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She loves Elvis, so she drew him, and became the official Elvis artist

ABC24 Visual Storyteller Shiela Whaley spoke with artist Betty Harper, who says she's been drawing Elvis since before it was cool to draw the king of rock and roll.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — “Over the years I have done over 20,000 drawings of Elvis. And now I’m in the gift shop of the Guest House at Graceland. I call it the art of Betty Harper.”

Betty Harper is the official artist with Elvis Presley Enterprises.

“I started drawing when I was really young. And I just drew everything I was fascinated with drawing. And then Elvis came out about that time. So I started drawing Elvis. And you know, you had Ricky Nelson and all of the others, but I always came back to Elvis. I am an Elvis fan. Big time. Nobody like Elvis. Never was. Isn’t. Never will be,” she said.

Harper has been having art shows of her Elvis work since 1981.

“The artwork has evolved a lot over the years. I try to bring the newest of the things when I come in August that I’ve done the past year,” said Harper. “And it’s fun and very rewarding to share it with the fans. Because they appreciate it so much.”

“I just bought two of Betty’s artworks from the Blue Hawaii,” said Elvis fan Donna Potts. “I did get married in Hawaii! Haha.”

Throughout the years, Elvis Presley Enterprises has used countless pieces of her work on products.

“Yesterday I went by Lansky Bros. to see Hal because he had samples in of three new shirts that are going to be coming out in the next few weeks that have my artwork on them,” said Harper.

The city of Memphis and the visitors and convention bureau also used her to design a billboard in 1978 on Elvis Presley Blvd. to commemorate the first year of Elvis‘ death.

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