A panel of international judges will jury the exhibition.
Artists will be notified of by email.
Awards will be announced after August 7th.
HOW TO ENTER:
Prepare your photo. Please photograph your artwork without a frame or passe partout. Crop the photo so that only the painting is visible. File should be 72 dpi and no more than 4mb. File format is YourLastName-FirstName-ArtworkTitle.jpg (ex. Smith-John-Summer Landscape.jpg)
Measure the size of your painting. Use height x width in cm.
An interview with Naseema Barday by Christopher Reid
Naseema Barday, won the Beginner category in the Expression Of Hope International Watermedia Competition with her painting “The Tattered Flag, A Dream of Time.” She took some time out from her hectic schedule to chat with us about her art and how she has come so far with her painting in such a short time. Naseema was born in Cape Town, matric from Herschel, qualified at University of Cape Town, has a post-grad in Infectious Diseases from Wits, and a post-grad in reproductive medicine from Stellenbosch. She is a GP and a head doctor at Kenilworth Medicross.
“I always loved art and did it as a subject in standard 8, but dropped out because it interfered with my other studies. My father was a doctor and I already knew I wanted to be a doctor too. I always wanted to get back into art at a later stage in life.”
With 4 kids and a demanding medical career, art had to wait. In 2001 she tried her hand at oil painting for a doctors’ art exhibit in Joburg, but didn’t have the time to paint again until 2018, when, time allowed with her kids growing up and started moving out, she began dabbling in watercolor. Her drawing skills helped her but she had no training and no idea about watercolor techniques.
In 2019 she took part in a doctors’ exhibit in Cape Town. Then the Covid pandemic struck. Socialising became social distancing. With more time at home, Naseema decided to set up an area in her house to finally pursue art seriously. Her husband loves photography and understands her passion for art. She began taking classes with Cape Town artist and WASA member Inge Semple at the start of 2020 and has put in an average of 20 hours a week practicing outside of class, despite a hectic work schedule.
“With a highly stressful job, art has been a stress coping mechanism for me. It was either art or medication. Painting has been a reprieve and an oasis.”
Naseema used Covid as an opportunity. Putting in lots of dedicated painting time outside of class began to result in leaps forward in her art. When WASA announced the Expressions of Hope competition, Naseema decided to enter.
“ I thought long and hard about an image that would philosophically encapsulate an expression of hope to me first, and then I searched for the reference material. I found an image online that I could use and bought the rights to it. I am inspired by nature usually, and and this subject was not what I customarily paint. I loved the texture in this scene and enjoyed painting it. The emotion evoked by viewing a painting inspires me.”
She spent 50-60 hours on her painting for the competition. Many hours were spent working on a detailed drawing. Her lessons with Inge taught her lots of techniques and helped her develop her skills. Some of the same qualities that make her a successful doctor have helped her in learning art.
“I am very good at analysis and comfortable with drawing, so I am very careful to get the drawing right. I am extremely patient when working on art. I have learned lots from Inge. A big eye opener for me was to learn how much you can remove watercolor from page with lifting. I almost never use opaque gouache or masking fluid and prefer to paint meticulously around light shapes.”
“All paintings have stages, stages where you hate them and stages where you love them. For me you have a relationship with your paintings. There is a stage where I fall in love with a painting when it is turning out well.”
It has been difficult to attain supplies during pandemic. Naseema’s favourite papers are currently Arches and Fabriano. She started out with Cotman student watercolor paints and has upgraded to Daniel Smith and Winsor & Newton artist grade paints. She plans to buy nicer brushes with some of the prize money.
What does Naseema love about watercolor painting?
“I love the translucency of the colour and the challenge of getting it right. Watercolor to me is a much more challenging medium than something like acrylic. I like a challenge and learning to master new things. I love the light in watercolor.”
Naseema’s winning painting shows what can be achieved in a relatively short time by someone with a passion for art who is willing to put in lots of time painting. At age 49 she is finally getting to explore her passion for art and we look forward to seeing where it leads her.
Lovebird Watercolours was born in 2019 when I joined a local art school and started learning watercolour painting as a means to help de-stress. I still consider myself a beginner watercolourist! Prior to this, I had a dream of making perfume and Lovebird Perfumes was born in 2014. The dream however was but a dream and did not come alive but rather evolved into something more vibrant and colourful!
I studied Chemical Engineering and have spent many years in sales and marketing of various chemicals and most recently in 2019 started in the world of pigments distribution. My love and appreciation of colour grew and my technical interest in the pigments used in the paint industry led me to start manufacturing my very own handmade watercolour paints. Lovebird Watercolours was officially launched just before my 40th birthday at the end of March 2021 and well since then, like they say…Life begins at 40!
Lovebird Watercolour paints are proudly handmade in South Africa using a natural binder and pigment. I make my own binder using Gum Arabic powder and spent a number of trials working on the right consistency and concentration to ensure good pigment dispersibility without chalking. The binder also includes natural antifungal and moisture retaining agents.
Pigment powder and binder is mixed and then hand mulled using a specially made glass Muller. I use a variety of coatings grade inorganic, organic and effect pigments like synthetic micas for the Shimmering Gems palette. The ratio of pigment to binder is specific for each pigment blend and a slightly higher pigment loading is maintained to allow for excellent colour vibrancy.
The mulled paint is then hand poured into half pans over a period of 2 weeks.. It takes approximately 5 to 6 pours and up to 48 hours of drying time between each pour. Care is taken to ensure air bubbles are removed so that the final product is compact. Since the product is hand poured, no two pans will be identical and natural imperfections will occur but this adds to the beauty of the full package. Each collection is a palette on its own and the first two palettes are the FLUORESCENT HUES and SHIMMERING GEMS.
The entire process from start to finish is very relaxing and quite meditative for me as I am able to immerse my love for colour and watercolour into each step, creating a final product that will be enjoyed and loved by many artists’ from beginner to professional!
This journey has just begun for me and I have so many ideas that I want to splash to life! It will be great if you can follow me on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/lovebirdwatercolours) as Lovebird Watercolours takes flight and brings to life some fun and exciting palettes for you to enjoy! Yours in Watercolour,
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