His love for drawing was curtailed by his uncle who saw nothing good coming out from his young nephew’s love for drawing.
He convinced him to concentrate on his studies to enable him become someone better, rather than a pencil artist. But years after completing university, his major source of livelihood turned out to be what he was forced to abandon.
Bra Cosby, has therefore, urged the youth to find interest in the industry and embrace it while asking those already in it not to opt out to search for other jobs.
The Times Weekend (TW) takes a look at the life of the 27-year- old budding pencil artist, Richmond Ametefe, with the pen name Bra Cosby.
Let’s see what he has to say…
TW: How are you doing Bra Cosby?
BRA COSBY: I am doing well
TW: How is pencil art business faring?
BRA COSBY: It is okay, I am still finding my feet.
TW: How long have you been in this art business?
BRA COSBY: I started drawing from childhood but somewhere along the line, my uncle forced me out of it because he felt nothing good was going to come out of it.
TW: Oh!! But what were you drawing by then that prompted him to say that?
BRA COSBY: I was just drawing anything that came my way and I was very good at it.
TW: Having stopped for a while, why did you come back to pencil art?
BRA COSBY: I met Armstrong the Future, a renowned artist who reignited my love and interest in drawing.
TW: Wow, how did he do that?
BRA COSBY: I worked with him as his marketer, I later told him I was at one time into drawing, which I did very well and he encouraged me to start all over again, which I obediently obliged.
TW: That is good, anyway, how did you feel when for some time you were not drawing?
BRA COSBY: I did not feel good but I can confidently say I am now better than when I started.
TW: Ok nice, so when did you start all over again.
BRA COSBY: Well, I started in September 2018 but hit a rock as I was not getting much returns as anticipated. Seriously, I do not feel comfortable when I quit drawing, I felt as though a part of me was missing, so I had no option than to start again and I did that from the beginning of this year.
TW: So how many drawings have you been able to do since you started all over again?
BRA COSBY: So far by His Grace, I have done about 70 pencil art commissions.
TW: Wow, that’s a lot of money I guess, any idea of the cost per piece of an art work?
BRA COSBY: It depends on the size.
TW: Okay, please tell us the prices for the various sizes.
BRA COSBY: (Laughs), well something in the range of GH₵160.00 going.
TW: How do you get your clients or patrons?
BRA COSBY: I mostly get them through referrals and recommendations. Also, friends decide to share my works for free on their social media platforms, particularly on WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook.
TW: How and where do you get your work done?
BRA COSBY: I can draw anywhere; all I need is the sunlight, so I carry my working tool -laptop with me everywhere I go.
TW: Sure, what do you do on a typical day, let’s say you are not drawing today?
BRA COSBY: I do freelance researching on the environment.
TW: What is the future like for the industry?
BRA COSBY: The future holds a lot of great things for me, do not be surprised to see me drawing international celebrities.
TW: Which schools did you go to while growing up?
BRA COSBY: I attended the Kings Palace School at Osu – Labone, later to St Thomas Aquinas and then I ended up at the University of Ghana, Legon, all in Accra.
TW: What course did you study at Legon?
BRA COSBY: I read Geography and Resource Development.
TW: Fantastic … and you dropped that to be an artist?
BRA COSBY: Oh not exactly, I work as a freelance researcher on environmental projects, but I can say it is the art that is fetching me the money for now.
TW: Awesome, that means the arts industry is good; am I right?
BRA COSBY: What I can say is that, it is better.
TW: How do you see the arts industry?
BRA COSBY: I am seeing something different now, it is now music and acting, but those of us in the pencil art sector are gradually picking up, and soon we will take over.
TW: What advice do you have for those who may have been pushed out of the arts industry?
BRA COSBY: I will ask them not to leave the industry entirely; they may one day fall on this when the time comes. I will add that they should find something attached to it, but not to entirely leave the industry.
TW: Thanks for the advice and for your time.
BRA COSBY: You are welcome.
BY JEMIMA ESINAM KUATSINU