There are no boundaries when it comes to creating art, and that’s what Mohamed Dalo has embraced in his artistry. Dalo, who has Muscular Dystrophy, specialises in anime art. What drew Dalo to the style of anime is the unlimited freedom it offers him in editing his works, and also how detail-oriented it is. Anime is an inclusive and accessible art form for anybody as well.
“I only have my A4 drawing pad and pencils to enable me to live out my dream."
Dalo’s passion for art came to him at a very young age. What started out as a hobby gradually transformed into a potential career prospect. Born in Gaza, Palestine, Dalo received his education in mainstream schools, due to both the lack of special needs schools and his parents’ desire for him to fully integrate into the community.
In school, his artistic talents were noticed by his middle school teacher, who encouraged him to continue pursuing art. Before he could take his baccalaureate exams, Dalo’s health deteriorated, and he had to stop his education. Yet, Dalo never stopped creating art, and decided to make a career out of it.
Through the internet, Dalo continually honed his skills and technique. He then discovered his passion for anime art, a Japanese art form. Over time, Dalo gained more confidence in his drawings, and began displaying his works first on social media, then to his family and friends. His exhibitions moved on to a larger scale, as he recently had his works showcased at two local events in Gaza. These events also garnered media attention towards Dalo and his talents.
Access to education, employment, or any form of personal development, is often difficult for people with disabilities living in Palestine, including Gaza. There are little resources targeted at people with disabilities, and it often limits their potential to thrive. Despite such obstacles, Dalo has never allowed them to hinder him from achieving his dream. Rather, he maintains an optimistic outlook for the future of Palestine, and is confident that how he can contribute to society.
“I want to leave a mark on the world of art, to travel and see what art is out there, especially Anime. I want to open my own exhibition, where people from all over the globe can come and view my work. I want to improve my skills by interacting with and meeting artists and academics, who may help me to nurture this talent via further studies."
Determined to be a driving force for change in the world through his talents, Dalo encourages others to follow their passions, too. “Don’t hide or suppress your talent. Nothing is impossible, so be proud of who you are and what you contribute to society,” he advises. “People with disabilities have a vital role to play in shaping the world and influencing the attitude and perception others have of disability.”
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