Siddiqa Juma is a multi award-winning, contemporary Islamic artist based in the UK. Siddiqa has worked as a professional artist for over ten years and is considered a force within the world of Islamic Art in the United Kingdom. We sat down with her earlier this week, to talk about her life as an Islamic artist, her inspiration and advice to artists who wish to make a professional career out of their craft:
What does a typical day look like for you?
I usually wake up quite early, I go downstairs, set up my easel and paint palette, put the kettle on and then I start to paint whilst having my morning cup of tea. I have a wonderfully busy household with 1001 things going on so, I tend to weave my painting activity into my day rather than just spending hours and hours in front of the canvas. It’s life punctuated with painting or painting punctuated with life - depending on which way you look at things.
Where does your inspiration come from?
I am asked this question more than any other question. My inspiration comes from anywhere and everywhere. I can look at the cracks in a brick wall or pavement, I can look at everyday household objects and the beauty of nature. Whatever I think is interesting gets parked away in the visual database of my mind and sometimes, something will just pop out when I begin to paint or when I start conceptualising my next series. My most well-known series, the Diversity series and my most well-known painting, Diversity - were inspired by a chopping board given to me by my daughter! And the focal theme of Islam, was something that I was naturally drawn to because of my own faith.
What do you consider to be your greatest career achievement to-date?
I have been fortunate to have won some awards over the course of my journey. Whilst recognition is lovely and awards like the People’s Art Prize which I won for Make Your Mark, were landmarks in my career, I feel my greatest achievement is the wonderful reception my work receives from Muslims and non-Muslims whenever I exhibit around the world. The response to my work is for me, absolutely priceless.
What advice would you give to up and coming artists today?
The biggest piece of advice I could give any artist is to create with your heart and to create every single day. If you do this, what you will find is a natural and seamless evolution of your craft that will truly reflect who you are as a person and artist. And the story of your work will almost naturally flow from there. If you create purely for financial gain or fame, you will stumble and you will be caught out. Be true to yourself. There are no shortcuts to success.
What do you hope people will feel when they buy your work?
It is difficult to say as my work draws a very broad range of responses. I suppose what I hope is that my work speaks to you on a level that doesn’t require spoken words and I hope that its message to you changes every time you look at it. When I paint, I paint with my heart and I always hope that my message travels as deep as the viewers heart.
Click here to browse Siddiqa Juma's collection
sister Siddiqa…u r a shinning star in Islamic world n whole universe to say. May Allah excell u in your endeavours. u r our pride in this field. Be Blessed n your family.