Yumna Al-Arashi was born in 1988, and grew up in Washington D.C. with her father, a diplomat from Yemen. She attended college at The New School in New York, studying politics with a focus on the Middle East. She is currently based in Los Angeles and New York. Though she is not super well-known, she is recognized by many major organizations, such as VSCO, National Geographic Abu Dhabi, the US Department of State Office of Art in Embassies, the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture, and Forbes Magazine. She has not studied photography and is self-taught. Her main focus is photojournalism. Yumna uses her work to show her heritage is a positive light and show the reality of the people living in the Middle East, and to empower women with portraits emphasizing the female body and sexuality. Her photography ranges from candid portraits, to landscapes, to fashion, but she has a unique style that is easily recognized throughout her work.
“I play in a lot of different arenas- activism, feminism, fine art, fashion, politics, travel.
They all feed off of each other in strange ways for me, and there’s always new things to
learn and create. I can’t imagine only stepping foot in one world; I love expanding my
knowledge, allowing different things to inspire and influence me. We have all these
resources at our fingertips, how could you not? Life would be so dull if you didn’t take
the time to learn about and indulge in the world around you.”
– Yumna Al-Arashi