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HELLO ORLANDO: A Solo Exhibition at NUR, Orlando, FL.

This last month has been simultaneously beautiful and chaotic. This is my first year has a schoolteacher, I am a kindergarten to 12th grade art teacher and yearbook advisor. I am infinitely grateful for the experiences. I am currently located in Tampa. My solo exhibition took place in the Casselbury area of Orlando, FL. The venue was cheerful, beautiful, and unforgivably welcoming. I am appreciative of the community that I have found there. And the friends who have found me.

Flyer for the reception:


The entrance of the NUR center. The Arabic calligraphy was a part of the hall.


A close up of the two gouache and ink paintings I completed this summer:



Discussing the art, answering very good questions:

Prints of the Qalam Series for sale:


A photo, of a few of my miniature paintings, taken by my good friend Maria Ordehi.




Thank you for the beautiful pictures Maria! (the previous three)

This is a photo I took at the end of reception


Close up of an old painting from 2011, also at this exhibition, by Maria Ordehi.



The following day, we all went to a Turkish restaurant called Cappadocia. In short it’s the best thing ever. We also got free tea and hummus :)


And ofcrouse no trip to Orlando is complete without a trip to Jeremiah’s.




Interview: Marium Rana


One of my favorite literary and art magazines recently interviewed me. There’s some storytelling, photographs, and my most recent painting! Enjoy :)

Dialogist also featured my work and my artist statement in their latest publication. Here it is:


Also if you would like to check out my very first interview, I am putting a link up for that as well. This interview was done almost three years ago and there’s a video of me talking, if that interests you!



Orlando, Florida: June 2014: Art Sessions and Mouse Ears

This month, I had the opportunity to visit Orlando and teach art to a wonderful student. We had two long art sessions in which our attention was definitely undivided. My student already had an eye for art and it was evident by the work I saw.

After two days we started two projects, and nearly finished the last. These are some progress photos from our drawing sessions.

I enjoyed one-on-one art classes and it is definitely something I am open to in the future.

I also went to Downtown Disney. Can’t go to Orlando without Disney related fun. :)

(A side trip to Royal Sweets in Tampa, during a day trip)

Mandala on day one

Early on on day two. Beautiful rainbow from glass on the front door. Definitely adds to the artwork

Picking colors. I still love using crayon in my drawings along with other media.

Another lovely progress shot!

Taking collage elements from scrapbooking paper and prints of old drawings (this is one i did about seven years ago). Worked nicely with handdrawn work.

Pure silliness!

Mouse ears :)

I’ll leave you with this adorable Dimbo painting on display in Downtown Disney

Artist Workshop: One week at a Panama City, FL elementary school

In May, I had the opportunity to teach art at Rising Leaders Academy, which is a charter school in Panama City, FL. This is my second visit to the school as an artist so a lot of the students saw me and immediately referred to me as “The Artist”. It was very sweet and I really loved working with the kids as they were so respectful and motivated.

This school integrates art into their core curriculum so when a workshop was available for specifically art, there was a lot of enthusiasm in the classroom. This class took place during the regular hours of their Arabic class. Students at RLA take both Arabic and Spanish. I was very happy to see that this is an option in a school that is not faith based. This openness to the language really elevated the status of this town in my eyes.

I grew up in this city and there are a few isolated incidents of hate but for the most part people are kind, there is southern hospitality. This city may not be as diverse as other places I have lived but I do believe that the majority is understanding to different perspectives and different places.

For this assignment, students in grades k through 5th grade wrote their names in Arabic in the center their drawing paper and used zentagle patterns to create an interesting border.

Teacher examples. The Arabic in the center says “Marium”

Zentagle print outs provided on each desk. “Please put the pattern print outs in a pile as you found them.” chaos ensues.

Forgive the upside downness.

A drawing I did during a class period without students. A rad going away card.

Graduation May 2014: Obtaining my BFA in Studio Art and a Masters in Art Education

My time at Florida State has been pivotal to a lot of personal change. I would definitely say that the lessons I learned here have been tough, incredible, and always needed. The friendships were great and that kind of companionship stays with you always. I always knew I wanted to be an artist and for just as long I’ve said I’ve wanted to be an art teacher. Somehow since kindergarten, I have always had this idea that art teachers are some kind of super humans that one must work hard to become. If this resulted in being an honor roll student for most of my education, then I guess it wasn’t such bad delusion.

In May, I received my Masters in Art Education, which wrapped up five years of living in my college town. There’s so much to say, but I should be brief.

May was also important as that is when I also officially graduated from undergrad as well, so both degrees were awarded then. I will definitely post about my BFA graduation show as that was a perfect night.

Candid picture (you can tell by the fact that I wore that shirt) my art education professor took after our very last day of class. Definitely actual happiness.

The Johnston Building where I have had class for the last year and a half. One of the newest buildings at FSU, and arguable one of the most aesthetically pleasing. :)

Tossing our hats up, memorizing our hat sizes and where we dropped them. Relief! What a great group of art educators. I’ll miss it all.



Public Art: The Qalam Series in California

Sincerely speaking, one of the best things about being a dedicated artist has been traveling with my work and meeting many different people. Through these experiences I have met many wonderful people and learned about many wonderful art initiatives throughout the world.

Experience will teach us that the beliefs that others have are valuable stories that they carried around. I try to participate in art initiatives that focus on identity and aesthetics. 

I would like to invite you to attend one of the numerous art exhibitions that Islamic Art Exhibit is hosting in California.

For the month of June and July, work will be on display in Fremont. Check out the schedule of the work below:


You can find more information about this organization at:

These two original miniature paintings from the Qalam Series are part of the exhibition in these numerous cities:



It’s always exciting to send work off to cities, I haven’t visited yet. If you are in the area drop by and let me know what you think :)



Giving artwork to Tegan and Sara: Ponte Verda, Florida. May 16, 2014.

Friday I had the amazing opportunity to be able to meet two of my favorite artists, Tegan and Sara. I can still remember the first time I heard about them, I was in middle school and still interested in I saw some fan art and decided to listen to “Downtown” and “Back In Your Head”. On long drives to high school, I would listen to them on my iPod Nano (haha) to lessen the feeling of being a sacrifical lamb driving towards the slaughterhouse.

With an opportunity to meet them, the first thing I thought of was given them artwork. I didn’t want to give them something to large so I gave them a bookmark. My friend Kathryn and I went to our third T&S concert two days ago, and I spent a lot of time thinking about the design on the bookmarks until finally I just made them spontaneously and without much thought.

It was neat walking into the venue with about thirty other people and watching them perform one song of their choice and then Tegan asked “Do you guys have any songs that you want to hear?” and I shyly said The Cure. And she said “Sure we can play that.” That was one dream come true. Never thought I would hear that performed live.

After that we got in line for the meet and greet and when it was our turn, I gave them their bookmarks and they were delighted. Tegan said “Did you make these?” I said yes and they were surprised. Sara put her hand on my shoulder and said “These are GORgeous. Thank you so much.” Sara then said that she brought two books that day so it all worked out. We took our pictures and they complimented my shows. I thanked them for playing The Cure and they thanked me for requesting it with these amazing smiles.And we got front row at the show later that night, so that was great.

The alleged shoes :)



Artwork in California: PRISM Art Show at UCLA, Los Angeles, California.

Hi dear friends,

I want to start by saying how grateful I am to all of the friends I have who are supporting this endeavor. Lately it feels like my work has been traveling more and further than I have, and I travel a lot!

If you are in the area this next week, please check out this show! The work has been sent from all over the country. My own being sent all the way from Florida. These are prints with metallic gold paint accents.

Here’s a brief video about the PRISM show.





Public Art: Caffiend’s Coffee and Tea, Panama City, Florida. Summer 2014

I am fortunate enough to have my artwork displayed at Caffiend’s Coffee and Tea for the next two months (May and June 2014). This is a wonderful cafe that my dear friend, Amira, stumbled upon and took me to. Ever since then I have fell in love with the place.

Caffiend’s is located in downtown Panama City in historic St. Andrews next to Oaks by the Bay Park, and the Shrimp Boat restaurant.

Drop by Caffiend’s, try their amazing sandwiches and other wonderful treats. There’s a good exchange in the shop and often many different art classes.

Here are some pictures of the shop, thank you David Hayes for taking these pictures of the display











I had the pleasure of serving on the board of TEDxFSU, our conference was in February 2014. It was truly a wonderful, elating experience. All of the hardwork paid off in the end and I really enjoyed the event. I had the opportunity to design the backdrop, you can see the signature patterning in the background. We had viewers from all over the world.

Here’s the TEDx talk my brother did that evening (I even got a shout out):

Logan Godby (incredible!):

Kevin Ginty on guitar:

Daniel Alvarez (everyone was incredibly kind and nice, talking to Daniel felt like talking to an old, dear friend)

If you are interested, check out the other TEDxFSU talks. I needed to stop before this update got even longer!

11th Annual Art Gala at the Biltmore: Atlanta, Georgia

On the last weekend of March, I drove to Atlanta to exhibit and attend the Emory University MSA Art Gala. It was truly a pleasure to share the exhibition space with so many great artists and kind human beings. It was truly a pleasure to make these connections and catch up with old friends.

I traveled with my mother, who is also my best friend, so naturally our trip went wonderfully, thank God. It was truly hard to get back into my routine when I arrived home last night. There were so many wonderful instances, as we were visiting family friends, who have known my parents before the were even married. It was incredible to be treated so well and be reminded of the good in positive, uplifting relationships.

The exterior of the Biltmore, it was so, so beautiful on the inside.


A symmetrical Wes Anderson-esque establishing shot.image

Some of the work I displayed, the following are mixed media, primarily gouache, ink, metallic gouache, and occasional colored pencil.



A detail of the previous work:


Older oil painting, inspired by the theme of loneliness in a large city by J.D. Salinger’s Catcher and the Rye:


This is the interior of the reception hall.


A stroll in downtown Atlanta the following day:image


Morning view, on our last and third day in Georgia. You treated us well Georgia.


By the way, we went to the Coke Factory and I got to try Apple Kiwi Fanta from Thailand. Incredible.