DOU­BLE TAKE They say, chil­dren are the mir­ror im­age of their par­ents. Two artis­tic Malaysians in­ves­ti­gate the ex­tent to which their imag­i­na­tive prog­e­nies will con­tinue to shoot for the moon. By Naressa Khan.

Harper’s Bazaar (Malaysia) - - Bazaar Junior -

The ap­ple doesn’t fall far from the tree in the case of Zaireen and Malena. With her big curls and equally big smile, 12-year-old Malena looks to be the split­ting im­age of her 35-year-old dancer, artist, and pho­tog­ra­pher mother (known best as the brain and heart be­hind J. Redza Art, Dance & Cre­ativ­ity, an art hub). Their sim­i­lar fea­tures aren’t the only fac­tor bind­ing them to­gether. The mother-daugh­ter duo also hap­pens to share a real pas­sion for the arts. While Malena did not in­herit Zaireen’s pas­sion for danc­ing, she was be­stowed with her 35-year-old mother’s tal­ent for paint­ing, and has been de­vel­op­ing her own colour­ful strokes from the im­pres­sively early age of 10 months. Now a homeschooled girl at the start of her ado­les­cence, Malena con­tin­ues to prac­tise what she’s learned best: to al­ways paint your feel­ings.

Malena’s emo­tions, po­et­i­cally cap­tured in her ab­stract paint­ings ZAIREEN J. REDZA: Why do you love paint­ing? MALENA SOFIA MAY: It makes me learn my feel­ings, and when­ever I learn them, I be­come calm. ZJR: Do you re­mem­ber the first time you picked up the paint brush? MSM: It was when I was about 10 months old. You told me that. You’d let me play with your brushes and paints. ZJR: Do you re­mem­ber your very first art­work? MSM: It was an ab­stract paint­ing with many colours. ZJR: What in­spires you? MSM: I just ex­plore freely, de­pend­ing on my emo­tions. ZJR: Which of my paint­ings do you love the most? MSM: The ones you painted of me. ZJR: Who are your role mod­els? MSM: My art teacher. And you, be­cause you are beau­ti­ful and when­ever you paint, you let out your feel­ings and it makes me happy. ZJR: If you could cre­ate a paint­ing with me, what would it look like? MSM: I would paint the tree of life. No, our en­tire fam­ily tree! It would look like a big tree with flow­ers, with all of our fam­ily mem­bers’ names on it. Yours and mine would be next to each other. ZJR: Which fa­mous per­son would you like to paint? MSM: Tay­lor Swift, my favourite singer. ZJR: What are some of your favourite songs to paint along to? MSM: “Count On Me” by Bruno Mars, “Su­per­heroes” by The Script, “Moves like Jag­ger” by Ma­roon 5, and “Right Round” by Flo Rida. ZJR: What would you want to be when you grow up? MSM: I want to be singer, an artist, a de­signer, and also a vet. I also want to be the per­son who takes care of na­ture so the an­i­mals would not fall sick.

On Malena: Sweater,

Karen Millen. Skirt, Kate Spade New York. On Zaireen: Top; and ear­rings, BCBG Max Azria. Skirt, Kate Spade New York.

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