How to Draw the Caricature of Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow

How did I draw this Caricature of Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow of the Pirates of Caribbean fame?

Look at the caricature closely, and then scroll down to read how it was drawn.

Caricature of Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow.

Where is the cheese...Captain Sparrow?

This was an easy caricature to do. Let us see why.

When you are trying to create a caricature of an actor in a persona that has several distinctive features and accessories, then if you focus on the accessories, you can create a likeness of the persona…and because the persona (in this case, Jack Sparrow) is recognized by every human, cat, and dog; you can rest your brush and sleep in peace!

Take the example of Jack Sparrow. Here’s a list of his distinctive features.

  • The head-cloth/rag/band tied at one side,
  • The long matted hair,
  • The beard plaited into two,
  • The beaded hair-rings (!)
  • The blackened teeth,
  • And of course, the kohled eyes!

If you just drew the first three and left everything else blank, I believe most of the humans at least would readily nod their heads and tell you that you’ve indeed sketched Jack Sparrow.

But then, that would be an average attempt, and you don’t seem to me a person who’d accept anything that’s not classy! So next, you’d need to create a likeness with the actor too. So look for the features that the makeup-man didn’t mess with – so what you have now is the nose and the mouth (notwithstanding the blackened teeth.)

Here’s what I did to create this caricature.

Studying Johnny Depp and Jack Sparrow Pictures:

I first studied some Jack Sparrow pictures and then some Johnny Depp pictures. The Jack Sparrow pictures helped me see the details of his accessories and told me a lot about his personality, and the JD pictures gave me a clear picture of his nose, his mouth, and the shape of his face.

Caricaturing the Eyes:

The eyes grew bigger than actual to accommodate the effect of the kohl and the expression of surprise (at the audacity of the mice, of course.) You can read about caricaturing the eye here.

Caricaturing the Shape of the Face:

I’d classify Johnny Depp’s face as pentagonal. So when I did his jaw-line, I pulled out the mirror points to exaggerate the pentagon. Read about caricaturing the shape of the human face here.

Caricaturing Jack Sparrow’s Costume, Accessories, and Overall Persona:

As I said earlier, the accessories become extremely important in characters such as these. Other examples of such characters are: Captain Hook (with the Peter Pan connection) and Agent Smith (of the Matrix Trilogy.)
So…
The head ornament became a butterfly (it brings in a humorous contradiction with a pirate’s personality,) and a huge nut got added to the string of beads that hangs from his matted hair. The twin beard plaits became thicker and more prominent too.

The Joke in the Caricature:

Remember that a caricaturist need not stop at creating a visual caricature. Use words to your advantage. Also remember that a story makes a caricature more interesting and lively.
The concept that mothered the joke in this caricature was the slovenly (and unhygienic) look of Jack Sparrow. Such a man would be quite capable of hiding his cheese behind his ear and the mice would be his constant companions. Voila, two cute little mice jumped out of my pencil and began climbing his beard!

So, that was how the Johnny Depp – Jack Sparrow caricature came to be.

Next in this Series >> How to Draw Tiger Woods, his Women, and the Devil!

If you want to learn the nuances of creating caricatures in a fun and easy to learn way, you would like to read, “How to Draw Caricatures – The Evolution of a Caricaturist.