@MaliyahMadeThis diverse digital art (currently inactive)

Project overview

I started my Instagram account, @MaliyahMadeThis (currently inactive), during the COVID-19 pandemic, sharing digital art and elucidating the importance of diversity in the field. At the time, I noticed a lot of people picking up digital art, but few were taking the fact that their accounts had skin tones, hair textures, body shapes and genders missing (or how these absences impacted their audiences) into consideration.

Using my iPad, Apple Pencil and the digital illustration app Procreate, I stuck to a cohesive colour story in my digital illustrations to showcase a better representation of people in the real global community.

I always credited the photographers, models and artists that inspired my work. Sometimes, that meant catching the eye of the subjects of my illustrations—allowing me to take on commissions and connect with creators, brands and local institutions (like the Waterloo Region District School Board) in a way I never had before. I’ve been blessed to have forged global creative connections with people, including some in The Netherlands.

@MaliyahMadeThis was also featured in local newspapers, including The Community Edition and the University of Waterloo’s Imprint.

The "why"

This Instagram account was a beautiful and inspiring self-reminder to carve intentional time into my days to nurture my passions and stay creative—even in challenging times.

Art samples

I hope to one day relaunch this project and set up a formal storefront to make diverse art more accessible in my community.