Photo by @shaistadeen
Photographer Shaista Deen (@shaistadeen) is giving the world the role model she wanted. “Growing up in Trinidad and Tobago, I never saw any female hijabi photographers,” says the 22-year-old great-great-granddaughter of Indian immigrants.
At age 14, she saved up for her first camera. With a bedroom desk lamp as her studio light and a stack of books as a tripod, she captured what was closest: her friends, her family and herself. “I was very different with regards to the way I saw myself back then,” she remembers. “I was depressed for a period of time as a teenager. Photography was one of the main things that helped me out of that. I was extremely insecure about myself, pessimistic and doubted my abilities a lot. After I was able to get past all of that, I wanted to help others do the same.”
Now, she’s a university student (and freelance photographer) living in the UK, but Shaista misses her homeland — and the Caribbean sun. “I love my little island and I’m proud of where I’m from,” she says.
Watch today’s story to learn more about Shaista.