Nabil Rosman, winner of the Project//21 category, is an 18-year-old Malaysian photographer with the dream to become a photojournalist in the future.


What first got you interested in photography?

When I was 13, I saw a documentary about Pete Souza and his dedication to capturing Barack Obama’s daily life with his camera. One image struck me in particular – a black and white photograph of Obama’s silhouette as he looked through one of the White House windows. I was in awe of this photo, and from then, I knew this is what I wanted to do.

What is your background in photography?

I haven’t received any formal education in photography as it is quite expensive to enroll in classes, but that hasn’t stopped me from teaching myself. I read lots of photography magazines and watch lots of YouTube tutorials to inspire me.

I find nature to be the best studio with only natural light as my light source.

What do you try to achieve through your work?

As my dream is to be a photojournalist, my goal is to be able to create stories through pictures. I want to capture my subjects’ emotions and translate it through my images so that the viewer will also feel the same thing.

What is your Masters series about?

This series is basically the continuation of the images I won the Masters with. With these photos, I explored a mixture of human emotion and nature; I see both as very wild and free and sometimes we get lost in our emotions just as we can get lost in nature. Combining these two elements together, we get a picture with its own story.

Where did you get the idea for your series?

At first, I considered shooting this project in a studio with all the lighting set up, but I realized that’s not my style; I am most comfortable in nature. I find nature to be the best studio with only natural light as my light source. As well, since I wanted to play with expression and emotion in my photographs, I included a human subject.

How was your experience using a Hasselblad medium format camera for carrying out your project?

It was a great experience using the Hasselblad X1D for my project, namely for the quality that it offers. The touch screen responded so well when using it. Its slightly bigger compared to my previous camera, but the ergonomic design allowed me to hold the camera easily. With medium format quality, you get a lot of information in a single picture, making it easier when it came to post processing.