Osman Orsal

Osman Orsal

Istanbul, Turkey
Istanbul, Turkey
“Humanitarian stories excite me the most because they allow me to make people’s voices heard.”


My favourite thing is to cover war and breaking news stories.

One Shot

. VAN, Turkey. REUTERS/Osman Orsal
A dog sleeps on a sofa next to Lake Van near the eastern Turkish town of Ercis.
“This shot was taken right after the Van earthquake in 2011. I saw two old, broken sofas and a dog beside Lake Van. In all the chaos, this scene shows some kind of peace. I like it because I think it shows the psychological and destructive impact of the earthquake very well.”


My earliest memory of photography is my 12th birthday, when my father gave me an old Canon camera.

I started to shoot photos with the camera my dad had given me. Later on, photography became my passion. When I began to work for a local newspaper, I improved my skills further.

My first assignment came during the Bosnian war, when I decided to shoot a story about the conflict. I told my editor about my idea and after making some arrangements I contacted a humanitarian organisation and went to Bosnia with them. I learnt that war is not what it looks like from the outside.

That first assignment during the Bosnian war left a big mark on me because I was inexperienced and didn’t know what to do.

Humanitarian stories excite me the most because they allow me to make people’s voices heard.

I shoot pictures for an audience who has an interest in events that take place far away, and who wants to learn about the people involved.

I respect my father. He always listens and tries to understand me.

I have learnt to stay calm, no matter what.

Behind the Scenes

. Reyhanli, Turkey. Sorel Dagistanli
Osman Orsal shoots pictures on the Turkish-Syrian border near the town of Reyhanli.
. Reyhanli, Turkey. Sorel Dagistanli
Orsal at work near the town of Reyhanli, Turkey.