Orders made on or after May 28, 2018 will not ship until June 13, 2018.

Announcing: The winners of the Resist Orientalism poster contest!

May 17, 2018

We want to extend a huge thank you to everyone who submitted their beautiful artwork to our Resist Orientalism poster contest! It was a hard decision for our judges, who had no shortage of beautiful artwork to pick from. But we are very pleased to announce the winners: Christina Atik, and Lina Habazi. Congratulations, Christina and Lina!

"A Woman's Voice is a Revolution" poster by Lina Habazi. (Buy here.)

Bigmouth Comix: How did you first get interested in art and illustration?

Lina Habazi: I have always been artistically inclined and I’ve been drawing since I was very young. Neither of my parents or any of my siblings are artists so it sort of came out of nowhere and I taught myself by copying artists I admired. It was only recently when I began to focus in on subjects that I relate to in terms of my Palestinian-American identity. 

BM: What does resisting Orientalism mean to you?

LH: Resisting Orientalism means reclaiming my identity from those who choose to define it for me. As an Arab-American, Muslim, hijabi woman, I am no stranger to stereotypes. Growing up, I have always needed to explain my identity and the reasons why I dress, speak, and believe the way I do because society generally has a distorted idea of who I am. By reclaiming my identity, I define it in a way that offers a true representation of myself.

BM: What were the main ideas behind your poster submission?

LH: I wanted to address the expectations and misconceptions of being an Arab-American woman. While creating my poster, I felt like the phrase "صوت المرأ ثورة" (“A woman’s voice is a revolution”) was the perfect rejection of [Orientalist] ideas. Being born and raised in the U.S., I have learned to proudly express my identity in a way that fuses both my American and Palestinian sides. It is often expected that women who are caught between two identities would be better off choosing one and completely losing touch with the other. In my poster, I challenge what that kind of woman is supposed to look like by portraying the combination of my American and Palestinian cultures through fashion and self-expression.

BM: Any tips or advice to aspiring illustrators?

LH: My biggest tip is to create the art that you want to see in the world. It took me a long time to realize that I have my own unique experience that I can speak about through my art. Nobody else has your story so it’s up to you to tell it.

You can find Lina's work on her Instagram account @ni3lina, and on her website linahabazi.com.

"Woman" poster by Christina Atik. (Buy here.)

Bigmouth Comix: What does resisting Orientalism mean to you?

Christina Atik: Resisting Orientalism for me is cherishing, discovering, and evolving my culture. There is beauty in our hair, our skin, big noses, thick eyebrows, wide thighs. There is beauty in our language, music, literature, and art. I feel like these things are robbed from us, they’re belittled and thrown away. 

BM: What were the main ideas behind your poster submission?

CA: The main idea is the attack on women’s bodies, particularly on their sexuality. There’s a lot of shame when it comes to [women's] sexuality...I was taught from a young age about how fragile, precious, shameful and weak my sexuality was, and when I got older, I saw it being attacked from all corners. The woman I drew is who I hope to be: grounded, tough, and larger than life. 

BM: How did you first get interested in art and illustration?

CA: I started out by leaving small notes and doodles for my roommates and friends around the house, like telling them we ran out of coffee or chocolate. It was easier for me to translate thoughts and ideas into images instead of talking or writing (I was never good at those).

BM: Any tips or advice to aspiring illustrators?

CA: I’m an aspiring illustrator myself, I’m still trying to figure out a lot of things. I guess my advice would be not to put too much pressure on yourself to produce things, sometimes people can’t draw for days or weeks or months, and that’s fine. I was very hard on myself and taking the pressure off made drawing fun and spontaneous again.

Christina's work can be found on her Instagram @daydreamsforjack.

Both Christina and Lina's posters are available for sale in the shop! As promised, we have screen printed them in house, in a limited run of 40. They are $20 each, or if you buy one of each and use the code RESIST at checkout, $30 for the pair!

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What is Bigmouth?

Bigmouth is a blog and distro project uplifting the work of women, femmes, and non-binary illustrators and comix creators from AMEMSA (African, Middle East, Muslim, South Asian) countries and their diasporas.

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