Meet Yemesrach Yetneberke Who Cartoonizes Ethiopia’s Daily Life


For Yemesrach Yetneberke cartoons ease the reality tension and because of that she wants to change the circumstance of real things to something funny but meaningful. Addis Insight met with cartoonist Yemesrach  a.k.a Yemi who is one of the very few talented and striving cartoon artists in Ethiopia.


Yemi journey to cartoon world started with her brother when she was a little girl.After work When Yemi mother brings bread folded with cartoon characters newspaper both Yemi and her brother first rush to snatch the paper and spend their next day just drawing the cartoons. As a little girl collecting comic books and coping the cartoon pictures by herself with her brother Yemi spends too much time on drawing cartoons, her academic results were always on the top. In her primary and secondary school she participated on bulletin board scenario by contributing different drawings of her own to post it on the board. Besides that she used to make homemade postcards for her friend’s birthday or for holiday gifts.



Yemi who was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia grew her passion to capture the way things exist into cartoons. After completing her primary and secondary academic education at Nazrete School ,she went to  Mekelle University to study Architecture.


Yemi has been using cartoon as a bridge to connect real circumstances with funny cartoon world characters. Some of her works captures a daily life which we tend to neglect and give it back to us wrapped with cartoon and compels us to say “hmmmmmmmmmmm oh this place,this man,this food,localized valentines…….”.



After two years later when Yemi become third year Architecture, she thought about drawing cartoons for a business. And it was successful. Architecture for her was interesting and at the same time fun since she likes drawing from the bottom of her heart.


Yemi’s parents always encourage her and give their own opinion about her cartoon drawings. Her role model is her younger brother Samson. She thinks he is way more mature than his age even when he was a kid. He sees things in different point of view.

Currently Yemi works as a freelancer drawing cartoons for advertising companies. In the near future Yemi with her brother and one of their friend graduated from a Marketing field they thought about commencing their own company with a name called Laughing Gas Cartoons. The aim of the company is to be in partnership with different NGOs, Schools and Industries so that they could illustrate cartoon pictures to the advertisement, draft and posters as a main stream.

As always I asked Yemi, too, what her message would be to the youngsters. She said “God created everyone of us giving varied talent and abilities. We should be happy God has put something on us and we should practice it. Whenever you follow your dream and passion after finding out your talent, you will be the most successful person. The more you try, the more it becomes a reality. Think big. Don’t only think about graduating, having a house, a car and a family. Think also about bringing a change. Think how your profession and your talent be helpful not only to yourself but also to your community, country and even internationally to the whole world. I believe everything is possible if you try hard no matter you face a topsy-turvy life. Stay true to who you are, your identity, your society and environment. And most of all Pray to God.”


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