I've drawn in 10 different theme parks now, and I'm seeing an array of artists, ages, skill levels, experience, styles, approaches, philosophies, customers, and tastes. It's amazing how guests of a Six Flags theme park will often fawn over a drawing that a Sea World guest would outright reject, even take as an insult.
I've also found that with the right attitude, swank and confidence, an artist can pull off whatever they want with a drawing, if you keep the entertainment going. "Selling" a caricature has little to do with the piece of art created in front of you (yes, I said ART), and far more to do with selling yourself. You could call it confidence, you could call it swagger or even arrogant enthusiasm... whatever you tag it, the attitude you project to the subject of the drawing or onlookers/family is the attitude the drawing is expected to have - or at least as much insurance as you're giving yourself. If (as an artist) you're a safe driver, then you don't need full collision coverage, and if you're a risk-taking exaggerator, you may need more than the soft-spoken minimum liability plan. My new friend Gabe Hunt taught me a lot about attitude and enthusiasm while drawing and selling. I like to concentrate on the art more than the business, however there's so much more you can do when giving yourself padding - cusion of crazy, as I've observed with Gabe. Either way, different situations call for different tactics, but as much as you try to make the customers pleased and happy (if you draw live) - don't forget to take that one bold leap and do something that helps you grow as an artist. Rarely do the drawings that give growth go over well with a paying customer in a conservative cute theme-park, but don't forget why you're doing it.
Here are a couple drawings done at Sea World in San Diego, CA. The first was done early in the day - an extremely cute little baby hanging out with daddy. The same theme asked of a 3 year-old (or so) girl a few hours later, with a different approach. Now even though the first father laughed, thanked, smiled, and purchased the drawing, in true form he kindly returned for a refund. This was truly a sketch-book drawing where I learned a lot, grew a little, and didn't produce the nicest drawing, but I taught him a little, myself a little, and my co-workers a little.. which is worth far more to me and them than the $24.95 refund; whereas the latter was a quick card-trick, small illusion or fun joke that I've told 50 times. Great for them and it made me feel good, but only a passing memory that will wash off. They both have their strong points and positive results and both are important in drawing live.
The 2nd group framed the drawing with enthusiasm, and I'm sure it's hanging in the living room right now. I experimented with the first, failing in some rights, succeeding in others.
I'll have more here soon... to much to sort through, too many drawings and paintings, too little time. I'm thinking of giving up sleep altogether.