I am a 100% self-taught South African artist residing in East London in the Eastern Cape. Charcoal and pencil are my main mediums but I have dabbled in acrylic and watercolour.

I have also developed a technique called Ashes And Charcoal Portraiture - a beautiful and unforgettable tribute. A quality charcoal portrait, created using the cremated ashes of a loved one.

A client and friend introduced me to the idea and commissioned my first cremated ashes portrait. I wasn't sure that I could make the medium work. But with a bit of trial and error, prayer and perseverence, I devised the perfect technique. Now I am able to bless others with portraits infused with the essence of their loved ones and give them a measure of comfort and closure.

Highlights of my career include being featured in the South African Artist Magazine, the You magazine as well as newspapers and various online articles in The Good Things Guy and The South African.

I have taken part in exhibitions at the Ann Bryant Art Gallery in East London and The South African Hall Of Fame in Sun City holds a few of my works including an acrylic painting of Nelson Mandela at the entrance.

I would love to leave my mark on the art world by sharing my work and inspiring others. If you ever feel something calling you to paint, draw, sing or dance, please refuse to worry if you're good enough. Just do it.

And remember, failure is a part of the journey to success.

- Craig Banks