Social media’s favourite boy is a Ghanaian child called Jake Amo.
A picture of the earnest little boy drawing in his school in the village of Asempanaye has been used to draw laughs about everything from buying a car to applying for a job.
It was taken in August 2015 when artist Solomon Adufah taught creative studies and art at Jake’s school for three weeks. Adufah (27), originally from Ghana, is studying fine arts at the University of Illinois in the US. The photographer was his friend Carlos Cortes, who documented Adufah’s work with the children.
“As an artist, I’m very passionate about using my talent to help children,” Adufah told Africa Check. “Much like Jake, I also grew up in a small village with few resources.
“Back then, my village didn’t have electricity. My uncle was a taxi driver. When he came home from work, we would use his car battery to power a small black and white TV and that’s how I was able to watch cartoons and sketch characters.
“That’s how I developed my talent. Seeing Jake and other children like him remind me of myself. I was once one of those children who needed mentoring and support. Now it’s a blessing being able to do that for other children like Jake all over Africa .”
‘Wish the positive aspect of this image will go viral’
Asempanaye is close to Koforidua, north of the capital Accra. Adufah says Jake was 4 when the picture was taken.
The artist has painted a picture of Jake that is still for sale on his website.
Adufah wrote on Instagram that he dislikes the “negative light” being shed on a “priceless unique moment”. “I wish the positive aspect of this image will go viral instead of how it’s being portrayed as.”
He is now trying to use the image’s popularity for good by starting a fundraising campaign for Jake and his classmates.