C.F. Payne & the Constitution

C. F. Payne is one of America’s leading contemporary illustrators and a friend. I spoke with him today about this artwork he did on the US Constitution:

Chris said that what he was after was “perplexed” expressions on the faces of Jefferson, Hamilton and Madison. In light of 2014 politics, what would they think of their handiwork today?  Would they say “we got it right on!” or “did we screw up?”  He imagines them wondering: “What if we got this thing wrong?” It’s conventional to think of the founding fathers as humorless, unflappable and larger than life. What I like about this illustration is that it humanizes the trio and brings them into our world. It imagines that their brilliance would allow for some irony and bewilderment over modern interpretations of the Constitution. In their way, these caricatures may be truer to life than the stiff portraits on our currency and elsewhere.

In an earlier blog post we wrote about facial expression. C.F. Payne’s illustration uses no quotes or captions; he says it all with gesture. Check out how the hand gestures work as one with the face gestures.

Bravo C.F. Payne!