Fatima Shbair, who was born in Gaza City in 1997, is a self-taught photojournalist who initially studied business administration, but you would never be able to guess this based off her work.
The young Palestinian photojournalist’s images are some of the best in the industry and her work is on par with the veterans who have been taking photos longer than she has been alive.
And that’s not a statement made without evidence; in April Shbair was announced as a winner in the 2022 World Press Photo Contest.
Her image dubbed Palestinian Children in Gaza won her the singles category for the Asia region and was chosen from 64,823 entries by 4,066 photographers.
The jury behind the World Press Photo Contest had nothing but praise for her image.
They wrote, “The photographer portrays the complexities of the ongoing situation in Gaza, particularly in regards to the daily lives of Palestinian children. While, traditionally, photojournalists may view issues from the outside in, the photographer bears witness to the community’s struggle from within.”
Shbair has received photo assignments from Getty Images and The New York Times, and she won the Ville de Perpignan Rémi Ochlik Award in 2021 and the Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award the same year.
The images she makes are intimate, beautiful, harrowing and powerful as she captures the reality experienced by the people around her and the reality she has lived through as Palestinian born in Gaza.
Her work can be viewed online through her Instagram and Twitter profiles.