In Kabul, Afghanistan 2015.

Photo: Jim Huylebroek         

I'm Emma, a documentary photographer born in southern Finland in 1987.

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I got into photography by traveling the world (since 2006) and feeling the need to document my experiences on the road. Since I like to travel alone, the photos were a way to share the story of my travels with people back home.

In 2011 I traveled to the Middle East (Syria, Jordan, Egypt), right into the Arab Spring. The reasons I took photos started to change. In February, after President Mubarak had resigned and people were out in the streets celebrating the revolution, I was at Tahrir Square in Cairo with my camera. That was the moment when I realised I wanted to tell stories of other people too. 

Since then I began taking portraits and documenting the daily lives of people in the streets. My curiosity has driven me into places that usually are seen in a rather dark light in my home country. Negative stereotypes are very often the reasons I choose my destinations and subjects. I believe there is always something very different and surprising behind them. 

Today my main interests are conflicts and crisis and how people manage to navigate their lives through them. Migration, change and environmental issues are also among the subjects of my photographs in the near future. Even though I am willing to document life in countries at war, my dream is to get to witness the beginning of peace after a long time of violence. 

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