Talented Independence Artist Gets Her Work Recognized

INDEPENDENCE, Mo – Evelyn Neal is a young black artist based in Independence, Missouri, and she wants to use her talent to bring the stories of black historical figures to life.

“I feel like over the last few years a lot of people either don’t know about some of our black icons or forget about them,” Neal said.

Neal said she wasn’t always passionate about art and she didn’t choose the life of drawing – the art of drawing chose her. She now just uses pen, pencil and paper to draw characters like Michelle Obama, Kobe Bryant and Sandra Bland.

“I draw them in pencil and then I grid them in pen,” she said.

Since then, Neal’s work has become a hit among his Independence community and stars, with celebrities such as Lauren London and Ice Cube praising his work on social media.

One of her proudest moments is seeing her art featured in Independence’s first-ever Black Excellence Exhibition at the Community Services League’s BlendWell Café through the end of the month.

She said she draws each portrait with a mission: “To speak to anyone who sees it, whether it can represent a specific event or even a song.”

“You look directly into their eyes, you can almost see what they’re trying to tell you,” she said.

Nearly 50 of his intricate portraits now shine in the showcase gallery. She said it only took her 24 hours to complete them all from start to finish.

Expo organizers said there was a lot of black talent to be discovered at Independence and some of them could be discovered at the Expo.

“We want to tell the story of the artist that we have here, the excellence that we have here, but also to share the story that many of us don’t know,” said Jennifer Manuleleua of the Community Services League. .

Neal said that while she can complete a portrait in what some might call lightning speed, the impact of black history has taken years to unfold, and it is her responsibility to tell their stories. stories.

“I will continue to speak on behalf of the black community,” she said. “Whether through art, community service, anything, I am important to my community and will continue to share the story of many people.”

To learn more about Evelyn Neal’s work, visit her Facebook page.

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