artist, book review, Nonfiction Review

Illustrating Justice for NBC News

illustrating justice

Illustrating Justice for NBC News

Betty Wells

In Collaboration with Vickie Gentri

This book is by and about a famous artist you’ve never heard of.  You know all those illustrations news programs use for notable trials and important events when camera’s aren’t around – well someone has to draw them, and in this case, the artist is Betty Wells. I never gave those artists much thought but since reading this book, I can now better appreciate their talent for capturing live moments in history on the fly.

The author covers some well-known trials, such as Watergate (1972-1973),Iran-Contra (1989), John Hinckley (1982), Susan Smith (1995), Tailhook (1991) and most recently, the Beltway Snipers Attacks (2003). She also covered sessions in the Senate and House of Representatives as well as the Supreme Court. She offers a unique perspective inside the courtroom from an artist’s point of view. There are no guilty/not guilty verdicts in this book – just the faces of the parties involved. The supplies she used, most often a Strathmore 400 series 18 x 24 drawing pad, Prismacolor pencils, and india ink were used to capture history at its best and worst moments.

For any aspiring artist this book offers inspiration in the beauty of average humans. For the history buff, this book provides a fresh, new look at some of the most historic trial and political events of the past century.

Rating: 4 daisy rating


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Art by Betty Wells:


Art Betty Wells created during retirement.