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Artist Showcase: Bette Clark

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If you’ve ever had friends or family tell you that art isn’t practical, you can simply refer them to the work of Bette Clark.

Bette was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She started drawing as soon as she could hold a pencil and began drawing her first portraits by the time she was five. Her love for art and drawing continued to grow as she did, and she decided early on to make art more than just a hobby in her life.

Bette attended a technical school where she received a four-year art degree. The first 10 years of her career were spent working for IBM as a sales artist. She then moved on to work for the Toronto Police Department’s Forensic Sketch Department. 

In 1985, she worked in conjunction with IBM Laboratories to develop the first photo enhancement computer program in North America. This program allowed her to “age” missing children, create images of suspects from witness’ descriptions, and to reconstruct faces from skeletal remains. 

The development of this new computer program led to numerous interviews from world police forces like Scotland Yard, the FBI, the Smithsonian Institute and many credible magazines and TV crime shows.

So, next time someone tries to tell you that art is a “frivolous pursuit,” perhaps you can direct them to the thousands of missing children found and criminals captured thanks to a technology developed with the help of an artist. 

You can view more of Bette's work at www.5pmc.com

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