Ray Mahmood for Washingtonian

 

I photographed Ray Mahmood at his sprawling mansion in Mount Vernon, Va. for Washingtonian magazine in December.  The Pakistani native came to America decades ago and built a fortune which he now uses to cozy up to the political elite here in DC as a powerbroker and shaper of American-Pakistan policy.  The night that I photographed him, he and his wife were hosting a dinner for an interfaith organization.  My job to was to document him as he schmoozed and single him out from the crowd, but this man has a super power the likes of which I’ve never seen before.  Without fail, he can sense the exact moment you raise your camera to take his picture- even if you happen to be shooting from 50 feet away and are hiding behind a plant or curtain.  When he senses you about to shoot, he looks directly into the camera. This drove me insane for a few hours, but it actually paid off and led to an unusual and storytelling picture for the opening spread.  I eventually drove home the point that he could feel free to go about his night as if I didn’t have a camera and I got a few shots of him looking at other things.  Read the article here.

[Ray pours a drink for Grover Norquist]