why do they still do those hand drawn courtroom images?

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why do they still do those hand drawn courtroom images?

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9 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Many courtrooms do not allow cameras or recording devices of any kind, so there is no way to get images from a trial for publication or broadcast. The idea is that without cameras, lawyers and witnesses will focus on the law and the case instead of how they will be represented in the media.

However, since trials are open to the public (by law) the next best thing is folks in the gallery who take notes on what is said during the trial and/or drawing pictures of key moments that can be then used for publication or broadcast.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Most courtrooms outright ban recording devices like cameras being in them. The higher the court, the more likely this is the case.

That’s why courtroom videos are almost always for minor offenses not murder trials.

The Supreme Court meanwhile NEVER allows cameras to be present.

The problem is having cameras around can change peoples behavior. Witnesses and defendants could grandstand for example because they are on camera.

It can also be disruptive, you don’t want camera men with flashes and steady cams constantly moving around the courtroom disrupting the process.

Having the media that involved can also negatively influence the process. The media has a way of only showing potentially inflammatory moments in long cases and this can unduly influence the public.

The OJ Simpson trial is a very notable example of a case that was shown to the public and it became very polarizing and arguably became a massive public gong show.

Publicly airing court proceedings for a certain ex-President would also be terrible, as he is likely to use every opportunity to use it to grandstand, talk down the court and witnesses, and generally make an ass of himself for the benefit of the camera and his fanbase.

The workaround to this problem is to allow courtroom sketch artists that can sit there and quietly draw.

Meanwhile the entire case is recorded by the stenographers.

Anonymous 0 Comments

It can be very intimidating to testify about personal, intimate, scary, etc. moments in front of a sea of cameras and flashes. So a lot of courts do not allow recording devices into court. And if they do they usually limit it to before the trial when people walk into the courtroom and sometimes at sentencing. But it is still important for courts to be open so justice becomes transparent. So they do allow anyone to visit the court and sit inn on a trial. If there is any obvious injustice or corruption then people in the public will notice and bring this up to public discussion. This means that anyone can sit in the trial and draw a sketch. It might intimidate the witnesses a bit but it is hard to enforce a no-courtroom-sketch rule, and even then people can still draw sketches after they leave the court.

Anonymous 0 Comments

It may seem odd or contrary to our modern always-trumpeted notion of free speech, 24 hour media, open access to everything — but sometimes, less publicity and openness achieves a better outcome.

Anonymous 0 Comments

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Anonymous 0 Comments

My brother and sister in law, both in the legal profession, were married by a judge friend and commissioned a courtroom sketch artist to do their wedding portrait. It was really great!

Anonymous 0 Comments

I recommend Episode 539 of the podcast 99% Invisible. They talk about the history of the courtroom artist, why they started, and why they continue today.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Media attention on criminal trials severely complicates the judicial process and interferes with proceedings. Especially after the media circus surrounding the OJ Simpson trial, it was clear that media access had to be restricted as much as possible. Of course this doesn’t mean there still isn’t interest, and courtroom sketch artists are crucial in conveying the atmosphere and emotions during proceedings but without obstructing the session in any way.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Some jurisdictions prohibit photos and videos in courtrooms. It’s based on the idea that people will compose themselves differently when being photographed or videoed, consciously or subconsciously.