Iraqi engineer turns art into business amid bleak job market

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BASRA — Iraqi engineer Wassan Ismail started creating and selling artwork after struggling to find a job in an economy battered by conflict and sanctions.

The petroleum engineer, who lives in Basra, crafts pieces featuring traditional Iraqi folklore by sewing, painting and adding other media to create designs on ceramics.

An Iraqi female petroleum engineer, who could not find a job in the oil sector, works on traditional antiques and Iraqi folklore patterns at her home in Basra, Iraq July 24, 2021.
Wassan Ismail started creating and selling artwork after struggling to find a job.
Reuters

She began making the pieces for her own home, using some as planters. After posting her work on social media, she got order inquiries, and her passion project has turned into a prosperous business.

“Little by little, my business grew and I started to receive orders through my page. I started to expand my work. I sell not only inside Iraq but also abroad,” she said.

An Iraqi female petroleum engineer, who could not find a job in the oil sector, works on traditional antiques and Iraqi folklore patterns at her home in Basra, Iraq July 24, 2021.
An Iraqi female petroleum engineer began making the pieces for her own home, using some as planters.
Reuters

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