Jaylah Abbey had no idea that when she posted her little sister’s drawings on Twitter that it would cause her to go viral with over 250k likes, 70k comments and even prospects for selling her art.
The 12-year-old, Dana Abbey, became the definition of a star when her art pieces blew up overnight thanks to her 19-year-old big sister, Jaylah, sharing her sister’s artwork simply because she was proud of her.
See the photos that started it all below:
"It was then when I realized just how huge this was becoming. It was a crazy feeling," Dana recaps with BET exclusively about the moment when they realized her art was becoming viral.
Admitting that she didn't think too much about it when her sister told her she posted her artwork, she remembers being in shock after receiving 3,000 likes, in just a day!
"After I got home from school that Monday, [Jaylah] FaceTimed me. I asked her if this attention was normal for her and she said, '50 likes isn’t even normal for me!'" Dana continued.
Growing "from 3,000 to 100,000 in a matter of hours," Dana knew her representation of "how beautiful a Black woman can be" struck a chord.
Empowered by the young lady’s vision of diverse #MelaninMagic, which she artistically displayed on paper, new fans fell in love with her vision of different types of beauty, including those with freckles, vitiligo, and features that are often shunned by Western standards of pretty.
“I didn’t think she would get this kind of response. I mean I’ve always known she was good but I never thought people would react like this,” Jaylah said while admitting she can’t draw. “I mean, my sister sets a pretty high standard in the house,” Jaylah tells BET.com exclusively.
It’s clear that Dana has some serious talent, especially if you read the responses she invoked with her art:
So what inspired Dana?
"All types of beauty are special. Sadly, today’s society is focused on seeing only one type of beautiful," Dana shared. "In my opinion, all skin types, colors, and sizes should be appreciated. I create my artwork to show how everything can be beautiful and to tell the world that everybody is different and unique at the same time. There is no person that looks exactly like the other, so stop trying to get everybody to look the same. It’s just not going to work. Besides, normal is boring anyway."
Can you believe she's only in middle-school?
“I’m just proud that my sister is comfortable and proud of who she is. She draws women of all types of ethnicities and 'imperfections.'” And as for whether she believes her sister's art is #BlackGirlMagic? “Yes, I do feel like some of her work is a great example of Black girl magic.”
We couldn't agree more.
"Black women in artwork is something I barely see, which is crazy, [Black] women are so beautiful to me. I think I just wanted to put them in the spotlight for once. They are too special to be hidden in the dark," Dana proclaims.
As for what we can expect in the future for the talented artist, get ready to see her artwork available for purchase.
"In the near future, I wish to have an online shop open so people can buy my artwork. Later on, I want to open up a real store, maybe in New York, where everybody will see it. I want to attend an art school in New York as well in the time ahead," Dana said.
We say, get this girl an art show fast!
(Photo: @DanaAbbey1 Twitter, @Jaylah_Baby Twitter)
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