Meet Dinara...an extremely lovely artist from Uzbekistan now living in Ohio. We instantly fell in love with her! She is creative, talented, patient and has such a joyful perspective on every thing. Her blog posts are a pure delight. You will not believe the intricacy of her work. When we read her answers we couldn't stop smiling!
What is your favorite thing to draw?
I never get tired of drawing all kinds of flowers. I have a sketchbook full of flowers only! It is very relaxing. But if you ask me about my favorite themes to draw - I'd say I really like illustrating birds, dishware, women, flowers, cities, sea world and even complete nonsense (depending on my mood). The theme usually appears from my life situation. For example, I was so inspired with my pregnancy that all of my recent illustrations reflected that and were all about fertility, feminism, motherhood and new beginnings.
What was your favorite toy when you were a kid?
Just like any other girly girl I played with dolls a lot. My mom made cute little outfits for them and I loved creating designs for their new dresses.
If you could live anywhere else for a year where would it be, and why, and can I come visit?
oh, that's a tough question! There are so many cities that I'd like to visit and it's very hard to pick only one place. I think I would start from Jerusalem - I always wanted to visit that ancient place. Of course you can come visit, I can only image what fun we will have visiting historical places!
What city/country has the kind of food you LOVE the most?
I'm a big fan of Mediterranean cuisine! And I'm also in love with Mediterranean countries. The way the food is marinated and cooked is so delicious. There is a big variety of salads in their menus also, the bread baking is not like anywhere else in the world!
Describe to me what you see when you look out your studio or workspace window
I live in an apartment complex and my studio window is facing a parking lot. There is a little green area right before our window and on a nice sunny day when the windows are wide open - all I see is a neighbor walking a dog and picking up hmmm... stuff after it :-))) I find it humorous.
Your work is very intricate and detailed. How did this style evolve?
I think it has something to do with your personality or the way you were raised. One day, when I was little, my mom taught me how to embroider and I liked it so much. Embroidery, as you know, takes much time and trains you to be patient in order to create something beautiful. That way I developed my love for intricacy and little details and can't give it up. Sometimes I'm mad at myself for being a small scale artist, when you need to create something really fast - it takes many sleepless nights.
You are originally from Uzbekistan and now live in Ohio. What do you miss the most?
Oh! Watermelons! Yes, I really really miss those yummy bright red black seed super sweet uzbek watermelons! My mom and dad still cook traditionally, so my husband and I are very spoiled by them cooking for us and inviting us over. The only things that can't be compensated are the uzbek fruits from local farmers.
You recently gave birth to your first daughter. Can you already see how she will influence your work and the things you create?
She is my sweet little angel. She eats, she sleeps, she poops - but she has already changed me so much that I just can't imagine how I lived all these years without her. I feel like I want to draw and design only for her, I want to make up stories and characters and illustrate all of that for her. I'm very interested in beautiful kids books and poems. And I just can't wait for the time when we start learning alphabet.
Do you listen to music when you work? if yes, care to share?
Music has always been a great influence. If I find something I really like I can put the tune on repeat and listen to it nonstop all day long. Sometimes, well most of the times, that drives people around me crazy. I have a great respect for people who write their own music, play it and sing it. My very favorite are Tori Amos, Regina Spektor, Zaz..
Do you have any pets?
I have a sweet persian furry cat friend named Matilda, who is such a goofball. She was my the only baby before my real human baby arrived :) Matilda likes to be involved in my projects. When I paint, or cook, or work on a computer she comes by and sits next to me.
List 3 illustrators/artists/designers whose work you love.
Listing only three illustrators/artists/designers is tough - this world is full of incredibly talented people who's energy is contagious. If you ask who is my favorite Uzbek artist - I'd say Akmal Nur. He is very contemporary, yet he is all about uzbek traditional motives. I also really like Gustav Klimt, whose style is very decorated, very swirly and detailed. And very recently I fell in love with Carlos Stanga's work. I was in NY subway where I spotted a incredibly cool subway poster. I fell in love right away! Carlos illustrates cities. His level of intricacy is breathtaking!
What is your most memorable art exhibit/gallery show/cultural experience?
When I lived in New York City one Saturday morning I woke up and went out to grab something to eat for breakfast. As I was walking I noticed a crowd of people, music and lemonade. It was an opening to one small local art gallery and everyone was welcome to come and join the celebration. I was momentarily swallowed by the crowed and the artists. The art they had there was soo youth, hip, cool, modern and very not a typical gallery type. I was very surprised to see that kind of stuff. The music made me dance without noticing that and I realized I was talking to people like I knew them my entire life.
Do you have a favorite color palette?
I never limit myself with certain colors, I like experimenting and mixing. Long before I was using nothing but black ink. But slowly I introduced myself to colors and I'm very happy about it. I realized I like using crafty brown a lot :-) And white is always my choice. I also like soft nude shades - it calms me down. Soft breezy dreamy blue reminds me of my childhood, of those old days when I was a young dreamer. And Cherry-ish Orange is something bright and happy and careless.
and last but not least...what is one of your favorite recipes on TDAC?
Oh, every single recipe is very unique and beautiful! I love them ALL and just can't wait for the book!!! How can I say who is my only favorite - you guys have involved so many talented artists in this project and everyone's style is so different and amazing!
Don't you love her now too??!!! Thanks Dinara...you are the BEST!