How it all began
I began The Hijab Diaries as a project in my final year of study in photography, and now an ongoing campaign I wish to continue after university. This idea did not come to mind straight away, it was a process and a personal journey.
As I am a Muslim woman who just recently started to wear the hijab (headscarf), I began to realise and witness the many difficulties Muslim women can face wearing the hijab. Especially in the increase in islamophobia. There has been a consistent negative and false narrative enforced on Muslims in general, being labelled as ‘terrorists’ and ‘demonised’. The dominant western media portrays Islam as being anti-civilized, Muslim women who wear the hijab as ‘oppressed’. The negative myths and misconceptions are many, and I really wanted to use my voice and platform to break these negative myths and represent the truth.
It became my goal to completely eradicate the negative depiction around Muslim women who wear the hijab, being labelled as ‘oppressed’, which is far from the truth! I began to do extensive research consisting of a collection of photographers, artists, publications, and discussions that address and debunk the negative narrative around the hijab. This method of in-depth study and critical analysis enabled me to artistically exhibit and make work with the goal of portraying the true power and beauty of the hijab and women who wear it.