The caricaturist strives for a portrait

Courtney Sell draws at the renowned Diner en Blanc Event- Courtesy of Ms. Courtney Snell

As Sixth Formers’ inch closer to the next chapter of their lives, many seek mementos. Ms. Courtney Sell delivers on this wish, creating colorful caricatures that highlight more than a wide smile—they tell each student’s story.

     “I get so personal on these,” Ms. Sell said. “It’s fun because I can be so much more in depth.”

     This is no ordinary caricature. Each student received a form to fill out his interests, hobbies, and styles. Ms. Sell then followed up with a ten-minute Zoom call to discuss the details. 

     “Zoom has been awesome for me. I actually love doing it virtually,” she said.

     Students expressed the same feeling. The virtual process was smooth, efficient, and provided Ms. Sell with the details she needed to capture each student’s story. 

     “She was really helpful, and I can’t wait to see what she makes,” Sixth Former Jonny Flieder said.  

     This is Courtney’s fourth year drawing our Sixth Formers. She began her career as a professional caricature artist at Dorney Park in Allentown before earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Tyler School of Art at Temple University. Since then, she’s worked for the Philadelphia Zoo and Citizens Bank Park. 

     Despite her extensive experience working for every type of event imaginable, Ms. Sell admitted that the Sixth Form portraits are some of her most challenging. 

     “I spend a lot of time on these, at least an hour each. I feel like I am drawing your lives.”

Ms. Courtney Sell

     “I spend a lot of time on these, at least an hour each. I feel like I am drawing your lives.”

     In order to finish in time, Ms. Sell plans to work over twelve hours each day, working hard for each of the nearly 130 Sixth Formers. 

     To the students awaiting the final product, they should be confident that this memento will beat their expectations. Courtney is Yelp’s Best Caricaturist in Philadelphia. 

     “It’s so rewarding for me to finish a project of this size. When you get your drawing back, I hope you feel that it is a snapshot of your life.”

Author: Tyler Zimmer '21

Editor-in-Chief Tyler Zimmer '21 has written for each section of The Index since 2018. He previously served as Managing Editor and Arts Editor. In addition to journalism, Tyler plays baseball and golf, and he is often found working in the art studio.