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An Interview with Mahira Khan Became The Turning Point in This Photographer’s Life

We love art but we do not want our children to become artists. There are a few people, however, who love creating art that other people can enjoy and in their pursuit of arts they do not listen to the society’s criticism. Areesh Zubair is one such individual. Born in a family of well-educated people, Areesh always felt the need to do something different. But he realized fairly quickly that sports is not that something different. Then he turned to music and played bass guitar for a few underground bands back in the day.

How It All Began:

Once his attempts to get into art school turned out to be unsuccessful, he turned towards photography. “Photography is in my blood,” said Areesh explaining that his father used to take great pictures. Even his eldest brother has a keen eye for photography and it was his camera that Areesh first picked, “Nikon D3000” recalls Areesh, and moved from playing guitar to taking photographs of guitars.

Areesh Zubair Interview

But Areesh’s journey started way before that. He started using a film camera at a very early age and then moved to a digital camera in the early 2000s. He has also used a point and shoot Nikon camera. But his most loyal partner, which he still has and uses from time to time, a Nikon D5000 is the one he bought after saving up and he has made most memories with.

From Being A Musician to Photographing Musician:

Once he started photography, he began hanging out at the studios of his music idols. He interviewed and photographed people like Ali Noor, Ali Hamza, Farhad Humayun and Ali Zafar.

Ali Zafar by Areesh Zubair

One day he sent a request for a small interview with Mahira Khan. The small interview turned to an hour long hang out session and Areesh managed to take a few candid photographs of her which earned him recognition and appreciation on Instagram.

Mahira Khan by Areesh Zubair

On Photographing Celebrities:

In his three years of working as a professional photographer, Areesh has photographed many famous celebrities. “In the start, I used to get a bit nervous and confused but with time it changed and became normal”, said Areesh. According to him, the trick to photographing celebrities is that you develop a level of comfort with them and earn their trust. “You can learn a lot from them because they have been in the industry longer than you”, Areesh told Twittistaan.

Annie by Areesh Zubair

Favorite Photographers:

On the question of who his favorite photographers are, Areesh had a list. But he managed to name his top 10 photographers and they are:

  1. Tapu Javari
  2. Arif Mehmood
  3. Mobeen Ansari
  4. Ashna Khan
  5. Steve McCurry
  6. Reza Deghati
  7. Brandon Stanton
  8. Michael Weschler
  9. Pete Souza
  10. Peter Lindbergh

Believing in Yourself is the Key:

The road to greatness wasn’t achieved overnight. Areesh has faced many rejections on this path. But the day his photo won a competition and he was given a signed copy of Tapu Javari’s book Shades of Green is the say he decided never to give up. Just a few days after sharing his work with Sadaf Zarrar, he got a call from her asking if he would like to work for SiddySays as a freelance photographer. Working for one of Pakistan’s biggest fashion blog not only opened the door of fashion and lifestyle photography for Areesh but also changed his career path from a business grad looking for a marketing job to a photojournalist.

Osman Khalid Butt by Areesh Zubair

And today he is on the panel of top photographers of the same company who rejected his application for an entry-level job.

“Being a part of the latest edition of one of my all-time favorite coffee table book Journey Through Pakistan is something I am really proud of.” – Areesh.

Areesh Zubair’s story is inspiration for all of us who are trying to do something different but are full of doubts. We should learn from people like Areesh and start believing in ourselves.

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