How to Draw Caricatures

How to Draw Caricatures

Before you start your career in drawing caricatures, you have to know exactly what this art style is. Today, we are going to take an in-depth look at caricatures and how they came to be.

We will try to guide you through the history of caricature and how it became such a popular phenomenon that it is still used by many artists today. Without further ado, let’s get started with this guide on how to draw caricatures.

What is a caricature?

A caricature is basically an exaggerated depiction of something. Most of the time, it is an exaggerated version of a person after they have been drawn on paper.

Their image could have a particularly bigger nose, smaller eyes or anything else that the artist wanted to exaggerate. It all depends on the preference of both the subject and the person drawing the piece.

Where can I find caricatures?

Most of the time, you will see caricatures in publications such as newspapers and magazines. You will be able to see that these types of caricatures have a sense of editorialism to them.

This is the most popular style of art when it comes to political satire because of how easy it is to convey an idea without having to actually write down what you are saying.

Do you have a politician who you want to depict as evil and corrupt but do not want to say so directly? Then simply draw a caricature of the politician with horns and a really big nose. That will definitely get your point across.

There are a lot of effective ways that you can present a message to viewers and readers simply by changing the focus of the exaggeration when it comes to caricatures. This makes them one of the most powerful ways for artists to break their own silence without even uttering a single word themselves.

Physical exaggeration in caricatures

The most common method of drawing a caricature is by taking something that is already noticeable from your subject then expanding on that. Does your subject have a big forehead? Then you can draw their forehead to be even bigger for a cartoonish effect.

We say cartoon, because that is how caricatures are seen these days. It is not an accident that Disney and other revolutionary animators used this art style to produce their first shows ever during the black-and-white era.

Caricatures are pretty easy to digest mentally since you have an idea of what the characters are like just by looking at them. This is one of those instances where judging a book by its cover is actually beneficial and encouraged.

You do not have to see read between the lines to know what a character is like. As soon as you see an intimidating face, big eyes and other creepy or scary features, then you know that you have a villain before you. There is no explanation required.

Physical exaggerations in a caricature are great for conveying a message to the viewer when it comes to describing a character. Usually, cartoon characters with soft and rounded features are typically seen as the heroes and protagonists.

This has been the norm for so long that it has become the standard way that animators portray their characters in a good light. There is no use in changing the norm simply because we have been conditioned to think of the character with the smooth features to be the hero of the entire story.

The norm could possibly be a bad thing in the long run, but right now, it is one of the best things that animators and paper artists alike are benefiting from. There is no background story required for the character to be relatable.

This is especially important for those weekly caricature-style comics that you see in newspapers and magazines. Sometimes, you pick something up and read a story from the middle and do not know exactly what happened before you started reading it. At least you know who the hero is and who the villain is based on how they look.

Using non-physical traits for caricatures

Another side of caricature is the use of non-physical traits when it comes to portraying a character. Like we said earlier in this guide, many publications use caricatures to convey a message that has a political context to it without getting into too much trouble because of plausible deniability.

Slap a pair of horns and tail on a caricature of a politician who is thought of to be corrupt and you have no way of being called a libelous artist. This is because you can legally deny that you wanted to present them as a corrupt politician.

Everyone has their own version of the truth when it comes to art and this is why caricature drawings shine when editorials have to talk about a topic too dangerous for text form.

Of course, a non-physical exaggeration of someone’s trait doesn’t always have to be political or even have an agenda behind it. You can always draw your friends and think about what aspects of their behavior stands out the most so you can create a physical manifestation of it on your caricature.

Does someone you know talk too much or too loud? Draw them with an exaggerated mouth. That will get the point across. There are a lot of creative ways that you can use this style to your advantage, especially if you are trying to draw caricatures for a living.

Other artistic forms of caricatures that don’t require exaggeration of an actual physical trait include fictional additions to the drawing. For example, you know that a friend of yours always wanted to be a pilot. You can draw them with the wings of a plane.

There are many ways that you can go about this without making it look too grotesque. However, avoiding a grotesque and distorted feeling with a caricature is simply too difficult to do when you have a wide audience. Not everyone is accustomed to the surrealistic style of caricatures which is why you have to know your audience well.

Converting photos to caricatures

If you do not want to draw, then there are other ways of coming up with a caricature artwork to present. There are a number of websites which give you online tools to convert any photo that you upload to a caricature.

This way, you can convert any pictures that you may have of yourself to a cartoon version. Let us take a look at some of the best websites that offer you this particular feature.


This is one of the best websites when it comes to cartoonifying yourself. THECARTOONIST has an online tool that lets you create amazing looking cartoon versions of your photos.

It does not matter if you feature your face or a landscape, it will add the necessary effects and filters so you can see that your photo has been fully cartoonified. This is a great way to mix up the vibe of photos that may seem too dull to upload to your social media profiles.

2. Befunky

Befunky is one of the most used websites online when it comes to adding effects to your photos. One of the effects that they allow you to add is a cartoon effect which generates a caricature version of your photos for you to look at and tweak.

There are many ways that you can adjust the settings of befunky so you can always have the best looking photo out of the bunch that they give you. There are many ways for you to experiment and add your own flair to what they already provide, so it makes for a wonderful experience in terms of personalization.


The website is definitely a great one to use if you are looking for ways to cartoonify yourself. You will be provided with an easy to use online cartoonifier. It is one of the most effective tools of its kind not only on the web, but for your desktop as well.

The Image Cartoonizer program that they let you download will easily convert any photo that you have on your computer to a caricature version of it. This is a great way for you to cartoonize pictures on the go especially for situations where you might not have a fixed connection to the internet.

4. Photo-Kako

You have Photo-Kako’s English team to thank for making this amazing tool available for non-Japanese speaking users. They are one of the best providers of tools when it comes to changing the look of a photo.

They let you convert your photos to a cartoonified version without any hassle and their frequently updated user interface is definitely user friendly. There are a lot of ways that you can go about to changing your look to a cartoonified version which is why Photo-Kako stands out among the pack when it comes to making caricature versions of photos.

5. Fun With Caricatures

This is not a converter that you can use to change your photo to a caricature version. In fact, this is more of an instructional guide where you can actually learn how to draw caricatures.

This amazing guide provides you with lots of materials to work on and learn from so you can convert your own photos by hand and begin your career as an artist who knows how to draw caricature artworks.

There are several resources that comes with the package, like the 7 days of tutorial material and videos with a step-by-step guide on how to learn caricature drawing. It’s perfect for those who want to learn at their own pace and not participate in classes.

You will find out the trade secrets of getting clients and customers and how you can appeal to a wider audience when it comes to artsy products and services.

Do not waste this chance to grab a copy of this amazing guide by Graeme Biddle now. The guide will only be available until he retires and we don’t know when that will be. All of his secrets, tips and techniques are going to be lost once he takes this resource off of the internet.

Only those who purchased it and learned all of the secrets beforehand will be able to use them to benefit their careers in the long run.

We highly suggest that you grab a copy right now because you not only get a broad selection of topics covered by a 30-year veteran artist, you also get a lot of bonus freebies that would normally cost this package’s price all on their own.

Drawing funny caricatures

Caricatures have become a lighthearted form of entertainment for a lot of people thanks to their widespread usage when it comes to cartoon TV shows. You can always cater to a younger audience with your caricatures by simply drawing friendly looking yet still exaggerated styles of your subject.

There are a lot of people that go on the streets to draw children’s faces for their parents to show off in the home as a symbol of endearment. Some of these artists go on to become major players when it comes to the local artistry in their community.

You can expand your targeted audience slowly and surely but make sure that you focus on one particular niche. Everyone loves their memes and their parodies these days which is why drawing funny caricatures is a great way to introduce yourself to your community as the go-to person when it comes to quality art.

We highly suggest that you use this platform to skyrocket your sales and boost your popularity in the long run.

You do not have to turn your back on drawing funny caricatures as soon as you hit the big time. There is still room left for high quality funny caricatures without compromising the value of your current artwork if you are someone who has been in the game for a long time.

Just draw a series of caricatures and submit them to your local newspaper. This is another way to market yourself while providing entertainment for different people from all walks of life.

Who knows? Maybe someone who picks up the newspaper and sees your artwork will hire you for their next big project.

Earning money with caricatures

Now that you know how to draw caricatures and the different styles that you can achieve for it, it is important to focus on how to make a profit on what could be considered a simple hobby. There are a lot of resources out there that teach you about this topic like the one that we just presented to you in the listing above, but we can provide you with the basics for now.

1. Know your audience and stand by them

Like we said earlier, you have to know your core audience and how you can keep this audience growing bigger and bigger every day.

Maybe you can ask the folks who buy your artworks to introduce you to other people who might be interested in cartoonifying themselves? It does not hurt to ask. Just do not be too pushy about it or you might risk alienating yourself from your customers.

2. Keep the quality of your artworks high

Make sure that you still pump out high-quality caricatures even though you might be tired in the first few months of drawing. The people who ask for cartoonized versions of their photos are not only asking for something that looks like an exaggerated form of them, they want a high-quality artwork that they can look at and have a good laugh.

Making sure that all of your artworks are of high quality will keep your clients and customers coming back for more.

3. Stick with caricatures

It goes without saying that the art style of caricature is one of the most constant styles there is. You only have to be loyal to it so everyone knows that you are the “caricature guy” or “caricature girl” in the community.

As you build up your name, it does not hurt to expand your content onto some other things and even experiment on other forms of entertainment. Never forget that you started with drawing caricature first so you always have something to fall back on in case your other plans do not work out.