Prepping for #CreativeMornings. Here’s my caricature of Nhlanhla Mahlangu, along with the reference pic.

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I always prepare for any event by spending time understanding the topic, looking at graphic elements, and working out what needs to be drawn before the event itself kicks off.

When I do a Creative Mornings event, one of the elements I do before the gig is a caricature of the speaker.

In this case, we’re looking at the vocalist, composer, theater maker, dancer and educator, Nhlanhla Mahlangu. (Here’s his Facebook link: www.facebook.com/nhlanhla.mahlangu.5030.)

The way I draw many of my caricatures is to pop a reference photo onto my Krita canvas (that’s the open source drawing software I use to make all of my sketchnotes).

My next step is to draw a very rough black line draft of the caricature in the space next to the photo. In this stage, I play around with what I want to exaggerate. I tend not to do classic caricature over-exaggerations, since I’m looking for recognisability, along with not insulting the subject.

Once I’ve prodded the draft into something I like, I drop the opacity down to around 10%, then make a new layer above that. I use the faint draft as a sort of tracing template. This allows me to make bold, simple strokes to find the right shapes. I have the reference pic next to this at all times so that I can "feel" how any particular line is supposed to be.

Once I have the linework done, I delete the draft layer, and start my colouring on a new layer below the linework.

This is the end result.

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I’m a professional sketchnoter. I’m happy to be at your next event, making visual interpretations of what people are saying. I literally help people to "see what you mean". If you like what I do, it’ll be great if you book me. Contact me via email on royblumenthal@gmail.com or Whatsapp me on +27741046386.

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