Spotlight on GUAP Work Experiences: Who is Naila Owusu

Spotlight on GUAP Work Experiences: Who is Naila Owusu

Naila Owusu is an up-and-coming Black-British visual artist and graphic designer breaking out into the creative scene. She employs her fascination with colour and texture to create pieces that serve to reflect the way in which she experiences her environment. With a particular magnetism towards digital mediums such as Procreate, and Photoshop, Naila feels that the freedom that she is allowed through both the portability and customisation of digital art inspires a sense of vulnerability within her work, which she hopes to develop further. At the age of 16, she attends The BRIT School, where her love for all things creative culminates into the study of Interactive Digital Design, and English Literature which she cites as a source of inspiration as she has the opportunity to socialise with other’s with assassins similar to her. She drives her artistic motivation from a range of varied movements, however, she has found a particular affinity toward the work of both Gustav Klimt, and Egon Schiele, noting their use of both colour, pattern and brushwork as something that she strives to portray within her own work.

The Mother- This piece was created using Procreate, to allow a Black woman to be the subject of an Art Nouveau style painting. By painting my Mother, Naila felt an intense emotional connection to the artwork, which she tried to express through the use of colour, and the intricacy of the brushwork. She was inspired by the work of Gustav Klimt, particularly in his use of abstract shapes which I used within the clothing.

The Separation – Inspired by the sense of disruption to the natural world that is explored with Romantic poetry, Naila has used Photoshop to digitally manipulate imagery and create this thought provoking graphic.

Firelit- Influenced by stories of West African mythology, Naila created this poster, and a concept for a video game, where the protagonist had a magical map which allowed her to enter these ancient stories and interact with the characters within.

Ahead- A self portrait created with the intention of utilising line and texture to convey form. The use of negative space and using only lines to suggest the outline of clothing is a reference to the work of Egon Schiele, whose work is often a source of inspiration.

One piece of advice that Naila would share with other young creatives would be to trust your own process, as by acknowledging and learning from the mistakes that you learn along the way, you will inevitably grow.

You can find Naila at: