Charlie's Cartoons   bespoke cartoons - modern gifts with a humorous twist  

November 24, 2011

Preserving memories when you do not have photos

Filed under: caricatures — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 3:17 pm

Photographs are by far the easiest and most common way of preserving a special memory so it can be treasured forever and also shared with friends. Despite the fact that digital cameras are now carried by anyone who uses a smartphone, sometimes the best and funniest moments are impossible to capture on film. They might be unexpected and gone in an instant, like the sighting of golden eagle on a mountain walk, or happen in places where photography is tricky – in the water or at a concert, for example.

While we usually create caricatures from photo sources, there is a lot more to a great cartoon than just reproducing a single image. We can bring in elements from multiple photos or (with a little help from you) draw something that perfectly represents that wonderful moment you didn’t quite manage to capture on film. It might be your loved one catching a perfect wave on the local surf beach or a holiday sunset that the photos just didn’t do justice to – whatever memories you want preserved, we can help.

A caricature cartoon can reflect a single moment in time or it can sum up a year or a decade. It’s hard to find a single photograph that captures all the ups and downs of an entire career, for example, but pen and ink can do a superb job. By building a caricature from photo sources and from descriptions and discussions, we can make sure you get something that brings to mind all those precious moments every time you see it.

November 19, 2011

Christmas card caricatures

Christmas cards are usually gorgeous items to send to friends and family. Whether depicting traditional nativity scenes, snowy landscapes or cute festive icons such as snowmen, robins, pine trees and Father Christmas, there is always a huge choice. However, why not try something a little bit different for certain members of your circle this year?

If you want to impress your friends, colleagues, and distant family members with something special this holiday season, we’ve got the ideal solution. A cartoon caricature can be framed and hung on the wall but the image can also be used for other things. They make excellent Christmas cards.

A caricature from photos can include all the family, including those who live far away. Imagine your auntie’s delight in finding that she has been included in this year’s family portrait even though she’s moved all the way out to Australia! The pets can be there too and we can also include motifs that reflect what you’ve been up to all year long – the achievements the kids have made at school, images from your home or garden, the holidays you’ve taken together, and much more.

With our help you can send out a Christmas card that will be a delight to open. Caricatures from photo images are completely personal and always good fun. If you want to send a card that will be saved and kept rather than ending up in the recycling bin, get in touch with Charlie today and order your caricature in plenty of time for the holiday season.

October 25, 2011

Charlies Caricatures as a Present

Finding the perfect present at this time of year can be difficult.  With Christmas fast approaching there is always that added pressure of finding good quality yet meaningful presents for those you love.  If you are in the market for something different, or simply just curious about our range of gifts, then please feel free to have a browse online at our portfolio.  Here at Charlie’s Cartoons, we are professionals at bringing to life caricatures from photos.  We believe that quality in line and tone gives a personal and meaningful gift.  Because of this, all of our caricatures are drawn to the highest standard, and we can ensure that you will be delighted with your cartoon caricature.

We also believe in the old saying, simple but effective.  We ensure that our cartoon caricatures are simple and effective, making them personal to you, but not too complicated.  This further ensures that your caricature from photo has that professional feeling to it.

Our process for creating caricatures from photos could also not be made simpler.  We advise you to firstly browse our extensive online portfolio before making any hasty decisions.  After you have had a look around, simply get in touch (contact details are on the website) and we will talk you through the rest.  We may ask some questions about what you would like to appear on the cartoon caricature, for example any specific hobbies or sports or personality traits you would like us to portray.  Then, simply send us some photographs and we can get started!

October 20, 2011

Anniversary Gifts from Charlies Caricatures

Filed under: caricature gifts — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 3:31 pm

This is a little known phenomenon, but predominantly, anniversaries come up in the winter months.  Maybe it’s the Christmas spirit, or maybe it’s the feeling of a new start at the New Year, but whatever it is, make sure you have got your spouse the perfect gift!  Anniversary gifts can be high end, and often expensive.  But when you think about it, what says ‘I love you’ more, some expensive piece of welded metal, or a hilarious, personal cartoon caricature?!

Well obviously here at Charlie’s Cartoons, we believe it is our drawings.  As all of our drawings are done by photographs, you can be sure to fully capture the traits of your spouse.  You can decide to personalise your cartoon caricature any which way you want.  Whether you are more of a romantic soul, and looking for a caricature from photos with a meaningful sentiment to it, or more of a joker, we have the perfect solutions for you.

We really can tailor your caricature from a photo however you want it.  We can incorporate iconic places, or even your pets!  The process for this could also not be made simpler.  All you need to do is contact our professional team, and send a few photographs through.  Once we are happy with the photographs, you get to specify exactly what you want the cartoon caricature to look like – what you want included, and what you don’t want included.  With different sizes available, we are sure to fully customise your cartoon caricature however you want it.

Caricatures for Children

Filed under: family caricatures — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 9:34 am

Kids’ caricatures are pretty tricky to make… Parents have a very subjective view of what makes their little boy or girl unique, and they are also very protective of the particular aspects, features, etc which make the child recognisable. On the other hand, children often don’t have that many obvious distinctive features out of which caricatures can be made. With their angelic little faces, what is there to exaggerate?

The answer is not to exaggerate anything, apart from emphasising that cute, big-eyed and big-forehead character that has been a staple for infant and child representation in painting and cartooning. But you can’t go generic when you draw caricatures. You can’t afford to just churn out a carbon copy little cherub every time someone wants a cartoon of their baby.

It’s a very delicate operation: First, to make the caricatures specific enough, context is key. Do they have a favourite place, a favourite toy, favourite clothes? Anything that is instantly recognisable to the customer, and to the child herself! Then, you have to identify the most infinitesimal defining features and render them ever so subtly, so as not to upset that cheruby look that parents will be looking for in their caricature.

A couple of times, admittedly, we haven’t got our kids caricatures right the very first time. Parents have come back to us with details we hadn’t even spotted, or to say that the draft is simply too generic, it’s too safe… Fortunately, that’s what our draft check phase is for. To make sure our customers always get the caricatures they want, whether they’re of kids or grown-ups.

October 17, 2011

Caricatures from Photos

Filed under: custom caricatures — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 9:34 am

How do we make sure we get our caricatures from photos absolutely spot-on? Well, my view used to be that the subjective buck has to stop somewhere, and that I should simply have the final call on how the cartoonists arrive at their successful draft. I used to check the drafts of our caricatures from photos on my own, and not run them past the customer, trusting that my instinct was always right. Well guess what, I was wrong!

Sure, in most cases the caricatures from photos that were of good enough quality, if faithful to the original image and mixed together with enough entertaining fantasy on the part of the artist, would go down very well. And I would always let out a long “phiewph” at every happy response email that would come my way concerning the completed caricatures from photos.

But every so often we would get a bad surprise. “That’s not at all him!” the odd customer would say after seeing the final product. The truth was that my desire to make these caricatures from photos into wonderful surprises that customers could discover all in one go had outweighed practical reality. My vision and the vision of my associate cartoonists might be good. It might be artistic. But it might not be right. And after all, context and composition is all very well, but likeness is the single most important thing for caricatures from photos.

So since January 2011, we have run drafts of all our caricatures from photos past our customers before proceeding to the ink and paint stage. And the result? Nobody ever gets disappointed… and the surprise is still just as great!

October 10, 2011

A Cartoon Caricature for Christmas

Filed under: cartoon caricatures — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 3:13 pm

Christmas is fast approaching, and you always find yourself buying the same gifts for the same people.  For your parents, socks and nice jumpers always suffice. For friends and family, gifts seem to centre around cds, dvds, and other such items.  Whilst the thought is there, you can’t help thinking that something more unique may have meant more.

Here at Charlie’s Cartoons, we produce high quality cartoon caricatures from photos.  As all of our drawings are made from photographs, you can be sure that whoever you are giving this gift to will be fully appreciative.  With that extra humour added into the mixture, this is also a funny gift, and will be sure to make you smile every time you see it.  So, whether you are buying for your granddad or your mother, these cartoon caricatures are an absolutely brilliant gift idea this Christmas.

The process could not be simpler.  All you need to do is send us a photograph or two of the person you wish to be drawn, and we do the rest.  It is important however that the photographs are good, and depict the chosen person well.  It is not so good to send group photos, unless you are in need of a caricature cartoon of a group.

The cartoon caricatures can be made specifically to you, and tailored however you want it.  Thinking of a Christmas present, you could always have a Santa’s hat or beard drawn on to your chosen person, or they could even be riding a reindeer!  It is completely up to you!

October 7, 2011

Caricatures Make an Emotional Investment

Filed under: caricatures — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 4:18 pm

I often get repeat customers coming back to order caricatures up to a year after their last order. The caricatures business is one that builds up a solid following, but it’s nothing quick-fire! It’s not like we’re selling doughnuts or contact lenses here. Caricatures are bought as a gift, and then if that gift goes down well, people think of the idea again a few months down the line, when the next birthday or wedding pops up.

Just this morning I had a couple of caricatures ordered for a birthday. The order was placed by a customer who had ordered a caricature for a wedding over a year ago, in August. It’s always funny when a familiar name pops up in your email list… You try to think: when did we last do caricatures for this client. You try to match a name to an idea, a composition… then , when that fails, I run a search through our caricatures archive, to put a name to a face. So,, who are you… oh yes that’s right, you’re married to that woman flying through the air on a magic carpet, dressed as Princess Jasmin and holding a giant blackberry. That’s the one!

That’s when it’s fun for me to take a trip down memory lane and re-visit old orders. Every single caricatures order represents an emotional investment, so it’s always funny to go back and see these caricatures, and to wonder what those caricatures have lived through since they were made: How many people have seen them, smiled, laughed…

October 5, 2011

Cartoon Caricatures for Weddings

Filed under: Wedding Caricatures — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 9:19 am

I got two orders today for cartoon caricatures for weddings. The funny thing is customers rarely know exactly what they want for this kind of caricature. They have the general feel that they’d like something sweet and pretty to commemorate their big day. But then the day can’t be all pretty and perfect – it shouldn’t be too serious. That’s where cartoon caricatures come in: to poke just enough fun at the characters, at the event, and to undermine any seriousness in an upbeat way. Cartoon caricatures say: “Hey, we might be dressing up, looking fancy and living a fairy tale for a day, but we don’t take ourselves too seriously. Taking one of the most important steps of a lifetime doesn’t have to be done without the kind of sense of humour that a caricature can convey.”

But beyond knowing that they want to bring that feel to the event that cartoon caricatures bring, customers often don’t really know where to start. They’re often overjoyed when I explain that cartoon caricatures can kill a multitude of birds with one stone: they can be scanned and used on invites, they can be mounted and left by the marquis to sign on the day, and they can be kept forever after.  With all these uses at hand, our cartoon caricatures often turn out to be pretty good sentimental and practical value for money!

On the other hand, wedding caricatures are the type of cartoon caricature for which people are, understandably, the most particular about what they want. And you can understand why: this isn’t just some funny off-the-cuff caricature gift to hand to granddad on father’s day – this is how people want to be portrayed at their prime. Cartoon caricatures, sure. Humour, absolutely. But everything in exactly the right dose, please! Wedding cartoon caricatures are drafted and re-drafted to get the balance of humour and personal charm absolutely right.

October 4, 2011

The Perfect Anniversary Gift

Filed under: caricature gifts — Tags: , , , — Charlie Anson @ 3:13 pm

A question that many of us ask ourselves, what on Earth should I get my partner for our anniversary?  We can always go for the standard gifts – chocolates, wine, flowers, but none of these things really have any meaning.  If you are looking for a special and personal gift, one of our cartoon caricatures is perfect for you.  Our caricatures are tailored specially to you, and we can incorporate any unique memories or traits that you wish.  So whether you are a keen golfer, or love your garden, our caricatures are completely centred on what you require.

As all of our caricature cartoons are individual, you can be sure of receiving a completely individual gift.    Drawn by only professionals, these caricatures are great framed and hung on the wall.  With different sizes available, these unique gifts can be made completely to your specification.

With that extra dollop of humour incorporated into every cartoon caricature, these gifts are sure to make you smile every time you look at them. Our caricatures from photos are also very realistic and picturesque, giving that extra bit of personality to each and every one.  Our process to making these great caricatures from photos is extremely simple.  All you need to do is get in contact with our team and send some photos across.  Two or three photos will normally be enough, but occasionally we may ask for more.  Photos are easiest to portray when they are portrait photos, so any portrait photograph of your partner will be fine.

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