Colours of his emotions – Shafarin Ghani (Star Metro Paper)

EVER since his digital SLR camera was stolen a few years ago, artist M. Shafarin Ghani has not owned another camera.

“It is not the value of the camera that I was upset about but the worth of the pictures I had in the memory card — taken at places that I would not get a chance to visit again,” said the 30-year-old Penang-born artist.

Shafarin used to snap photographs of scenes that he wanted to paint so he has since relied on his memory and the feel of his heart to capture those images.

“I think it worked out for the better. When you depend on photos, you tend to take things for granted. When impressions are formed solely in your head, you start to put in a bit more imagination into your paintings,” he said.

Passionate: Shafarin in front of a painting in his ‘Oeuvre of Movement No 2’ which translate onto canvas what he hears in classical music.
His love for art started when he was seven years old and he started painting seriously when he was 13.

A self-taught artist, Shafarin said his parents had always been supportive of his choice of career and would even put up with his sometimes eccentric behaviour whenever he went into an artistic mood.

His works in his ongoing solo exhibition Oeuvre of Movement No 2 – Yang Tersembunyi (that which is hidden) at The Core Design Gallery were a good reflection of how this young artist focuses his emotions into his art.

Be it fierce or mellow, each painting uses strong colours combined with distinct strokes to capture the movement of waves in the sea that blends into the clouds.

“I do spend some time by the sea to observe the scenery and get a basic feeling of the emotions it evokes in me,” he said.

Ray of light: The calm sea and bright light in the middle in this ‘Untitled II’ piece reflects a calm emotion.
Piece by piece, his paintings seemed to form snapshots of events taking place in his life from one period to another.

As he talked about his paintings, Shafarin revealed his other passion — classical music, something which also influenced his paintings and the majestic energies contained in them.

“When you paint, there’s a tendency to listen to music and that’s what I do. Classical music has a different character compared with pop music, which is made up of repetitive beats. The orchestration of classical music is based on tempos to express moods and tell a story, so it is never boring. Art is close to music in that sense,” said Shafarin, who also plays the violin.

His piece “The Ninth” stood out among the collection with fast-moving waves that culminates in the centre in bright fiery colours, making it look like there was a lot of anger when he worked on it.

“I was listening to Beethoven’s Ninth symphony when I painted that so all the emotions of the music just overwhelmed me,” he said.

An artist to the soul, Shafarin also penned a few poems to accompany the pieces in his collection.

“I also write poetry but they are mostly in Bahasa Malaysia because it is a language I’m more comfortable in,” he said.

The exhibition ends on Nov 30. Core Design Gallery Sdn Bhd is located at 87, Jalan SS15/2A, Subang Jaya, Selangor (Tel: 03-5612 1168).

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