This season On Pedder has teamed up with photographer Abdela Igmirien originally from Morocco, currently based in Hong Kong. After spending a few years as an engineer and cartographer in Morocco and China, he finally found his true calling in visual imagery. Through the medium of film, his focus is on conceptual and fashion related projects, with the street being his only studio space.
1. On Pedder thoroughly enjoyed working with you for our Spring/Summer 2017 imagery, if you could use 4 adjectives to describe this season’s tone what would they be?
– Fresh, vivid, crisp, and bold.
2. You don’t originally come from a photographic background, could you tell us how you found yourself behind the lens with thousands of social media fans?
– I’m a surveyor engineer and cartographer by profession, I started getting into photography when I first moved to China and I was mostly doing street photography with my iPhone. I was sharing my photos mainly on Instagram, where I met many photographers in China and now Hong Kong, making it my main networking tool.
3. With the rise of social media platforms and the exposure of many photographers (both amateur and professional), what do you think makes your work unique and stand out from others?
– With social media, you can easily follow what the crowd likes and post or take more photos that would get more likes and praise haha. I didn’t go down that route and I still make images that I primarily like and enjoy.
4. Film seems to be your go-to photographic style and aesthetic, how does it differ from digital? Why do you choose to shoot film in a digital age?
– I started shooting film when I got to Hong Kong, it was an experimentation that turned into an addiction. Film is so different in many ways, the texture, the tones, and the overall experience that can’t be recreated in digital. For example, I hated using flash before, but with film, it’s beautiful. Also, with film, you can take your time composing the shot, measuring the light and feeling the moment before pressing the shutter.
5. Strong lines and angles appear in many of your shots, are these purposeful reoccurring motifs or is it purely coincidental?
– Lines and angles are the main elements of my major at university—surveying engineering. We use distances (lines) and angles to draw city maps and plans. That’s why I’m really drawn to these motifs.
6. What would be your advice for any budding photographers/ content creators?
– Master your gear and stop investing in every last camera or content creation tool that’s out there. Focus on what you have and start experimenting from there. Don’t be afraid to try different types of photography, that’s how you’ll find your style and make you aware of your strengths and weaknesses, and work towards evolving.