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BABA SHER  

Born in the Chahardi area of Kabul, Baba Sher was a student of Muhammad Aman, the father of Muhammad Usman and Asad Ullah. He began to take photographs at the age of thirty using glass-plate photography; and started working with the kamra-e-faoree at around forty. We're not sure exactly how old Baba Sher is - he is far more spritely than the one hundred and twenty years he says he is. We do know, however, that from his time he is the only photographer left alive; and also that he is responsible for teaching many of the older kamra-e-faoree photographers who have worked on the streets of Kabul. Out of his seven surviving sons, all are photographers, as well as some of his grandsons. Nowadays, he has his own digital studio in the Dhermazang area of Kabul where he can be found during the day. Like many other photographers in Kabul, the studio he previously owned was burnt down during fighting in the civil war. And like many others, it is the reason why he has no surviving photographs from before that period. During the Taliban times, he continued to work making small identity photographs.


Here's a video of Baba Sher showing us his abandoned kamra-e-faoree in the backroom of his photo-studio. He stopped using the camera six or seven years ago.