Meet Sena Ahadji, young African Illustrator

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Golden Baobab is happy to introduce to you, Sena Ahadji, a young African Illustrator who is truly passionate about her art and puts much thought and focus into the works she produces. The Golden Baobab Prize is constantly evolving and we have placed more emphasis on the creation of African stories that will inspire the imaginations of African children. To depict this vision, we sought the help of Sena to create a poster for the 2013 Golden Baobab Prize, on which she delivered marvelously! Let's welcome Sena and see what she has to say.

Hello!

I’m Sena Ahadji, an African Illustrator. From as far back as I can remember, I’ve always loved drawing and no bare surface ever seemed safe around me if I was holding a crayon or a marker!

In primary school, library time was sacred to me; the books I chose to read were heavily influenced by their illustrations. I was always fascinated by the different techniques the illustrator’s used to bring the characters to life. This seemed to determine whether or not it would be a good read.

Studying Illustration and Graphics Design at Coventry University gave me the platform to explore my talent as an Illustrator. It birthed a passion in me for children’s books and my characters tend to stem from unique personalities I come across. My stylistic approach is not always very conventional as I always look for ways to improve and express myself as an individual. My African background also plays a vital role in the way my characters are depicted.

I was honored to be approached by Golden Baobab to design this year’s Prize poster and so I wanted to design something captivating. After researching, brainstorming and sketching down some ideas, I came up with the concept of an African character with a big afro, fascinated with the contents of a book coming to life. The concept was refined each time after getting feedback, until the final creative solution fit the brief!

I believe the role of an Illustrator is to provoke and assist ones imagination to push its boundaries. As my skills continue to expand, I hope you will find more of my illustrations all over! There are endless possibilities and opportunities I endeavor to explore and I look forward to working on some interesting projects and making my print as an African Illustrator.

Sena Ahadji

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