Meet the Makers!

Makers Unite is a hub of design and creative activity, and co-creation is our secret weapon. Over the past 2 years, we have been pioneering creative talent development programmes. We are always seeking new inspiration through our ever-expanding network of creative newcomers.

Our creatives are new here, newcomers, you might say. Together we'll take you along their journey, stories, what makes them unique, their dreams and projects.

Contact them for opportunities!

GAIDAA has 10 years of experience as an English teacher. Now, she is learning Dutch and would love to know a little bit more about photography. On the long term, she wants to study Human Resources and find a job in this field: she is very interested in helping others like herself to find their way in a new country.

KHALED is an accountant, and has worked in many international companies and organizations in Egypt. He now lives in Amsterdam, and next to his accounting, he also makes oil paintings – inspired by styles of Rembrandt and Davinci. He also loves swimming and playing the keyboard. At the moment, he is doing a lot of volunteer work and studying Dutch, and his priority now is to find a job as an accountant or a study that leads to that. However, he would also love to have an exposition of his paintings!

OSAMA was an English teacher but also has experience in the organizational field: as office manager and event organizer. He loves drawing and is planning to learn tattooing, and currently works at Outsider Art Gallery in the Hermitage. For next steps he is looking forward to an opportunity within event organization, but would also love to get a connection to an artistic workspace or for teaching English.

ARIYA used to be a graphic designer for more than 10 years. He likes everything that is about art and/or design. Next to his interest in graphic design, he would like to learn more about make-up and fashion here in the Netherlands.

MUATAZ comes from Yemen, and has a BA in architecture as well as an MBA in Business Administration. He worked for 14 years in architectural design and project management, but then had to move to Turkey, where he worked for humanitarian non-profit organization to design houses for underprivileged students. His current aim is to settle down in the Netherlands and find a fulfilling job to use his leadership, designing and organizational talents.

MAHA is a philosophy teacher with many years of experience. She is now only one year in the Netherlands, and loves to play basketball. To combine both of her passions, she is looking to start a study as sports teacher and to learn Dutch as well.

ANDRANIK is from Armenia. After graduating, he worked for a year as a history teacher, but then decided to follow his passion: he learned classical singing in the state conservatory of Yerevan and worked in a musical theatre for 4 years. In the Netherlands, he wants to recreate himself as an artist and study musicology in UvA. He is also looking forward to learning about the cultural life here, and developing skills for interacting with a new world.

ODAI studied technical engineering and is switching to data analytics; he starts a Bachelor at Vrije Universiteit soon. Before, he did a private course in small enterprise management and worked for several NGOs. He would like to continue working for NGOs and combining it with data analytics. Aside from this, he is also a photographer.


SAMER was born in Syria in 1989. He studied Electronics and Communication Engineering in Damascus University. He is a funny and approachable person with strong character and he is communicative about his own ideas. Interested in building a future in the Netherlands with new steps in the field of Electronic Engineering, Samer has experience teaching in subjects related to electronics at the MBO level.  He has the ability to see the potential in each person. Currently, Samer is looking for a traineeship in Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) and Programmable Logic Controller (PLC).

CHRISTIN was born in Syria in 1991. She lives and works in The Netherlands. In 2014, she graduated from ArtEZ Academy of Art and Design. Being Assyrian-Dutch inspires her to work with the interfaces and contradictions from both perspectives. Her process is a game between intuition and the search to find the right materials and shapes—a way of expressing herself without using words. She trusts her materials and constructions on a fragile but rough way to the viewer, and carries out the content of her work, without making compelling statements.

HUSSEIN is from Lebanon. He has been working as a graphic designer for the past 10 years in Beirut. He is a self-taught musician. He has been experimenting with noise and glitch sounds for the past 3 years. He is curious about animation and illustration. He recently moved to The Netherlands and he is planning to expand his knowledge and research on audio visual.

SALLY was born in Syria in 1988. She obtained her Bachelor Degree in Fine Arts, Printmaking from Damascus University. Her artwork takes a humane point of view, with a focus on sense and sentiment expressed simply with a line, a shape, and a point. Inspired by organic cells, she tries to mutate and transform those shapes in order to create new structures. She has always enjoyed decomposing such forms. It gives her a sense of the truth of being when arranging them into new conceptually layered pieces.

SAED moved to the Netherlands in 2017. Carrying a diverse portfolio of artistic and visual illustration experience, he established his own Designing and Development Company ( FANARI D&D ), and simultaneously, he works as an associate with Dutch, MENA region and International institutions. Over 20 years, Saèd has a proven track record in his expertise, which lay in the areas of fine arts and creative design. His artistic career has been developed and revealed in a mixture of three parallel paths: Impressionism, Abstraction and Futurism, which was reflected by delivering hundreds of designs, artworks and art projects, and creating hundreds of paintings.

RAAFAT was born in As-Sweida (Syria) and graduated from the Damascus University Faculty of Fine Arts in 2014. In his work, which mainly contains painted portraits, he confronts us with an expressionistic, daring and at the same time delicate and sensitive approach to painting. His disfigured faces are main elements characterizing his current work. The imagery from his canvases are a strong reminder of the numerous devastated lives he left behind when he and his fellows left the smoking barrels of the blasting army guns.

MOUTAZ was born in Palestine. He graduated in Higher Institute of Dramatic Art (Acting Department) in 2016. His acting experience include “Fear and Misery of the Third Reich in 2015, “Marriage of Figaro” in 2014, and “Shakespeariat” in 2013.

NOOR started her study at the Faculty of Fine Arts, Damascus University, but had to flee Syria because of the conflict. She has been living in Cairo, Egypt for two weeks, and then in Istanbul for almost 2 years where she did volunteer work with kids teaching arts and English. She came to the Netherlands by the end of 2014, where she started the orientation year in 2015 at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. What she loves the most is to paint and express her feelings in her paintings and art.

BETUL studied architecture and it opened many doors for her as it trained both her technical skills and creative expressions. She developed practical insight, a keen sense of space and its meaning for human interaction. Coming from Turkey and living in the Netherlands gave her a deep understanding of what it means to be a newcomer, even though she is here out of choice. She dedicated my energy to help many organizations to realise awareness and create a safe environment for solidarity with her photography and graphical design work. 

YARA graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Damascus University, Syria in 2014. Shortly after graduating, she left Syria on a journey that for almost a year led her through several countries and refugee camps before arriving in Amsterdam. She found a studio in Amsterdam, which gave her the freedom to focus on her art again. Her art is not confined to one discipline. She creates paintings, collages, as well as conceptual art. The work is very personal and expressionist, yet at the same time has a strong purpose to communicate with the beholder; to tell a story bigger than herself and more universal. In 2016, she designed the flag for the Olympic Refugee Team at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

meet the makers | our creatives: Fares, fashion designer

FARES is a fashion designer with 8 years experience in couture- and confection techniques. He is working hard to become an independent fashion designer, and followed drawing classes through the community of Makers Unite. He is now working together with Philine Zinnicq Bergman (Atelier Phi) on developing and producing a new clothing collection.

NOUF gives theatre all her heart. She is a theatre and costume designer, but also has experience as a make-up artist. And, secretly, she also loves to act herself, because then she can run her big imagination wild living different lives at once. And she also likes to read plays – as we said, she covers all aspects of the theatre world.

meet the makers | our creatives: Abdul, student

ABDUL is still a student, as he wasn’t able to finish his school in his home country. He is now orienting on how to continue my studies, but has been learning a lot of Dutch already super fast! He has been a great help to Makers Unite in the production sessions of the first program. If you are  at one of our community events, he’ll probably be there as well!

meet the makers | our creatives: Fahed, painter

FAHED is a painter with extensive knowledge of art history and painting restoration. In his work, he uses techniques that the old masters he admires also use. He is now studying a Master’s Conservation and Restoration at the University of Amsterdam.

MAZEN is an artist and a graphic designer. He has been a great help in our first program as he prepared and shot all personal videos of the participants. He also was the first to participate in the artist in residency collaboration with Kunstfaam, together with Yazan. Makers Unite connected him to D2 where he now works as a graphic design intern.

theatre and costume designer: Noor, artist

NOOR is a freelance artist with a passion for fashion and accessories design. She originally studied engineering, but is now looking to professionalize her passion in creative design. Besides making jewellery, she works with various material such as charcoal, ink, and acrylic paint. Noor would love to become a tattoo artist, or learn more about professional product design.

meet the makers | our creatives: Batoul, architect

BATOUL studied architecture, and participated in the second edition of the Kunstfaam art-residency. There, she found that she needed more space and experience to learn how to express her artistic ideas. Although she still wants to study architecture to be able to make this her profession eventually, she is also looking for additional training and opportunities to learn more about art and creative expression.

meet the makers | our creatives: Yazan, sculptor

YAZAN is a sculptor, mostly working with stone and metal. He is always looking for expanding his professional network here in Holland and to meet other art professionals. Yazan participated in various Makers Unite events, such as a workshop in Paris with locals and newcomers, and, just like Mazen, the Kunstfaam residency. 

meet the makers | our creatives:

NOUR EDDIN is a cook, who makes both Syrian and Western dishes. He learned how to cook in kitchens of hotels, restaurants and hospitals, and blew everyone away at our last event together with BNO.  He is looking for more cooking experience as broad as possible – as long as he can be in a kitchen preparing delicious food that makes people happy, Nour is satisfied.

meet the makers | our creatives: Maher, engineer

MAHER studied mechanical engineering, but has a very diverse creative portfolio. Besides his career as a Syrian rapper, he is also skilled in graphic design, illustration, sound design and video editing. His dream job would be in construction engineering, maybe combining his studies with his creative passions. Therefore, he wants to learn more about creating small machines (such as working with robots or new modes of transport). He is also interested in improving his knowledge on music and sound (playing music as well as sound engineering).

meet the makers | our creatives: Muhannad, event organization and management

MUHANNAD has a diploma in business management, and has over 10 years of experience as a reception manager on various fairs and conferences. Next to that, he also writes poems – in Arabic and English.  He is now working as a receptionist at the Movement hotel and would love to continue within event organisation and management. For his poems, he is looking for possibilities to publish or perform them – and if people speak English fluently, he is also eager to improve so he can express his thoughts even better.

meet the makers | our creatives: Yaser, hairdresser and woodcarver

YASER is a hairdresser and a woodcarver, making  frames (for paintings and mirrors), tables and chairs. Makers Unite connected him to Barbara Kletter of Atelier aan de Gracht, where he is improving his 3D skills and learned to work with sculpture wax. His dream job would be to have his own company in either of these two professions. He would love to learn more about haircutting for women, as well as make-up art.

meet the makers | our creatives: Mustafa, computer technician & poet

MUSTAFA  has a background in industrial automatisation, with 3 years of experience in computer reparation, both hardware and software. He would love to continue his professional experience in this direction, studying or acquiring more knowledge of computer programming through an internship. Next to that, he also writes Arabic novels, where he mixes real-life experiences with fictional details into a story.

meet the makers | our creatives: Mohammad, industrial entrepreneur

MOHAMMAD was the owner of a metalworking company, where he produced large industrial machines such as stone crushers and bulldozer blades. In the future, he would love to set-up a company that transports these machines to Lebanon and Africa. He is interested in the industrial sector here and is looking for a place where he can put his knowledge of his job into practice.

meet the makers | our creatives: Souria, Arabic, English, Dutch translator

SOURIA is a translator. She can translate both Arabic to English or Dutch and the other way around. She has over 10 years of experience as a teacher and  helped Makers Unite with translating  the entire website – in no-time!  Currently she is working as a teaching assistent at Leer Arabisch and loves to teach her native language to Dutchies.

meet the makers | our creatives: Rashad, tailor

RASHAD is a tailor. He learned his skills growing up in the family business. Makers Unite connected him to Tatteljee, where he is now in training to make custom tailor projects. In the future, he would love to study into the direction of IT.

NASAM is a sculptor from Syria, on a continuous search for capturing beauty into visual artworks. She works with materials such as clay, bronze, wood and metal. As an artist, she did various exhibitions and she also has teaching experience as an Assistant Professor at Damascus University. 

meet the makers | our creatives: Oesama, accountant

OSAMA studied accountancy and has over 3 years experience as a digital accountant. He is looking for some more experience in his area, through an internship for example. At the moment, he is preparing for his Dutch diploma.

meet the makers | our creatives: Mohamed, music teacher and photographer

MOHAMED is a music teacher and a photographer with 4 years of experience. He loves to both take and edit photos, using photoshop. That’s also why we asked him to make the very portraits you are now looking at! He would like to continue his passion for photography here in the Netherlands and get some more experience.

meet the makers | our creatives: Marwa, interior designer and illustrator

MARWA is an interior designer and illustrator. Apart from her university degree in interior design, she also has freelance experience in graphic wall painting and portraits. After doing an internship at Ymere / Podium for Architecture, she is now studying Interior Design at the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht (HKU).

meet the makers | our creatives: Ayham, IT student

AYHAM is focusing on his Dutch studies at the moment. After this, he is looking to study IT. He has mostly experience in hardware, and a little bit in programming, but would love to learn more  about software and coding. 

meet the makers | our creatives: Marina, illustrator and painter

MARINA is an illustrator and painter. She as a lot of experience working as a art teacher for children. For her illustrations, she likes to work with several different media and materials. In her expereience as a freelancer she also illustrated stories for magazines. She is now looking for an art related professional experience. 

meet the makers | our creatives: Dana, primary school teacher

DANA is a teacher, now looking for a professional opportunity teaching in primary school. She loves taking care of children and is always motivated to learn new skills. While learning Dutch, Dana believes that the best opportunity is to be able to work in her professional field.

meet the makers | our creatives: Fadi, accountant

FADI is an accountant.

meet the makers | our creatives: Santa, creative crafter

SANTA is a creative that works with a lot of different materials but always with her hands. According to her, this creates a direct connection with the things she makes. Santa doesn’t think about a dream job. As long as it is something creative,  makes people happy, and creates a more sustainable world, then that would be a dream come true. Although it is quite hard to pin here down on one thing, right now, she would love to learn digital design tools such as Photoshop.

meet the makers | our creatives: Rohif, architecture student

ROHIV studied one year of architecture and when we asked her if she also wanted to do this here in the Netherlands, she said: “I don’t think I want to do anything else other than architecture.” She loves the style of Le Corbusier because it is simple and clear. Rohiv wants to develop her sketching skills, manually as well as digitally (Autocad for example) – so she can become a professional in her passion.


meet the makers | our creatives: Avin, business manager

AVIN  has a background business management. But as she just arrived in the Netherlands, she is exploring her opportunities. She is interested in learning what kind of tools and programs business professionals use here so that she can adapt her knowledge to this local context. Next to that, she would also love to learn more about how to draw.

meet the makers | our creatives: Iman

EMAN came to the program through Ammar, her husband. When she was small, she wanted to be a teacher. Here in the Netherlands, she is looking to do something with or for other people – as she likes cooking, or maybe working with a hairdresser or stylist.

meet the makers | our creatives: Moutassem, lawyer

MOUTASSEM  is a lawyer, with 7 years of experience. He is now busy studying Dutch, and after that, he is looking to study so he can continue his profession as a lawyer, international or Dutch.


meet the makers | our creatives: Haytham, pharmacist

HAYTHAM  is a pharmacist, with 3 years of experience. He is going to study MBO so that he can also work in a pharmacy here. He would like to start as a pharmacy assistant. He also loves to play chess and participated in tournaments back in Syria.

meet the makers | our creatives: Oussama, painter

OUSSAMA applies a conceptual approach to painting. By exploiting the stylistic variants of the medium, he is able to explore how form can articulate the urgency of sociopolitical issues. With each new series, he adopts a different painting style, reflecting the impermanent nature of art as it becomes increasingly conceptual and further dematerialised.

meet the makers | our creatives: Ammar, designer

AMMAR is a designer with expertise in digital embroidery. He also loves to draw and cook. In the future, he would love to buy is own embroidery machine and start his own company. He has a wide experience within tailoring – if you’re looking for repairing your curtains, shoes, or clothing: he is your man! And if you have one of our laptop sleeves, he is probably the one that sewed the logo on there. He is now looking for a Dutch course in embroidery or tailoring.

CARL is a filmmaker, and is now preparing to study at a film school in the Netherlands. Carl started out with photography, but soon found out that he needed film to express his ideas. He mostly works with Hetfilm4 express and DaVinci Resolve to make work. He is looking to expand his knowledge on film hardware and camera functions, either through a course, an internship or another professional experience.

AHMAD studied electrical engineering and worked in the field of sewing for 7 years. He would like to learn the Dutch language as soon as possible and hopes that he can complete my studies in the field of electrical engineering. His dream job would be to have his own workshop in tailoring. Currently he is part of our tailor team!

MAISON is a math teacher with 23 years of experience, on a primary school. She is very motivated to learn the Dutch language well, and continue her profession in mathematics.

SAAD is an architect with 23 years of experience in designing and implementing buildings. First, he hopes to learn the Dutch language, because although he knows how to read and write, he wants to learn better to speak and listen. He would love to continue his profession as an architect.

MARIA is from Estonia, but has travelled and lived abroad since many years now, collecting new experiences and languages on the way. She has a background in neurolinguistic research, but decided to leave the academic world and use her skills, knowledge and energy to help solve the world’s sustainability challenges. She is now doing an internship researching gender and diversity.

MOHAMAD ABUZENA is an electrical engineer, who wrote his thesis on lighting for museum and galleries. Here in the Netherlands, he put his knowledge directly to the test at Dekmantel Festival. He would love to continue in his field of studies, as his dream job is having his own company. For now, he would also like to learn more about programming.

MOHAMAD ALARAJ is a tailor, and after the program started out helping out our own tailor team. He loves to work as a tailor, but would love even more to apply his design skills as a fashion designer in the future.

MOUIN likes design, statistics, and arts. He would like to volunteer in social and sustainable design projects such as permaculture. He would like to learn the Dutch language because he thinks it’s a beautiful language. He has a marketing degree and worked with statistics before. He wants to follow courses in programming soon.

IMAN is a housemother of three children. She likes to do aerobics and cooking. She would love to learn more about sewing and making clothes. She is also studying to improve her Dutch.

AYUB would like to learn more about ICT, computer programming, and software developing. He used to work as a tailor. Ayub loves sports, he does football, and Chinese kung fu. He likes to learn new things and would like to learn Dutch better.


MOHAMMAD would like to learn the Dutch language. After that, he would like to start a business in hospitality. He had a restaurant and a fabric shop before. In his free time, he likes to help elderly people in his neighborhood.