Middle East Oman Photo Essays

An Ode to beauty | Photographing Oman

November 19, 2018

by Cécilia Foissard

As part of her photo essay on Oman, we interviewed photographer and journalist Cecilia Foissard about the images she captured and her experiences in this beautiful country. 

Why did you decide to visit Oman? Which areas of the country did you visit?

I’ve always been fascinated by the Middle East, the Arabic language and culture. I watched a documentary about Oman and found myself captured by the beauty of this untouched place. The documentary finished and I booked my ticket.

I spent one month in the country, visiting Muscat, the Wadi’s around, Nizwa, Djebal Shams, Sur, Dibba, Musandam and finally Salalah.

What surprised you about your trip to Oman? What things that you expected to see were different than you imagined?

Actually, everything was exactly like I imagined. The landscapes, colours, the light. It was such an inspiring place for a photographer. One thing which surprised me was how open-minded the local people were about photography. In general, the Omani people are incredibly kind, helpful, and really open to people wanting to know more and explore their amazing country.

What inspired you to photograph Oman in the way you did?

The beauty. The beauty is everywhere. Omani’s say ‘beauty has an address’ and it’s really true, it’s Oman. In the souks, the fish markets, in the middle of the mountains or in the wadi’s, it’s everywhere.

Can you choose one of the photos in the essay, and explain the story behind the capture?

I love the picture with the two children on bicycles. I took it when I was in Wadi Tiwi with Khlafan, my Omani friend. On that day, he brought me up the mountain where there is a secret Wadi. We met the locals of the village, who were very curious about me, a foreigner in their village. I met these two boys and as soon as I brought my camera out they tried to bike as fast as they could pass me to escape the lens. We were all laughing so hard when I managed to capture this shot.

Roamer, journalist and writer, Cecilia is always looking for places out of the beaten path. Acting as a witness, she travels all around the world with a camera and her journal like a curious storyteller. Bringing the world into focus, she tries to see the yet unseen just because ‘there was nowhere to go but everywhere’. 

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