Moaz Tasabehji began his career as a wedding photographer before finding viral fame on social media for his photo tutorials during the pandemic. In an interview, Moaz recounts the origin story that led him to become known to his 3.8 million TikTok followers as “Camera Bro.”
“I’ve been wanting to help people take better photos,” says Moaz, citing an emotional bride who once told him she rarely sees good photos of herself. “I found that to be a very common thing with people that they think they look bad in photos.”
When weddings were canceled due to Covid-19 lockdowns, Moaz had ample free time and a camera. “I just wanted to do something,” he says. Like other influencers, he tried taking artistic photos, “being cool, you know, trying to do an artistic shot of some kind. But it never really worked for me at the beginning.”
The viral moment came spontaneously one day in 2020. “I’m with my brother and I just simply take his photos with my phone and then he’s like, ‘Damn, this is really good. Why don’t you screen record how you took this photo and just try, just try,’” recounts Moaz. He and his brother walked around taking sample photos, and Moaz recorded a short tutorial video showing simple tweaks to improve them.
“I didn’t think much of it honestly,” says Moaz, who posted the video and went about his day. But that night, the video blew up. “I opened [the app] up and it was one of those where like a lot of notifications popped up and I’m like, ‘What the hell?’’ remembers Moaz. Encouraged by the enthusiastic response, he bought a used iPhone and began creating more straight-forward photo tutorials.
“I would just ask my brother, my sister, ‘Let’s just go for an hour anywhere you want and we’ll take photos,’” explains Moaz. “I would just do like a few steps. that’s it. Like my idea was. Do two things to improve the photos.”
The simplicity struck a chord. “I do think I had the first mover advantage,” says Moaz. “I feel like I’m one of the first people to use this style, and it just caught on so fast with people.”
Nearly three years later, Moaz’s distinctive style has spawned a legion of copycats. But the originator’s following continues to swell as he sticks to the formula that made Camera Bro a star – showing people how to make simple tweaks to help them look their best in pictures.
Keeping It Simple: How Moaz Tasabehji Aka CameraBro Built His Photography Empire With An IPhone
Finding a Niche
Moaz explains that his content has evolved to focus more on simplifying phone photography tips for everyday users rather than complicated, professional techniques.
“I think that evolving mostly happened with me, developing my art, because phone photography is very similar to camera photography. But it’s me realizing that I’m not here to take professional photos per se for clients. I’m here to teach people how they would do it,” he says.
Initially, Moaz tried fancy effects like light painting, but realized “the [most] people don’t care that much. The [most] people would like to learn how to take a photo at the restaurant.”
So he pivoted to ask himself, “Oh, what are people doing and what would they like to take photos of?” rather than “what photo would look cool.”
While Moaz sometimes uses action cameras, his primary focus is iPhone photography. “I have an OK number of videos with Android. And the reason why I use an iPhone is not because I think it’s the best. But because it’s very accessible to everybody, it’s simpler,” he explains.
He adds, “I want it to be accessible to everybody. I don’t want someone to feel like, oh, this is not for me.”
In terms of content, Moaz aims for organic, simple shots of what people actually want photographs of in daily life. “I want something that feels very natural, very much like what people want to take photos of,” he says.
A big chunk of Moaz’s 3.8 million TikTok followers are everyday users, not photography professionals. As he puts it: “It’s a mom who wants to take photos of her kids. It’s a friend that likes to take photos on her vacation. A boyfriend, his girlfriend always tells him, take my photo, and she doesn’t like them.”
Building Confidence and a Business
Moaz explains that while creating content may look easy, “There are so many challenges. People look at this and think, oh, it’s easy.There’s so many challenges that I faced.”
One hurdle when starting out was imposter syndrome. “I felt, who am I to teach? I always compared myself to the people that I look up to that do crazy photos,” Moaz admits.
Over time, he reframed his thinking: “I don’t want to teach the professionals that I do think they’re better than me. I’m teaching everybody else.” By focusing on helping beginners rather than comparing himself to experts, Moaz overcame those doubts.
Currently, Moaz offers two photography courses catered to everyday users, not aspiring professionals. As he puts it, “It is meant mostly for people who like to travel and take photos, people who want to take photos of their kids.”
His first course is Pocket Snap Academy, which covers iPhone photography basics like lighting, composition, settings, and focus. “It is really meant for the people who are starting photograph,” notes Moaz.
His second course is Dramatic Lighting Masterclass, which packs advanced lighting techniques into an efficient 20 minutes. As Moaz explains, this course builds on popular content of his: “how can I create a different feeling where it’s very dramatic, the background doesn’t show. it’s all black. And then my face is in focus.”
While the courses are paid, Moaz tries to price them affordably and often grants access if people can’t pay. As he says, “It’s not about making money. I do think I want to help as many people as I can.”
Advice for aspiring content creators
Moaz stresses, “consistency is so important with social media.” He explains, “When my first video went viral, it took me like weeks of me just posting videos, figuring out my style” before catching fire.
Moaz advises creators to “focus on improving your content” rather than obsessing over view counts. In his experience, “People will come if you improve your content.” He also says to carefully analyze your content and user data to optimize engagement.
On the growing creator economy enabling regular people to build audiences, Moaz remarks, “I don’t think I was a famous person or anything, I am a regular guy…I took a few photos and then I was able to highlight my skills.”
He predicts creativity will flourish in coming years “because so many people who haven’t been seen are able to come out and show their art, show their skills.” Moaz is excited to see what emerges from “new kind of skills of creativity in this world.”
As for 2024 goals, Moaz plans to incorporate more camera-focused content despite finding viral fame through iPhone photography tips. As he explains, “I’m finding that more and more people have taken the first steps, and I want to help take them to the next step in that aspect.”
He wants to cover techniques for getting better photos with digital cameras while ensuring his core audience still finds value. As Moaz puts it, “I still want to give value to everybody, not focus on a group of people and exclude everyone else.”
By strategically expanding his skills content while keeping it relatable for all viewers, Moaz aims to continue enlightening and engaging both existing and new followers. Just as he simplified high-level photography to help everyday users, Moaz now hopes to guide fans taking their first steps into more advanced creative spaces with the same trademark care and accessibility.