Yesterday (Sunday, October 29, 2017, for the historical record) I went to a talk and book signing at Politics and Prose for Barry Blitt's new book "Blitt," available in hardcover at fine retailers everywhere.
Blitt is one of those illustration rock stars, kin to Steve Brodner and Edward Sorel, who have made their name mostly through caricature. Blitt is personally infamous for his topical New Yorker covers, sometimes dashed off in a few hours in the middle of the night against hard deadlines, his most notable being the Obamas giving a "terrorist fist bump" in the Oval Office. In the movie of his life, he's played by Martin Mull or Bob Balaban.
I dig him because he draws the old-fashioned way, with a crowquill pen and watercolor on paper with little underdrawing, sometimes drawing the same piece over and over to get it right, if deadlines allow. There's a freshness to the best illustration (I think) that turns it from a mere drawing into an idea that just happens to also be in drawing form.
This is the long way of saying I didn't buy his book, because it cost $40. But I did do a drawing of him from the front row while he was answering audience questions, which he seemed to approve of and signed for me. My left eye was acting up, hence my funky expression in the above photo, but all in all, not a bad night.