About Rana and her Art
What is your Name, where are you from and when and where were you born?
My name is Rana Zaher, I am from Lebanon and I was born in 1989 in Sidon – Lebanon.
Tell us something about yourself that you would like our audience to know.
I’m an Illustrator and Graphic Designer, Coordinator at a Design Gallery, and I’m pursuing an MA Degree in Ancient Near-Eastern Archaeology at the American University of Beirut.
What is the type/ form/ style of artwork you focus on?
Traditional Illustration (ink/graphite), as well as Digital Painting (Adobe Photoshop using Wacom Cintiq), and Digital Illustration (Adobe Illustrator).
Describe your creative process?
Heavy research and lots of sketching produce a great finalized outcome.
How did you commence your journey into Art and what was the first piece of Art that you had crafted?
I’ve been drawing almost all my life. I believe the ‘piece’ I most remember was a fire breathing ‘dinosaur’ when I was very little. I still had no idea dragons existed, but found that making dinosaurs spit out fire was awesome.
How has your style changed over the years?
I have always dedicated my time and efforts to be more concentrated around stylistic and cultural subjects and details from the Middle East. I think I lacked this detail when I first started out.
How do you differentiate your work from the rest?
Every individual pours a little of herself into her work, I think that plays a big part in differentiating illustrators’ final outcomes.
Do you ever experience creative blocks? How do you deal with them?
All the time, I’ll let you know when I find out.
If you had the chance to dine with an artist, who would it be and why?
Definitely Alphonse Mucha, he’s been my longstanding idol for as long as I can remember.
What drives you to create art and where do you get your inspiration from?
I’m a very visual person, and expressing my ideas with imagery is what I do best. As for my inspiration, it always starts with an idea that is then taken into further visual research, which ends up being inked on a piece of paper after several trials.
Who inspires you as a person, and as an artist?
I believe that list is a very long one, but I can summarize it by saying it’s usually people who overcame their fears and rose to success.
What is your own favorite artwork and why? what’s the story behind it?
Gustav Klimt has a very small piece called Judith – It might seem like a simple portrait to most, but I cannot stop staring at it, and contemplating its details. Finally seeing it live in Vienna was one of the best moments of my life.
What role do you think artists have in society?
Art, to me, can very well hike up or bring down a nation’s cultural integrity. Without art, and more importantly, awareness towards art, a society becomes less capable of visualizing the beautiful.
I cannot say the same towards some of the most recent products of Contemporary Art, however. I believe the world is in one big artistic decline when it comes to those (Contemporary Art).
How do you see the future of art?
I’d like to see more Seurats, Da Vinci’s, Klimts, Calders, Monets, and a little less Damien Hursts.
What is the name of the book that you are currently reading and who is the author?
Sapiens, a brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari.
Who or what influenced you to choose to read this book?
My interest in Human Origins.
Can you name a book that impacted you as a person or that has left a mark on you?
I read Sophie’s World when I was 12. I am forever thankful towards it for opening up my mind and helping shape up my beliefs till this day.
On the word ‘Osheq’
Our brand name is ‘Osheq’ which means Extreme Love or Extreme Passion – what does the word Osheq mean to you asan artist? or what is your own Extreme Love or Osheq story?
‘Osheq’ to me is reading Rumi’s poetry.