The short answer: I draw 1 digital caricature every 3-4 minutes (about 15-20 an hour). I draw a hand-drawn caricature every 2-3 minutes (20-30 an hour).
But wait, there is more to consider…
Many people planning an event that would be enhanced by a caricature artist are concerned about how fast the caricature artist can draw. Maybe you are nervous of a long line forming or you are afraid people will get upset if they don’t get drawn funny. With hundreds of people coming to an event these are valid concerns.
From my experience doing hundreds of live caricature events this is what I have learned:
Not everyone wants to be drawn funny
The hilarity of having a caricature artist at your event doesn’t come from one person seeing themselves drawn funny. It comes from seeing others drawn funny. It’s almost a guarantee that a line will form and people get excited to see their caricature; however, the most laughter comes as they gather around me and laugh out loud as they see the drawing develop.
So, even if I don’t get to draw everyone that night, everyone will still be laughing.
Not everyone needs to be drawn funny
No matter how much time or money you invest in your party, you aren’t going to please everyone. Will there be people at the party that are disappointed they didn’t get drawn funny, YES. There will also be people at the party that hate the chip dip, or think it’s too cold in the room. The reality is, caricature artists transforms the energy in the room. Those that get drawn laugh more, they show off their caricature and get others laughing. I’ve never met an event organizer that regrets hiring a caricature artist.
It’s worth paying the artist to stay longer
Ninty percent of the time the client asks me to stay longer than originally planned. The first time my clients hire me they plan a couple hours just to see how it goes. After an hour passes, and they see people gut laughing, they can’t help but ask me to stay longer.