When Lois Gibson was just 21, she was attacked by a serial rapist and killer.
This terrifying event served as her motivation to become a criminal sketch artist, and now she’s one of the most successful in the world, having helped law enforcement catch more than 1,000 criminals during her career.
Gibson holds The Guinness World Record for most identifications by a forensic artist in the world, along with a plethora of other awards for her efforts. A drawing of hers even holds the distinction of being the first forensic sketch shown on “America’s Most Wanted.”
Check out these 10 sketches and photos of suspects and victims to see just how good Gibson is.
Gibson graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honours and the FBI Academy Forensic Artist Course. Now she has become the teacher, passing on her wisdom of forensics to students at Northwestern University and The Institute of Forensic Art in Houston, Texas.
She co-authored her first book, 'Faces of Evil,' with renowned writer Deanie Francis Mills, and wrote a second called 'Forensic Art Essentials' so that she could help illustrate tips to people interested in learning or developing the discipline.
Her goal is to help anyone who wants to become a forensic artist, as there are very few of them. She even trained Israel's first forensic artist, Gil Gibli.
She also helped elevate the work of Florin Lazau in Romania, Filipe Franco in Portugal, and many other forensic artists around the world.
In her early twenties, Gibson drew over 3,000 portraits of tourists in San Antonio, Texas. This served as practice for the work she would continue to in forensics. Gibson has been serving the Houston Police Department and surrounding area since 1981.
Her work has been featured on Good Morning America, ABC's 20/20, Discovery Channel, Fox News, CBS' Early Show, Oprah's O Magazine, Reader's Digest, People Magazine, and other outlets.
In 2007, Gibson's drawing of a girl who was murdered found its way onto the internet, where it was seen by the girl's grandmother over a thousand miles away in Mentor, Ohio. This helped authorities find the two murderers of two-year-old Riley Sawyers.
In her spare time, Gibson loves to do watercolors of scenery and portraits of her family.
She has also done oil portraits of prominent Houstonians like Mayor Bob Lainer for the City of Houston Public Works Building.
Gibson says she plans to fight crime with her artistic talents for as long as she can.
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