The painting of Mrs Malukimba the Dressmaker. She has much to say to you if you listen closely. Inspired by the dressmakers in Maramba Market in Livingstone, Zambia. One of the things that was interesting about these women and indeed many others in that market and other market cultures in the 3rd world is the benefit they enjoyed from a micro loan scheme for women. Small loans to help buy tools and machinery or seed and grain that empowered these women to discover independence and self-sustainability. This was the first time I had seen that these schemes in action and it was amazing to witness their success.
Technically, I branched out to explore with contrasting texture and soft edges in this painting.
I really enjoyed the process of exploring the hard and soft edges in the warm-up drawing and decided to bring that into the painting. I also wanted to push my imagination and move away from the source photograph in terms of colour. I wanted to bring her skin alive with reflections and subtle shifts in tone and value.
She kept me in very good company through the COVID-19 lockdown – we got to know each other very well and became good friends.