PetaPixel

Syrian Conflict Transforms Woman From English Teacher into War Photographer

noor1

NPR has published a fascinating piece about 25-year-old young Syrian woman named Noor Kelze who has been working the front lines of the Syrian conflict as a conflict photographer for Reuters.

When the Syrian uprising started nearly two years ago, Noor was a recent college graduate teaching English in a private school. […] she offered to record one rebel unit’s battles and upload the footage to the Internet. She says it was her way to help the cause.

“The camera is as equal as a weapon,” she says. “And you need to document every single thing that’s happening. Because back in the ’80s, when we were in similar situation, nobody had any idea about what was going on in Homs and Hama,” she says, referring to a brutal crackdown by then-President Hafez Assad. […] Tens of thousands of people were killed then.

Last fall, a well-known war photographer with the Reuters agency, Goran Tomasovic, spotted Noor shooting pictures with her cell phone. He trained her for a week on how to use a professional camera, then gave her a few of his cameras to keep. She’s been sending pictures to the agency ever since.

Here’s the audio version of the story that was broadcast on NPR’s All Things Considered:

You can read the story and view a selection of Kelze’s powerful images over on NPR.

Conflict Transforms Syrian English Teacher Into War Photographer [NPR]


Image credits: Photographs by Noor Kelze/NPR


 
  • http://www.facebook.com/azety Geoffrey Froment

    yeah cause you know, take a canon, 24-70 2.8, use Aperture mode, and now you are a photographer.

  • not so bitter

    Geoffrey, I didn’t understand your comment, so I looked at ALL of your comments. YOU are one bitter dude.

  • Kurt B

    At least she does something for her country. What are YOU doing for your country?

  • http://www.facebook.com/duke.shin1 Duke Shin

    Making sarcastic comments on blog posts are as patriotic as anything.

  • http://twitter.com/cajieb Cajetan Barretto

    You do realize it is not just about shooting the pictures – but rather risking your life? The operative word here is “war” photographer. She is probably less techically qualified compared to you, but even if she shoots in full auto mode, she stills deserves the credit.

  • http://eziz.annagurban.com/ Eziz

    Respect Goran Tomasovic for helping her out.

  • Borjabatalla

    WFT???!

  • tertius_decimus

    What an asshole.

  • http://www.richardsnotes.org Richard

    This is an excellent story, not just Noor’s story inside Syria but Kelly’s reporting of it. Never take NPR for granted, you don’t find a story like this in many other places.

  • Larry

    “Last fall, a well-known war photographer with the Reuters agency, Goran Tomasovic, spotted Noor shooting pictures with her cell phone. He trained her for a week on how to use a professional camera, then gave her a few of his cameras to keep.”

    I wonder if Mr Tomasovic would have helped to that extent had Ms Kelze been a scruffy unshaven man similarly spotted taking pictures using a cell phone…

  • Chris

    If you think pro’s shoot only using DSLR’s in manual mode, you’re a noob.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1312995208 Christian DeBaun

    Brave young woman. The photos she shot (see the NPR link above) are pretty remarkable for an amateur. Keep up the good work, and stay safe Noor.

  • http://www.bobcooleyphoto.com/ bob cooley

    Every photojournalist starts somewhere.

    I took my first published photos using a Canonet 28; but I was passionate about the job and learned a lot along the way. In my career I’ve had assignments published in LIFE, Sports Illustrated, The NY Times, and had a long, great photographic career before moving to the Creative Director’s side of the desk.

    A great career comes from passion, involvement and vision – if you have those things, you will learn to use your gear. And it can come from humble beginnings.

    Clearly she has passion for her situation, and will learn more shooting in a year, than most ‘safe’ shooters will learn in 5.

    Good luck to you Noor and Good on Tomasovic for guiding her.

  • I’ve been in conflict.

    In-conflict shooting is mostly aperture anyways, like most shooting, war photography is 90% living and 10% taking pictures. Would you chimp and change settings instead of taking pictures or staying alive?

  • michaelp42

    Respect to her! :-)

  • alphaskye

    Goran Tomasevic, not Tomasovic.

  • Kurt B

    Such irony.

  • http://www.facebook.com/azety Geoffrey Froment

    that was a joke Kurt, but thank you for enjoying it. I do nothing for my country and i will not do anything.