Every artist has a unique mark that helps in establishing themselves in the creative world. Although the art inspires many, it is not possible to replicate due to the effort and attention to detail that only the artist and their creativity can pinpoint.
Art is one of the most beautiful forms for many to express their creativity, whether as a hobby or as a full-time passion.
Alicia Goveas is a prime example of taking her hobby into a full-time gig within seven years, which has left her more fulfilled than ever.
Alicia's journey with art began at a young age, similar to when many are introduced to art, and quickly became an outlet for her to channel her creativity.
Born in the UAE in 1993 and raised in Dubai, Alicia started going to art school when she was around five years old.
Alicia said, "Art was a hobby then, and it was one to keep me busy during the weekdays and the evenings. I never really had a vision or the slightest idea that, someday, it would be a professional means for me."
While in university studying Human Resources, Alicia participated in multiple exhibitions and events part-time. While working with a brand that needed a children's face painter for an event, Alicia offered to help, as no one else could be found at the last minute.
Having not painted in a while, at 22 years old, the experience was a nerve-wracking one for her, but reignited her love and passion once again for art.
Alicia said, "I had a lot of peace and happiness with doing art and had a real fondness for it. It is total happiness, and I love what I do."
With being completely self-taught, being an artist happened gradually for Alicia, starting with her wanting to learn more and buying face paints, then using them to experiment by painting her face and the people around her.
Alicia said, "Being an artist, for me, is more fulfilling on a deeper level. I get to really speak my mind through my work."
Slowly but surely, as she started falling in love with art once more, Alicia started contemplating whether she could do this full-time rather than as a project on the side.
Having now amassed seven years as an artist, the initial years in her career were the hardest for Alicia saying, "The first three of four years were so difficult as I would work everyday and weekend, as well as public holidays, when people close to me would have a day off to celebrate."
However, Alicia chose to look on the bright side, as she knew that despite the first few years being the most challenging, she wanted to make this her career and could not see herself doing anything else, as it gave her immense joy.
Her career started with small-scale mall events as a children's face painter before she started experimenting more with different art mediums.
One of the biggest milestones in Alicia's career as an artist came in 2017, when she participated in one of the biggest beauty awards in the region called the 'NYX Face Awards'.
Having made it to the top 6, Alicia got the opportunity to meet more like-minded creatives and to experiment with her art on a bigger scale, saying, "Ever since then, I have never looked back. I have been levelling up and diversifying and do not just stick to face or body paint. I like to do a lot of different things, and it contributes to my growth, as an artist and as an individual."
One of her current specialities, however, is body painting, which allows Alicia to use humans as her canvas, and helps the wearer to feel their most confident, by looking past all their flaws and appreciating themselves for who they are.
Alicia first started getting into body art when it was a novel concept in 2015, and on sharing her work on social media, ended up receiving requests to create art on dancers and performers that work at clubs, and painting people at concerts and festivals.
"For me, when I body paint, I am not painting on a canvas, I am painting on a talking, living, breathing human being." Alicia added, "I interact with them closely and learn how they feel, and it offers a much deeper connection and process."
Through body art, Alicia has been able to give power to people's insecurities and help them find a deeper appreciation for themselves while focusing on the beauty humans possess.
With body painting, there are so many aspects that Alicia has to consider, from finding the right shades, creating the art catering to their body type and trusting the process to create a stunning end result.
Alicia said, "Every challenge has only taught me how not to repeat a mistake, how to work around it or just get better."
As an Indian, Alicia loves taking inspiration from her Indian culture and is heavily inspired by the works of other Indian artists, the people, the music, the food, and the colours.
Alicia said, "For me, art is an expression, and it is more of a combination of the multicultural upbringing that I had, and it comes from a deeper place, it is not just commercial. Aside from creating for brands, I also love to have days and shoots with creations that are solely mine, from my brain and are the ones that make me the happiest."
When feeling uninspired, Alicia says, "It's tough. If there are a few books I have read or shows that I have watched, I like to remind myself of them or read a snippet from it, or while having lunch watch a part of the show that enforces how much I love doing this. I tend to look at myself as a third party and say that 'oh my gosh, you get to do this, it is fantastic, keep going', and then I continue with the task."
With the UAE now giving artists the platform to grow and create on a larger scale, the ability and credibility given to an artist is immense, allowing people to explore and not limit themselves to specific jobs.
Alicia said, "There is a difference between being an artist and doing it only out of love, and it being your profession. When it is professional, if it means redoing it, delivering on time, meeting the deadlines, and showing up even when tired, you got to do it as it is part of the job."
Now with the overstimulation from social media, many artists can get lost and confused while trying to figure out their place. However, Alicia added that once you find your passion, all things will fall into place.
With navigating the ever-changing world of social media and art, Alicia mentioned, "The beauty about being an artist when there was no social media was purely because we loved it and gave you a total sense of satisfaction, peace and focus. All the thoughts in your mind are reduced to one motion of observation or a brush technique, and that is a reason why art is so therapeutic."
Currently working on a body art series of photographs, these pieces of work, which will be released shortly, use art as a medium to highlight each person's personal stories and struggles.
At 29 years old, Alicia is a brilliant artist, that has found a way to change her career path from studying human resources, and finding a life full of passion and creativity through art. In her span of seven years, Alicia has gone on and taken up many art forms, always exploring her abilities and never limiting herself, while also finding beauty in the little things.