Sara Noubani is a singer and songwriter and is currently working on some creative projects—and as you can see in this series, she is a talented model as well. I met Sara via Instagram, and she asked me if I would be interested in doing something together. For sure I was—it’s always great meeting new people!
Strolling through some corners of Berlin Neukölln with Sara, I tried to take spontaneous snapshot-like photographs. It was really fun and super relaxed to shoot with her. And most of all: it really was spontaneous. On the day I took the photos, the weather forecast said it would be raining and storming the whole day. Nevertheless, I didn’t want to cancel the shoot, so I also prepared a plan B—we would shoot inside if the weather wasn’t good. Fortunately, as soon as I was on my way to meet Sara, the sun came out and the sky was wonderfully azure-blue with soft-looking white clouds.
After some light styling, we left her flat and went through the neighbourhood. And we found some interesting spots there: at one point we found a cart standing on a sidewalk; later on, we reached a little playground; then, on another street, there was this super old-school-looking photo booth. At the end Sara recommended we go to Klunkerkranich, an outdoor bar on the rooftop of a shopping-mall. That was where I took those windy sky-photos.
With my work, which is entirely analogue, I want to capture contrasts. I leaned into that when styling the shoot—for example: a girly, princess-like skirt combined with an oversized vintage t-shirt and Doc Martens or sneakers. For me, contrasts often mean combining something elegant or dreamy with dope or grungy aspects. Candid expressions are also important, because I want to try to capture authentic moments. I always say to the models: imagine I’m not here in front of you with my camera; be as you are, no posing.
Ting Ting Chen