Portrait of a Cover Artist - Naeem Ahmed | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 21, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:35 PM, February 21, 2019

Portrait of a Cover Artist - Naeem Ahmed

Naeem Ahmed began his career as an architect, having graduated in that field of study from Shahjalal University of Science and Technology. He went onto explore many avenues of design, including game, user-interface, product and others. Art, on the other hand, is a field that he is immensely passionate about. Currently a user-experience designer at a software firm, Naeem recently took up cover art and began making covers of books for the Ekushey Boi Mela in 2017. For this year's fair, Naeem has designed the covers of Attopochanimulok Rosh or Self-Deprecating Humor by Wahid Ibn Reza, Bamoner Chandrobilash by Anonto Rahat Rakib, Juddho by Ahsan Habib and Shobar Jonno Ubuntu by Nasir Khan Saikat. We caught up with him to find out more about his work.

Tell us about the process you follow for the artwork while working on a book.

My aim as a cover artist is to reflect the mood and tone of the book, keeping the title and text in mind. Readers should be able to understand how the cover complements the text once they have finished reading the book.

Who are some of your inspirations in the art community?

I am huge fan of Satyajit Ray. I am also inspired by the work of Sabyasachi Mistry, Ahsan Habib and Mehedi Haque. Many young and emerging artists today are also doing remarkably well.

Ekushey Boi Mela is certainly a busy season for cover artists, but how do you keep yourself occupied otherwise?

I am always sketching something or the other, be it book illustrations, story boards or cartoons. However, I enjoy making art for myself the most.

How would you characterize your artworks and the messages you aim to portray through them?

I am pretty versatile as an artist, which comes with its pros and cons. Even though my versatility gives me immense creative satisfaction and allows me to develop my skills in different platforms, maintaining specific messages or themes in my artworks proves to be difficult.

What kind of hurdles have you faced as an artist, progressing through your career?

I face hurdles internally, in the sense that I do not push myself enough to reach my potential to the fullest and so, I think that I have not fully explored my capabilities as an artist yet. Otherwise, I believe that artists in Bangladesh today have plenty of ways to create their own opportunities.

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