Meet Imaan Malik. She is 12-years-old and she is a professional illustrator even though she doesn’t call herself one:
R. Do you identify yourself as a professional illustrator or artist?
I. Well, I would call myself a professional illustrator if I had illustrated a lot of books. But I’ve only illustrated one, plus I’m only twelve. So I would probably identify myself as an artist.
R. Tell us about how you started illustrating? How did it all begin?
I. I’ve always had a love for drawing, be it paper, pencil, paint, rock art, oil paint or even digital art. My professional journey began when my parents suggested that I could use my art to remind myself and others of Allah’s words. However, my illustration began when my mom came across someone who was looking for an illustrator on Instagram. So, my mom thought I should give it a try and at first, I was like, “No way!” (She laughs). We messaged her and she requested to see some of my art. She seemed to like it and asked to have a sample page drawn for her. I was also worried a lot if my art didn’t meet her expectations but ٱلْحَمْدُ لِلَّٰهِ, it did! Phew! From then on, I started illustrating my first book and to be honest, I never thought I would start this early. We then started to introduce myself to other Muslim Authors and they started to promote me which really helped throughout this journey.
R. Where do you get your ideas and inspiration? مَا شَاءَ ٱللَّٰ, each image on your instagram page has a special message to it.
I. My parents love to travel, and I’ve ٱلْحَمْدُ لِلَّٰهِ traveled a lot with them. As I travel, I see a lot of beautiful scenery and try to capture that and draw it. I seem to have a natural desire to capture beautiful places and put it on either paper or digital art. Even with Covid this year, I’ve still been able to remember a lot of scenery from our last holiday.
R. Tell us about how supportive your parents are with your work?
I. They have my best interests at heart and are always involved and helpful. They are always encouraging me to do my best with my hobbies and interests. If something doesn’t turn out, they tell me I’ll always have another opportunity, and Allah always has a better plan and you will get something better waiting for you.
R. Do you have any tips for aspiring illustrators?
I. Keep trying keep going and never give up, always follow your dream and practice practice and practice.
R. How can we follow your journey?