There were a lot of uncertainties surrounding my trip to Iran. The US Government advises against all travel to Iran, and especially warns against photography. I travelled to Iran without knowing if I’d be able to achieve anything resembling my work in NYC. 

I knew that a lion’s share of my success would hinge on one thing: my guide. Like all Americans, I was assigned a full time guide during my travels through the country. All I knew was that his name was Mohammad, and he was certified by the government to lead Americans. 

Who was this man? And how was he going to respond when I told him: “Museums are great, but instead let’s walk around all day and ask strangers for their photograph.” 

Mohammad was an absolute godsend. He not only allowed my photography, but he believed in it and became a partner in its success. Asking strangers for photographs is an intimidating process. But he never once refused to make an approach. And almost always, he succeeded in securing permission. 

As a result, the collection of photographs that emerged from this trip were a collaborative effort. I provided the eye, Mohammad provided the tongue. Without him, none of these photos would exist, and I am so thankful for his contribution. 

I will be providing his contact info in my next post, regarding general guidelines for travel to Iran.

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