The difference between a good caricature and a great one, according to Matthew Doubek, can be found in the personality of the finished product. “A great one would be a likeness with personality and volume that exists on the page—not just a bunch of lines,” says Doubek, owner of Alias Karicature Masters Studio in Lafayette.
Doubek prides himself on the talent at his studio, where he employs caricature artists, face painters, temporary and henna tattoo artists, fortune tellers and tarot card readers. “All the people I work with don’t just draw caricatures, but we are always drawing fine art, illustration … some people teach art school,” he says.
Though Doubek himself is employed in capturing people’s character on paper, he’s quite a character himself. The Minnesota native has his hands full, running his studio and creating artistic architectural detail construction with Mobius Studios. While his talents are applied to architecture at Mobius Studios, his true passion has always been illustration. “When my pencils are busy, they’re happy,” jokes Doubek.
Caricature started for him as “a way to get paid to draw” in the summer. “It’s bettering your drawing skills, being around people, and keeping my pencils busy,” he says. These days, Doubek is seeing the industry head more towards guerrilla tactics: drawing subjects without them knowing, and then handing them the piece. “Sometimes I feel kind of creepy,” he laughs. “But I’ll prepaint the backgrounds and turn each one into more of a piece of art than a caricature.”
When he’s not drawing faces in five minutes or less, Doubek lives for the outdoors. He frequents his local ski hill, Eldora Mountain Resort, in the winter and can be found on kayaking trips in the summer. Doubek’s wife and 11-year-old daughter tease him for “geeking out in the garden,” and he’s also constantly producing other forms of art that hangs in local galleries. But Doubek always comes back to caricature every chance he gets.