Party Doodle has been my adventurous hobby. It has taken me to all areas of Chicago and outside suburbs I have never been to before. I have done a few festivals that were total fails or complete successes. I have met a lot of friendly people who really appreciated my art which I am grateful for. Thank you to all of you. Your positive responses is what keeps me going. Ruben is my boyfriend who does face painting whenever he has free time from his salary job. When ever he comes out to face paint for kids he loves it because making kids happy really brightens his day.
What did I go to School for?
People ask me a lot if I went to school for this. I did not go to college seeking specifically to become a caricature artist nor gotten a major for caricature art, I don't think that exists. I went to school to become an Animator which is making cartoons that move on TV like Pixar's Toy Story (3D Animation) or like Classic Disney Lion King (2D Animation). I studied both 3D and 2D Animation and while studying those, I also had to learn how to draw. On one summer day in 2009 during college years, I was on a date at Six Flags where I stumbled upon some caricature artists. I have gotten one before while I was in high school but this time I was looking at it with new eyes. I was suddenly inspired how someone could create concept art in an instant. The next day I started researching caricature artists on youtube, blogs, and google to learn as much as I can to know what it is like to be a caricature artist, how it is done, and how to draw like one. I began practicing on my own which was difficult. I practiced for a year in 2010 and everyone knew that I wanted to become a caricature artist. Then on another summer day in 2011 my brother asked me to draw caricatures at his garage sale to attract people to browse around and I was selling them for $5 per face. It was my chance to test the waters of live caricature and boy I was nervous! Luckily they liked my drawing and I made about 2 or 3 sales. Then there was one man who stopped his car in front of our garage who I thought came to look at the stuff we were selling but instead asked me to draw caricatures for an event at the local church. And there it is, I've gotten my first gig! The event went well and it was a real confidence booster. After that, Ruben's sister asked us to sell at her block party and she suggested to Ruben that he should do face painting while I sell caricatures, and that is where Party Doodle was born. Liz the caricature artist and Ruben the face painter. I started posting on craigslist to get more gigs and we designed this website together.
Shortly after we started Party Doodle I was hired to work at a theme park at Lincoln Park Zoo to draw caricatures in 2012. While working there I learned soo much more about caricature art, how to sell my work, how never to sell myself short, develop thick skin from unhappy customers, how to draw faster and maintain good quality, and met many awesome artists in the caricature community. It has been one of my favorite summer jobs and I would recommend it to anyone starting out. Party Doodle was getting less attention from me while working at the Zoo because I had to commit more to my job than my hobby, which ended up in me rejecting a lot of gigs. I worked at the zoo for three seasons. At one point I realized my manager was the artist I stumbled upon at Six Flags when I first became inspired by caricatures, and he became the one to teach me everything I know. Isn't that interesting how things work out? In the summer of 2015 I did not work at the zoo for the first time but instead was furthering my studies in 3D Animation with online workshops at IAnimate.com and was also able to spend a bit more time with Party Doodle. That summer I did more gigs than usual and experimented with different festivals and craft fairs. It was a lot of fun just doing my own thing.
Caricatures at Lincoln Park Zoo wasn't the only job I had during those years. I was bouncing back and fourth between the zoo and in the off season working contract gigs at NetherRealm Studios doing 3D Animation. The skill I actually which I went to school for! I was involved with the famous games "Injustice: Gods Among Us" and "Mortal Kombat X"! That was the dream job, to do 3D Animation and still manage to live in Chicago to be close to my family.
Where is Party Doodle Heading Now?
So what am I doing now? It is mid June in 2016 and guess what? I now have a permanent position at NetherRealm Studios and we are working on the next Injustice 2. *jumps up and down in glee* I am so happy! But do not fret! Caricatures still is and will always be one of my passions along with animation. I will continue to do gigs and also continue to improve my craft.
However having a salary job does mean I will have less time to manage Party Doodle and also less time to do gigs. I am sorry if I am slow at responding to emails and this is also why I don't regularly manage things by phone. I plan on updating my website to be simpler for booking gigs and hopefully link you to other artists I would recommend in case Ruben and I are not available for your event. I will continue to update the blog so you can see the gigs I've done, sketches I've drawn, and random things I would like to share with you. I will try my best to stay actively involved with Party Doodle because it is still one of my passions.