Miniature Masterpiece
Digital Photographer|Issue 204

Ashraful Arefin explains what moves him to capture small-scale scenes full of light and colour

In recent years, miniature photography has become a popular sub-genre of macro imaging. The ability to completely build a scene from the ground up to your ideal specifications holds a unique and creative appeal. Ashraful Arefin (ashrafularefin. com) is an expert in shooting realistic and beautiful images of even the most mundane objects. Here he describes his creative process.

What got you started in photography?

I have always been interested in art and wanted to be an artist from my childhood. I got my first camera when I was a second year student of Fine Art. I bought it to take some good-quality photos of my artworks. Later I got frustrated with my drawings, because I was constantly looking for perfection. I took a break from my usual work and started to take photos.

Eventually I fell in love with creating images using light, and started to see things differently. I have never enjoyed any other media as much as I do photography – it totally opened my eyes and heart. I got to realise that you don’t always have to be perfect to create something beautiful. That peace of mind and joy inspired me to take it forward.

What are your favourite subjects to photograph, and why?

Flowers are definitely one of my favourite subjects to shoot. They are so versatile and there are so many opportunities to play with colours and tell beautiful stories.

I also love to shoot anything that’s a bit old and beaten – for example old lanterns, used toy cars or paper boats – something that not many people will find beautiful. For me, these objects already have a story, a past. It fascinates me that I can create a certain mood or story without even using people. I mostly tend to shoot simple small objects and try to make them look whimsical.

What are you trying to show in your images – what stories do you try to tell?

Finding beauty in the little things in our surroundings inspires me to create each image, to glorify simple beauties and ordinary objects in a dreamy and whimsical setting, which gives a peaceful and positive energy. It’s all about finding joy in the simple things.

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