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Tom Gianni – RIP

Courtroom artist and illustrator Tom Gianni has passed away.

Thomas Francis (Tom) Gianni
January 5, 1960 – March 30, 2020


courtroom sketch artist, illustrator, artist
brother to Gary Gianni

From the obituary:

Thomas worked as a book illustrator, freelance artist, and most notably courtroom artist for WGN, NBC, and WTTW in Chicago. He was the paint strokes that gave our lives color – the world will be far less colorful without him.

A 2013 appreciation of Tom courtroom skills from WGN:

I’m sure Tom appreciates those who appreciate his work. He was guided to his career by his brother. Gary Gianni worked through the 70’s and 80’s. He was the principle courtroom artist during the trial of serial killer John Wayne Gacy. Tom says, “Gary didn’t want to do it anymore so he passed it down to me. I get to do what I love and that’s drawing.” But Tom doesn’t recommend his career path to anyone. “They are introducing cameras to Illinois courtrooms so it might be the twilight of this job.”

And a 2018 profile from NBC:

Chicago artist Tom Gianni knows one thing: his art often has a very quick turnaround.

The popular notion is that great art, of course, takes time. After all, Michelangelo famously took four years to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

Michelangelo could never have been a courtroom artist.


Tom was also an accomplished illustrator and book cover artist.


Epicstream has an array of Tom’s Magic: The Gathering card illustrations.



See Tom’s website for more.


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