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Malak Kabbani: Through The Lens

Malak Kabbani: Through The Lens

A photograph has the ability to capture the essence of a soul.

Malak Kabbani is a 23 year old Egyptian German photographer based in London, United Kingdom.

Hannah's comments: Malak's photography screams youth, rebellion and attitude. Her pictures ooze so confidently with character and draw you into the subject so heavily, which is a striking quality in such a young photographer. The range of her work stems from fashion photography to intimate portraits, highlighting the diversity of her overwhelming talent.

Nour's comments: When you look at an image and it compels you to want to know more about the person in it, about their past and present, their hopes and dreams, their greatest fears ... in that, a photographer has succeeded at least in making their subject transcendent. And who doesn't want to be transcendent. 



What attracted you to photography as a visual medium of expression? 

I was a painter when I was younger, I remember always wanting to make things. The love for photography came from an urge to create visuals quicker and more precisely. It was during my foundation at Central Saint Martins that I realised this the most. I had come to London at the age of 17, torn between doing design or fine art, which I think my father wanted me to pursue. But the foundation I did was a diagnostic, which meant I had time to explore a variety of paths including graphic design and photography.

Photography had always been a hobby, but it became a quicker and much more effective way of me translating my thoughts visually, I've been hooked ever since. 

How do you chose your subject - people/places/things - what draws you in?

I don't. Everything is inspiring if you look at it the right way. With fashion I'll choose a model of course, with that I look for personality. But in reality, out on the streets or anywhere, there's always something going on, in a way everything draws me in.

What is the most important thing to pay attention to when taking a photograph in your opinion? Color? Composition? Subject? Lighting? 

The most important thing in a photograph is the person in it, if you neglect that then your photo has no soul. I like to sit and talk with the people I shoot before even pointing a camera at them. That way you can observe and understand, how someone moves, where their face looks good, the bits that I feel contribute to me giving an honest depiction of the person I'm going to shoot. It's the kind of thing you lose on fashion shoots, because everyones concentrated on the wrong thing, which is why I much prefer working with smaller teams. It's also one of the main reasons I shoot everything on film. There isn't a screen with everyone on set saying what the model is doing wrong, no one making them feel awkward, with film you can almost make them forget the camera exists at all. Light is important too, obviously. 

Photography is truth.
— John-Luc Godard
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