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Vertigo
posted: May 16, 2013

It's been a rough week for Obama. I imagine he must suddenly be feeling a sense of vertigo, falling from such great heights in such a short span of time. I've been watching Hitchcock movies lately and I thought this shot of Jimmy Stewart would translate the moment well.
There have been some terrific illustrations using Hitchcock as source material. Here's Tim O'Brien's from a few years ago using the same shot from Vertigo. I think this was for Entertainment Weekly.
Here's Victor Juhasz's fantastic take on North By Northwest, with Dan Rather in the Cary Grant role, for the New York Observer. I've seen this piece a million times and I still shake my head in awe.
There was a little trend here on Drawger a few weeks ago that had artists posting their 15 biggest influences. Hitchcock would be at the top of my list, right behind Sergio Leone.Those super close up shots that seemed to last forever sort of taught me how to look at faces, searching for the smallest detail that might give some secret away. If you know me, or meet me, rest assured that as you're telling me your interesting story, I'm probably only half listening while studying your face for the real story of you.
I've added this sketch per Victor's request....

21 comments
Tim OBrien May 16, 2013
A painful yet accurate image for Obama's week from hell.
Robert Crawford May 16, 2013
Ready made for a magazine cover! Somebody should jump on this ASAP! Nice one!!
Greg Newbold May 16, 2013
Spot on emotion Dale- Ha Ha!
Victor Juhasz May 16, 2013
I love your Obama here, Dale and agree with Robert that this is ready made for mag cover. Hello out there! I'd love to know how many different visual sources you used to make this caricature. If one takes a breath and thinks back a few decades it seems that the second term for any president who makes it that far is the great unraveling. Don't know why, don't know how, but it is consistent. Even the Gipper was not immune. Was talking about this with Brodner yesterday. Week from hell for sure. Thanks for including me in your short list of killer take-offs. Tim's is scary good. That Rather piece remains one of my favorites.
Dale Stephanos May 16, 2013
Thanks guys. Robert, I agree. There's a magazine out there looking for this cover! Vic, this is one of those cases were I've drawn Obama so many times that I initially just doodled a likeness from memory. For caricatures that's what I usually do, and only go to reference after I get a drawing that I like. Then it's the old mirror reference or snap a photo.
Carl Wiens May 16, 2013
Tough week makes for a great image, Dale! Love the little details, like the translucent ears and pout dimples.
Brian Stauffer May 16, 2013
No tears from Barry! The guys on top of the Repub juggernaut. I can't wait for them to turn it around and remind the American people that this is apparently the only thing the GOP can achieve.
Richard Borge May 16, 2013
Yeah, a week from Hell for Obama... is perfect for a magazine cover for sure
Stephen Kroninger May 16, 2013
Nice work, Dale. I'm also a HUGE Hitchcock fan and have passed on that love to my kids as I believe you have as well. As I look at your image I can hear Bernard Herrmann's brilliant score for Vertigo welling up in my head.
Victor Juhasz May 16, 2013
Any chance you have that doodle? Would love to see the intuitive appraisal of the features.
Marc May 16, 2013
Hitchcock is among my all time favorites, and possibly the only director whose films I can't "watch" while working--they're all too visual to follow without complete attention to the screen. Great image for a horrible week.
Dale Stephanos May 16, 2013
Marc, me too. Kubrick too. Victor, I added that sketch/doodle up there for you.
Stephen Kroninger May 16, 2013
"Kubrick too." If we start naming favorite directors this could become the longest comments section in Drawger history.
Dale Stephanos May 16, 2013
I mentioned Leone too, Stephen. Been digging Michael Heneke lately. :)
Robert Neubecker May 17, 2013
Nice capture of a lousy week.... Angel Eyes! Window to the soul...
John Dykes May 17, 2013
Love this Dale - a great range of skin tones happening...
Ellen Weinstein May 19, 2013
Great image, love that sketch. Vic is right to have you post it.
Ellen Weinstein May 19, 2013
Great image, love that sketch. Vic is right to have you post it.
john cuneo May 20, 2013
Just terrific work here, Dale. (And having never once told you anything interesting, I feel pretty safe about being spared any close observation.)
Jim Paillot May 21, 2013
Wow. Dale, you nailed this. The emotion, the color. One of the strongest portrayals of President Obama I have seen. Great work!
Bob "Kooch" Coutu May 30, 2013
Absolutely amazing! The detail is unspeakably insane! From all the variations in the skin tone, the expression in the facial features, most dominantly the obvious tiresome worry behind the eyes. You capture the emotion and personality to where we can feel his distraught......and I love the over exagerated features. The subtlty in the smallest highlights and glares that bring this image to life. Speachless!! I envy your skills Dale. Your work always has me awestruck.
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