The Wire



Last week I got to play the part of courtroom sketch artist for HBO’s The Wire.
That in itself was a gas, but what made it even better is that the scene featured Baltimore’s own Billy Murphy playing himself.

My first assignment as a sketch artist for WJZ-TV was the trial of Charles A. Hopkins who had gone on a rampage at City Hall shooting and killing Councilman Dominic M. Leone. The jury found Hopkins not guilty by reason of insanity. His attorney? Billy Murphy.


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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One comment on “The Wire
  1. dion graham says:

    Hi Art. Couldn’t figure out how to access sketches from the Wire other than Billy’s above. I played the prosecutor, Bond, in case you forgot.


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