mij and honesty

My name is Mij. I am an Emirati/Irish photographer and film-maker based in Dubai. My work is usually informed by my love of character. Mainly the character of the subject I aim to photograph. I’ve always been fascinated with the way people live their lives and behave and it was only in my 2nd year of university at Essex when I watched a film by Molly Dineen that I realised I could capture this fascination in an image. Since then, I’ve been exploring the different ways we, as people, have approached ‘truth’ in imagery and what is a truth in any given work.

I mainly shoot people, but I try not to limit myself to just the human subjects and I try to photograph anything I think has character. This could be food, it could be an animal or something else entirely.

I think that acceptance of the people and world around me that leads me to my best work. There is an idea in stoic philosophy which states that what happens in the world around us isn’t good or bad, it’s how we, as individuals, react to the world around us which ultimately frames things as good or bad. It was this lesson in acceptance that I have little control over the world around me that really made the difference in how or what I shoot.

When I started capturing images, I would cancel a shoot simply because the weather wasn’t how I’d like it, now I just go out and take the photograph anyway. This is especially true for the two images below, the one of my dog, Biscuit and one of Hatta Dam. In both cases I had little control over everything aside from which lens and camera I was using at the time, but I’d say that this is what made these photos work. Finding a moment amidst the chaos and capturing it.

At the moment, I use my approach to photograph products and models in a manner I haven’t seen in Dubai. I believe that it is the honesty in the way I work that has lead me to whatever success I have thus far and I hope to continue to push my work out to more people so that they may see it.

To keep up with Mij's work, check or @mijrin.alhajri