Please introduce yourself: What is your name, where are you from, what do you do?
Sareh Arjmand, 31,Tehran, Iran
What is your relationship with photography? How did you get into it?
Like many photographers I did not begin my work from my childhood or teenage years. Although I would take photos, keep them and go to them every now and then, I began to take photography more seriously at 28 years old when I noticed that a photo did not necessarily have to reflect a beautiful composition of a landscape or a face with impressive light and colors but it could be a portrait of objects.
What do you think triggers you to photograph in a certain moment? Is it planned or solely driven by intuition?
The photos are the result of my walking through the city I live in. There exists in the city in front of my eyes a view of the objects that are not placed in the appropriate location where they belong to, and their interaction with their environment seems to be irrational; this interaction being permanent sometimes while being very variable and vanishing in other times. Such elements as history, decay, change, surprise etc. can be found in such views. Taking photos of such details is attractive to me and encourages me to take a photo when I am exposed to such subjects in the city. What is interesting in them is that they are accidental with no preplanned arrangement and as a matter of fact that is my walking with a camera that discovers them. The subjects previously being an everyday life routine regardless of their geography, now become characterized in front of the camera that keeps them in the time being (now).
Which city would you like to visit the most and why?
I do not care about what city to choose for photography, because my photos do not represent a certain city; however I like to experience photography in the cities of such countries as Italy.
What is that one place you have never managed to photograph at and which is now forever gone?
While walking on the street with my camera I will surely take a photo if I feel I should. However, there have been times I have been faced with very attractive subjects but not equipped with my camera and when I was back with my camera either the subject had been totally changed or had disappeared.
If you could travel back/ forth in time, what advice would you give your younger/ older self?
I would tell my younger self that I did not have to buy a large «DSLR» camera too heavy to be with me always. I could have a small compact camera light enough to be with me everywhere. I would tell my older self to take as many photos as you can, print them, put them in a large box and take a look at them as often as you can to see where your collection is going to.
What do you prefer saying: to take a photograph or to make a photograph and why?
I would rather «take a photo», because I do not change anything to make a view ready in front of the camera.
Asking you to single it out, what was the most interesting experience you have had while photographing?
People look at me surprisingly when I take a photo on the street. Sometimes they give me a smile and leave while sometimes they come to me to talk with me and even get eager to show me other locations. Sometimes they mistake me for a correspondent and ask me to report such anarchy and problems in their living area. Sometimes they think I am a tourist just interested in such subjects.
If it wasn’t for photography, what would you be interested in doing instead?
I would write if I was not a photographer and my writings and descriptions would probably contain a lot of details.
Please, describe one of your pictures to a blind person.
I would tell him or her that my pictures contain some objects probably making you ask why they are there and why I have taken a photo of them. It is like when you are tidying up your room and pull your bed away to see a crack on the wall from where a plant has grown up and you ask how it all has happened and then you become friends with the crack and plant.
What are you currently working on, and — if there is — what is your next project/ journey?
Currently I am working on this project and I like to finish it and go abroad, but have not yet decided where to go, maybe to one of the neighbor countries such as Turkey.
Thank you very much, Sareh!
© Sareh Arjmand