Profile of a young photographer from Syria: Mais Shourbaji

Mais Shourbaji, Forward MagazineMais Shourbaji photography

Mais Shourbaji photographyMais Shourbaji photography

It doesn’t take one a long time to realize the young woman, holding her camera and getting busy searching for good angles, is a talented one. Born in 1983, Mais Shourbaji is one of Syria’s self-taught photographers; ready to snap a picture with great ingenuity and passion as long as she is in love with the experience.

Her regular office working hours – as executive assistant in a multi-national company – take up most of her day, but after 5pm every evening she is ready to change into casual dress and join her friends at concerts, Jazz festivals and the theatre. That’s where she fulfills her heart’s passion and spends many evenings taking snapshots of Syria’s buzzing cultural life.

Mais is popular, very active and has a lot to say about women in her country. She advocates freedom and adventure, two aspects that define her photography. Recently, she has taken part in a documentary to be released in the near future about the changing face of the Syrian society, the contradictions young women of today are facing, and the ambitions someone like Mais has.

Photo Passion

mais shourbaji

I met Mais last year, on one of
Music Matbakh‘s stops in the region. She was the photographer assigned to take photos of us while we performed at Qasr el Azem. I had the pleasure of meeting Mais again when I relocated into Damascus and joined Forward Magazine as its associate editor-in-chief.

The young woman with a lot of zest believes “success is to love what you do, to persist and never give up no matter what obstacles you face, and to keep on developing your skills in order to excel.”

That’s indeed an indication of a very driven person. But where did Mais get her inspirations from?

“My father is one of the most influential people in my life; he’s an artist, a cultivated and quiet man. He’s my friend… he hears me out and supports me in everything I do, at the same time he is a harsh critic who wants to see me stand out. My dad has a great role in shaping my personality; he helped me liberate myself from one-track mindedness and taught me to look at life from different angles with open mindedness.”

Mais photos on Flickr can be found here.

Writer: Ruba Saqr (associate editor-in-chief, Forward Magazine. Damascus, Syria)

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22 Responses

  1. i’m one of Mais’s fans
    seen her in many concerts and i like the way she does her job.
    with all this enthusiasm and passion it can be a real pleasure just watching her .

  2. way to go maisos! all the best 😉

  3. Mais is a talented photographer and a very nice person too, I met her through the virtual world in facebook first time, then I met her in reality…
    I loved her work very much, she knows very well to catch the moment and convert it in a captured moment which could stop the breath…
    keep up the great creativity Mais, waiting to be photographed by you in my next concert in Jan.
    great Job Mais and God Bless you

  4. if you know mais in person you would know that all what ‘s been said is true.
    best

  5. Mais u have a place under this sun i’m so proud of u …keep on the good work

    best of luck

  6. I’m really proud of this young lady, cause it’s not easy to deal with a lot of things with same high spirit and passion. but Mais you really succeeded in that.

    Wish you all the best my dearest friend…

  7. الله يحميكي

  8. WISH U ALL THE BEST… and Hard Luck

  9. Since she honored my friend list on facebook, I have been amazed by the multi talents this young lady have, a fantastic photographer who makes me eager to see her new posts and funny comments every time I check my account, a social energetic lady I could only wish her the best,,

  10. Active? yes .. but talented? i think that’s a big word for mais.. she still needs education and devotion to be a real photographer.. i hope she keeps working on that.
    a question to the writer of the article: what does mais really know about women in her country?

  11. hey good luck girl,,,;)

  12. God bless you maiso, you are the best.

  13. damn right !!!!
    Mais is one of the best amazin photographers i’ve ever met in my life
    God bless u my beautiul angel
    love u girl:)

  14. god bless you maiso and good luck

    🙂

  15. I can be nothing but proud, may God bless you in your way to success.

  16. mr./ms. niv : would please tell us how many photographers u ever met in ur life ?

  17. Mais dear, I may not be the best judge, but I can be sure that each and every photograph you take, you pour your love and passion for life in..and that’s more than enough to make them the best.
    well done dear…and I am proud to be a big fan of MAIS SHURBAJI the great TALENTED WOMAN

    keep the great work !

  18. I read the article about you and I already know your apparent photography skills,
    I beleive ya Mais, that the problem we’re all facing is the lack of national academic and professional firms that should adopt our WASTED talents…

    I see in you Speilberg, Scorsese, Burton, Verbinski,,,, yes, I do really se in you a high potential screenplay director,

    I bet that you can transform a “Dostoyvsky” or “Chekov” piece of art into a real picture that depicts our reality and reflect the Human Inner World :)…

    Great Job Mais, looking fwd to meet you,

    Mahmoud

  19. Wish you all the best Miso … i’m so happy and proud coz you are my friend … and not a normal friend …

    Keep it up Miso … great Job 😉

  20. Mais is a free spirit… there’s a lot more
    Keep going looking for more

  21. WeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeW

  22. wiiiiiiiiiioooooo tarek

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