An interview with Aya Al Sabeh: AP painter


The general concept of Aya’s AP art painting is based on her experience and connection with religion.

Sajar: How long have you been taking the AP art class?

Aya: I have taken it since my sophomore year. I am planning on taking it in fall and spring, so I will be taking the class four times.

Sajar: What does your painting represent?

Aya: It is my story with religion and identity. It describes how some of my identity and values conflicted with my religious beliefs and temptation.

Sajar: What inspired you to do this piece?

Aya: My personal experiences inspired me to paint about it because most often I do not have an outlet for how I feel so what helps me is to paint them and put all my emotion in them.

Sajar: How long did the painting take you?

Aya: It’s a big canvas so it took me around 15 hours. 

Sajar: What are your tips as an AP student?

Aya: The most important thing is to not get caught up by the amount of work. There is so much going on especially in AP Art. I recommend getting your sketches done on time, planning out your piece, and letting there be room for you to experiment.

The title of this piece is “Guilt” and the piece’s main focus is the woman’s frowned facial features and the figures in the back. The figures play as the temptations while the woman’s face is shaded to show the expression of guilt on her face. The cat is a representation of innocence. The entire piece is done with oil paint and took her around 18 hours to complete.

Sajar: Did you face any challenges while creating your piece?

Aya: Definitely, especially with the shading, I wanted to focus on the fading and the expression given on her face. What I did to capture that was extenuating the features of the face but even then it was still a challenge.

Sajar: What is your favorite part about your piece?

Aya: I really like how the meaning of the piece was shown. That sort of freedom and inspiration you get when you first step into a religion. 

Sajar: What are your tips for art?

Aya: Take it to the next step, try and incorporate yourself into the artwork and that is when you will truly see improvement. Be authentic to yourself and your work.

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