Proud Sibanda is a 27-year-old Zimbabwean artist living in the Midlands town of Gweru, Zimbabwe. He is a young man born with a pencil in his hand. He is an artistic wonder with a remarkable talent.
Written by Constance van Niekerk, SA
Proud says that his romance with art commenced at a very tender age. “My preschool teachers were wonderful motivators and encouraged me to freely express myself through drawing,” Proud says. Unfortunately, his parents were not as supportive as they saw his talent as a distraction from his academic studies. But, even at a young age, Proud’s dream was to be a professional artist.
At the age of 13, Proud lost his father. The young art fanatic no longer had the opportunity to buy art materials. “I had to make do with whatever pencils and paper I could lay my hands on. Eventually, in 2016, I gave up drawing due to lack of materials and confidence.”
In 2018, Proud met Munya Chibaya, a fellow Zimbabwean artist who introduced him to oil painting. Munya gave him materials to practice and Proud’s confidence returned. Another artist introduced Sibanda to charcoal pencils and supplied him with some a while later. This is his mostly used medium to date. “With encouragement from friends and family, I reignited my passion for drawing and have not looked back since. I once again get lost in the wonder and joy of drawing portraits and wildlife,”
“I hope and pray that my God-given talent brings joy to others.” Proud says.
Proud continues to work very hard to realise his childhood dream of becoming a professional artist. The harsh economical state of Zimbabwe makes this quite a challenge, but he perseveres. His work can be found across the globe, including a private hospital called St. Andrews in Adelaide. He has been featured in several online sites, including Porto Venere.
His advice to upcoming artists is “Work hard, be patient and don’t give up no matter what. Don’t take for granted your talent because it is what you have from above.”
Contact Proud on his Facebook page: Proud Sibanda Wildlife Art and Portraits, email: firstname.lastname@example.org and on WhatsApp:+263 77 633 1837
All images from Proud Sibanda’s Facebook Timeline.