Omar Chennafi is as modest as he is talented. He has difficulty talking about himself but no difficulties whatsoever in expressing himself through his photography. He is soft-spoken, thoughtful and genuine … just like the images he manages to capture. Omar sees things the ordinary person misses.
As a child, Omar used to use his eyes like the shutter of a camera. He would play with the light in a room by squeezing his eyes shut and quickly opening them to watch the images flicker and change ever so slightly before his eyes. Years later, when a friend gave him a camera to play with, he discovered a natural affinity for playing with light. But Omar never dreamed he would become a photographer. His path as a photographer has all seemed so serendipitous. Today, Omar photographs for the Ministry of Tourism; he’s photographed dignitaries as well as the faces and places of Fes and he is the photographer of choice for Café Clock.
For Omar, photography is all about light and making visible that which was invisible. And Omar’s photos are realistic and romantic at the same time. Omar has vision, too. He knows most Moroccans do not get the opportunity to travel and would love to show his fellow countrymen all the beauty and variety of Morocco through his photography.
Omar has learned a lot about his country by listening to foreigners as they talk about their experiences here. He’s sensitive to the fact that everyone sees life through a different lens. When Omar is the one behind the lens, you are sure to see a reflection of someone who loves his country and loves reflecting the insights each of his subjects has to offer.