“It is for us to get associated with our dreams wholeheartedly, and if we are able to do that success is just momentary. All that stands between you and success is your will to work towards your dreams with dedication. Everything is achievable if your efforts are sincere.” shares Entrepreneur and pro photographer Saleh Daxi the owner of Saleh Deqsi Landscape, wedding and fashion photography.
Ace Entrepreneur Saleh is presently at the bottleneck of his career and a source of inspiration for all the young talent who wish to build a career in photography. Our team has brought an exclusive interview with Saleh for all of you:
- Tell me a little bit about your story, where does it all begin?
Saleh- Well everything started while I was filming and directing a program on Arabian horses as an amateur photographer in a small village in Israel that is called Daliat El Carmel, located in the Carmel Mountains.
I was with a small pocket camera as an amateur video photographer. I suggested the owner of a Farm to make short movie clips about the horses and the riders at his farm. Eventually the idea grew and the program improved and succeeded and we shot as many as 12 episodes. It was at that point from when I decided to study filming in a professional way, I signed up for film studies and television at the Kinneret College in the Jordan Valley, which is located on the beautiful shore of the Sea of Galilee (Tiberias).
During my studies there was a course of basic photography (the basics of photography), and from there began my love story with the world of ‘still photography’, I got the best grades in the class and decided to build a career in professional photography.
- How did you enter your field/begin as a fashion photographer?
Saleh- I started as a fashion photographer after a series of portrait photos that I did by going deeply into the Eyes. Eyes attracts me the most and characterizes me as a photographer, you can spot that in many of my works.
Also my closeness to the photographed person caused me to put in everything that related to the face, as requested to make beauty productions, such as to shoot makeup and hair styles productions for hair salons and makeup artists. This required me to move to an interesting commercial subject, and to study that in a profound and professional way, so I enrolled in two courses at Photography School Galitz, in Tel Aviv. There I took fashion course and professional Photoshop course to retouch well and process the images in a professional way.
- Have you met anyone interesting/famous on your journey?
Saleh- If we are talking about world class celebrities I’ve met, famous singers like Justin Bieber, Celine Dion and Chris de burgh, but usually I do work with local celebrities, some of them famous in the Arab world, such as Haitham Khalaily , Asala yousef , Noel Kharman , Eyad tanous and Sharif.
- What do you find to be the most frustrating aspect of fashion photography?
Saleh- Many difficult aspects that make me feel frustrated in the fashion photography or in the fashion world; well the fashion photography itself is a very difficult profession from any other photography profession in the industry. You cannot work alone, there must be complete synchronization between the photographer and the production team, hairdressers, makeup artists, styling section and of course the Customer that you have to comply with his/her requirements. On the other hand, in order to succeed in this world, you must have the right networking as a photographer, there is a lot of “politics” in it, and what’s more, especially in my country, because I belong to the Arab minority, you can feel the element of racism in the fashion industry. Therefore I have to constantly prove to everyone that I’m one of the best at least, because things are noticeable as an “Arab Job”, which is not acceptable in the Local and Global industry.
- Who is a fashion inspiration to you?
Saleh- There are many that I follow and I admire each time from their works, both locally and globally.
I’ll mention two:
- First one is my fashion photography teacher “Shay Kedem”. He has taught me for several years and I have learned and received a lot of tips from him. It is most emotional because it’s part of my success.
- The second part goes to “Eyal Nevo”. He is an international fashion photographer who is the favorite photographer for the most successful models and celebrities in Israel. I think he is the best in the industry and I’m looking forward to being like him. He is my idol. So if I hear that the supermodel “Bar Refaeli” is allow only and trusts “Eyal Nevo” to take her a pictures in the bathtub, while she is naked, which is so impressed and excited for me, and it makes me want to reach that personal level of connection between the photographer and model, beyond the professional level.
- Are there any new trends that you find particularly exciting for fall 2023? How do you see it evolving?
Saleh- Definitely, from season to season there are always innovations and changes in fashion, even in different trends. For example, there was a year when the scarves were very noticeable and a year later there was an emphasis on the long collar and was a year characterized by upholstered long jackets.
Although it is very variable from country to country and from society to society, so if you see Zara Israel collections, you’ll find it much different than the European one. I as a fashion photographer must be aware of these things and bring them into my work, also depending on the client requirements.
- Is there any advice you would have liked to give yourself when you first started out?
Saleh- For the beginning, to be as fashionable as you can, to be interested in fashion history and to learn the location before thinking about even touching the camera, it has a lot of importance and implications that could change worldviews of photographers and their way of work. I have been formulating this over the years, and if I had been immersed in it from the beginning I could have achieved far better results or find the shortcut to it.
- So what does the future hold for you; what is next?
Saleh – I have a lot of photos and projects that have not been exposed well; I am working currently on a commercial marketing plan that will help me step forward and reach new places.
I am looking to be more global. I’ve already reached everything local, and aspire to be famous. I also believe in myself and know that it will work because I am in the right direction.
- Finally, do you follow any philanthropic causes and how do you see them impacting our world?
Saleh- Of course, this is the most valuable aspect for me more than the commercial side of the industry.
I have volunteered at an Association for Disabled Children for more than 4 years. The association has now broken up but I continue to be in touch with the children and the families. This is an organization that I grew up in and we have done many projects wherever possible including support groups. I also give donations for minority students, who have economic difficulties, and I do donate to an organization as part of my projects. I volunteer with an association for supporting cancer patients, Generate awareness by creating short movies to raise funding and more …
I’ll start a new project with an author to document a book about poor and sick children in the coming months. As in coming winter, I am going to join an aid project for helping Syrian refugees in Greece. In my opinion, it will be the most spectacular project for this year.