Authenticity, Intimacy & Sincerity.
Moroccan-American photographer Jinane Ennasri shares insight on the importance of intuitive portraiture.

Born in the Northern Moroccan city of Taza, Creative Director Jinane Ennasri is dedicated to documenting the profound yet overlooked beauty of quotidian interactions. From grocery shopping at local markets to greetings on the street, Ennasri takes a raw medium to create raw art.

Through her twelve-exposure Hasselblad, Enasris’ work reveals film photography’s reminiscent, soft richness. Here is what she has to say about her ongoing Photo-Journalistic journey.

What initially inspired you to become a photojournalist? 

I’ve always enjoyed writing and documenting events that happened in my day-to-day life growing up. At a young age, I made the decision to become a poet – I loved expressing myself with words and would collect all sorts of quotes. When I discovered that I could document my daily life with photographs, I started to combine both my writing and photography to then become a film documentary photographer. 

It is beautiful to see photography be the vine that connects your passions. Would you say photography was a discovered love affair? 

I would say my parents have had a big impact on my discovery of photography. They stressed the importance of extracurricular activities such as tennis, kayaking and art. I remember my father constantly telling me to fill up my time with things that will help me become a competitive yet well-rounded person and to stick to them. Photography was the one thing that stuck with me, and each day I aim to get better at it. 

Grand Taxi, 2019.
Morroco on 35mm

Photography is an individual, unique practice that is special to each person. What makes Photography special to you? 

It’s therapeutic and subjective and personally, it has taught me to be extremely observant. 

As creatives, it is our responsibility to tell stories. Knowing that, how do you use photography as a tool of expression and communication? And what do you hope people receive from your art? 

My storytelling of Morocco has been the most successful in the last few years. I find candid moments, large or small in everyday Moroccan life and document them to the best of my ability. I avoid sugarcoating reality and bring forth my perception of Morocco. I come from a very not-so-touristy city in Morocco called Taza and yet my best work has been created in that city.

The beauty of elevating ordinary people to extraordinary is something I enjoy doing throughout my work. 

Jinane Ennasri

It is clear you use your photography as an insight into the beauty of day-to-day life. As a photographer who works both digitally and with film, do you have a preference? Do they play different roles in your work? 

I certainly do have a preference for film. Film requires less effort and more instinct. I love working off instinct, and the fact that my Hasselblad only offers 12 photos makes things much more interesting. The colours, quality and behaviour of my Hasselblad are ten times better than any camera I’ve ever seen and I’m sticking to it. 

With the world becoming more and more digital, Analog photographers continue to show how film brings out a raw, sentimental feeling to photographs we can’t help but connect to. Would you agree? What is it about Analog Film that draws you in? 

100%. Besides the fact that it’s the original form of picture taking, I’d say it allows me to think a little more deeply about what I want to shoot and why. My camera specifically allows for 12 shots compared to a DSLR where the number of clicks is endless, and I like that challenge. 

With prices increasing and supply decreasing, Analog film is becoming much less accessible. Why is it important to preserve the craft of Analog Photography? 

Like writing with a pen and notebook, film photography allows for closer transparency of each photograph. The darkroom process allows things to be hands-on, holding your work soon after the shutter sounds. It’s an enjoyable experience for me & I hope everyone who’s ever considered photography gets the opportunity to practice film. 

As you have just mentioned, Analog Photography provides insight into how photos are taken – it brings a deeper appreciation and love for the craft. How can we amplify the community and educate people on the beauty and importance of film?

My way of spreading the importance of the film is starting off by offering it as the main method to my clients/projects. Some clients are hesitant but soon agree and some agree as long as there are digital backups (which is ideal for me).

Conversations, public talks and photo walks are other ways in which I educate on the beauty of film. 

Marrakech, 2022.

Born and Raised in Abu Dhabi, Palestinian creative Dujanah Jarrar reports on all things imaginative, immediate and intimate. Passionate about shifting perceptions and cultivating insight, her writings carry themes of cultural placement, identity and representation, exploring what innovative collaboration and creativity mean today.
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