UAE resident expresses gratitude with a portrait of Shaikh Zayed

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UAE resident expresses gratitude with a portrait of Shaikh Zayed
Zeenath Jassim has dedicated her portrait of Shaikh Zayed to the UAE, the country that helped her and her family thrive. Supplied photo

Abu Dhabi - Zeenath believes that it is not happy people who are thankful, but thankful people who are happy.

By Saman Haziq

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Published: Wed 14 Sep 2016, 7:14 PM

Gratitude is a rarity these days. Not many people we know are happy with what they have, but Zeenath Jassim is not one among them.
Zeenath believes that it is not happy people who are thankful, but thankful people who are happy. She classifies herself in the latter slot. This Eid is probably the most special one for Zeenath. After spending a blissful 16 years in the UAE, she dedicated 18 hours of efforts to the country's founding father, the late Shaikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.
Zeenath, who hails from Kerala in India, works with Al Hosn Gas in the Capital as a planning and report specialist. She is proud of her first gift dedicated to the UAE, the country that provided her and her family ample opportunities to thrive.
The mother of three realised her long-cherished dream of painting her first portrait using oil paints. For her subject, she chose none other than Shaikh Zayed. As a gesture of gratitude, Zeenath dedicates the lifelike portrait of the founding father of the UAE to the President, His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

"I love this country. The late Shaikh Zayed was the driving force behind this well-developed country. I always had great love for the Father of the UAE."
A colourful journey
Since her childhood, Zeenath was fascinated by colours, especially paints. "To be honest, I never realised that I had an artist hidden in me until I tried my hand at it here in the UAE. But I had never made a portrait of any person, until I chanced upon the huge picture of Shaikh Zayed along one of the highways.
"I could not help but marvel at it, given the fact that I hold him in high respect and admire his vision in developing this beautiful country," Zeenath said.
"From an artistic point of view, I was attracted by Shaikh Zayed's sharp facial features. His features give off a very regal, commanding air."
And that was it. Zeenath decided to follow her inner calling. "I always wanted to thank the country's leadership for giving us such a good life here in the UAE, a home away from home. I wanted to do something to show my gratitude."
But it was not easy for this working mother to take out the time and sit for long hours to finish the portrait. "Even though I had my husband Jassim's full support in helping me accomplish my artistic venture, it was hard to find the time to paint. After returning from work, I have to manage the house, cook, clean and take care of my three lovely girls, Mariam, 15; Sarah, 9; and Maha, who is just 8 months old."
But eventually, her desire to express her love and gratitude for the country overcame all other barriers, making her complete the painting in time for Eid, which seemed like the right time to dedicate the painting.
"I used to sit up every night, after putting the kids to bed, for about an hour and since I planned to complete it for Eid, I was up all night before the big day, and managed to complete it.
"Eid is all about showing love and gratitude to God by loving his creations. This painting is my Eid gift to the country that has blessed me with countless blissful moments," said Zeenath.

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