In pictures: UAE workers living the dream with help from Photoshop
March 22, 2013
t is only when you look out of the window and see the dusty roads of Mussaffah that the incongruity strikes home. Al Bashir Studio is next to Workers Village, a massive compound built to house thousands of blue-collar workers. Almost all the studio’s cu???
The lime-green walls of Al Bashir Studio are lined with men in suits, men in kanduras and men in designer T-shirts, posing in front of lush greenery and gleaming images of the Dubai skyline.
“Everyone wants to look handsome to send pictures to his wife, or his parents at home,” said Sameer Malik, the studio’s owner. “What they say, we will do.”
Nazam Hussain, a 30 year old Pakistani welder, holds up his picture at Al Bashir Studio in Mussaffah. He greatly enjoys sitting on grass which is why he wanted the foreground of the picture to be covered in grass. Deepthi Unnikrishnan/The National
Mohammed Nasim, who works as a pipe fitter in Ruwais, holds up the photograph he likes the most to get a "version" for himself. Mr Nasim told his family about his job – but not everything about it. “My job is unsafe,” he said. “I don’t want my f???
The portrait of Dewendra Kumar will travel thousands of kilometres to the woman he might marry. “It has to be nice,” says Mr Kumar, 26, a welder who works in Ruwais. “Just for a change, I want a good photo with a jacket and trousers to send home.”
If the woman’s family like what they see, his parents in Bihar will meet her. But even if the marriage goes ahead, Mr Kumar will not confess to his future wife that his photograph was doctored. “What’s there to say?” he asks. “Telling everything???
Mohammed Arfan prints out the pictures he worked on for Mohammed Nasim.
When his family requested a photograph of him, he dressed up for the occasion, wearing grey trousers and a gold watch. He picked out a different background for each of his three copies: a garden scene, the Burj Khalifa and the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, h???
Anwar zaib, 33, looks into the camera as Shobuj Mejan shows him different samples of the photoshop work they do. On a busy Friday, men stream in and out of Al Bashir Studio asking for their signature services.
The customers at Al Bashir Studio usually cannot afford to bring their families to Abu Dhabi. But sometimes, with a bit of ingenuity, the photographers can arrange a virtual reunion. On the right an example from Bangladesh where family back home sent pict???
For Dh25 customers at Al Bashir Studio in Mussaffah, Abu Dhabi can get any photograph they desire. Most of the customers are low-income workers who opt for photoshopped pictures to send home to families to show they are doing well in the UAE.