Tuesday, February 27, 2018

My Experience with Illustrating Children's Book Course with Make Art That Sells

We are already finishing the second month of 2018 and this year announces it self to be a busy year for me! Which is great! last November I took advantage of the Black Friday sale on Make Art That Sells website and enrolled in the Juice Pack courses. I have already started MATS A and now I am in the middle of the boot-camp course that lasts for 5 months. Check out their available courses here.
The first ever MATS course I took was Illustrating Children's Books "ICB3" last October. It was a turning point for me artistically! I have learned how to prepare a portfolio and how to pitch it for illustrating a children's book - which is my dream - and I also got a chance on experimenting with gouache as a new medium and that turned out great!

The course is taught by the lovely Lilla Rogers and Zoe tucker. They have guided us during five weeks by giving us an assignment at the beginning of each week. At the end of each assignment Lilla hosted a live review to discuss some of the students' work. My book cover made it in the last week review and Lilla included it in the "Cool Style' section. It was also featured in the "Student Showcase" on their blog. To read the interview follow the link:

The first week was the most challenging as the whole concept of MATS courses was a new experience for me. We had to illustrate the main character from the story written by Zoe Tucker called "Pet Problems".
The week that follows was all about movement and poses. I really stepped out of my comfort zone that week and sketched a lot of kids posing in different ways. We also had a daily sketch prompt which helped getting us ready for the week assignment. Environment was my favorite week! I spent hours and hours painting every detail of the town where the main character lives on a two page spread. It was so much fun. We then designed the book cover during the last week and that was a wrap.

The five weeks were so intense, we learned a lot and improved in a short period of time. After the course has finished, we had an option of making a one minute video talking about our experience. Here is the video I made that was also featured in MATS blog:
The Illustrating Children's Book course is happening now in February but is currently sold out. However, I will definitely enroll for the upcoming one next October and will be part of this lovely experience again! 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Custom Dog Portrait - AsmaOriginal

The latest custom dog portrait I did this month. You can find all the custom pet portraits layout in my Etsy shop here. It is also the last custom portrait I am doing before I go on Vacation to central France and Copenhagen. Very excited!

First, I illustrated this lovely Jack Russell called Parker.
Then a sweet poodle mix called Frankie. Love love love <3.

Follow me on Instagram to see my work in progress and stories. I also have a new Instagram account called AsmaInspired for all my original mixedmedia illustrations.

See you there!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

7 Amazing Illustrators to Follow on Instagram - Art Inspiration

Social media outlets are becoming a big source of inspiration in the modern world of technology. Amazing artists are more and more showcasing their artwork online and even showcasing their work process and behind the scenes. One of the most important platforms to display pictures is Instagram which I find a huge source of inspiration for me as an artist. Here are six amazing illustrators that I find very inspired by on Instagram.

1. joojoopaper
I love Afsaneh's work! Very elegant and clean. In fact, she is my first inspiration to open an Etsy shop and work on my art photography. I invite you to check her illustrations and be carried away in her magical universe where all humans, animals and plants live in harmony.

2. amyjpeg
I discovered the work of Amy in an issue of Flow Magazine France few years ago and fell in love with it ever since. The painting "Girl With a Pigeon" is my all time favorite! I love watching her videos where she shares her work process and how she does her amazing patterns.

3. Sibylline_m
Sibylline magical portraits using markers and inks. She also makes those very cute pins out of her illustrations. She is such an inspiration to her over 324,000 followers on Instagram.

4. emmablockillustration
Emma is a London based illustrator who also teach watercolor art and lettering workshops. You can see her work process through her Instagram stories. She is currently working on writing and illustrating an art book which is amazing!

5. inameliart
Amelia creates whimsical illustrations with exquisite details. She makes fun portraits of cats, dogs, horses and even bears and lions with a touch of mystery and quirkiness.

6. augustwren
Jennifer makes mesmerizing illustrations Everyday. I can watch her painting forever! Her Instagram feed is always full of colors and beautiful details. Check her sketch book "Draw Every Day Draw Every Way" to have a motivation for painting every day!
7. maggiecoledraws
I am absolutely in love with Maggie's quirky portraits! She set herself a goal of #100daysofhair and only few paintings are left to accomplish it.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Travel Custom Family Portrait - AsmaOriginal

Summer time had started and we can really sens it with the extreme heat here in Dubai (over 45 degrees). But since I love travel I also love summer time as it means vacation time!
Mixed Media Custom Family Portrait

The custom portraits I did the most this summer was family custom portraits which I enjoy a lot. I did several once and the I am showing in this post is the last one I finish before I go on vacation my self. We had planned to leave to a lovely village in central France and to Copenhagen.

Paper Collage for the Outfits
I enjoyed illustrating nine countries for this family portrait. The mediums I used are watercolors, acrylics, paper collage, glitter and leather.

Illustrating Austria using watercolors, paper collage and acrylics
Illustrating Angkor Thom in Cambodia using watercolors

 My shop on Etsy displays all the layouts I offer for travel portraits.

The portrait I am currently working on is a pet portrait and will let you know about it soon!

Have a colorful day!

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Visiting Green Land Dubai - A Tropical Forest in the Middle of the Desert

Today we have visited the first indoor tropical forest in the UAE located in City Walk Dubai. The best place in my opinion to escape the heat of the summer with kids in Dubai. We went as a family and started our visit from the fourth floor going down. Surrounded by a living ecosystem of canopy.
Seeing all the exotic plants, animals and insects was very inspiring for me. I felt curious like a child and enjoyed interacting with the animals. I must mention how friendly the staff was showing us some animals out of their cages. I even touched a snail for the first time in my life.
I was also excited to see a toucan up close. To see more of my illustrations follow me on Istagram @asmaoriginal
The green planet provides a program throughout the day to interact with some animals. We had the chance to see the sloth at the time we arrived. We watched him climb a tree and eat his meal. My daughter was very interested!
The sloth climbing slowly and with ease
 The dome is a home to more than 3,000 plants and animals inducing birds, reptiles, spiders, insects and fish. We discovered them all walking down 4  stages around a giant tree. We kept looking left and right trying to see the most of it.
My daughter Sara, always ready for adventure!

We had the chance to see many animals up close and even to touch them
We surly had a wonderful experience that I recommend for anyone visiting Dubai, especially with kids. This a link to their website for more information: http://www.thegreenplanetdubai.com/en

Have you already visited the Green Planet? Say in the comments below what was your favorite animal to see! 

Monday, November 2, 2015

Save the Date - Mixed Media Original Illustration - Custom Portrait from AsmaOriginal

Hello Everyone, It has been a while since I shared what is new on AsmaOriginal but I was working on some personal work and learning new techniques. I am also working on re-branding AsmaOriginal and having a new logo, visit car and banner which is really exciting for me. Marketing was my major in college and branding was my favorite subject :)
Save the Date - Custom Portrait
I am very happy I extended my line to wedding gifts and announcements. I was making custom wedding portraits for a while now with lovely wedding dresses made of lace and fabrics. But today I lunched my first "Save the Date" custom portraits.
I try to capture the details and personalities
 I loved working on this custom portrait. I wrote "Save the Date" by hand on a banner. The couple will add the wedding details once they receive the portrait and then print the cards.

The work process is similar to my my usual mixed- media work on AsmaOriGinal where I use paper collage for the clothes in addition to acrylics, gouache, leather. .. etc.

I will keep you posted in the future. Have a colorful day everyone!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Flying Star - Original Collage Portrait - Work in Progress

I love doing collage portraits! This one I did is for Illustration Friday weekly challenge. The theme for this week is "Star". I decided to make a collage portrait of a little girl.
I was inspired by the Halloween that will come at the end of this month. The girl is wearing a star costume that I designed and chose its fabric from collage paper.
The star is actually the collar of the costume. The girl is dreamy and at the edge of nearly flying to  represents the theme of the challenge.
I am really proud of this portrait :) I am going to list it in my shop on Etsy soon!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

3 Mother's Day Gift Ideas from aSmaOriGinal

All mothers love flowers and heart shaped chocolate boxes but do you want to give your lovely mother a personalized gift made especially for her? I am aSma, an artist who would make her a custom portrait as a gift made from her photo. In my shop aSmaOriGinal on Etsy I offer many layouts and sizes. Here are three ideas for a personalized gift on mother's day:

You would get an individual custom portrait for your lovely mother painted with watercolors and glitter in the background...
 Individual Custom Portrait
...A painting on a 2.3 x 1.5in mini canvas using acrylics...
Or a personalized illustration with her name on a flower framed watercolor portrait illustration.
2. A Custom Portrait With Her Husband or Kids:
I traveled to many cities with my mother including Paris, Geneva and Cairo. This mother daughter travel custom portrait is great to symbolize all the trips you have made with your sweet mother.
A custom portrait with her other half. This is a collage and mixed-media portrait for a couple standing.
Or with her lovely kids... A watercolor illustration with the sentence: "You Are So Loved".
3. A Custom Family Portrait:
What can make her happy more than a custom family portrait for the whole family! You can add all the symbols of your family moments or passions in the illustration. Or you can present the places you have been to together in the background. Click Here for all the custom family portrait options I offer in my shop.
Still wondering what to ger your lovely mom on Mother's day? ;)

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Abstract Paintings by Sara my 2 Years Old Daughter

Sara is my very active little sweet heart. She was born on December 2012 and she brought joy to my everyday ever since. Now that she passed two year old she found her passion in painting.
Abstract painting by Sara
A close up.
Actually, I am finding a hard time painting when she is awake as she takes my place and start using my colors creating her own master piece.
Get up momy it is my turn!
One day when she will grow up she will give titles for her paintings. I will help her for now and title this one: "Pine Seed".
"Pine Seed"
I am hanging Sara's paintings on the wall in her room. Maybe one day we will hang them in an exhibition, who knows! :)
Now that Sara is asleep, I will try to finish as much work as I can. I have lots of orders! ;)

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Love That Will Last Forever!

I lunched aSmaOriGinal about a year ago on Etsy making custom portraits. I will share with you the work process for the collage custom portrait I did for my lovely sister-in-law Sheghaf and her husband Ammar. A couple which I have been blessed to have in my life as they portray all the funkiness, passion and love that I am sure most people yearn for.

The lovely couple: Ammar and Sheghaf
This is the custom portrait I did for them using watercolors and paper collage:
My work space and the custom portrait I did on my desk
However, before I can gift this illustration to them on Valentine's day, Sheghaf asked for some changes and a darker hair.
Changing the hair color
She also had the wonderful idea of adding objects using paper collage all around the illustration. So I looked for objects in the magazines that have a meaning to the couple and symbolize their interests. This really gave it a nice and personal touch!
Cutting magazines for the collage parts
Now that I made the changes and glued all the small paper pieces I can gift it to Sheghaf and Ammar on Valentine's day. This way, they will have an illustration that will last forever just like their LOVE to each other.
You click on the picture to see it in my Etsy shop aSmaOriGinal
Hope you girls had wonderful gifts and flowers today!