5 African Female Digital Artists Talk About Their Work

March 18, 2021

Digital art is fast becoming one of the most lucrative art types as social media advances as well as the tools used to create the art. In this article, we spoke to 5 female African digital artists about their work. 

Ohimor Oghenerume, 22, Nigerian 

I started digital art in September 2017 because I was very sick and I thought I was going to die. Digital art was on my list of things to try out. I googled the apps I needed, downloaded them on my iPod touch, and started playing around. I didn’t even know when I became good enough for commissions but people kept recommending me for jobs and eventually someone gave me a shot. Sometimes, I still get shocked that people think I’m good enough to be commissioned or be in their galleries. 

There is so much talent that it’s easy to feel like you would never be good enough. It can be overwhelming, but I’m learning that the presence of someone else’s talent isn’t the absence of mine. This allows me to be deliberate about the work I put out. 

Araba Opoku, 22, Ghana

I learnt how to use Corel Draw in high school because it was the easiest way to replicate my print patterns and vectorize the motifs. I was 16 at the time. Now, I alternate between CorelDraw, Photoshop and Illustrator. I still paint on canvas and sew but digital art is easier for me — from creating colours to cleaning brush strokes or applying a fill. I think it’s profitable but not as your main source of income.

Titilola, 21, Nigerian 

I started as a traditional artist and then transitioned into digital art in 2018. I was inspired by some digital artists I found on the internet — people like Duks Art and Yinkore. Art for me is a journey filled with experiments. It took about a month for me to create decent work

In the art world, traditional art is still preferred from what I know because there is a debate around whether or not digital art is real art. Hence, it is difficult to get contemporary galleries to notice your work or take it seriously. Aside from this, digital art is versatile and there are multiple avenues to create income from it. 

Yuwa, 23, Nigerian

I’ve been drawing since I was like 6 or 7 as a hobby. I work as a product designer but in 2019, I got an iPad as a gift from someone who knew I wanted to learn digital illustration, and my journey as a digital artist began. A few months later, I got an Apple Pencil and started experimenting. I earn money from it as a side-gig. I love the versatility it allows — I have worked with different kinds of people, from bridal shops to writers. 

I am not interested in turning my hobby into a job, so I take small jobs that require minimal effort. The largest amount I have received for my work is £300. I believe the ability to draw is a gift that God has blessed me with. I love the fact that I can use it to tell people about Jesus. That’s the larger purpose for me.

Samira, 27, Nigerian

I started drawing and writing as a child. It has always been a hobby for me. My mum wanted me to publish one of my stories but I wasn’t interested in it. My stories were my escape — I draw and write about places or characters I want to meet. 

I started taking drawing seriously because I wanted to prove a point to my brother that I was good at it. It’s been great so far. At first, I felt uncomfortable charging for my illustrations but when I moved out of my parents’ house and hunger saw the chance to tag along, I became comfortable with charging for my work. I am lucky to be blessed with great clients.

QUIZ: Can You Score 7/10 On This Primary School Art Quiz?

Are you smarter than a primary school student? Take this quiz to find out.

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

August 27, 2020

The general reaction when we think or talk about cockroaches is disgust. However, meeting a flying roach in person is a whole different ball game. Ladies, this is what a man’s reaction to a flying cockroach says about him in bed. Don’t try to understand the inference, I am about to drop some nuggets so […]

October 10, 2020

In different locations all over the world, people are holding protests to call for the end of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad. During these protests, people are demanding their right to live freely without being profiled. However, female protesters are announcing incidences of sexual violence from protesters. Sexual harassment is one of the most prevailing forms […]

Watch

Now on Zikoko

Recommended Quizzes

November 14, 2019

The fourth season of Big Brother Naija came to an end over a month ago, but the conversation surrounding the housemates is far from over. So, in a bid to keep the fire burning, we decided to create a quiz that tells you which famous member of the ‘Pepper Dem’ gang is your soulmate. Take […]

April 9, 2020

At some point in life, we all learnt that someone can be very intelligent and still lack common sense. That’s the difference between being book smart and being street smart. If you’re not sure where on the spectrum you fall, well, that’s what this quiz is here to tell you. Take it:

November 7, 2019

These days, everyone is always talking about how much sex they’re getting, or how little sex they’re getting, or how disgusting sex is etc. There’s just so much talk about sex, it’s almost impossible to know who’s lying and who’s telling the truth. In anticipation of our new series about the sex lives of young […]

March 24, 2020

While we know that a lot of the best Nigerian artists deservedly have fans across generations, that won’t stop us from attempting to guess how old you are based on your taste in Nigerian music. So, take this quiz to see if we got it right:

More from Her

May 25, 2022

Today’s #ZikokoWhatSheSaid subject is a 36-year-old Nigerian woman. She talks about her big-city dreams after moving from Owerri to Lagos, why she married her persistent lover from Facebook and the challenge of living with her in-laws before finding happiness.

May 11, 2022

Today’s subject on #Zikokowhatshesaid is @fehinlean, a 30-year-old Nigerian woman. She talks about her childhood love for motorcycles, why she waited until she was 28 to ride one and handling the stares when people realise she isn’t a man, on her biking trips across the country.

Watch

Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.
X