Faim arts-About me
Everything you need to know
about my life as an artist

My name is Iyanu. I'm a self taught artist based in Nigeria. I love creating art pieces and spend a lot of time doing this either for sale or for practice. I am currently mastering the use of graphite and charcoal pencils to create photorealistic art, but I would love to use coloured media later in the foreseeable future.


My journey

I wasn't always able to draw. I didn't grow up as that kid that had what one might call an "artistry talent". That gene fell on my younger brother instead. I couldn't draw anything beyond stick figures, and the closest i ever came to drawing something that could bore a resemblance to something real was drawing Amoeba and plant cells in Biology class. I had no hidden art talent whatsoever, so there was nothing to discover.
I had this habit of scribbling tornadoes though whenever i was emotionally hurt or was in a kind of bad mood, and that habit was what edged me towards art. It was in the middle of the night on April 24, 2020, and a close friend of mine who would have his birthday in few hours spoke words to me that I wasn't quite pleased with. Although he apologized, I had a mood to carry. So as usual, I got a pencil, but instead of scribbling a tornado this time, I looked for an image of a horse on my laptop and started drawing. It was a sketch, and not an accurate one, but today, I am proud of where it led me. I also did another sketch of a bird that same night. My friend got to see it, and he said, "wow! you're going to make a great artist. I really believe you can draw well. Whatever you need, I'll help, but you should draw." Although I thought he was rather unserious and was flattering me, It gave me the spark I needed and the desire was birthed.

My first drawings on April 24,2020
When I started about three days later, I had no idea photorealism existed and hadn't even seen it prior to that point. I tried to draw an image of Adele that i got from someone's display picture, but the result turned out more like a caricature. This was when I decided that I needed to learn. I gave tons of hours to watching videos and learning and subsequently, I got some low grade art supplies that I could strain to afford at the time. This was how the journey began. Countless hours of practice, reviews and encouragement from my friends have helped me arrive at this point.


My progress from May-July 6, 2020

Inspiration

I am inspired by life, nature and everything around me. I am also inspired by intelligence. I love creative and smart things. Anything could inspire me to want to make a piece; a person's posture, the texture of their clothing, their smile, the expression on their face, or even manipulated images.


Drawing style and experience

I create pencil portraits from still images in reference photos, attempting to recreate everything found in the reference images as close to the original as possible. I focus more on drawing the actual figures though and spend less time on the backgrounds. In most cases, I do not draw backgrounds. I used to be a perfectionist and beat myself up when my pieces don't look at least 99% like the reference image and as such would spend hours on end trying to perfect the piece and correct issues or layer more details over and over again. Sometimes, I end up messing it up. If I don't get the results I want, you can imagine the sadness or grumpiness afterwards. I am slowly letting go of my perfectionist ideology though, learning to accept that I am good enough, and able to better judge when to take my hands off the piece.


Goal

All artwork is valuable. At least that's how I see it. If I created it, it is impressive and holds emotional value to people, then it is extremely valuable. My first goal thus is to create a lot of masterpieces that resonate with a lot of people emotionally. My utmost goal however is to teach a lot of people to draw and help aspiring artists easily overcome the obstacles and issues I've faced; to help them get past every kind of limitation and achieve their art goals.


What about you?

If you're not an artist, and you'd like to follow me on my journey, you can either become my donor and donate to help me achieve my art goals(to do this, simply contact me through the contact page) or you can become a collector and regularly purchase my art pieces. Simply contact me about this and I'll let you know any time I release a new piece for sale. Alternatively, you can request a commissioned piece, if you'd like me to create a piece specifically for you.
If you're an artist, then make sure you follow me on Instagram, where i post divers yet curated content both to help you improve your art and also to grow your art business.


Iyanu Akoteyon

Artist, Faim Arts