Pakistan through the Eyes of Emerging Young Photographers from FATA

Thursday, June 27th, 2013 7:59:27 by


Seventeen young photographers from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) displayed their work at the National Art Gallery in Islamabad and discussed the unique perspectives and insights they learned in a special training program led by photographers from the prestigious National Geographic magazine.  The program was funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).


“The U.S. government is proud to support the work of these talented young people, who are cultural ambassadors for Pakistan and FATA,” said U.S. Embassy Minister Counselor for Public Affairs Peter Brennan.  “They have given the American people a better understanding of what everyday life looks like in Pakistan,” he added. 


The young photographers, mostly in their 20s, hail from mixed socio-economic backgrounds and represent various regions of FATA.  The photo exhibit provided glimpses of everyday life in Pakistan, as well as beautiful shots of famous landmarks such as Faisal Mosque in Islamabad.


The 17 photographers were selected from more than 250 applicants in a rigorous application process to participate in the USAID-funded training program, which included two sessions led by esteemed National Geographic photographers.


Muhammad Rizwan, a 25-year old man from Jandola, Frontier Regions Tank, said, “Before the National Geographic Photo Camp I was using my mobile camera to take pictures and did not know how to take a really good photo.  Now I understand the editing process and how to select one great picture out of many.”


The National Geographic Photo Camp introduced photographic storytelling techniques that encouraged the aspiring young photographers to explore their unique perspectives and styles.  They also learned how to tell their stories with others outside of FATA.


Huma Gul, a 22-year-old business administration student at the University of Peshawar, said, “National Geographic gave me the opportunity to learn photography from some of the most skilled photographers in the world.  I also learned that I could tell important stories through photography, something I was not aware of before this training program.”


In addition to supporting young photographers, the U.S. government is funding the construction and rehabilitation of more than 650 kilometers of road in FATA and neighboring areas.  These new roads will provide families with better access to health facilities, allow farmers to more easily take their goods to markets, and help local governments provide better services to rural communities throughout the region. 


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