Back in November 2012, my cousin Melvin surprised my family and I by visiting us from Nigeria. That particular time in 2012 was a real trying time for me. I was depressed, confused and had no direction with where I wanted my art to go as well as myself in the world. As soon as Melvin arrived a shift happened in my life. With his presence alone I felt strengthened, and within a couple of months, in January 2013, my whole life changed when the BBC interviewed me and filmed me conducting a masterclass at Middlesex University where I just so happened to be working on a portrait drawing of Melvin.
Overnight, I was catapulted into the media and recognised as an artist in the eyes of society.
My drawing of Melvin was featured on the BBC and later exhibited at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters at the Mall Galleries in May 2013. And subsequently won the De Lazlo Medal Award for excellence and best artwork in the show.