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Rarely have I come across photographic work as inspired and stunning as that of Baha’i photographer Shahriar Erfanian. Hailing originally from Ecuador, Shahriar now lives in Vancouver, Canada, where he and his wife run a photography agency. Shahriar has been a participant in the wonderful Baha’i photographic project Nineteen Months and has many of his uniquely vivid photos online over at Flickr and 500px.
Baha’i Blog caught up with Shahriar to ask him if we could showcase some of his beautiful work here on the blog, and to learn a bit more about what inspires this passionate Baha’i photographer. But before we get to his answers, here are some of Shahriar’s photographs to gaze at!
You have some of the most evocative photography I’ve ever come across, what inspires your work?
I get inspiration from many amazing photographers around the world, from the past and the present, as well as things that I see every day around me. Sometimes I see beauty in things that others wouldn’t, or in faces that are not conventionally “beautiful” and some of my favorite photos have come out of those moments. But I also love experiencing and photographing natural beauty, such as landscapes, the love between a parent and child, or the sweet moments in a wedding celebration.
You have been involved in the Baha’i photographic project Nineteen Months, how important do you think projects like that are?
Projects like these are great collaborative efforts between people from all over the world with very different perspectives, inspirations and techniques. They serve as inspiration for the people involved in the project to explore and learn from one another, as well as the people that enjoy the posts every month. It is an opportunity for artists to share their love and art, and for the audience to engage with it in an easily accessible way.
How would you like to see the state of Baha’i photography change in the future?
Every day more and more people are sharing and engaging with life through their photos. The same can happen with Baha’i photography, making it an integral part of our life experiences and sharing those experiences with our communities. I think that photography can be a great source of connectivity between people…the sharing of one’s experiences, emotions and reactions to different aspects of life…and connectivity and love is what the Faith is about!
If you had one piece of advice for aspiring Baha’i photographers, what would it be?
Have your camera with you always and shoot, shoot and shoot! You don’t have to have the most expensive gear or sophisticated training…just a love for it, and a desire to engage with the world around you. All the technical stuff will come with practice 🙂
And I have to ask, favourite equipment?
Canon 5D mark II with a 85mm lens.
Thank you Shahriar!
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