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Illustration by Sherifa Elterebi

Get to Know Me!

The Graduating Class of 2022

Graduating Class of 2022

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Graduating


Graphic Design

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Graduating


Interior Design

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Graduating


Painting + Printmaking

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Graduating


Fashion Design

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Graduating


MFA in Design

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Graduating

Interesting things happen when we hear the voices of our undergraduates and graduates 2022 at VCUarts Qatar. Look at our survey below.

Illustrations by Sherifa Eletrebi, Graphic Design ’22

#1: Are you planning to study abroad?

Yes: 15       
No: 5       
Don’t know yet: 22

#2: Are you planning to start your own studio or work as a freelance?

Yes: 29        
No: 3         
Don’t know yet: 10

#3: What is most valuable to you in your first job appointment?

Time: 7    
Money: 8         
Autonomy at work: 0
Opportunities for growth: 27
Location: 0

#4: Do you define yourself as…

An Artist: 8
A Designer: 30
No label please: 3
Still don’t know: 1

#5: What kind of workplace culture are you looking for? Select the most important for you.

Feeling valued in all aspects of my work and life choice: 19
Uniting around a common cause: 1
Hungry for knowledge and innovation: 9
Diversity and inclusion as priorities: 7
Prestigious, well-respected and admired institution as key factors: 4
Centering on transparency and trust: 2
Grounded by mentorship, collaboration and camaraderie: 0

#6: An Example of a text based poll question?

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#6: If you can be a superhero of the art/design world, who will you be?

The superhero of program shortcuts!

– Mashael Al Baker, Graphic Design
qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/mashael-al-baker

A rendered space would pop up as soon as I think of a concept

I would like to be the kind of hero that makes a difference with my designs. To give a voice, a narrative to the voiceless.

Farida Fathala, Fashion Design 
qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/farida-fathala

#7: How do you define success for yourself?

My personal definition of success is following your passion wherever that road takes you.

– Deema Al Muraikhi, Interior Design
deemaalmuraikhi.com
qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/deema-al-muraikhi

Success is about finding happiness in what I’m doing. It’s about making a difference in other people’s lives. It’s about giving back to the community. If I made a difference in at least one person’s life, I would believe I have succeeded.

Success to me is to be self-content.

#8: Among the teammates and collaborators, you've worked with in the last few years, who do you admire and why? #gratitude

  • I genuinely admire professor Johan, as he works hard because he has a true passion for design.
  • I admire all because I learn something from each.
  • Professor Nathan and my 2 classmates, Reem and Hira. Shoutout to you guys for enriching my university experience.
  • Professors Michael and Simone! Being in their Sonic Jeel class and Practicum made me really appreciate their creativity which goes beyond design.
  • SO many. Qatar Museums is a major one, Doha Fire Station, Sarah-Al Afifi, Izza Alyssa (VCU Alumni), every single professor from the Graphic Design department in VCUarts Qatar & Tasmeem Doha. I think they all had a way into my heart because they managed to show me that being creative isn’t down to a specific aesthetic/interest/field. The institutions I’ve mentioned pave way for creatives, and from what I see, it’s inclusive and hosts different types of design which is what I stand for. The individuals I mentioned, stylistically, match the design work I like, but also from attending their presentations and reading about their work, I admire that we have similar motives.
  • Graphic design professor, Law C Alsobrook. His constant support and encouragement inspires me and makes me an overall, better designer.
  • The students in the interior design department. Our collaboration skills and willingness to learn from each other is very inspiring.
  • Over the past few years I have worked with different personalities and talents. Each and everyone of them has taught me something that I carry with me today. But the one person that I admire is my father. I had an internship, working for him. He has taught me the values of owning a business and how the connections you make will benefit you in the long run. I am forever grateful for what he has taught me.
  • #8: When was the first time that you remember realizing that you were a creative person?

    When I created an art piece that challenged the ‘table-ness’ of a table.
    My love for learning & sharing stories through different mediums.

    #9: What was the last advice you gave to someone?

    Build a good relationship with time so you won’t get screwed.
    You design your own reality.

    #9: What is your creative obsession?

    Refusal to rest a content or topic, the willingness to take risks.
    Nostalgic moments shared between the public.

    – Ayatalla Mohamed, Fashion Design

    @aymkv

    qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/ayatalla-mohamed

    I love to tell stories through my work. To me, art is a storytelling medium.

    #10: Where is your inspiration spot in Doha?

    Driving around Qatar gives me inspiration

    – Hannah Fakhri, Graphic Design
    @hannahf.designs
    hannahfakhri.com
    qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/hannah-fakhri

    Old areas and zones and by the sea and desert

    – Hassan Alshehhi, Painting and Printmaking
    qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/hassan-alshehhi

    Musheireb downtown

    #11: What do you believe you can achieve in Doha personally or professionally that you can't anywhere else in the world?

    • You can create an impact on society’s behavior so easily because of the connections and scale of Qatar.
    • Balancing between work and social life,
    • Growing myself,
    • What I love about Doha is that it’s a small population and we are all closely knitted together, Everyone knows everyone, so it’s not very difficult to gain attention to your art,
    • Doha is a small town where you can get the limelight very fast since everyone is aware of each other, unlike in big countries with billions in population,
    • I believe I can develop stronger connections with popular designers in Doha, since many exhibitions by famous designers, such as Virgil Alboh, are being held in Doha.

    #12: How can the art and design world be more inclusive?

    By welcoming unfamiliar designs
    ​​Including stories within works about all the different experiences/hardships/reflections of the cultures and contexts that creatives face, Including different nationalities within design studios and businesses, Prioritizing passion and drive over individuals with connections or favoritism, Speaking up for the less privileged or for minorities, Supporting art and design works of people who struggle racially, mentally, religiously, financially, etc
    For me personally, I would like to see more diversity when it comes to body image/sizes. I am a curvy girl, and it’s quite difficult to shop for things in my size because most of the time it’s not offered. As fashion is my major, I would like to have the opportunity to also look fashionable comfortably

    – Farida Fathala, Fashion Design
    qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/farida-fathala

    #13: If you were in a conversation with someone that does not think Art + Design is a serious career, what would you say to him/her to change their opinion?

    Try it out for yourself

    Just because you can’t see the importance of a certain field does not mean it is not a serious career to be a part of. Art and design shapes our world in so many ways that most people don’t realize

    #14: What do you hope will be different about the art and design scene in Doha, compared to now?

    • I hope that Doha will be known for being the home of many notable artists and of creative freedom.
    • A more open minded look at discussing different topics that need to be talked about through art and design such as sexual assault and mental health,
    • Less standard, more experimental,
    • I believe we need a bigger and stronger art community and a space that brings these talented individuals together while connecting with the international art world as well,
    • Controversial topics, more self-expression, less commercial art,
    • More marketing and ads about creatives and different creative events,
    • I hope Doha can keep expanding their art and design scene in terms of exposure for everyone and having opportunities in every creative space. To eliminate favoritism and cherish inclusion!
    • Designing things that celebrate Qatari traditions in a modern way,
    • Bringing together anime fans in Qatar, which was the point of my whole senior thesis,
    • Opening up an Egyptian experience brand that resonates with the locals.

    #14: Name an art or design-related Instagram account you highly recommend to follow, and why?

    @avant.arte because it is an account with different artists’ work that shows how art is developed into sculptures and paintings. It makes it more accessible for people to know and visualize others’ creativity.
    @type01_

    #15: What was the last thing you nerded out on?

    The individuals actions, and how they’re oriented around objects in everyday life.
    My plants. In every social event.

    #16: What’s the difference between an artist/designer who’s great versus one who’s outstanding?

    Artists who are great are artists who are great at certain topics. Whereas an artist who is outstanding is able to improve and makes changes for themselves and their environment and focuses all their efforts in order to find growth.
    Outstanding is when the artist/designer can make you feel the design/art you observe. When you feel a reaction to the work. But it will depend, not all people will see the same thing as outstanding.

    #17: Name a life-changing art work or design: If you can meet your favorite artist or designer, what question will you ask him/her?

    Anish Kapoor’s work ‘Svayambh’. I would just ask him about his process when coming up with different ideas. What aspects does he think of first? Whether it looks visually pleasing, whether it is understandable or, whether the engineers are able to build it and so on.
    MONA HATOUM

    – Safa Al-Hadithi, Fashion Design
    qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2021/safa-al-hadithi

    #18: What is a question that you wish we had asked?

    Art is a tool and media that can be used in everything – how will we use this tool in the future and what work will we create? As we are now seeking diversity – we should also seek it through our major.

    – Safa Al-Hadithi, Fashion Design
    qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2021/safa-al-hadithi

    If I am okay
    Anonymous

    #15: What's one part of the university’s culture that you hope to bring to your next work environment?

  • That strong collaborative bond, and shared understanding that we are all on the same path to achieving bigger things. We help each other up and give advice on how to refine the little details in order for us to get to the next step. No one is left behind
  • That strong collaborative bond, and shared understanding that we are all on the same path to achieving bigger things. We help each other up and give advice on how to refine the little details in order for us to get to the next step. No one is left behind
  • The support I have from all around starting from classmates to the entire department
  • #16: What aspect of design/art do you give the highest priority to?

    • The meaning behind my design is my highest priority.
    • Quality,
    • The process and rendering,
    • I give my highest priority to communicating a compelling message. Whether it is to inspire or advocate for something I believe in,
    • Visual systems (consistency), color theories and design intentions,
    • I would say the ‘refinement’ process. Once I know that a concept works and that the idea is understandable. I spend the longest time on creating variations and seeing what details work and what don’t before finalizing something. Everything from style, colour and contrast.

    #17: What is your favorite part about being an artist or designer?

    • Getting to experiment and finding creative solutions,
    • Being able to reflect personality in a space,
    • Trusting the process,
    • The fact that I am able to use my own imagination and pieces of myself to create an artwork or illustration that is expressive, but also tells a story or communicates something to the viewer,
    • Seeing the results I’ve been working on,
    • Being able to speak without words, art is a universal language,
    • Coming up with solutions to problems that seem unsolvable – design-wise,
    • Coming up with solutions to problems that seem unsolvable – design-wise,
    Screen Shot 2022-05-18 at 1.13.09 PM

    Important note:
    We did a survey of all the VCUarts Qatar senior students in our design programs (Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Interior Design and Painting and Printmaking) and in our MFA in Design program. We asked them about their post-graduation plans and asked them to share their ideas on their studies and on their futures, even asking them what superhero they’d like to be. The survey was voluntary, and we were fortunate to have a great response: of the 57 students surveyed, an astonishing 42 (73%) responded. The responses reflect just how important VCUarts Qatar and its education were to the students and provides rich and practical insights about students’ expectations about their future professional life.

    Illustrations by Sherifa Eletrebi

    Sherifa Eletrebi is a senior graphic design student who can’t seem to get enough of learning new things and challenging herself. Her go-to explorations revolve around thought-provoking concepts, handwritten typography and anything hands-on, which is evident in her thesis project. Sherifa aspires to perpetually feed her curiosity by discovering new ways to express herself.

    Sherifa Eletrebi is currently the Graphic Designer for Special Projects and Website Content at The Gallery at VCUarts Qatar.

     

     

    sherifaeletrebi.myportfolio.com
    https://qatar.vcu.edu/bfa-mfa-thesis-2022/sherifa-eletrebi

    ISSUE No.
    4

    The RAW Talent

    MAY–AUG
    2022
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    Learn about our open and past events

    Explore new perspectives on art and design from
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