Today I saw a lot of children and young people enjoying the sun on a cold crisp day here in Germany and it made me think of this new generation.
They have to deal with so much and to inherit a broken world lacking in hope and riddled with corruption and warp.
The world today is so different to the one I had as a child. And yes, I did grow up inside of a civil war, but today feels somehow more volatile than that.
Things seem to be changing so fast and my hope is that change can happen in both directions. I know that sanity will return and morality still exists and good take up center stage at some point. It must…
I had them so often as a child and every once in a while as I got older. The feeling was so intense during my childhood that I completely believed that I could fly. I used to close my eyes and kick off with my feet and just hang there in midair doing swimming like motions to float up towards the ceiling.
This felt so intensely real that I know on some level, at some stage of our lives and in a certain state of reality, we can.
It always felt like a secret I had to keep but then the older I got the more stories I heard of others having experienced this.
On November 13, 2019, I was in Tripoli during the height of what had come to be known as the October Revolution in Lebanon. During those months, Tripoli was given the name ‘ the bride of the revolution’, because its people rose with power, with hope, and with an undeniable spirit to right what was wronged by a failing and criminal government of thieves and war lords in Lebanon.
What I met that evening was unforgettable. Simple and humble people gathering in the city square with music, art, food and a common cause. Hope tinged the air with gold and the enthusiasm was infectious. I found myself lifted to the platform where the speakers were addressing the crowds along with my camera and lenses.
But looking back on the first image today, 2 years and 2 months later, I am heartbroken to realise that back then, the cry of the people expressed in writing on that wall in red : ‘your lies are causing our hunger’, was only the beginning of a disastrous economic collapse that has left these beautiful people below the poverty line with no end in sight.
I was born in Lebanon and grew up there in a scarring civil war that raged on for the majority of my young life, until at one point in 1987, I just picked up and left, never to return except for short family visits.
And today I watch with disbelief how my country continues to suffer, how its people go hungry without food, medication, electricity, water, infrastructure or money. I feel helpless about helping them and I struggle to understand how this can be fathomed and tackled without emotion.
I hope to photograph my country again in its glory, with it people happy and smiling, well fed and armed with dignity.
Hi from another one of a series of gray rainy days in Germany.
So many things keep drawing me back to the streets with my camera and we are now going on over 25 years!
One of those things is a memorable moment, where everything comes together to encapsulate a memory. A smile, a story, a writing on the wall and the experience gets encapsulated in an image, never to be forgotten.
This image was take in the Tarlabasi area of Istanbul.
I am still traveling through favorite moments in photography today and these images stand out.
During my travels through Yunnan, I often had a Polaroid camera with me to make instant photographs of people and mostly the children that I could offer to them as small gifts.
This process caused a huge amount of joy and fun at the surprise of seeing their images appear as if by magic and at times like this as in the second photo, an attack of little people trying to get their hands on the magical device, my Polaroid camera 😂.
But as a traveling street photographer, this is a great way of bringing the distance between you and local people you are meeting for the first time and trying to photograph them in a short time window.
Hi again, I almost forgot how fast projects like this go when you start them and how merciless time is…
How much of your childhood do you remember? For me it is short salient moments of intense emotion, some life changing moments that left permanent scars, or pleasant memories like the smell of my swimsuit when my mother took it out of storage for the first trip to the beach…
Why are we designed to forget? It could have been easily tweaked that we remember everything, couldn’t it have been? I do understand the need to forget pain, but what about everything else?
And most importantly, if you do believe that this is not your first life, then why do we arrive here empty?
At my age you sometimes forget what you’ve set about to do moments ago, so this memory thing needs some thorough investigation, don’t you think?
The world feels more and more alien to me with every passing day. 2022 is proving to be an even more intense transition into a changing future than the years that preceded it.
What kind of world are we leaving our children? They are a generation that was born and grew up in an accelerating age of technological advancement and an ever narrowing focus toward screens and social media with less and less connection to nature and its wonders.
How will they reconnect to what matters the most? How can we guide them towards a more harmonious, connected and natural state of affairs?
Maybe winter weather , shorter days and exploding covid numbers are promoting these thoughts and contemplations, but they are real and dominate my thoughts.
Good night from here and I hope you wake up to a bright new day full of promise and change to the better.