By Kuwait Anime Club
An Instagram video shows a woman holding a hair dryer and some crayons in her hand. You’d never think that those two things have something in common, or that it is possible to create anything by using the two together. But as Nina puts the hair dryer near the crayons they begin to spray their hue on a white canvas in a pattern you’d never think was possible. Moments later, there is a white unicorn on that canvas bordered by the hues of the crayons. If you think that’s amazing, more than 140,000 viewers of that video would happily agree with you.
You would expect that a Kuwaiti artist with thousands of followers on social media and hundreds of thousands of views for some of her videos would be all ego, but Nina, who excels at balancing between her work as an artist and her responsibilities as an accounting student in AUM, makes you feel like you are speaking to the nicest and most down to earth person in the country.
“Nina is my nickname. It’s what my friends used to call me in high school. My real name is Anwar Dashti, and berry is just a random word.” After explaining the meaning behind her username on Instagram, @berry_ninaa, Nina continued to explain the reason why most of her drawings seem to be of DC and Marvel heroes, “I got into comics when I was young. I like anime, but I’m not a fan. As for games, I played some PlayStation… a year ago.”
Her quirky answers complement her professional demeanor. She mentioned Pikachu as her favorite anime which, if you watch anime, would put a smile on your face. But despite Nina’s simple take on things her take on art and life is far from simple, “Society doesn’t take the arts seriously so I study accounting to become an accountant. I’ll keep drawing as on the side, but my degree is what matters the most.”
That statement was particularly shocking not only because of how mature it is but also since artists usually take pride in dedicating themselves completely to their art. While Nina posseses a powerful imagination that is capable of filling the many canvases of those who commission her for work, she keeps a realistic look at life and the future.
It makes you wonder; how can someone go so far with such a simple and realistic take on life? Usually it is the risk takers who gain the kind of success Nina has gained with her work. But in her case it wasn’t risk but rather being herself that got her there.
“If you want to succeed just be yourself. Be unique. There are those who just follow trends and do what other people do that won’t get you anywhere.” Nina has earned the right to say that. After all, her thoughtful art is anything but usual and that’s what made her go from 2,000 followers to over 10,000 in around one year. “Using unique techniques in creating my art instead of traditional methods is what differentiates me from others. My most requested paintings are ones with lights installed underneath them,” she explains.
The execution of her art isn’t the only thing that is thoughtful and unique but the philosophy behind it is just as meaningful, “I don’t do it for the income or the attention, I do it because seeing my art hanging on the walls of the homes of my fans means the world to me.”
Despite her positive attitude and thoughtful art she still has to deal with bad people in some occasions. Not only from comments, but from commissions as well. “I had problems with commissions when it comes to boys.” However, she deals with it the same way she deals with everything else; with a simple approach, “I just ignore them.”
You can commission Nina with a direct message on Instagram and if you wish to meet her then you just might see her at one of the many conventions happening in the country. “I’m thinking of participating in one of those conventions in the future,” she says, “I wanted to join an art competition once, but missed it. Maybe next time.”