Acrylic on Canvas –
24″ x 30″ –
Commission Piece –
She asked if I could paint her a powerful animal. This request came at the best time. I had been wanting to paint the lion in honor of my father but couldn’t find the will to do it. Thank you, Nadin, for encouraging me to do this. The lion was his favorite animal. It represents our culture (The Lion of Babylon) and it represents my dad in general. He is strong. He is a protector.
This painting was the most excruciating thing for me to create. In terms of technique, I enjoyed it and appreciated the chance to push my limits and explore outside of my normal range. In terms of what it did to me mentally…I must say that it broke me. Maybe I needed to break? Maybe it was a good release? I don’t know.
I do know that the first thing I wanted to do when it was completed was to show it to my dad like a little girl excited about her report card. And then I remembered that I couldn’t show it to him. I don’t know why but I felt like if I couldn’t share this with him then what’s the point?
I can see his exact facial expression and what he would say: “Rawana, this is really wow!” with his eyes so big and his jaw dropped. He always built me up so much. In his eyes, I was the next Zaha Hadid. In his eyes, I couldn’t fail at anything. In my eyes, he was the one who got me through everything. He knew how to calm my nerves, how to regain my strength, how to overcome.
My cousin, Eva, named this piece. “His name is: Overcomer. He is serious and strong like the one that created him”. I think of the one who inspired this, my dad. He was the overcomer.
He overcame so much. His life could be written about in an endless amount of books. Maybe I could use art to paint his life. Let’s start with this piece.