To some, the wealth gap can be a difficult topic. La Petite Touche, a photography duo, and former refugee turned media entrepreneur Anna Nooshin decided to address this challenging subject matter through photography. They came together to put the #lensonlife – exploring the contrast between those who have, and those who don’t. Through images, they searched for the common stories that build bridges between these worlds.
The most engaging photos tell a story – they take us on new journeys and allow us to explore undiscovered paths. When doors are opened to a new world, opinions change and our point of view can shift. That’s why we introduced #lensonlife – a project that brings different worlds together by celebrating unique perspectives.
We partnered with Lele and Phemina, also known as La Petite Touche (“the small touch” in French), who captured former refugee turned media entrepreneur Anna Nooshin. They all met in Paris (Lele’s and Phemina’s home town), where they roamed the streets and discovered that they have more in common than they initially thought.
Seeing the world through a different lens
La Petite Touche explains “Our own perspective is completely unique. No one will ever have the exact same perception of reality because no one’s life has been exactly the same. When someone comes along with a different background and appreciation of how the world works, we start to see things differently.
“Having grown up in Paris, we’re aware the city has two sides. With Anna Nooshin and Nikon, we captured both; the hard environment of the suburbs, and the elegance and sophistication of La Rive Droite. Two worlds that Anna can relate to. Like me, Anna fled her country as a refugee when she was very young. But now she is a successful media entrepreneur, living a glamorous life, travelling the world and wearing the most beautiful clothes.
“Amazing things happen when we realise that our perception does not equal truth. You are able to view circumstances and people from a bird’s eye view, rather than a biased stance. Working with Anna, who has her own unique perspective on life, we could free ourselves from seeing situations in terms of black and white, right or wrong, good or bad.”
“The project has taught us many things about ourselves and the work we do. As photographers being able to communicate the wealth gap story through our work has been truly special. It’s important that we challenge ourselves to look at both sides of the story with empathy. We hope that the #lensonlife project crosses these borders and opens doors to new views through the power of photography.’’
Anna Nooshin elaborates “In some communities the word “dreamer” has a negative connotation but while it is important to put these thoughts into action, I think it’s good to have a lingering dream. Shooting in Paris, in all its glory, while listening to Lele’s story of having nothing and working super hard, I am reminded that there is no dream too big to accomplish. Looking back at the growth I made reminded me that I need to keep dreaming and pursuing those desires. Maybe it’s this shoot with La Petite Touche that got my creative juices flowing, but I will always be the little girl with big Paris dreams.”
Photography equipment used
For this project, La Petite Touche shot with the Nikon D850, the AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G.
“The incredible image quality of the D850 allowed us to capture inspiring stories. It’s extremely agile to keep up with our demands with features such as continuous shooting and a shutter and mirror drive mechanism that improve the stability of the composition.
“As for the lens, the 50mm was a great companion. It performed great in low light situations – especially in the darker corners of Paris’ streets. It enabled us to capture stunning images with a shallow depth-of-field, so Anna stood out against the backdrop. It renders a beautiful, nature background blur at its wider aperture settings, which we loved!”