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Arash Moallemi believes in the power of celebrating snapshots in time. Ever since he was a child growing up in Iran, the Toronto-based photographer has had a fascination with capturing magical moments and sharing them with others. “We used to travel a lot when I was a kid,” he explains. “You have all of these experiences and you want to come back and tell people about it. I always used to think that if I had a picture, they would understand. I got obsessed with preserving moments. It’s the ongoing theme of my life.”

After moving to Canada at the age of 12, Arash’s father gave him his Nikon camera kit, inspiring him to transform his hobby into a true passion. By the time he turned 16, Arash was learning the ropes of the business assisting local photographers. And by his early twenties, his talent had already taken him all over the globe – shooting in Hong Kong and Dubai for Wallpaper magazine – and honing his skills in New York and Miami under some of the industry’s brightest lights, including Michael Comte.

But the emerging shutterbug had a voracious appetite for creating images, and he didn’t want to limit himself to editorial. “I like to shoot,” Arash maintains. “Period.” And so he set his sights on expanding into the commercial field. “I strive to be able to shoot anything that’s put in front of me,” he reflects. “It could be a beautiful model. It could be a piece of jewelry. It could be a building. At the end of the day, you want to be able to produce your vision of whatever is put in front of your lens.”

As a result, over the past fifteen years, Arash has shot fashion, beauty, architecture, landscapes, portraits and food, and has directed motion ad spots. He’s been published in the pages of glossies like Hello! Canada, Glow, Sphere and Gioia. He’s worked with prestige brands such as Visa, Nike, Sears and the LCBO. He’s photographed billionaire Ron Joyce on his yacht in the Martimes, best-selling author John Irving at his rustic home in Connecticut and tennis champ Andre Agassi over drinks in at a Toronto hot spot.

Arash brings a loose, organic sensibility and flexible approach to each and every assignment. He lives for the adventure of producing arresting, unexpected, award-winning images under tight time constraints and ever-changing conditions. “A successful photographer is someone who can roll with anything that happens,” he notes. “When things change, it’s not a disaster. You look at the new situation and think, ‘What can I take away from this?’”

The Canadian photographer also possesses a gift for fostering connection, for drawing out the best in subjects and crew alike, and for creating a warm atmosphere on set that generates photos that sing. “I want to show a genuine side of whatever I am shooting – something that most people may not see,” Arash says. “A lot of times, people don’t live in the moment. I hope that my photographs serve as a reminder for all of us to relish the special moments in life.”