Story and artwork from Shelina Khimji
A self taught, award winning Tanzanian born artist and a qualified accountant, drawn to art since her childhood.
She has a rich African and Arabian background since she grew up in Tanzania and inherited the Zanzibari upbringing from her parents. She has also lived in Britain, USA and UAE. This combination tends to stand out in her work with the colours and layers highlighting her identity.
Her strength lies in the contemporary feel she has given to Tanzanian art. She also lets her art speak for her values when it comes to the preserving the environment and recognising the less privileged.
Over a decade long career, she participated in World Art Dubai 2020. Her lockdown artwork was featured on CNN Style and also been a two time finalist in the New York and Los Angeles Coffee Art Project, scooped awards in local art competitions, a participant in the sketchbook project and the EA Art Biennale. She has sold her paintings to Ahlulbait TV, an Islamic channel in UK, Flightlink, a local airline Company in Tanzania and a cafeteria in Australia apart from her circle.
Colour and realism is her powerful symbolism as it reflects her happy persona and her ideal world imagery. She believes art has allowed her to dip her brush into her soul and paint away her fantasies. The imaginary places and dreams that she expresses on the canvas permit her to lose herself and fulfil her inner longings by bringing them alive in a painting.
She loves to do challenging concepts that give her a sense of achievement. Since she loves realism and has a knack for sketching she feels she has to overcome her drawing from life challenges and learn from the Drawing Academy to master the correct way of drawing. She had been so far following the short videos and drawing reviews for artists that drawing academy sends out on emails to learn whatever she could.
She would love to achieve how to portray realism in both paintings and drawing and she has only been following the drawing academy videos since 2015 and she feels no other school teaches art the way drawing academy does in terms of drawing from live, learning anatomy as well as due to the support of tutors that is provided by them. She would therefore be thrilled if she could level up and win the course.
Being a self taught artist and working so hard to get where she is, she will really appreciate it if people vote for her since it will allow her to further her career and help to learn the right skills from the course instead of struggling and trying to learn herself like she has been all these years.
Also if voted, it will boost her morale to make her realise that her career ladder reflects her hard work as to how her work keeps getting better and better with all the effort she puts in.