Commission Your Affordable Portrait From African Artist Peter Asare

Peter Asare portrait

Peter Asare portrait

Select your portrait reference photos or create a new selfie, then chat with African artist Peter Asare to discuss portrait ideas (email Asare Peter manlyricaca@yahoo.co.uk ). Check out the artist’s Facebook page here and Portraits africa portfolio here.

Peter ASare double portrait of mother and child

Peter Asare double portrait of mother and child

Do you want Peter to create your portrait painting on canvas or paper? Decide on the materials and size for the finished portrait art during your consultation with the artist.

Provide your reference photo or photos to the artist so he can get to work and he will send you a work-in-progress photo!

Peter Asare portrait

Peter Asare portrait

Portraits Africa–based in Amsterdam, Netherlands–holds your international currency payment until the portrait is complete and delivered to you. Only then is the money is paid to artist. Contact Portraits Africa via email: editor@negativeentropy.net -or- by telephone: +31 20 672 78 06

Peter Asare double portrait drawing

Peter Asare double portrait drawing

While a portrait drawing on paper may require less time to complete, a painting on canvas will take more time. If you have an anniversary, birthday, or other date you’d like to receive the completed work, just let the artist know.

Peter Asare double portrait drawing

Peter Asare double portrait drawing

Final photos are sent to you for approval. The artist Peter Asare packages and ships the finished portrait to you.

Peter Asare portrait

Peter Asare portrait

Portraits Africa–based in Amsterdam, Netherlands–represents Peter Asare and many other African artists. Contact Portraits Africa via email: editor@negativeentropy.net

creative portrait art by Peter Asare

creative portrait art by Peter Asare

Peter Asare produces one-of-a-kind highly realistic portraits of people of all ages and he will create a portrait to please you.

Peter Asare's Del Cara Arrugada

Peter Asare’s portrait titled Del Cara Arrugada

 

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How to Commission Your Portrait From African Artist Eric Sher

Eric Sher, South Africa

Eric Sher, South Africa

Select your reference photos or create a new selfie, then chat with African artist Eric Sher to discuss portrait ideas (email Eric Sher <ericsher2003@yahoo.com ). Find Eric Sher on Facebook here.

Would you like him to create your portrait painting on canvas or paper? During your consultation with the artist, he will help you decide on the materials and size.

Eric Sher, Deviation from REality series portrait

Eric Sher, Deviation from REality series portrait

Provide your reference photo or photos to the artist so she can get to work and she will send you a work-in-progress photo!

Eric Sher painting

Eric Sher painting

Portraits Africa–based in Amsterdam, Netherlands–holds your international currency payment until the portrait is complete and delivered to you. Only then is the money is paid to artist. Contact Portraits Africa via email: editor@negativeentropy.net -or- by telephone: +31 20 672 78 06

Eric Sher child portrait

Eric Sher child portrait

While a portrait drawing on paper may require less time to complete, a painting on canvas will take more time. If you have an anniversary, birthday, or other date you’d like to receive the completed work, just let the artist know.

Eric Sher portrait

Eric Sher portrait

Final photos are sent to you for approval. The artist Eric Sher packages and ships the finished portrait to you.

Eric Sher, Deviation from Reality series portrait

Eric Sher, Deviation from Reality series portrait

 

How to Commission Your Portrait From South African Artist Lioda Conrad

Canvas portrait art in Lioda Conrad's South African studio

Canvas portrait art in Lioda Conrad’s South African studio

Select your reference photos or create a new selfie, then chat with South African artist Lioda Conrad to discuss portrait ideas (Contact Lioda Conrad via email: liodac@gmail.com or Phone: +27 72 460 3222 ). Find Lioda Conrad on Facebook here.

Lioda Conrad, woman with baby

Lioda Conrad, woman with baby

Do you want her to create your portrait painting on canvas or paper? Decide on the materials and size for the finished portrait art during your consultation with the artist.

Provide your reference photo or photos to the artist so she can get to work and she will send you a work-in-progress photo!

Portraits Africa–based in Amsterdam, Netherlands–holds your international currency payment until the portrait is complete and delivered to you. Only then is the money is paid to artist. Contact Portraits Africa via email: editor@negativeentropy.net -or- by telephone: +31 20 672 78 06

Lioda Conrad portrait painting in progress

Lioda Conrad portrait painting in progress

While a portrait drawing on paper may require less time to complete, a painting on canvas will take more time. If you have an anniversary, birthday, or other date you’d like to receive the completed work, just let the artist know.

Final photos are sent to you for approval. The artist Lioda Conrad packages and ships the finished portrait to you.

Lioda Conrad portrait

Lioda Conrad portrait

Lioda Conrad, Duality of Color

Lioda Conrad, Duality of Color

How to Commission Your Portrait by African Artist Gideon Fasola

Gideon Fasola's pencil portrait of young couple

Gideon Fasola’s pencil portrait of young couple

Select your reference photos or create a new selfie, then chat with artist Gideon Fasola to discuss your portrait art ideas ( email gideonfasola1@gmail.com. Telephone: +234 816 762 1698). Do you want a painting on canvas, a graphite and charcoal drawing, or ink drawing on paper? The artist will help you decide on the materials and size for the finished portrait during your consultation. Full terms and the artist’s portfolio here.

Innocent African Beauty by Gideon Fasola

Innocent African Beauty by Gideon Fasola

Once you’ve made your decision, you only need to send your reference photo or photos to the artist so he can get to work. As your portrait art progresses Gideon Fasola will send you a work-in-progress photo!

Payments are made to Portraits Africa–based in Amsterdam, Netherlands–(Contact via email: editor@negativeentropy.net -or- by telephone: +31 20 672 78 06 ). Portraits Africa holds your international currency payment until the portrait is complete and delivered to you. Then the money is paid to artist.

Gideon Fasola portrait drawing

Gideon Fasola portrait drawing

Your pencil portrait drawing on paper may require a few weeks to complete, and a painting on canvas will take more time. If you have an anniversary, birthday, or other date you’d like to receive the completed work, just let the artist know.

My Princess, red, blue, black ballpoint pen drawing by Gideon Fasola

My Princess, red, blue, black ballpoint pen drawing by Gideon Fasola

Final photos of your finished portrait are sent to you for approval. The artist Gideon Fasola packages and ships your portrait art to you.

A moment with Gideon Fasola–

 

Happiness Costs No Money, painting by Gideon Fasola

Happiness Costs No Money, painting by Gideon Fasola

GideonFasolabusinescardbanner

Slavery, “True Life Stories” and Other Difficult Subjects in the Art of African Artist Clara Aden

slave relic, Clara Aden

slave relic, Clara Aden

I sense a deep sadness as Clara Aden talks of the difficult theme of the history of slavery portrayed in her drawing of a man in chains. Clara says, “l exhibited this work in Ibadan. Their project was organized by the Forbidden Fruit art group. The exhibition was a pre-event activity before the Badagry exhibition. The title of the work is slave relic. The very word slavery conjures up horrific pictures of brutality and oppression. Slavery has a long and ugly history. No continent has suffered the ravages of the slave trade as much as Africa.”
Clara Aden exhibition

Clara Aden exhibition

In spite of the artist feeling saddened by the subject, much interest and good came from exhibiting her drawing slave relic. Clara said of the exhibition organizers, “They were amazed. They asked me to do a drawing workshop for kids. Some of them said, “seeing is believing.” So that day l did drawing demonstrations for children. It was a nice experience.” Clara used her drawing to teaching history, art, and in her demonstrations she shared her expressive drawing skills with the children. “Oh yeah, l love children and l love to live in their world, if just for the time l do drawing demonstrations. l love their openness their sincerity– it is very rare among the youth.”
Nollywood actor on set, Clara Aden

Fish Seller, Nollywood actor Empress on set, Clara Aden

Clara Aden is a gifted and sensitive artist and illustrator. From a very early age she found herself in the company of actors, actresses, writers, journalists, and editors in the publishing industry in Nigeria.
For her portrait Fish Seller Clara says, “I met this woman when l was working at Soul Publication Limited, as an art illustrator. She is a Nollywood actress. Her name is Empress. She tried to portray the role of women in the society as homemakers also providing for the family. l got her photo shot on set.”
Clara Aden illustration for Soul Publications

Clara Aden illustration for Soul Publications

The US movie industry capital is Hollywood, and Bollywood refers to the film industry of India, and “the cinema of Nigeria is often referred to as Nollywood, ” says Clara Aden, whose real name is Omolara Adenugba. “Clara Aden is abbreviation the of my real name Omolara Adenugba. Omolara is a Yoruba name meaning “Children are my companions.” My secondary school music teacher coordinated the music club in my school. He came to Nigeria from United Kingdom to find his roots. When he asked me what is my name? l said Omolara Adenugba. He had to bite his tongue when he was trying so hard to pronounce my name. He nicknamed me Clara Aden.”
She decided to use the name Clara Aden on her published illustration art for Soul Publications Limited true tales magazine HEARTS Magazine. “Every week l illustrated three true tales stories from individuals who are willing to share their life experience, their ups and downs, secrets and scandals– the editorial team goes through the stories, give it to production units where l start brainstorming and looking for photo reference to start my layout,” Clara explained.
Clara Aden illustration

Clara Aden illustration for HEARTS magazine, Nigeria

Hearts Magazine seems something like the tabloids in the USA and UK. Some might call them Pulp Fiction or Pop Art.
Clara says, “Yes, they are true life stories in which the individual’s name will not be written. Most time the writers don’t want their real name to be published either.”
But she graciously shared some of her illustration art to give us a view into secret lives in Nigeria.
Clara Aden illustration

Clara Aden illustration for HEARTS magazine, Nigeria

Clara described working as an illustrator for HEARTS magazine–“All of us are in the two story building. The editorial team’s office is beside the computer, and the production units, the advert and marketing team’s offices is opposite the reception office for visitors. They give me the stories. l read them until l am in the story– l want to feel the experience of the writer. l sketch some scenes in the stories. Once l get the feel of how to portray the emotion, gestures or anguish of the characters in the stories l get photo reference and start laying it out.”

Clara Aden illustration

Clara Aden illustration for HEARTS magazine, Nigeria

“They give me the stories on Mondays and have to submit the pencil drawings for production on Wednesdays. l work like a tornado! Actually l was on probation for six months before l become a full member of the house. The post of the Assistant Manager was for a man, but the Director of Soul Publications Limited was so impressed by my pencil drawings but she wanted to undermine me because of my stature. At that time l just graduated from my secondary school awaiting my admission into higher institution. So l was able to convince her that something big can come out of something small.”

Although Clara Aden started her career as a magazine illustrator as a young teenage girl and she worked very hard, and her hard work helped her develop as an artist–“At times l worked overtime in the office to meet deadlines. l was able to develop and built my skills as a pencilist.”
Clara Aden illustration

Clara Aden illustration

Clara has a fascination for the traditional roles of African women as subject for her art. For her fine art drawing “Sumburu Women” Clara says, “African people are very fascinating and captivating. l have always admired the beautiful Samburu maidens in traditional dress and their exquisite strands of beads. l tried to depict the traditional fashion trend of Kenyan maidens.”
Sumbaru women, Clara Aden

Sumbaru women, Clara Aden

I chatted with Clara on her birthday, and didn’t wish to keep her from plans. She said, “l have over 80 drawings and I am always passionate to talk about them, but time is not on my side today to do that, but l hope that time will surely come.”
 Clara Aden is represented by Portraits Africa, a start-up service procedures in place to bring portrait commissions to the artist from around the world. If you are interested in finding out more
email editor@negativeentropy.net

African Artist David Thuku Creates Portrait Paintings, Drawings, Murals, 3D Assemblages and More

David Thuku in his studio

David Thuku in his studio

African artist David Thuku has two paintings on display at the Kenya National Museum in an exhibition that opened on the 23rd of this month. He will also have artwork in several group exhibitions in the months ahead, including the first exhibition of Portraits Africa artists, and one at The Circle Art Gallery. Then he’ll do the Kenya Art Fair. David Thuku is part of the exhibition planning committee working to organize the Portraits Africa group show.
Portraits Africa exhibition planning committee at their first meeting, October 23rd, 2015

Portraits Africa exhibition planning committee at their first meeting in Nairobi, Kenya on October 23rd, 2015

Here are some views of David at work in his studio that he sent me from a cyber café computer in Nairobi while we chatted.

DavidThukuStudio1

David is a busy and productive artist who creates paintings, drawings, portraits on commission, 3D assemblages, and murals.

DavidThukuStudio3

He’d just arrived at the cyber café after completing a commercial mural project, and although he didn’t have photos from that day’s labors, he sent examples of two doors he’d painted for another project, saying, “I was asked to come up with images that suggest ‘ladies’ and ‘gents’ without the usual writing.” He opted to use an ancient Egyptian theme with a “Thuku twist.”

David Thuku commissioned door designs

David Thuku commissioned door designs

David Thuku door design

David Thuku door design

self-portrait, David Thuku

self-portrait, David Thuku

Of his portrait art, David Thuku says that his self-portrait pencil rendering is one of his favorites so far.

While I found another of his portraits reminded me of the Mona Lisa, of which David Thuku said, “He he he, sure, I felt a monalisa.ish effect after painting that one! I love it because when I painted it, I was experimenting on quick oil portraits on different unconventional oily surfaces…this is on paper and it’s one of the few that was successful…timed for 2 strict hours…between 12 midnight and 2 a.m. I love pushing myself to extremes.”

David likes to place restrictions on his drawing, paintings, sketches and personal studies in order to challenge himself. To make himself more resourceful and to keep in practice for when the right time comes. So as not to be “freaked out” when he gets a short notice commission from a client–saying, “you don’t wanna tell them it aint possible. right?”

DavidThukuMonaLIsa

The second portrait painting we talked about is titled THE LITTLE RED BOOK, the artist described it as, “dear to me,” saying that he loved the pose–“It was modeled by a friend and I love it because of the story it represents…everyone gets a different story after seeing it.”

David Thuku

THE LITTLE RED NOTEBOOK, David Thuku

“The book is the basis of the whole story. I consider myself an anatomist…every whitty detail or process is important to me…the painting is about the small literatures that everybody has and after reading they take you on a reflective meditative journey, either self-written or a favorite publication.”

And David loves to read. “I love literature in all its representation and definition –poetry….and any good fiction,” and “someone keeps describing my paintings as visual poetry.”

In Between, David Thuku

In Between, David Thuku

“My focus is the process, and expression…approach is not of much importance, as far as I have achieved my goal, which mostly comes as a connective communication with the artwork, as sometimes I don’t have a fore planned reason, but the artwork just leads me to its own creation….my favorite approach.”
 DavidThukugraphiteIntuitiveDrawing
When David allows the art to take the lead, his painting and drawing practice also results in artworks created by intuitive guidance– working with charcoal on pastel paper, (as the drawing above), and three-dimensional artworks made from paper, such as the (tabletop or pedestal displayed) artwork below.
Die casting checkerboard die cut shadow, David Thuku

Casting the Dice, David Thuku

 Each year, David Thuku sends some of his paintings to the UK for a Charity Auction Ball to help raise funds for the Langalanga Scholarship Fund, and he also produces small artworks for Christmas cards and notelets that are available for purchase online at the Langalanga.org store here.
Screenshot 2015-10-27 at 7.35.45 PM
David Thuku accepts commissions. Connect with David Thuku on Facebook here.

 

South African Artist Lynette Swanepoel Talks About the Controversial Initiation Ritual Depicted In Her Portrait Art

"The Initiation", 100 cm x 70 cm. 2014, Acrylic on Paper, Lynette Swanepoel, Thabo Mofutsanyane, South Africa.

The Initiation, pastel painting on paper, Lynette Swanepoel, Thabo Mofutsanyane, South Africa

I recently chatted with South African artist Lynette Swanepoel about her portrait art. Lynette lives about three hours from Johannesburg, on Libanon Farm next to Libanon Mountain which is close to a small town named Bethelhem–“so it almost sounds as if I am in the Middle East, but I’m not. I’m in the middle of South Africa,” she says. Lynette farms dairy cattle with her family and they also have Arabian horses, and plant maize and wheat. Before farming Lynette taught Graphic design at a University for many years. “I wish I had time to just do art, but the farm takes up some time and I also teach visual art at local schools as well as digital photography.”

Since she is in rural Africa, I asked Lynette if she encountered wild animals on her farm. She said, “There are some bucks here, but no, no wild animals, except the occasional jackal or wild cat.”

Depending on where you live, that may seem a bit on the wild side! I also asked her if there were villages nearby. Lynette told me that there are many villages all around her, and that the young man in her portrait(above), “is a South African but from the South Sotho tribe which originated in Kingdom of Lesotho our neighbouring country right in middle of South Africa. We stay near the border. It is also known as the Mountain Kingdom.”

Photo by Lynette Swanepoel

Photo by Lynette Swanepoel

As we continued our chat, I found out that Lynette is fascinated by both the ceremony and the juxtaposition of the ancient elements of the ritual and the contemporary elements–as in her painting Initiation, the young man’s mirrored shades and cap contrast with beaded headgear and traditional blanket that he wears.
She said, “Yes, that is what I liked most is how the indigenous culture was mixed with the Western influences. Also it shows that the indigenous culture is fading and slowly being replaced by “cheap” probably Eastern imports of plastics instead of the pride there once was in handmade artifacts. In the reflection of his glasses (in her portrait painting at top) you can also see he is standing on a skin of an animal that was slaughtered for the occasion (full view of figures in photo above).” Lynette said that she wasn’t sure what animals were sacrificed, but perhaps “a deer and a Blesbuck. They also get a wooden weapon called a “knopkierie” long stick with rounded head and beaded decoration to carry with them to signify that they have completed the ritual initiation. The stick is something they can carry with them from then on, I think it has been carried over from history when young men could then be warriors and were old enough to fight. The blanket, with a pin to hold it together, comes from their Bashoto culture and Lesotho the mountain kingdom is close to us and because it can get very cold here the blanket is often part of dress. They come in an array of colours and designs. Even the King of Lesotho will dress in a traditional blanket on occasions.”

Lynette explained the details in her pastel painting titled Initiation–“Yes. We had to get special permission to attend the final day when they are washed from the clay that covered them and they are dressed in traditional Bashoto blanket. We could attend the end to take some photos. This particular boy (I know him) looked traumatized and not very comfortable. He must have endured quite a lot.”

The next logical question to ask is–What is the young man in your portrait being initiated into?

Lynette Swanepoel's pastel portrait of "The Old man with cap. He is a introvert and one can see in the way he almost does not allow you to see into his eyes. He is a cattle herder and looks after all the cattle on the farm."

Lynette Swanepoel’s pastel portrait of “The Old man with cap. He is an introvert and one can see in the way he almost does not allow you to see into his eyes. He is a cattle herder and looks after all the cattle on the farm.”

Lynette says that the “Initiation is part of many African cultures and this particular boy belongs to the Sotho culture. The initiation leads to or gives them their ‘passage’ into manhood. In these tribes it is part of becoming a man. There is however also a lot of controversy around the whole ritual and process.”

What is the controversy?
Lynette explained that the initiation ritual takes places over several days in camps specially set up to complete the ritual– “These camps are makeshift tents in the bush, with little to eat, no contact with family and the rest “teaching ” them to be men. One can only guess what it all entails as they are not allowed to speak about it. Many boys have died in these camps. The rituals are kept secret. Nobody is allowed to visit these rituals while it is being conducted. One of the things is that the boys get circumcised during this time and this is where things often go wrong.”
I asked Lynette is her portrait Initiation is part of a series?
She replied–“I did only one on initiation but plan on taking some more photos on the same ritual on the girl’s side and add that. I try to portray more of the emotion and spirit of the person. Try and get the viewer to almost understand who they are as person.”
Lynette Swanepoel describes this portrait, "The Old lady has an aristocratic air about her, being a very simple person leading a life i n rural area , she still shows a lot of pride and strength in character."

Lynette Swanepoel describes this portrait, “The Old woman has an aristocratic air about her, being a very simple person leading a life in rural area, she still shows a lot of pride and strength in character.”

 Lynette Swanepoel also accepts portrait commissions as part of the Portraits Africa service. To inquire about a commission you can contact Lynette on Facebook here.
Lynette Swanepoel pastel portrait, " This is a portrait of my mother-in- law, I am busy with, she loved roses and always pruned the rosebush before spring. She has died and this is a tribute to her."

Lynette Swanepoel pastel portrait, ” This is a portrait of my mother-in-law, I am busy with, she loved roses and always pruned the rosebush before spring. She has died and this is a tribute to her.”

Of her process, Lynette says, “The reason I am using pastel is that I like drawing and do some oil painting as well, and coloured pastel to me is like the two in one– painting and drawing simultaneously. It also allows me to create realism without it being too formal but using more of an “impressionistic ” technique where colour is mixed optically. I had to import pastels from the UK because it was difficult to find here. Have not yet tried to make them. I use Rembrandt pastels at the moment.”
Lynette Swanepoel's tea-stain and pencil portrait." The girl with tea stain (In my mind) Is a pencil drawing , I wanted to make it more feminine and soft. The tea refers to tea-time when the lady takes out the porcelain and have leisure time and the print of the "crochet doily " refers to a tradition among White South Africans, The grandmother with crochet these little tray doilies and pass it on to the girl as part of her give away when she gets married. For a long time it was considered as "kitsch" and hidden away but now crotchet items has become popular again. ( this is part of an series.)"

Lynette Swanepoel’s tea-stain and pencil portrait. “The girl with tea stain (In my mind) Is a pencil drawing. I wanted to make it more feminine and soft. The tea refers to tea-time when the lady takes out the porcelain and have leisure time and the print of the “crochet doily ” refers to a tradition among White South Africans, The grandmother will crochet these little tray doilies and pass it on to the girl as part of her give away when she gets married. For a long time it was considered as “kitsch” and hidden away but now crotchet items has become popular again. ( This is part of a series.)”

I enjoyed interviewing Lynette and thank her for the wonderful chat.

Nigerian Artist Gideon Fasola’s *Tiny Breaks* in the Duality of His Self-Portrait

Face of Me, Gideon Fasola

Face of Me, Gideon Fasola

Last night I chatted with artist Gideon Fasola of Nigeria, who is one of the African artists represented by Amsterdam-based Dr. Keith McFarlane’s international Portraits Africa project.

Portraits Africa is all about the African artists they represent and the portrait art their artists create. All of the portrait art in the Portraits Africa artist portfolios help to brand the project and service. But none more so than African artist Gideon Fasola’s iconic self-portrait Face of Me, of which the artist says–“It’s the artwork that represents everything about my art.”

Gideon was one of the earliest to be curated into the Portraits Africa aka African Portraiture Service. The artist says that he appreciates every effort the service makes to promote his work and obtain commissions for him from clients around the world–“African Portraiture Service is a loving platform for African Artists, to me it’s like making a dream that seems impossible come true so unexpectedly soon to the dreamer.”

His Face of Me self-portrait is also used to help brand the @PortraitsAfrica Twitter account here.

You’ll notice that in this self-portrait (image above) there is a rough division down the center of the face, with the left side painted in color and the right side rendered in graphite pencil. Both sides demonstrate Gideon Fasola’s skill and ability in rendering realism in any media. He says, “I like to be free with my color and rendering, I don’t like following a strict way of painting. The graphite side is simply showing my pencil realism in like manner to the painting.”

Such duality of imagery carries much metaphorical meaning as well, referencing dualities in the life of every artist, while providing a visual summary of the Portraits Africa service of turning flesh and blood faces into drawings and paintings.

Yet Gideon Fasola’s work is not limited to realistic renderings–“I love good music, inspiring poetry and drawings that speaks, so rhythm, words and message always influence my artworks,” he says. “That is why my works are not limited to realism and hyperrealism portraiture and drawings that is common among African artists of this generation.”

The abstract aspects of Gideon Fasola’s self-portrait is in the texture and patterning, which he refers to as Araism. “The background represents two things about my art, the tiny break texture is Araism–a painting movement invented by a Nigerian artist Mufu Onifade. I became a disciple of the movement in 2013 and I am the first artist in the group that is using pencil to render the movement. The second thing on the background is my background pattern that I have been using for the background of my works since when I was in school 2008 till now.”

Gideon speaks the three major languages of Nigeria–Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa, and many dialects under them. He explains that, “Araism is derived from Yoruba (the language of the western Nigeria tribe).” From the word “Ara” which means “wonder.” As in, there is wonder and amazement in the viewer at the lines of “tiny breaks” that come together to create an art piece. Also, the word “Ara” means “thunder,” with the lines that strike across the surface of the artworks like lightning in a thunderstorm. “Ara” (in the Igbo language) can also mean a woman’s breast. Gideon explains that connotation as, “the way the artworks entice people and gives their delightful view and pleasurable experience is compared with womans breasts. So Araism is all African rooted, especially Yoruba.”

HOPE, Gideon Fasola

HOPE Gideon Fasola

His two imaginative works titled HOPE and Virtuous Woman very clearly articulate this “tiny break texture” of Araism–or as Gideon says– “Yes, this are some of my pure Araism works.”

Gideon Fasola

Virtuous Woman Gideon Fasola

Fasola explains that he first heard about the Araism movement while studying at The Polytechnic Ibadan, Eruwa Campus, Oyo State, Nigeria. “I first heard about Mufu Onifade at school, from one of my lecturers that is one year senior colleague of Mufu Onifade when they are art students. Mufu Onifade is a former student of my school, my campus, he graduated there 1988. I started searching for his name and possible contacts online after I heard about him and saw some of his works. After many trials, I was able to chat with him and talk to him on call. I saw him face to face for the first time when he invited me to the Araism Movement on the 10th of September 2013. It was after then that I joined the Araism movement with two Araism works that I submitted to him.”

The Adorable One, gideon Fasola

The Adorable One, Gideon Fasola

Gideon Fasola has created many portrait drawings and paintings. You can view more of Gideon Fasola’s art on his website, on his Facebook page, and on Portraits Africa here.

In the portrait above, the artist demonstrates his skill for working with the ink from blue, black and red ballpoint pens, common tools in Nigeria. He is especially fond of this ballpoint pen ink portrait of “my only niece, which I treasure as my daughter,” he has demonstrably titled The Adorable One.

Fasola also says that being an artist is a “humble career,” demonstrating his humility via encounters with “old wise artists who have made me a young man with an old mind.”  He recalls their advice–“An old artist once told me that art is in your brain and hand, to never let materials silence your expression, but to learn to use whatever can make a mark on a surface to express yourself.”

Gideon Fasola painting

Gideon Fasola painting

Fasola thinks that being an artist is “a gift, a privilege, I am not more worthy than other people to have the talent, so I’m using it like a precious gift given to me as undeserved kindness.”

He describes his painting, above, of laughing children– “It’s saying, if the poor can be happy then you can be happy against all odds if you choose to and if you have the right attitude the way you live your life.”

 

 

 

Artists Support Artists: South African Painters Lioda Conrad and Benon Lutaaya

Lioda Conrad and

Lioda Conrad and Benon Lutaaya  Photo: Lioda Conrad

“Guess who bought one of my works in The African Crysalists series. The very gracious man himself Benon Lutaaya! Thank you and it was a pleasure to have created this work Benon reigns in Africa. He embodies all that is true ideology within art. Benon, a Great day spent with you exchanging passion of art, thoughts and laughter,” Lioda Conrad shared these thoughts and feelings recently on her Facebook page and tweeted them from her Twitter account.

Lioda is pleased and touched by Benon’s wonderful support of her as a fellow artist. Lioda said of the transaction and sale of her portrait painting (image below) to artist and subject Benon Lutaaya–“He said he wanted to buy it because it was stunning, but also because I had something more to convey thru my art and convey an important message about Africa and the beauty of its people.”

Lioda Conrad portrait of

Lioda Conrad’s mixed media portrait painting of Benon Lutaaya, titled Benon reigns in Africa

I’d gotten to know about Lioda Conrad’s portrait series via Dr. Keith McFarlane’s Portraits Africa here and when I featured her paintings in my Xposy magazine article Lioda Conrad’s Portraits of Contemporary African Artists.

Xposy magazine article

Xposy magazine article with photo of Cyrus Kabiru, another of Lioda Conrad’s fellow artists and subject of her portrait paintings. View more of Cyrus Kabiru’s wearable art creations on his Pinterest page here.

Two African Artists Commissioned to Bring Old Photograph Back to Life

Reference photo with visible crease damage

Reference photo with visible crease damage

The reference photo that African artists Seth Sketcher (aka Seth Odhimabo) of Nairobi, Kenya, and Gershon Kwaku Puregold of Accra, Ghana were both commissioned to work from, was a scan of the lost creased and damaged original. The man in the photo is the deceased father and father-in-law of an American couple living in Florida, Kane and Roger. “It was a great photograph of my father-in-law that was lost except for this bad scan of the original image,” said Roger. The couple particularly liked this image and wanted it reclaimed and preserved it in an original artwork. In fact, they commissioned two versions of this photograph–one from each of the two African artists.

To start the process, Roger says, “I commissioned a work with Seth Sketcher.  We started talking together client to artist and I asked him if he would do a nice drawing from a poor scan of a great photo of my father-in-law. He said “yes” and we discussed a price of $300.00 for a medium-sized work plus all shipping costs.” A similar arrangement was also made by contacting artist Gershon Kwaku Puregold.

According to Dr. Keith McFarlane, Founder and CEO of Portraits Africa–“Roger rather insisted on the literalness of these pieces, and on a complete rendering, for example, of the striped shirt. Left to their own devices the artists, Seth in particular would be rather less literal, and so the works illustrate the constraints that a commission can impose. But of course the creative balance of a client and a commission does bring a financial reward.”

Gideon Fasola completed portrait commission for Roger and Kane

Gershon Kwaku Puregold’s completed portrait commission for Kane and Roger, charcoal on archival paper, 54 x 63 cm (21 x 24  inches) Commissioned for $250 + $35 shipping and insurance from Africa to the USA

Dr. McFarlane also spoke of the two resulting drawings–“The comparison is interesting as it illustrates the differing sophistication and abstraction of the two artists (Gershon is the younger and less practiced). It also shows how an old photograph can be “brought to life” in the hands of a skilled artist.”

Seth Sketcher completed commission for Roger and Kane

Seth Odhiambo (Seth Sketcher) created this drawing for $300 + $35 shipping and insurance from Africa to the USA.

Another benefit to bringing an old damaged photo back to life as a drawing, is that the fine art quality of the paper stock that the artists use produces an image with longevity. For his drawing above, Gershon Kwaku Puregold used a heavy paper stock similar to a thick watercolor paper. Both Gershon and Seth Sketcher used Archival grade acid-free non-rag papers on which to create their drawings. These artworks will last for many generations of ownership and preserve the memory of this man within his family for many years to come.

Seth Sketcher at work from iPhone screen reference image

Seth Sketcher at work from iPhone screen reference image

Resulting commissioned artworks may be to any size! Here, in the photo above, Seth Sketcher in Nairobi, Kenya, is at work on the portrait drawing on paper which is 42 x 63 centimeters (16 x 24 inches).

Seth Sketcher and Gershon Kwaku Puregold are just two of the more than thirty artists available to produce your portrait on commission via Portraits Africa.

If you have questions about commissioning a Portraits Africa artist, contact Dr. Keith McFarlane via email:  editor@negativeentropy.net

The service is described in detail in the Portraits Africa brochure, Commissioning a Portrait.