Editorial cartoons usually feature political caricatures while those of celebrities are plied in various entertainment mediums.
The term ‘caricature’ is coined from an Italian word meaning, to charge or load. In essence, it means a loaded portrait. There have been arguments that caricatures are only meant to depict the real-life objects and not fictional characters such as fabricated cartoons or other illustrations.
The accepted conventional rule is that the characters ‘loaded’ must either possess objective sets of physiognomic features to draw upon for reference, or, in case of inanimate objects such as cars or coffee mugs, the anthropomorphic depictions thereof. Renowned Caricature Artists have often said that it is difficult to draw a caricature of an animal that works as best as those of human characters.
Caricatures dates back to the olden days where famous artists sort for deformed models to feature in their works. They strived to represent the original image in a way more striking than portraits. This whole art was born out the need to load as much meaning to an image as possible. caricaturist London Arts used to be distributed among closed groups just for the mutual enjoyment it created.
Nowadays, the art has gone public with many artists plying their trade commercially in public places such as parks, beaches, and other frequently visited tourist attraction spots. It is now a full time employment opportunity and the art is even taught in colleges and universities as a subject. In the past, it was just a natural talent or one picked up by sheer posterity or opportunity.
Apart from the traditional political and celebrity satire use, most modern caricatures often drawn by fulltime or part time street vendors are used as gifts or souvenirs. Often popular at street functions, carnivals, and even weddings, caricatures can be quickly drawn to specification for random clients for a token fee.
Many publishing houses used to employ permanent Caricature Artists to sketch portraits by hand for use in their daily publications. With the advent of modern tools and a much more varied need for caricature arts, the future of this unique art is still light years away.