Zahida Ali, 31, is a housewife and lives with her children in Dolomuch.  Her husband, a Doctor, works away from Chitral. Zahida dreams of sending her children abroad to study and is working to give them a brighter future.

‘I thought the Outer Hebrides was a big city at first when I compared it to our small villages in Chitral, but when Adil showed me books and photographs, I was fascinated by the lifestyle, the houses and the people.

In the tapestry I am showcasing a small village from the Outer Hebrides… Through the illustration, I decided to show daily life, natural surroundings like different village animals, telephone booth and a mail box.  

My favourite part of the illustration was the lamppost … It reminded me of the Minar – e Pakistan. I instantly connected with the rural lifestyle, village life, goats, chickens and the hardships of living in a remote village.  The olden Hebridean culture was very similar to the way Chitrali still lives… I’m amazed!


‘My class mates used to make fun of my drawing when I was in high school, but now I can proudly say that I have taken part in an international art project and my work will be exhibited abroad…It is a great feeling.

Through this experience my children have learned so much about Scotland and are proud of my skills…They encouraged me to challenge myself and to do more.

I enjoyed the drawing sessions during the workshops. I made new friends and was given the opportunity to learn in a creative environment.

I think the Scottish people are hard working and also have had a tough life in the past.  I am inspired by Hebridean culture, and would like Chitral to progress and have the same environment one day’

(An Eye on the Hebrides – Illustrating Journey by Mairi Hedderwick was used as an inspiration)