How do you see photography as a form of activism, and what do you hope to accomplish with your work?
The idea of the photographer as an activist is an appealing one. It means that photographs really matter, that they can lead to changes in representation, attitudes and policy. It transforms the photographer from a shutterbug to a prophet, someone with real vision and moral standing in the world, someone with power.
I know that the power of photographs is limited and is part of a longer process where politicians, writers, community figures or lawyers play a greater role. But I wanted to bring a little change at least through my lens. I tried a lot to change the cliched ideas about women of Afghanistan with Burqas and restrictions which the media always cover, and I always try to show and capture the unseen portrait of women in Afghanistan — To talk about their strength, power, liberty and beauties.
Photos have the power to change people’s minds and wake people up to things they aren’t aware of or are ignoring. They can make people feel a certain way, or just care a whole lot more depending on what they are used for. Photography is a really important tool.