"Liah, aka @DriftedLineDesign, sees each body as originally beautiful. No duplicates, no prints, feminist values are at the core of her art: positivity, support and defiance. She flicks through her notebook and recognises the people behind the faceless bodies instantly, because they’re so perfectly different. She stops turning pages and arrives at the body of a secret model, nameless. Her family, friends and co-workers will never know of her double-life as a muse for Liah, an alter-ego formed on trust and respect. It’ll sound like a cliche but she is simply a real artist: drawing the female body in its truest form, capturing the first few moments of its unveiling. That’s the best time, she says. Best before shapes are forgotten, distorted and moved. Bold black lines steer round every curve and crevice, all with the intentions and outcomes that spawn confidence in her subjects, when she hands them her work.
“I have a scatty personality and I’m impatient, so I draw with pen. I don’t like rubbing things out because if I don’t like what I do, I’ll just draw it again. If I fuck it up, I fuck it up.” Liah’s an Aries, but it’s not obvious when I meet her because she’s so delicately humble, quietly confident.
It all began at the Light Space Collective up in Sheffield, where Liah’s from and based. Flourishing in a tight network of fellow business women made her empowered. Most of what she produces is wholly selfless, it’s not intended to look edgy, it’s deeper than that. One project gathered together women with low esteem, to tear down their walls, off their clothes, and show them their own bodies through someone else’s eyes, and pen.
“It takes time when you come from nowhere” – two years in fact, but her triumphs are only growing. She’s recently now featured on BBC Three’s Too Fat For Love, a documentary featuring blogger and model Emma Tasmin Hill centered around exchanging the media’s warped view on what sexy and beautiful should look like."
Words by Emily Barker