Beginning 2015 I joined Turkish illumination/gilding course with my wonderful teacher Dilara Yarci. It simply means painting with gold. This requires special gold ink and technique to paint old Ottoman motifs. The complication of the process lies in drawing the motifs first, then at painting them. And one of the rules of illumination is to paint the full pattern with gold first then apply colors to it.
When I first started drawing patterns I discovered a way to draw corner patterns myself. From there it was easy to map the way I want to draw my simple patterns. So when I got into the Ottoman motifs I had a slight idea on the shapes but it wasn’t easy.
From there on, I bought several books to educate myself on how to draw Ottoman motifs. It was so challenging to learn everything myself but after years from reading, drawing, and watching other motif designers I began to know the technique behind drawing a full Ottoman motif.
Visiting Turkey helps with the learning process too! Visiting Camii’s (Masjids) with all of their beautiful patterns and decorations really inspire designers a lot.
In my last visit to Turkey I got to see yet new places and visit new Camiis. It was such a wonderful and amazing trip. Also, I managed to buy the most important tezhib/gilding tool which is the Muhre. This tool is used to brighten the gold letting it shine. And while I was looking at the other art tools in the store ( It’s called Guven Sanat: http://guvensanat.com ) I saw small watercolor palette that most artists and motif designers are using all over the Instagram. It’s really helpful to carry such a set with you anywhere even when traveling. At this point, I can’t seem to leave without my sketchbooks and markers.
Instead of leaving all of my materials behind I’d rather bring small sketchbook, markers, and this new small set of watercolors with me.
I’m posting photos of my pattern designs below. And if you have any question do not hesitate to shoot me an email at any time: email@example.com.
For the past few weeks I was busy getting more illustrations done than before. Fortunately I love designing and illustrating so it’s not stressing me at all, however, when life gets in the way that’s something else though.
I still am doing all of my tasks alone, hence work is slow. But I’m getting used to being that busy so I guess with a bit more time I’ll be done with my main projects and tasks. Since I’ve been working on the design part, I’ll make more time for managing my business.
Anyway, on the good part I’m posting my recent illustrations. I’m really happy with my current abilities and I’m familiarizing myself with more tools regarding painting my designs. I bought way too many art tools which helped me be more creative.
Aside from fashion illustrations, I illustrated patterns inspired by the Ottoman patterns. To be honest, I’m thinking of giving a workshop on how to draw Ottoman patterns. I enjoy designing Ottoman patterns and when I read more about them I couldn’t help but admire that form of art even more. Also, I’ll join an upcoming Exhibition at the end of this month where I’ll showcase my work. I’m super excited! It’s been a long time since I last participated in an exhibition. Below are some of my recent designs and you can definitely watch me on Snapchat where I post the process or Instagram:
I had a lot going on this year. So the past few months (until now, though) have been a true roller-coaster for me. That’s why I wasn’t too consistent with my designs and I got lost too many times. However, these days I’m setting things right once and for all so there is no returning point and definitely no time for tears.
Although I’m a designer specialized in patterns but when people don’t understand what patterns are and such I get confused to and start questioning myself about my own specialization. I tried changing it more than once but I always get back to it. Deep down I’m positive that this is the right path for me but it’s just that it needs some time before it can take off and I start working on real commissions rather than design personal projects.
I bought three different books that talk about the Ottoman patterns. After attending a course on gold gilding I was determined to learn more about Tezhip and the Ottoman patterns. It’s such a wonderful art that made me see patterns in another angle. Prior to that, my patterns were random and weren’t too attractive but nowadays I’m really happy with the progress I did.
I traveled last month for 10 days so I had to stop my work at that time and then got back to it after I returned. The problem is that when I’m motivated enough to work I hate getting distracted but sometimes things don’t go my way. So I needed a lot of time before I got back to work for real. I’ve been having too many distractions lately that forced me to drop my work and start again with new ideas and schedule. Whereas it would’ve been a lot easier for me to work daily with consistency.
These days I’ve been working on Ottoman patterns a lot. Although I yet to learn more but I’m really happy with the latest designs I did using the knowledge I had. Once I get even better at designing them, I’m thinking of giving out a basic workshop for anyone interested. I’m really excited for this experience and I can’t wait to start working on it.
Lately I’m so fond of flowers. Since getting into patterns I enjoy illustrating flowers. Even when drawing Ottoman patterns I heavily rely on flowers. Below are sketches for my latest patterns which I yet to paint:
The part that scares me the most when designing Ottoman patterns is painting. I question myself a lot as to what colors to use. The thing is that I’m not into reds and greens so I end up using gold and black with a little of light pink and white. Instead of blue I use turquoise to balance out the whole design. I love this colors combination for it doesn’t leave the design too bright. I yet to experiment with the painting part for I always spend more time on sketching than painting. So I’ll work on painting my designs these days along with drawing new patterns.
Guys let me know what you think about my designs because I’m thinking of doing live sketching/painting in the next couple of weeks.
I meant to write this post but I traveled for ten days and got back yesterday. I didn’t have enough time for I had to pack my belongings and at the last minute, I decided to take photos of me in a studio. This was all a day before my departure and luckily my photos were out the same day.
I’m dedicating this post purely about me personally and will talk briefly about my brand. I already posted a blog post earlier in my brand’s blog here: http://a-artista.com/blog/. You can read it and get an insight about ‘Artista’. However, I’ll talk about me being the founder of my own business.
My name is Anwaar Saleh Al-Asousi and I was born and raised in Kuwait. I’ve always been a dreamer and I highly believed that most of my dreams will come true one day. By now I accomplished some of my dreams and I’m waiting to accomplish the rest of them.
Maybe you wonder why I always type in English rather than Arabic. Although my native language is Arabic but since I was a kid I loved English. My readings and most of the TV shows I used to watch were English. The moment I learned how to read, I grabbed English stories and read them. At school, my favorite subject was English and although I wasn’t much of a speaker but I my English vocabulary was excellent for kids my age. I remember that we used to have a morning assembly that gathered all students, teachers, and principles. Whenever the English teachers contributed to the daily assembly program, my teacher always chose me for public speaking in front of the whole school. Although I was shy by nature, but that was one thing I loved to do.
Before that public speaking, my teach used to call me during recess and asked me to copy what she prepared for me to say. From the excitement, I used to memorize the whole thing. There was a time when I forgot my public speaking paper. but since I memorized every text the teacher prepared for me, so I recited the whole thing without holding a paper or a card.
Growing, I studied first at the Kuwait University for 3 years before switching universities. I then got enrolled at the American University of Kuwait. There I got to use my English a lot specially when it came to speaking. Since I’ve been using English even more than ever. Right now, conversations, words and thoughts are English by default. Even the notes I take are all in English. These days I do not speak English that much unless I’m talking to an English speaker but my writings are mostly in English.
Hobbies and Interests
My most favorite hobby is reading. This is the oldest hobby I practiced as a kid until today. Even at days when I get too busy, I try to read an article or a short story as to not abandon this hobby of mine.
There was a time when I was too addicted to reading. I used to finish reading a novel in a week and immediately start with another one. Anywhere I travel I purchase a bunch of novels and fill up my book case with more books. Right now I have tons of to-read books and I don’t have the time to finish reading them these days.
Later I got into crafts and art. Since I loved coloring I used to visit ‘Crayola’s’ website and print out these coloring pages. Back then I wasn’t too good at drawing so I printed premade drawings and colored them. Now, I reached a point where I can draw and post my drawings for others to color. Ironic, isn’t it?
Years later I was introduced to graphic design from a forum called ‘Soompi’. And the last hobby I gained was writing. The funny thing is that I used to hate writing. My least favorite thing to do in the world was writing. I wasn’t good at expressing myself and thoughts which is the main reason behind my hatred. But from writing essays, articles and such I came to love writing. It’s the one thing that helps me express myself better than anything else to the extent that I wrote poems and anthologies.
In 2011 I finished writing a full novel. It’s a fantasy novel that’s filled with action and adventure. I tried publishing it in the past but failed. I contacted several agencies but wasn’t lucky enough. Therefore, I’m waiting until current matters settle before attempting to publish it yet again.
My main interest is learning languages and one of my dreams is to become fluent in several languages.
In 2006 I started learning Japanese alone. My knowledge in Japanese is good but since I don’t practice it with anyone I started to forget the basic conversation. It’s such a loss but I’m thinking of joining a Japanese course/club and have people to converse with.
Aside from that, I watch Korean dramas a lot which helped me understand the language. I’m not that good in Korean but I’m working on studying it.
The third language that I’d love to become fluent at is Turkish. Again I watched few dramas and loved the language. I understand a little and hope to be able to learn it in the future.
Aside from languages, I got interested in fashion illustrations lately. You can view them in this blog of mine and instagram.
In February 2012 I was able to establish my own business. It was a daring move for I wasn’t born in a family of entrepreneurs and business owners. So I paved and still am paving my own way. And although I didn’t have the experience to handle a whole business myself I got to learn that as the years passed by. It wasn’t easy but it’s definitely no impossible either. I used to pressure myself a lot to gain customers but these days I’m working at my own pace.
I try to take care of my photograph skills and shoot images with good angle and lightening. I then edit them if needed using Photoshop. But everything in my brand is handled by me personally at the moment including designing too.
These days I’m focusing on creating full patterns and they’ll be posted in my website soon. I’ll also change the look of my website to showcase more work and edit my portfolio section. So there’s a lot of work awaiting me.
You can watch my latest painting process video on Artista’s YouTube channel:
For more information you can watch me on instagram and snapchat and to watch my painting process.
Around a week ago, I came up with an interesting idea. I wanted to display patterns on a different surface than papers so I thought of …. drawing them on my face!
Yep, I truly did it.
But there were few mistakes I did that I will definitely avoid the next time I try this method. So one mistake I noticed was that the pattern I drew was small. Therefore the details weren’t so visible. Otherwise I did a great job drawing a clear pattern near my eyes. And I felt that I executed the idea in a good way.
The second mistake was probably me using a pencil eye color instead of liquid eye liner. Even when I apply my eyeliner if I want to draw a thin clean and detailed eyeliner I use liquid eyeliner. But if I wanted a thicker and more visible eyeliner I use pencil/gel eyeliner.
But all in all I was happy looking at the original patterns I drew. However, I did one major editing before posting the picture on instagram. I opened up Photoshop and editing the pattern digitally. The whole idea behind it was displaying a high quality looking pattern instead of hand-drawn one. So I had to edit the original image to get the result I was looking for.
I searched some cosmetic brands for glitter and I didn’t find what I was looking for. That led me to ‘Make Up Forever’ where I found everything I wanted and more! I ended up buying two glitters, a powder and a cream eye color. I’m still testing one of the glitters to see which lipsticks works well with it. And I’ll definitely share the results and perhaps review them for you later.
Around a week ago I saw the announcement of Illamasqua’s new sketch sticks and I got excited about them. I went to Harvery Nichols in Kuwait few days ago and they told me the collection still didn’t arrive. I got disappointed. So I went today as well, and I found them displayed. I loved the new colors. They have summer vibes and are too preppy! I love colors so they’re my current favorite eye pencils. Sad to say I ran out of makeup removal wipes so I couldn’t apply them for you to see. I’ll do that in a later post.
I was going to wait a little bit longer before publishing this post but I couldn’t wait!
For few months I had in mind undergoing a new experience. Which is teaching. I was going to hold an actual teaching course but I didn’t have enough time to prepare. It was two weeks before Ramadan that I finally decided to give it a try. And those two weeks weren’t enough at all. Anyway, I stopped preparations and focused on my daily sketching routine.
I joined Skillshare.com last year and I’ve been keeping an eye for classes related to my brand and specialization. I enrolled in many classes but didn’t finish all of them. I liked how organized the website is and the whole teaching process is made easy. I never thought that teaching online is not that hard!
Which is why …. I’m challenging myself by teaching online in Skillshare!
It’s a new experience for me and I definitely am shaky and a little worried. English is not my first language which feels like an obstacle to me. Second, I’m not familiar with the whole teaching thing which makes me indecisive sometimes on the way I should be transmitting certain ideas. Yet, as long as I have the opportunity to try teaching online for the first time ever I will grab this chance and learn from my mistakes later.
So without any further a due, here are the details:
Below is a 1-minute intro to the course:
Title: Drawing Patterns on Fashion Illustrations.
Since my main specialization is patterns I decided to give out this short course on patterns.
The duration of this online course is around 16 minutes, and I chose two patterns to illustrate. The first one is lace and the second is golden swirls. Since it’s not a full course I’m illustrating them quickly while explaining how to do so.
I’m publishing the intro video tonight and will begin uploading the rest of the videos the next couple of days. So you access the project here:
I do apologize for not posting the past few weeks for I was having such a busy schedule. I had a lot going on at that time and I couldn’t concentrate enough to write a blog post.
Last month I went to Turkey for few days then came back to Kuwait. I stayed for few days then traveled to KSA!! My trip to Turkey wasn’t planned to be honest which is why my whole schedule got messed up. However, I’m glad I went for I bought new books on ‘Islamic Illumination’ which is also referred to as ‘Tezhip’.
Last year, I took a course on illumination which was the first course I ever took and I absolutely fell in love with that kind of art. Originally, I started my business using patterns which made it easier for me to create my own patterns. It was the technique that I needed to learn the most. Since I haven’t practiced that much I now need to practice both drawing patterns and painting them. I won’t rush myself because it’s not my main specialization.
Those are some of the latest patterns I created. I have a lot more designed but I have to search for them, hehehe. I had to clean up my desktop a little to leave space so I moved my designs to another hard disk. So wait for my next post where I’ll share my designs with you <3.