The Ruins of Gaziantep – 2013 (aged 20)

In celebration of my blog’s one year anniversary, I decided to post this painting of the interior of the Gaziantep Mosaics Museum in the southeast of Turkey. This is based on a picture I took while I was there. I replaced the ceiling with the night sky. The museum collection consists of mosaics, pillars and walls excavated in ancient Zeugma (an old city within the Gaziantep Province). All the artifacts are Roman in design and nature.

The Ruins of Gaziantep, 2013

The Ruins of Gaziantep, 2013

Gaziantep is situated between the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers in classic Mesopotamia.

The Ottoman Stallion – Aged 19

For Father’s Day, I painted this silhouette of a charging horse. It is inspired from an already existing calligraphy called Darwish’s Horse on the blog by a superb calligraphic artist Everitte.

The writing on the horse is the complete poem Take my Horse and Slaughter it by Mahmoud Darwish.

Please bear with me that since I speak no Arabic, the writing descended into gibberish.


The Ottoman Stallion, 2013

The Pomegranate – Aged 19

This year’s academic Short Term adventure has been in Turkey. We studied political identities and history in Istanbul, Mardin, Ufra and Gaziantep within a 15 days. So in honor of all the inspiration, I will continue to paint themes from the places I visited. My dream of visiting the Middle East has been fulfilled!

I decided to make a technical change this year: I have officially moved to acrylics. Why? 1. They are water-based paints (easy to clean)    2. Far less toxic than oil paints and their solvents 3. They dry faster and I can work on layers and details more

I was inspired to paint this pomegranate because we had pomegranate juice everywhere we went in Turkey. They are such beautiful fruits too; their seeds shine like rubies. The tile work and table surface are inspired from the interior of the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul.

The Pomegranate, 2013

The Pomegranate, 2013

In Islam, pomegranates grow  in the gardens of paradise. They are also symbols of fertility.

For more info on my other Short Term adventure last year in Scotland here is the link:

Shout out to the crew

Turkey Short Term 2013

Turkey Short Term 2013

Shout out to our amazing professor: Senem Aslan

Prof. with her patience achievement award

Prof. with her patience achievement award

2012-The Thinking Persian-Aged 19

For no particular reason I decided to go back to Orientalism.

The Thinking Persian, 2012


  • As a child I thought the nose was an unsightly thing to put on someone’s face so I drew portraits without them.
  • Before I was born my mother always dreamed of a house full of paintings.  Then I came to do that for her.
  • For a moment, I wanted to become a forensic artist as a kid. Too many crime shows on TV.
  • I am officially a Ravenclaw.

2012-In the name of Scotland-Aged 19

This year I went to Scotland (Edinburgh and the Shetland Islands) as part of an archaeological dig class with fellow Batesies. It has been my most inspiring experience yet…and still more Scottish paintings to come soon.

Old Scatness Detail, 2012

Old Scatness is an archaeological site in the Shetland Islands. The settlement is thousands of years old and has remnants of medieval, Viking, Pictish, and Bronze Age  architecture. So one of the structures there was a wheelhouse that I genuinely fell in love with. It was restored to recreate the Viking lifestyle complete with hide covered wooden beds and a peat fire. It was a tiny structure and in the corner they made a little storage place with pots and candles. I took a picture of it and then I came home to paint it. So here it is. My finest work!

We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilisation.

The Holy Grail, 2012

Lerwick is the capital of the Shetland Islands. At the harbor where we usually parked our van, there was a statue of the Holy Grail with a prayer at the side. I took a picture of it and then painted it.

Scottish by birth, British by law,
Highlander by the grace of God.

Esha Ness, 2012

Esha Ness was the windiest place I had ever been to. Beautiful landscape.

From scenes like these old Scotia’s grandeur springs.
Robert Burns
The Cotter’s Saturday Night.

The Earl of Southampton, 2012

The Earl of Southampton was actually English but I watched the film Anonymous while in Scotland. I also wanted to experiment with French Art Nouveau.

Not related to Scotland

Desert Rose, 2012

This was done long before I went to Scotland. I took an oral French class with Prof. Curren and we concentrated on Maghreb culture, Oriental art and Francophone-Middle Eastern films. I knew I had to paint something related so I did this…hopefully I will do more in the future.

Egyptian and his slave, 2012

And I did this as part of the Middle Eastern influence.

Back on the topic of Scotland….

My heart’s in the Highlands, my heart is not here,
My heart’s in the Highlands, a-chasing the deer;
A-chasing the wild deer, and following the roe,
My heart’s in the Highlands, wherever I go.
Robert Burns
My Heart’s in the Highlands.

Scotland…I will always love you.

And one last special note in memory of Evan Dube, a good soul who never left the Highlands. The winds there blow with a might in the character of the Scots. And whenever they pass we will know your spirit moves with the thousands who have passed on, dancing in the wind.