Digital ArtPolitics

Make a Member of Congress

Guys, as you know it’s been a difficult few months, politically speaking. Many of us are worried about the future, are troubled about everything coming out of Washington and it kind of feels like we’re living in the exposition paragraph at the beginning of a movie that explains why things will be exploding for the next two hours.

So, considering all of this, I would really like to attend a town hall with my Republican Congress representative. As an engaged citizen I would love to hear what he has to say about the pressing issues of today, from the ACA to, oh, I don’t know, maybe that pesky situation with Russia and the election. I feel like it would be very helpful to get his perspective.

Or it would if he would deign to speak to his constituents. Instead, he is a ghost, a myth, existing only in rumor and condescending blog posts. But, we held a town hall for the district anyways. I helped organize it and yet somehow did not see a single one of those sweet protest dollars I’ve heard I should be expecting. My main contribution was to provide the print for the cardboard Congressman, as I admitted that I knew how to use photoshop and this seemed like the best use of my skillset. Here’s how you can make your own!

Step One: Find a head. All the members of Congress have nice, high quality headshots available online at a resolution suitable for printing. I assume the intended use is newspapers or something.

Step Two: Find a body. Now this was surprisingly tricky as it turns out the official photo is at a weird angle that isn’t preferred by people who take stock photos of men in suits, and I’m trying to put as little effort into this as possible. This businessman on Clipart ended up being the best match.

file from

Step Three: Frankenstein’s monster. I started out in Photoshop, adjusting the two photos to make them fit. I had some trouble with proportions, and unfortunately the suits didn’t match well. One was pinstripe and the other was solid and let’s face it, there was only so much tedious cloning I was willing to do. I got tired of trying to clone everything and took my FrankenRep into Painter, which has much better blending tools than Photoshop. And then…I got ambitious. I started turning my FrankenRep into a full on painting, to better provide him with all the dignity and magnificence he deserves. But like, I couldn’t be bothered to re-draw the leg so he kept the awkward businessman briefcase.

Step Four: Selfie with your FrankenRep at the town hall he never bothered to attend!

*jazz hands*Democracy!*jazz hands*

NOTE: I’ve been asked to do this again, with a different politician. I guess this is now my thing.

Celia Yost

Celia Yost is a graphic artist and painter by both training and trade. She's also prone to ill-advised craft projects and yelling about politics.

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