Moira Zahra

Blog

Booked!

Resolutions, resolutions... we all know that by February most of us are back to carbs and Facebook, bar the special ones amongst us who have some kind of unearthly will power. Sadly I'm not one of the special ones, but I'm hopeful, which is why I'm going to list down my resolutions anyway. I have two resolutions for 2016. I don't think I could handle more, and if I do manage to keep these two up I'll be a happy, healthy, artsy bunny.

  1. Walking - I have started walking with my husband in the morning and it really is a good start to the day. I've been inspired to walk on a daily basis by a fellow local artist, Steve Bonello's early morning walks (also documented in his beautiful photographs!), as well as by a book that was gifted to me this year by a friend. The book explores the rituals of artists and authors. I've found that walking, for many artists, is a way to escape from work and from life in general. It will be tough to keep the walking up when I get back to work but I'm adamant to do it. I enjoy it anyway, and that gives it automatic priority.
  2. Finding time to create my own Work - Now this is a tougher one. I'm a full-time lecturer and I freelance as well, so finding time to do my own work is always at the bottom of my priority list, but nothing my Google calendar can't fix. I will be dedicating 2 evenings to my own work and hope that it will result into fresh, new creative personal projects. 

A few months ago I blogged about trying my hand at writing a spoof superhero comic, 'The League of Extraordinary Underpants' that was illustrated by my husband, Mark. I'm so happy to say that the comic was almost sold out at the Malta Comic-con and completely sold out a few days later. Sure we only had a small number of copies printed, but hey not bad for an indie comic right? I've also gotten great feedback from a local author and a publisher that I greatly respect, so that has given me the encouragement to embark on similar projects, and most importantly to keep my comic writing insecurities at bay.

2015 was all about book illustrations and branding the now popular Flora's tearoom and cafe in Naxxar! (If you're in Malta, you MUST try their Victoria Sponge cake and the Breakfast French Toast!) But I'm not done with book writing and illustrations for 2016, a few weeks ago I finished illustrating a children's book series that was written by Clare Azzopardi and published by Merlin. I actually just got the printed copies last week and I love how they've turned out. Knowing that they're going to be read by hundreds of children makes me happy :D. The books should be distributed in stores early next year. Here's a quick snapshot...

This year I've written my first children's book that should be published next year, but for now I'm not going to say anything about it except that it will also be illustrated by my husband. I got the idea for the book last year but got an OK from the publisher a few months ago. It tackles a somewhat controversial topic so I am extremely grateful that it is getting published. 

Then there is this new comic project that I'm involved in with two talented Maltese girls, Cassi and Inez. We're still in the early stages but I'm very excited about this one. We have a scenario, some cool Pinterest pins and Inez is scribbling these amazing character sketches, I can't wait to see it come together!

My present illustrated project is a book that was written by my cousin. It's a lot of fun and I'm using new techniques, styles and digital tools so that's always a plus! Feel free to check out some of the sketches on my Instagram page. I feel extremely lucky to be involved in all these projects and I'm still trying to squeeze more in my beloved Wunderlist app. 

Grandad is a hipster!