Exhibition with Samandal

Hello everyone :)
This is an invitation to Samandal exhibition on wed 22 December at Dar Al Musawwir, Clemenceau.
I will be Participating so try to come and we ll party :)

سائقة التاكسي

i did this illustration for TEDx Ramallah based on an inspiring story about a palestinian-disabled woman that works as a taxi driver in Beirut.
You can check the article in issue # 8 of Hibr Newspaper or on Ted x Ramallah's website in arabic or in english.

some special music from Berlin

When i was participating in Berlin Literature Festival, i met a very special person, Lucid.
She is an amazing singer, songwriter living in Frankfurt.
She played a lot of beautiful live music before every reading in the festival, and here is her song before i presented my book Haltabees.
you can hear "Lamees" in the song, the love of Haltabees.
Thanks a lot Lucid for sharing.
and enjoy it everyone :)

Berlin Literature Festival 2010

Last september, i was invited to participate in Berlin International Literature Festival.
The organizers first saw my book, "Haltabees Haltabees" written by Rania Zaghir and published by al khayat al saghir, in Bologna book fair, Italy where they discovered the book and invited me to participate in their International Children's and Youth Literature section.
Let me say i was honored to participate at the age of 25, with my first book, in this amazing festival next to brilliant illustrators and authors like Shaun Tan, Philippe Lechemier, Emily Gravett, Eva Muggenthaler and many others.
The festival was extremely well organized and the amazing thing about it that i visited a lot of german schools, children's museums, libraries, and i was able in a short period of time to have a looot of wonderful souvenirs from this lovely capital Berlin.
i read my book for hundreds of kids living in Germany. the book was translated to german, but kids wanted to hear it in arabic and they enjoyed it :)
i did some stop motion workshops for some schools and i learned a lot from kids. some other schools did workshops based on my book before i met them and presented the work for me. it was overwhelming to see kids performing some plays based on Haltabees, or doing group illustrations using my style of illustration. some presentations were just funny like kids talking about how they imagined i look like after they saw the book :)
i had a lot of fun with those wonderful kids, with the authors and illustrators from the festival, with the organizers specially in the parties at the end of each day :)

i did a video that describes a bit what was happening :)
tx a looot for the amazing people i met; Ina, Katrin, Mahmoud, Claudia, Inga, Christina, Alex ....

Giselle & Na3eem are Back !

They posted their movies on youtube !
Probably, Kassatly Buzz will take them and broadcast it on TV.

Na3eem in a desperate call ...

Gizo speaks out ...

Check it, share it and hope u like it :)

Timout Beirut - PhotoFinish

Last month, Ellen Hardy from TimeOut Beirut contacted me to participate in their PhotoFinish section. it was fun working with Ellen, who gave me a Photo of an old Lebanese house and i had to do a comic strip inspired from it.

the original photo from Ellen

the end result :) (from right to left since it s in arabic)
it s now out in November's Time Out beirut issue. Go check it and hope you like it :)
Thanks Ellen


This is another illustrated and animated campaign with agency Leo Burnett Beirut.
The client is Picon, and it is the back to school promo entitled "a2wa rass bi Lebnein" :)
it s a competition on Picon's website that challenges the kids knowledge about Lebanon.
Here are the key visuals i did for the campaign.

i had to do all the elements in the illustrations with a simple contour line so the production team can add die-cuts easily, specially that part of the campaign is to do pop-up stands in supermarkets.

Just after the visuals, we moved to the animated TVC Ad. I did the animation together with the great Ashley Choukeir :) tx Ash.
Enjoy the animation and i hope you like the project :)

في البراري

لمحته في البراري
يرقص ويبشّر بزمن الإنحراف

photo by Mohamed Fathi

Egypt - مصر

last month, i was in Egypt; a country full of colors, textures, patterns, and women who want to get married ...

TreeShirt & Hamra Expo

"أشعار للمياه" is a project combining illustration and poetry between Soha Awwad and me. Our aim is to integrate poetry into society using different techniques. we did before an animation and now we finished this hand made book. i learned binding techniques in a workshop with Sofi Eicher, tx Sofi :)

we presented the book with other materials in the Arabic Language Festival in Hamra since Soha's poetry is in arabic.

in this festival, we introduced "Treeshirt", another project, derived from this poetry - illustration collaboration.
What is Treeshirt? this is how they define themselves :

Treeshirt is for everyone with an eye for cool designs and a passion for making this world a better place to live in.

With a growing selection of original designs created by a group of talented artists.Whether it’s about making the world a greener place, a more peaceful place or simply sharing your take on life, love and everything in between, TreeShirts are the tees for you!For its mission, TreeShirt is helping in the reforestation of Lebanon that’s why every time you buy a TreeShirt product, a share of its revenue will be donated to the AFDC (Association for Forest Development and Conservation), and they will use it to reforest areas all around Lebanon. You’ll also receive with your TreeShirt a special edition package so you can make your life a bit greener too.TreeShirt, we’re all about changing the world one idea at a time. By buying our awesome tees, not only will you look great but you’ll also making a difference in our community and the world.Treeshirt. Look great. Live green

this is the design we did for Treeshirt and it s entitled "Intoxication";
for all those searching for the perfect cycle, we offer a leap, a free fall into the world of intoxication.

ok, if you like the idea, just go to this link, buy a shirt, tghandaroo fiya, and save a tree :)
wa shukrann !

الحق عالطليان

"El 7a2 3al Telyein" is a new comic published in Samandal Magazine issue 9.
This comic is part of Let's comics project and i did it just after the Israeli troops attacked the Turkish aid ship sailing for the Gaza Strip.

All participants attended a workshop in the Palestinian Youth Center inside Chatila camp where we exhibited the comics we did. (tx Jana Lazarevska for the photos)

here is the comic i did :

Tx :)

Soha & Fadi

Soha = 15 years of extreme friendship, respect, creativity, music, passion ...
Fadi = unknown creature living in Egypt who wants to marry Soha :)
Soha + Fadi = love, wedding, paranoia & mustard :p

halla2 3anjadd, I love u guys ktir w mabrook men halla2 !

Fadi, Soha and I decided to do a fresh wedding card without such accessories. Soha wanted a postcard so i designed an illustration on one side and the usual postcard layout with a twist from the other side.
the illustration is based on a poetry line that of course Soha wrote "الله في الحب انحناءة شجرة تظلل روحين" and the following are the steps leading to the final illustration.

and here is the wedding card, printed in pink to add more Trallallaa :)
on the other side, i designed some stamps for Soha and Fadi.

The lovely Soha enjoying the card :)

Mabrook ...

fresh summer press articles :)

I was honored to participate in issue # 375 of l'Agenda Culturel. Since 1994, L'Agenda Culturel is one of the best references for cultural activities in Lebanon. Miss Grace Barmaki interviewed me and i replied with illustrations. check the interview, i hope you like it :)
Tx Grace.

Another Interview with Vanessa Bassil, from Al Mustaqbal Newspaper about blogging in Lebanon. Tx Vanessa.

في واحد طارق راسيل

last sunday 4.7.2010 was the wedding of two sweet lovers : Tarek Bacha & Racelle Ishak.
let me say it was one of the most happy, amazing, unusual and simple wedding parties i ve ever attended. everyone was involved in the preparations and Love was in the air :D

i did this illustration for Tarek and Racelle and we made it part of the wedding ceremony :)

Tarek & Racelle discovering the gift.

loving the best bride Racelle ( bel 2ezen mennak 3arees )

i love u Tarek and Racelle and i really wish u a happppppy life wjamelkon :)

Puppet Animation - Prague / the Movie

"Captured" is a stop motion movie done during the puppet animation workshop in Prague, May 2010. Enjoy :)

Puppet Animation - Prague

Last may, i was in Prague for a Puppet Animation Workshop.
I discovered this workshop through the internet and it is the most interesting workshop i've attended so far. it was perfectly organized with great instructors who provided unique knowledge and an amazing experience ! i definitely recommend this workshop for puppet animation and stop motion lovers.

For ten years, Mirek Trejtnar and Leah Gaffen have been organizing puppet workshops for students from around the world. Mirek heads the workshops - he is a puppet-maker himself and also a designer of toys, sculpture and much more with a special background in wood. Leah is an American who takes care of the organizational side of the workshops. Together Leah and Mirek bring together a team of leading Czech artists - woodcarvers, puppet designers, puppeteers, film animators, etc.- who bring the students into the world of puppetry in Prague.

i was lucky to be one of the eight participants in this workshop and i tried to document for you as much as i can from what happened during the 10 days.
the first day, we met in the KID studio where we worked most of the time surrounded by puppets ,wood and toys. and this is where i met the other lovely participants.

the first two days, we were asked to come up with a short story and do the storyboard. we also had to animate the movie in "stop motion" technique using a selection of professional finished puppets and in two different sets in Hafan Studio. we succeeded in accomplishing the mission with the help of one of the best czech animators, Lenka Krizova.

discussing the storyboard & sleeping akid.

the participants left some illustrations on the walls of the Hafan Studio

after we finished the movie, it was time to create our own puppets supervised by Mirek Trejtnar and Zdar Storm, the specialist on building puppets for animated film. and here are the sketches i did for my character "Bahman". you can see as well the technical drawings for the same puppet.

cutting the basic shape of wood cubes for the head, chest and pelvis based on the technical drawing.

carving the head, and this was not easy because it was the first time i worked with wood.

a lecture about how to make hands for animated puppets in the studio of Jaroslav Bezdek.

everyone modeling the hands of their puppets. the latex was added later over the metal base so the hand can contain wires for animation.

group photo with the instructor, Jaroslav Bezdek using some latex accessories :)
in the end, we received the latex hands we did in a chocolate box.

metal studio: Milan Vins is teaching us how to make an armature.

back to the KID studio to finish the puppet by connecting all the wooden parts with metal wires and covering the armature with foam.

other participants' work in progress.

and "Bahman", the puppet, getting dressed for the group photo.

the nice thing about this workshop is that, we were given lectures by several film directors, producers, photographers, puppet builders and animators who are experts in their field.
one of the most interesting lectures was with Michaela Pavlatova, a czech director and artist who taught us how to create a film step by step. she also showed us the original illustrations she used in her animations.

another lecture about Production of animated films by the producer of Fimfarum, M. Vandas.

visiting different animation studios in Prague was very exciting; we saw the way they made things possible. they showed us how they animate the puppets, the original designs, how they build the sets, how they film and edit, everything !

and finally, I wouldn't have had this much fun if I were with any other group.
the people you see in the pictures below are the best animators, illustrators and most importantly, the best of friends.

Monica Masucci
Suraya Raja

Thank you all :)

check other photos here