Colourful wildlife inspires Gray

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SHAH ALAM ― The rich diversity of Malaysian wildlife has inspired an aspiring British artist, Rachel Gray, to bring alive the characters of the animals through the art of digital painting.

The 29-year-old artist is featuring 12 paintings depicting Malaysian wildlife, utilising a combination of traditional and digital techniques at an exhibition themed “Pameran Seni Digital Hairul and Rachel Gray” at Shah Alam Gallery until March 30.

“Each portrait depicts Malaysian animals which I have photographed mostly in Borneo and Taman Negara,” she told Bernama.

“I find the stunning variety of wildlife here such an inspiration, from the beautiful Malaysian tiger and tapir to the gorgeous colours of the orang utan, proboscis monkey and hornbill.

“My aim is to capture some of the character, beauty and intelligence of these amazing and rare animals from Malaysia.”

Digital painting is an art form in which traditional artistic media such as watercolours, oil paint, pencils, charcoal and acrylics can be replicated on a computer using a stylus and a tablet.

“I use software that enables me to use the stylus to mimic the effect of a paintbrush and oil paints. This gives me the opportunity to use my traditional techniques and skills but in a digital manner,” said Gray, who has been a professional pet and wildlife portrait artist for over nine years.

Currently based in Kuala Lumpur, she picked up painting when she was two years old.

She also paints abstract oil work, which is highly influenced by her travels, and incorporates elements and impressions of these into each work through the use of vibrant colours, texture and more recently metals.

Romona International Sdn Bhd president Datuk Seri Romona Murad, who manages Gray, said singer Datuk Ramli Sarip would officiate the exhibition on Wednesday.