The shoot took place at Le Jardin, a beautiful French restaurant in Kabul, and on the ground of Murad Khani, in the old city of Kabul. Both locations were stunning, and provided a great backdrop for Zolaykha's new work.
And, once again If there is anything you see that you like, you can place orders for Zarif through their website!
You can now follow me on Instagram here
The Little Book of Kabul
Please keep up the support to The Little Book of Kabul. All you need to do is purchase the book in advance to support this great cause, and you will receive the book next year once the project is complete.
To support, please go here: http://www.indiegogo.com/littlebookofkabul?c=pledges
This summer, the ever talented Lorenzo Tugnoli photographed me for Zarif Design's newest collection. I was super sick that day, but it was fun nonetheless! The shoot took place at Le Jardin, a beautiful French restaurant in Kabul, and on the ground of Murad Khani, in the old city of Kabul. Both locations were stunning, and provided a great backdrop for Zolaykha's new work.If there is anything you see that you like, you can place orders for Zarif through their website!
The Little Book of Kabul has been a not-so-little project in my life over the past few weeks. Two of the most talented people in my life, photographer Lorenzo Tugnoli and writer Francesca Recchia have set out on a remarkable mission. The Little Book of Kabul looks at the wold of art and creativity in Kabul and the important role it is playing in shaping the future of the city. The book will profile five instrumental individuals in the music, art, media and design world, and through snippets of their story, will tell the story of many others.
Francesca and Lorenzo
The project is very close to my heart, as last year I connected the two of them when Francesca told me, over a cup of coffee in London, that she wanted to come to Afghanistan. It was a match made in heaven, they instantly hit it off and set to work on a article together called Creative Kabul for Domus magazine. Since then, they've been talking about how much more there is to tell and finally this year decided to make a book.
What makes this project so special is their approach. Lorenzo, an art photographer at heart, has a slow and deliberate approach to his work, always looking for the art and perfectly beautiful proportions. Francesca has spent the past 9 years working on the concept of art and conflict, in Palestine, Iraq, Kashmir and now Afghanistan. So together they provide a unique insight that avoids the cliche that some coverage can have that focuses only on the war and less on the details of the remarkable individuals that exist here.
You can support this wonderful project through their crowdfunding campaign here. We have to raise $12,000 in the next 39 days - please show your support for the unique project!
Peace one Day
My colleagues and I at Moby were recently part of an exciting project, where we were asked by Peace One Day to produce video promoting all of the different activities that were taking place in Afghanistan for Peace One Day celebrations. Peace One Day is an initiative set up by Jude Law and Jeremy Gilly, to call people from all over the world to come together for the largest gathering in the name of peace ever seen in one day.
Last Friday, on 21 September, International Peace Day, our video was aired into Wembley Stadium at a concert held there to celebrate the day.
Special thanks to Sami Sadat, whom I have been working closely with on the 2012 peace campaign for the High Peace Council of Afghanistan.
Snippets of Sicily and the end of a beautiful Summer
I am back in Kabul now, and the summer seems to be slowly coming to an end, with the nip of winter in the evening air. I am well and truly a summer sun person, so the thought of another snowy winter here does not feel me with joy. The memories of my Sicilian summer linger, and I thought I'd share the last of my photos from that glorious island.
Syracuse was a major power city in the Greek Empire, and to my surprise I found out also the birth place of the legendary Archimedes. The inner geek in me could not help but be excited by this!
Scopello - what a great find! A tiny little town on the West of Sicily with crystal waters and cute little beaches. We stayed in a rustic converted fishing estate, with our very own private beach. Evening consisted of relaxed walks and meals of spaghetti a la vongole. Heaven.
Making dreams a reality -
The Afghan Premier League
You had to see it to believe it
"You had to see it to believe it", is what I kept telling my friends and family back home. The first match of the Afghan Premier League. The crowd went wild as Kandahar scored against Kabul. The atmosphere was electric, and people were simply having fun. This may sound like a normal scene to most of you out there, but for Afghanistan this is a first.
This is a project I have been working on with my colleagues for the past 8 months, and I cannot explain the immense pride I felt yesterday when all of our hard work came to fruition. Moby had the idea of starting a football league a few years ago, but it wasn't until this year that we finally made it happen. Frankly speaking, I was a little skeptical of the possibility of setting up a professional football league in Afghanistan. With all of the large and small expected and unexpected issues that arise everyday, it seemed an impossible feat.
The first match had the stadium packed to the brim, full of eager young supporters, in awe of the professional production that was before their eyes. It would not be an overstatement to say that Afghanistan has never experienced anything of the sort in its history.
Funnily enough I ended up sitting next to a former Afghan national cricket team player who was gob smacked at what he was seeing. He seemed mildly peeved that cricket had never seemed to reach this level of professionalism in the country, even though – according to him – it was the most popular sport in the country.
The incredible energy in that place brought tears of joy to my eyes, filling me and everyone there with hope for the future of their nation. But the most astonishing part of the whole thing was at half time, when the Afghan women’s football team was brought onto the pitch, after having just returned from Sri Lanka with a 4-0 win over Pakistan. http://www.tolonews.com/en/afghanistan/7547-afghan-womens-football-team-soundly-beats-pakistan.
I could not believe my eyes. There we were over 2,000 people – mostly men –cheering these ten or so women with such enthusiasm and pride, sitting only a few hundred metres away from Ghazi stadium, where women under the Taliban would be stoned to death for merely attempting any form of freedom. That moment will stay with me forever and remind me of all the good that has happened in Afghanistan and all the good that can still happen for its future.
Taormina is a small town on the east coast of Sicily. After a long LONG overnight boat ride from Naples, we arrived in Sicily, ready for endless meals of spaghetti alla vongole and cannoli and beautiful Mediterranean sea and sun. Actually it turns out cannoli is one of the richest choices of sweets you could ever decide to eat. One bite of that sweet, creamy cheese is enough for a lifetime!
Taormina itself was packed with holiday makers, mainly Italian. It seemed like all of Italy was squashed into that one hill-top town.
Arriving off the boat. 14 hours from Naples to Sicily!
Sicily's infamous cannoli.
Taormina by night
An eclectic Italian city
Arriving in Naples, I had an overwhelming feeling of being in the middle east, or something very close to it. Staying in the historical centre, I was expecting something similar to what I have experienced in all other Italian cities (albeit northern ones). However, the centre of Naples was pretty run down with an obvious trash problem. Still, it was charming and gave me a familiar feeling, feeling comfortable with the rough edges of this eclectic city.
Being smack bang in the middle of August, most of the town was shut down. The illusion this gave was as if we were walking around an art gallery. Every inch of wall and closed door was covered with incredible graffiti art, displaying the passion of the city through colour, political statements and exploration of the Neapolitan identity. Not only that, the town was full of abandoned items seemed to be deliberately arranged as some sort of piece of abstract art. Even towels hanging out to dry showed incredible colour coordination.
decrepit and charismatic buildings of Naples
Navigating Naple's underground world by candle light
Hair styling Napoli style. This guy was awesome...everything you ever thought a camp, Italian hairdresser could be
unwanted trash or abstract art?