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Debbie Schafer is an accomplished fine artist as well as a caricaturist and cartoonist recognized both nationally and internationally. As a caricaturist, Debbie Schafer "Art Girl", has delighted thousands of people with her drawings and congenial humor. The International Society of Caricature Artists recognized her immeasurable talents with three "Caricaturist of the Year” (gold and silver) awards, the equivalent of the “Oscar” for the caricaturist in competition judged by peers. 

Debbie's Big Date
DEBBIE'S BIG DATE: Debbie Schafer at Brooke Army
Medical Center, San Antonio Texas. First woman cartoonist to
join the NCS "Cartoon Posse".
Debbie grew up in Allentown Pa. where she began her professional career at 17 drawing portraits in charcoal at Hess’s Department Store in Allentown. She suggested the idea to the store owner who proposed she audition by drawing a portrait of him. The owner, a patron of the arts, allotted her a space on the first floor of the store. Her knack for capturing likenesses gave rise to a rewarding summer as a viable artistic direction began to emerge.
She has owned and managed a string of caricature retail locations along the south Jersey shore. She has taught classes and workshops in caricature and cartoon drawing as well as classical drawing and oil painting, including a weekly TV drawing instruction show for children, “It’s So Easy”, which she hosted live from Atlantic City.
Deborah graduated from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia where she earned her cum laude BFA. Her postgraduate studies continued at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of the Arts, Hahnemann University, and Temple University’s Medical School. She is the first woman cartoonist to join a USO tour entertaining our troops when she traveled to Iraq and Kuwait with the USO and joined Dr. Patch Adams in Russia in 2011.
Serving three years as an art and activities therapist in an acute-crisis psychiatric hospital in NJ expanded Deborah’s experience to the wide scope of human conditions. Redirecting and reality-focusing patients while leading therapeutic art activities, she participated as part of the medical and psychological treatment team, sharing and recording her observations as well as contributing to patient well-being and recovery.

For over 25 years, Debbie has worked with special-needs populations, especially cancer patients and their caregivers, creating more than an entertaining diversion for patients.

“Humor is powerful medicine with no ill side effects.”  ~ Debbie Schafer, Art Girl

Debbie was selected to be part of a pilot program at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia called “Face To Face: The Craniofacial Program Portrait Project.” The program paired four artists with children, each undergoing multiple craniofacial reconstruction surgeries throughout their childhood years. The resulting large oil portraits were unveiled at the hospital in October 2010 and remain on permanent display or on traveling exhibition.
"Humor is the shortest distance between two people. Be it portraiture, caricature or any creative form. Art has the power to heal." ~ Debbie Schafer, Art Girl


 



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