3 Afghan photographers have just won the Shah Marai prize
Three Afghan photographers have won the first three places in the inaugural Shah Marai prize, held in memory of AFP’s chief Afghanistan photographer.
In the award ceremony, all three said they hope their winning the award would influence a new generation of photographers from the country.
Farshad Usyan came in first place, along with Hoshan Hashimi in second and Mohammad Anwar Danishyar in third. Each picked up their awards at the “My Afghanistan” awards, held at AFP headquarters in Paris.
According to Usyan, he never expected to become a photographer. The former medical student took up the profession following a call from Marai, after his brother – also an AFP photographer – died.
"I was just a student, I had no idea about photography," said Usyan, "I did not know about professional cameras, how to turn it on," he said.
Speaking of the late Marai, he said, "I wish he was here. But I know he is proud of me. He was my close friend at a personal and professional level."
Usyan won first prize for a series of photos dubbed, ‘The Pacifist’. It’s a collection of candid photos featuring unexpected scenes around the country, such as those enjoying Afghanistan’s first 3D cinema and women laughing.