If you’re still in doubt of social media’s efficacy in projecting talent, this story of how Comedian Kevin Hart was taken aback by a Nigerian Hyperrealist Eli Waduba should propel a rethink.

Social Media is so much like a seesaw but it doesn’t take away it’s cruciality in projecting talents with probably some reach that would typically cost a fortune if done otherwise.

It has become a norm for creatives to present their work to the public especially via Twitter and Instagram as they are currently the in-social media platforms and guarantees a virtually direct contact with people in high places.

While some creatives post and clamour for attention, mostly with buzzwords like “my customer/helper may be on your TL” before eventually throwing in the towel. In the same vein, a couple creatives have been able to break off the clutter of amazing talents dispersed around every corner of the cyberspace especially social media – where there are a bunch of them.

For these set of Social Media users (creatives), a relatively trivial gesture like a “Like” or “Retweet” on such posts means everything to them as it could connote that every reaction to the post brings them a step closer to a patronizer because at least, one more person would see it.

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In the scene of hyperrealism, these creatives opt for making portraits of their favourite celebrities and tagging them in frail hope that the celebrities notice and respond.

Especially for global public figures who garner mentions in tens of thousands, a couple posts directed at them are prone to be missed. The chances of them seeing it or even as much as Retweeting or Liking relatively hangs by a thread but on February 27, luck shone upon Nigeria’s own Eli Waduba Yusuf, a Kaduna-based Hyperrealism pencil artiste.

Waduba’s celebrity muse for his first portrait was one of Hollywood’s hottest comedian Kevin Hart. Without a shadow of doubt, the sameness between the portrait and the actual picture is quite uncanny.

Waduba initially took to his Twitter page to enjoin users of the app to contribute at least a Retweet until it reaches Kevin Hart. In close to no time, going by social media lingo ‘Twitter did it’s thing’ and the post began to make the rounds. The going later got more euphoric for Waduba when Kevin’s attention was drawn to his hyperrealistic magic.

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Ideally, a mere Retweet or Like from a highly influencial public figure is rewarding in it’s own right as it further places your work in front of millions going by the rate of engagement such account rakes, as people pay would pay a fortune for that sort of visibility.


But having your tweet quoted, with not just encomiums but demanding an order for the portrait and being commissioned for three more celebrity portrait is beyond a dreambound reality for the Northern Nigerian artist.

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Kevin’s quote on Waduba’s portrait has since amassed over a hundred thousand Retweets and one can just imagine how many impression it has garnered so far.

This is another win for the burgeoning Hyperrealism scene in Nigeria as it’s reminiscent of Oresegun Olumide‘s success story in 2016. The Hyperrealism Oil painter who saw his work go viral after posting them on Facebook and has since received offers to exhibit them in the UK and USA.


This also poses as some morale boost for more Hyperrealists who have shied away from displaying their work to the public as it’s been raining celebrity portraits on social media since then.

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Waduba has later confirmed to be in talks with Kevin Hart already. He was also inspired by renowned Hyperrealist artist, Arinze Stanley.