An interview with our artist of the month – Dina Elahwal, who hails from Britain but is originally from Egypt. She tells us more about her art – Oil Paint on Canvas – and her artistic inspirations.
About Dina and her Art
Tell us something about yourself that you would like our audience to know.
My biggest fear is an ocean ship cruise. I absolutely hate how vast and dark the ocean is at night.
What is the type/ form/ style of artwork you focus on?
My artwork is all oil paint on canvas. I tend to stick to more of an abstract style.
Describe your creative process?
I usually get inspired by certain emotions that I bottle up inside of me. I then use these emotions and portray it on the canvas. It can be portrayed from the drawing or the colors in general.
How did you commence your journey into Art and what was the first piece of Art that you had crafted?
After I was born in the UK, we moved to Saudi Arabia when I was two. While growing up, my mother had put me in several activities (mainly sports). I would quit that sport after a week or two. She then decided to put me in an art class when I was seven. During my first class, I was amazed, astonished, ecstatic with mixing colors on a fresh new canvas. I drew a picture of a dog then painted it. That was my first artwork. My art teacher told me that I had a great talent for a seven-year-old.
How has your style changed over the years?
I did not stop drawing or painting while growing up. I always made sure that I was taking art classes at school and university. I always stuck to oil. My paintings were very detailed and mainly focused on scenery. I gradually changed to soft pastel colors and more of an abstract style. I stick to oil because I feel like I have more control with the structure of the paint.
How do you differentiate your work from the rest?
My artwork portrays my emotions. It has positive vibes and pastel colors most of the time. I usually like to paint artwork that can be suitable for interior design as well.
Do you ever experience creative blocks? How do you deal with them?
Yes, I definitely do! I usually write my ideas on paper, carry a sketchbook, listen to music, put music in my tiny studio, go out to unique places to get inspired and take notes on life.
If you had the chance to dine with an artist, who would it be and why?
Pablo Picasso, definitely Picasso. I would like to ask him how he initiated modern art. He changed the course of art. I would like to know how he was so ambitious, dedicated and what inspires him to create such revolutionary pieces.
What drives you to create art and where do you get your inspiration from?
As mentioned before, I usually use my emotions and portray it on the canvas. It at least reduces some stress from our everyday lives. I believe that I have a certain talent that should not be wasted. This is what tends to motivate me to continuously paint.
Who inspires you as a person, and as an artist?
My mother. God bless my mother. She put me in that art class and has pushed me everyday until today. She inspires me in every way by being a better mom, wife, a good friend and of course a better artist. My mission is to spread love and colors with my artwork.
What is your own favorite artwork and why? what’s the story behind it?
My favorite artwork has to be “Slip into my daydreams” It was out of my comfort zone. I used colors that were not pastel. Mostly white and black. To be honest, I was at the end of my pregnancy and just wanted the baby out and all my feelings went out onto that painting.
What role do you think artists have in society?
To spread, love, happiness, and joy.
How do you see the future of art?
It will go on forever until the end of time while humans still have emotions. Nothing will stop that. It is a stress relief system, enjoyment with every brushstroke, anxiety approaches you when you used the wrong color, the suspense of how the painting will turn out in the end.
Can you name a book that impacted you as a person or that has left a mark on you?
The Great Gatsby – it didn’t really leave a mark on me. It is just a great story and set in a really interesting decade.
Our brand name is ‘Osheq’ which means Extreme Love or Extreme Passion – what does the word Osheq mean to you as an artist? or what is your own Extreme Love or Osheq story?
An everyday lifestyle to love what you do and continue to perfect yourself.
To see more of her work, visit her Instagram page @dinaartgallery