Why we still need courtroom sketch artists

Why we still need courtroom sketch artists

what do P Diddy Donald Trump and Martha Stewart all have in common Christine Cornell she's a courtroom artist who's captured all of them at their trials everybody ends up in court it's really amazing I've been covering trials for the last thousand years which is about 1975 I did Woody Allen and Mia Farrow my drawing Mick Jagger a couple of times I'd drawn Mike Tyson I did just come off the Cosby trial recently but I drew him probably 20 years ago we live in an age where people's phones have 4k cameras and every dipstick on a snowboard has a GoPro attached to their head so why do we still see old school pastel sketches of so many trials courtroom illustrations are part of an old tradition that dates back to the infancy of the United States but to figure out why we're still relying on them we need to turn to federal rule of Criminal Procedure 53 which is exactly as exciting as it sounds it's a law that basically says that you're not allowed to broadcast or take photographs of criminal proceedings inside of federal courtrooms the ban on cameras was adopted in 1946 but its origin is often linked to the sensational coverage of the 1935 trial of Bruno Hauptmann for the murder of the Lindbergh baby most state courts have had a similar ban on cameras as well which is why news outlets relied heavily on artists like Christine to document the trials courtroom photography has been a hotly debated issue for a long time there are many who believe having cameras in all courtrooms will make for a more transparent judicial process on the other hand some people point to the OJ Simpson trial as a prime example of why it might not be a good idea a lengthy complicated judicial process was turned into a prime-time spectacle it's an unfair burden I think to put on a defendant because they are presumed innocent for starts and the camera is a brutal exposure and the artists are a filter there's just something that's a little more human it's a little bit softer it mitigates a little bit on behalf of the person one great thing about drawing is supposed to you know cameras in the court is you could shrink the space you can put people in juxtaposition to each other that you know they're dramatizes or allows the drama to come out I asked Christine to do a drawing to show me her process I requested one of me in a prison jumpsuit getting tased by guards but she suggested we do it sitting instead when I look very hard at someone that I'm about to draw then I look at my page their face is actually glowing on the page and it's kind of like when you watch film develop except it's a reverse I watch that image fade studying Anatomy is very useful because I have to do an awful lot of recreating of things that I just saw happen in front of me but then they just happened and now they're not there anymore and you have to be able to do that from your from your knowledge if you think too much about what your feelings are about somebody it's going to interfere with your drawing but what about all the awful people you've had to draw over the years I think you need to have a huge dollop of compassion because that's the only way you're going to capture soul on the page and that way you're going to get your your most true likenesses you want to make those portraits speak to you on the page when people cry you're got to get it it's like part of the court artists contract you know do not miss the tears unfortunately for Christina I'm from Minnesota so I'm unable to express my emotions drawing this fast is just it's totally insane sometimes you can turn out as many as you know six drawings a day I've turned out as many as eight drawings a day you're always taking it all in as it comes but there's always certain things that catch your eye and you find particularly appealing like when Martin shkreli was in court he had a bunch of gestures where he would he would just sort of take his hand and go like this and it was sort of fun because you could see the white around this part of his eye you know when Bernie Madoff was sentenced he was taken you know remanded directly and they cuffed his hands behind his back and led him through a door and of course I had to draw that Christine's captured a ton of memorable moments but the laws have changed her profession over the years and a number of Bills have been introduced to allow cameras inside federal and Supreme Court's once upon a time there were so many artists they'd have to give us a whole front of the courtroom you know front row on both sides and now there's just few of us they allowed cameras and an experimental basis in New York state court and that sort of eviscerated the business it took away the bread-and-butter because state court was really where we made most of our did most of our work the business has changed but there's still you know they still crime I mean I'm really kind of done it's just I can keep making it better here let me show it to you isn't it kind of fun don't you like this thing I really like this thing see how nice it is did you took your glasses off so I could really see your eyes you

37 thoughts on “Why we still need courtroom sketch artists

  1. She’s so good at her job. It’s not just drawing people. She’s capturing people’s soul, too.

  2. What dose this guy have against snowboarders?

  3. I agree with the no cameras or media in the court room this is why court trials are open to the public, so that people can come up with their own conclusions on the defendant and the evidence presented against them. With the media there they would find a way to spin it to create propaganda and probably put an innocent person in jail/prison because the public was influenced by the media to believe something that wasnt true or the truth was spun in a way to make that person out to be guilty.

  4. "and every dipshit snowboarder has a go-pro attached to their head"
    The writer of that line has never been on the slopes before lmao, I personally have been to Mt Bachelor maybe 20 times and only seen one person with a go-pro, skiing

  5. From a fellow Minnesotan, I feel you.

  6. i feel like she’s seen a lot of crazy s*** in them courtrooms…just by the way she speaks.

  7. Minnesota represent!

  8. Her eyes are beautiful

  9. Anyone noticed she is left handed

  10. Most of the courtroom illustrations I've seen are terrible. I guess if you're a horrible artist and refuse to do something else, you become a courtroom illustrator.

  11. She really captured his 5 head

  12. dude what the hell did the snowboarders with go pros do to piss you off

  13. Courtroom sketchea are a great example of artwork, but cameras are so much more efficient and typically can remain unbiased with ease as it only takes a second to capture the image.

    But, actually, just keep the media out of the courtroom — and everywhere else for that matter. Why do we need artistic pictures (drawn or itherwise) to hear about a courtcase??


  15. Fk Snowboarders…….#ithadtobesaidandisaidit

  16. I know Christine for many years. She is tops. Also a great gal…And I believe she was a young artist when Ida Libby Dengrove (the lady who wrote the book on courtroom artists) was still at work.

  17. Calls a dude a dipshit for no reason 😂??

  18. She is a god.

  19. I am not a dipshit

  20. Snowboard hater. Wtf! You beta clown.

  21. That was hate speech towards snowboarders. Video has been thumbed down.

  22. Pictures and cameras are better and more reliable like she said how you view a person personally can change how the sketch can come out sketchers are out dated 1000 pics can be made in the time it takes for one sketch

  23. Eh pointless position

  24. Her drawing is just amazing

  25. 2:24 oh my god I thought I was the only one who could see things like that??

  26. This was interesting, but it didn’t really convince me that we still need courtroom sketch artists. All it did was provide me with a point of view, not with facts to support it.

  27. I love her art. She's great.

  28. Seems like a job that used to be Important but is clearly unnecessary now…

  29. She can take selfie with pencil.

  30. Wtf did snowboarders do to you

  31. I’ve considered this career. I’m terrible at buildings and landscapes, but I can accurately draw your bones, flesh, and clothing. My process is like hers, watching it appear in front of me. But also… I spent so much time perfecting that (and cats) that I suck at everything else.

  32. "Every dipshit on a snowboard has a gopro"
    Please never change

  33. The Minnesota tears part is so true

  34. As an artist who struggles to draw still life or objects (not moving), I can't imagine what it's like to remember an emotion and draw it the next second.

  35. 0:01 they all have said the n word

  36. Anyone else think courtroom sketches look similar to the loading screens in Grand Theft Auto?


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