Join our featured Star of the Week in expressing and celebrating the beauty of the world through her artworks.
“I see art as a Spiritual Journey and Spirit is energy which has no beginning and no end.”
“All passes only Art endures.”
“Who We Are is a gift from the Universe and Who We Become is our gift back.”
– Farida Ali.
WAS THERE A PIVOTAL MOMENT WHEN YOU DECIDED TO FOLLOW YOUR PATH AS AN ARTIST?
“At the age of 16, I had an epiphany and an instinct to draw and paint. As a child at school, I enjoyed drawing diagrams in biology and other subjects with great accuracy. I have never been to any art school or pursued any art courses. I’m a self-taught artist and have been dedicated to my work for the past 47 years.”
CAN YOU DESCRIBE YOUR WORK FOR US?
“My intention has always been to integrate art into spirituality and hence express the beauty of the world: through painting landscapes and monuments unaffected by the impurities of the environment we live in; through painting portraits of people, birds, animals, and pets by bringing out the true essence of their personalities and beauty; through painting florals and nature so that human beings, despite their busy lives, can stop by to appreciate their intrinsic beauty. This is because I believe that reality belongs only to spirit and art is the miracle to prove this truth in the world we live in.”
WHAT DOES YOUR WORK AIM TO SAY?
“My work aims to express and celebrate the beauty of the world, which often goes unnoticed due to the fast-paced lives most people live. To draw attention and spread a message to protect nature and our environment, we, as a family, have introduced unique greeting cards based on my artwork. The special feature of these cards is that they are made of sugarcane fiber residue saving our trees, which are cut down for paper. Some of the proceeds from sales are then donated to plant trees. Last year we planted 200 trees in British Columbia, which was devastated by forest fires. We also intend to use hemp instead of paper in our future greeting cards. You can view and buy these cards from soulfulgreetings.com.”
Self portrait, Oil on Canvas by Farida Ali.
HOW DO YOU THINK YOUR WORK FITS WITHIN SOCIETY IN OUR PRESENT TIMES?
“In present times, more than ever, art is essential as I believe it can be a transformative experience to bring about social change.
My genre of art is photo realism, aiming to be used as a material to educate children and make them realize the beauty of our world. In addition, most of my art has been used to raise funds for various charities for transformation among the youth and as a therapy to support cancer patients and fund cancer research.”
WHEN LOOKING BACK, WHAT ARTWORKS COME TO MINDA THAT MOST RELATE TO YOUR LIFE STORY?
“I have used art as a shock absorber during the challenging phases of my life and for spiritual awakening and personal growth. As I said earlier, I regard painting as a spiritual journey, and I admire and respect all artists who nurture their inner selves and have the courage to depict the beauty of their inner world, which is unique only to them.”
WHO ARE YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCES?
“My biggest influences are all the artists who have kept fine arts in the genre of photorealism alive by working with the traditional brush.
I admire Leonardo de Vinci and Albert Einstein, who maintained that painting with the brush is also a science.”
Simplicity of Life, Oil on Canvas by Farida Ali.
CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT YOUR CREATIVE PROCESS?
“I rely on my intuition and instinct to create my canvases. I begin by visualizing what my end art should look like, as in bringing a clear vision of it into my higher mind. The rest follows as a spiritual journey, and I focus on bringing out the essence and life of the subject matter till I feel it is literally speaking to me—whether it is landscapes, portraits, monuments, florals, etc.”
WHAT VISUAL REFERENCES DO YOU DRAW UPON IN YOUR WORK?
“I draw inspiration from beautiful and scenic places I have visited, the personalities of people and pets I meet or their loved ones when commissioned to do so, nature, birds, animals, and florals, and depict their beauty on canvas.”
ANY UPCOMING PROJECTS?
“I am currently painting a portrait of the late Her Highness Queen Elizabeth. I will continue to paint birds and animals for the education and inspiration of children.”
Christmas Gathering of Blue Jays by Farida Ali.