The Canvas Corner
Amna Hussain 


Why did you start painting? 

I first started painting 3 years ago, I had just finished a degree in Islamic theology and the reality of domestic life was hitting me....hard! I just felt that I constantly needed to keep myself busy with something other than the chores of being a housewife, so I ordered some paints and brushes online and bought a couple of small canvases from a local pound shop and painted my first canvas in my bedroom on my ironing board. It was a navy blue background with ' Abu bakr' written on in gold arabic calligraphy. I used Google to show me how the arabic calligraphy was done as I was quite unsure.

What Inspires you? 

It can sometimes be just an emotion I'm feeling; happy, sad, angry or even jealous ( we all do it) Also when I see certain colours or colour combinations in everyday life, that really gets the creative juices flowing, especially colours of mother nature. I really enjoy painting using blue, green, red etc..the colours of the sky, earth, water and sunsets. I also do personalised canvases, so if someone asks for certain colours they would like for their canvas, then I would try and create an image idea or pattern that will encompass those colours, effectively.

Sometimes when I'm browsing through the internet, looking at other peoples work, that will also inspire me to try something different or maybe I'm not quite convinced by some of their colour choices and want to try it out how I see the image in my head. Basically....nature and colours are my thing!

How would you describe your style?

I wouldn't say i have a specific style, because i love trying different techniques. I really enjoy scenes of nature, even though I don't think I've mastered that just yet but I also really love the idea of abstract art. It is so fascinating and interesting because it can be interpreted differently by each individual and the painter can express whatever they want.

My dad is not a fan of abstract art, so once i did a canvas painting, with a criss-crossing pattern in various different colours and my dad did not approve..he called it a Jackson Pollock. At the time I had no idea who he was but then my dad explained and i realised he was an abstract artist. So my style, i'd say is ...Travelling (because I don't stick with one and keep trying new things)

How did your upbringing influence your artwork? 

Arabic was a major part of my life growing up and wheni started my degree in islamic theology.. it was taught in arabic and urdu and so it is a language i am very fond of and probably why i use a lot of in my canvases.

Also my dad is very fond of nature and used to take us out regularly to garden centres, zoos and parks etc and i guess my love for nature stemmed from that; influenced by my dad.  (love him loads) He also enjoys gardening and grows flowers and vegetables as does my momma.

As we are on the subject of parents just want to say that we should really appreciate everything they have done and will do ...never really appreciated them properly until i got married and moved 100 miles away...wish i had done more...

Tell us something random about yourself!

My dream job would be working as a forensic/detective; so to be involved in the the analysis of evidence as well as solving the crime. 

I studied at college( not sure what the American equivalent is as i live in the U.K...high school..perhaps) for 2 years and did a BTEC Level3 course in Applied Forensic science but have not been able to attend university just yet as i have a child who attends school and mosque in the evening. 

But then i do wonder whether achieving a degree in this field would even help me at all in securing the dream job because I am a Niqabi 

How would you like to improve your style? 

I want to improve on my steadiness of hand as well as developing new techniques which can help me paint detail better as well as painting beautiful scenery in intricate detail. Also develop the use of acrylic paints so I can produce better quality prints. 



Where do you see yourself in one year? 

I will be selling to people all over the U.K and quite successfully. At the moment its mainly relatives who I am painting for but I hope to be getting a lot more commission pieces soon!

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