When acquiring a DSLR is just a matter of buying the camera and doing point-and-shoot, any one could theoretically take a nice photo right there and then. However, it is real photographers like Mahwash Rehman that reinforces the importance of discipline and training…
“I am a business professional with an MBA and PHR, who turned visual artist by way of photographer, poet, blogger and I am also a mother to two beautiful kids, mashallah.
“I first explored DSLR in 2008 when I was taking a career break from the corporate world. I took it up seriously in 2010 when Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture in Karachi, Pakistan offered its first ever post graduate degree in photography. It was through this program that I became passionate about this medium.
Though I guess the roots of my love for photography go a long way back to the time when my father used to take our pictures with his Yashica Electro 35 – one of the most popular consumer 35mm cameras of the 1960s and 70s. I still have his camera!
“I always try creating the image in my head before shooting – that way I know what I am trying to achieve in terms of lighting, mood, frame and expression…of course this is true for more controlled environments. In other environments such as shooting concerts, you have to improvise as you don’t have control over any of the parameters in the picture besides your own camera.
“My work and portfolio is diverse, ranging from portraiture, fashion, to concerts, behind the scenes, photojournalism and art work. I enjoy how each genre is unique in offering its challenges, and I like exploring those unique elements.
“I have worked with a lot of celebrities from Bollywood and Pakistan. From Bollywood, I have mostly worked with musicians, singers and composers and I absolutely love working with them in the concerts and behind the scene settings, trying to be creative with my shots, capturing them and the lighting beautifully while watching them practice and perform.
What’s better than enjoying both your passion for photography and music at the same time!
“I enjoy working on fashion assignments, as it offers a lot of room for creativity. You can go wild in your imagination or take a simple clean shot, the choices are endless!
For portraits in a studio setting, I love to use low key lighting, playing with shadows and highlights, trying to bring out subject’s true personality. Taking environmental portraits is always fun as you are able to tell so much more about the subject.
“But if I have to choose one work that is closest to my heart that would have to be my photojournalistic project on Pakistan’s Women Cricket Team. The objective of the project was to acknowledge that Pakistani women stand parallel to men in any field, and recognize the ever growing self belief and strength of character of Pakistani women. The project has been showcased internationally.
“I truly admire Yousuf Karsh and Thomas Struth for their approach towards portraiture, Annie Leibovitz for her book ‘Olympic Portraits’ and how beautifully she captures athletes’ persona through creatively using perspective and body language. Steven Meisel, for breaking the ‘rules’, and Richard Avadon for his simple, clean, black and white photography.
“We moved to Abu Dhabi in 2014 and I am truly excited at what Abu Dhabi has to offer in terms of art and culture! I am currently working with a publisher to take out my photographic book, and hope to launch it this year. More commercial work, creating artwork, holding photography classes, and meeting positive people in the industry to partner with. Also I travel a lot and plan to start my travel series soon. So like my Facebook page and stay connected!”
and @mahwashr on Instagram