I am very familiar with the art of drawing currency.
Over the years, many clients have commissioned my illustration services for images incorporating the graphic elements of money. In many cases, I am asked to insert someone’s portrait into space normally reserved for George Washington, Andrew Jackson, and the rest.
Speaking of Jackson, Here’s a currency illustration I did for a store chain that ran a print-ad, advertising a sale. It’s a straightforward rendition of the central oval on the old version of the Twenty-Dollar bill:
One of the more interesting projects I worked on, drawing currency, was for the Luxor Casino in Vegas. The client needed a super-graphic of that mysterious eye from the One-dollar bill, to drape from the top of the casino building. After completing the drawing (always by hand), I converted it to a vector file, giving it that smooth graphic look:
Wish I had a photo of that thing hanging up there — must have looked awesome!
One time, Time Magazine hired me to do a cover illustration, for a story about Arab oil and its relationship with the American economy. I thought the drawing came out well…
… but a funny thing happened: With a weekly magazine, the turnaround time for a commissioned piece of art needs to be brief. I shipped my art to New York via Fed-Ex overnight courier, in time to meet the agreed deadline. This happened to be one of the very few times Fed-Ex let me down. Somewhere in Manhattan, the package was lost! When found, it was delivered late. As you can guess, I was mightily perturbed. In the end, it didn’t matter because my cover-story got bumped for another, late-breaking news item. Ah, the travails of a career in Illustration!
Here is a black-and-white illustration I created for the Chicago Tribune:
Alexander Hamilton, from the ten-spot, sporting a rakish grin and a big “Thumbs-Up”. Here’s looking at you, kid.
Anyway, that leaves us free to contemplate those currency illustrations with the substitute portraits I mentioned earlier. Here’s one of Tiger Woods I created for Sports Illustrated:
Scottie Pippen, the basketball champ…
And, I am unsure as to the identity of this gent — can someone help me out here?
In any case, I’m certain I’ll be drawing currency for years to come.