Michael Vick brings circus to Richmond


After hours of standing in a line behind police tape on a typical Richmond summer day my paper was damp from the humidity and my fingers were swollen like sausages.  As entertaining as it was outside among the hordes of protesters, spectators, media and police it was a relief to finally take a seat in the courtroom. The actual court proceedings  were brief and anti-climactic.

The sketch shows Michael Vick being sworn in before entering his plea of not guilty to gambling and interstate commerce charges involving dogfighting. Standing behind him is Billy Martin, one of his attorneys.

WaPo story is here.


Art Lien

Courtartist is me, Art Lien. I've been sketching the courts since 1976, and for most of that time the U.S. Supreme Court has been my regular beat. I've been working almost exclusively for NBC News since 1980. Courtroom sketching is a form of visual journalism or reportage drawing that is slowly dying out. Where once upon a time news organization each had their own artist covering a story, today a "pool" artist often sketches for all. It is a demanding and stressful discipline where the drawing is often done directly and under tight deadline.

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