Saleha Contractor, Artist
Started telling Islamic stories through my art in 2012. Why? Because my journey to better understanding Islam started around then. Like a child, I was fascinated by everything I was learning so I thought what better way to share the beauty of this religion than through art.
My original paintings are released once a year. It takes me months to create each painting and because I can't possibly recreate these, I decided to produce photographic prints of each piece. This way, more homes around the world can own modern Islamic art for a reasonable price. Prints of my paintings are available to purchase online in 4 sizes. Orders are shipped worldwide.
5 Things About Me
Birth: Born and raised in Toronto, Canada.
Education: I have a B.Comm in Marketing Management so if I'm not painting, I'm conquering the corporate world
Makeup: You'd assume I'm a master at winging eyeliners because of my love for calligraphy. Truth: I end up colouring my entire eyelid!
Best Memories: Visiting the Holy mosque with my parents, marrying my best friend & taking a mother-daughter trip to Dubai
Inspirations: I love listening to Nouman Ali Khan, Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, Mufti Menk etc. They have a gift of helping us understand the beauty of Islam through engaging stories. So I take what I learn from them & tell it in my own way: via visual representation.
Where does my inspiration come from? Usually it's that "one thing" that catches my attention from an Islamic lecture, book, childhood memory or a simple interaction. When I'm fascinated by a story I conduct research for a deeper insight. I then sketch my ideas to create a visual representation of the feeling or story.
My art displays my admiration for both calligraphy and abstract art. I tend to incorporate verses from the Qur'an to flaunt its exquisite beauty. Islamic calligraphy is truly an expressive art form as it combines spiritual meaning with aesthetic beauty. I've had the privilege of studying art from an early age but in terms of Arabic calligraphy, I was self-taught.
my paint box
All kinds of gel mediums for added texture
Gold and silver leaf (my favorite!)