In 2016

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In 2016

I traveled the world. Went all the way around it. Something I always dreamed of.

I gave everything a taste, not saying no to anything.

I did some of my best work. Video content truly became king and I came through with some good ideas.

I embraced every opportunity. Walked through every door with confidence. And started a conversation with anyone I wanted to.

We created HYFN as a side project but it quickly became a huge part of our lives. We met the most amazing individuals that inspire me every single day.

I went to Portugal and for the first time didn't feel the color of my skin or the hair on my face. I truly felt people were colorblind there. I realized that even in New York I'm subtly but constantly reminded of my appearance as being the other.

I met some of the smartest people in the world on a 4 night cruise who made me gain more perspective.

I found that I've always played being the black sheep in the room to my advantage.

I constantly tried to be the light in my wife's life who went through the loss of her mother

I fell apart.

I worked hard on patience, empathy and calmness.

I struggled to be a better son but was a pretty good sibling.

I fought a losing battle with fitness. Going to the gym was the worst part of my day.

I wrote down every idea I had, no matter how big or small.

I found my groove.

I danced every chance I got.

I became closer to myself. Understanding just a little bit more of what this whole thing is about.

I became an influencer.

I bought a Kindle and reconnected with books.

I made twice as much money as I did last year.

I fell in love with Paris. I fell in love with Tokyo.

I realized that I'm going to move away from New York at some point overseas.

I lost a friend.

I became friends with the people I look up to.

I met somebody I admired and totally blew it due to awkwardness.

The camera took me to incredible places I could have never gone on my own.

I went to Mexico City, Porto, London, Paris, Milan, Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Bali, Amsterdam, Austin, Phoenix, Miami, Vegas and Los Angeles.

I made so many hats and I wore even more.

I let go of the fear of missing out.

I went out less. I partied less.

I dined more and drank fine wine more.

I hung out with fashion royalty.

I felt energy.

I spread pyaar.

I went to therapy.

I drove a lambo.

I watched A LOT of TV.

I listened to Future wayyy too much.

I bought Alexa and it completely changed the way I interact with my space at home.

I got a massage for the first time.

I started the process of building my first real office.

I decided what's next and will announce it soon.

I gave it everything I got.

I worked harder than I've ever worked.

I wanted to do it all and somehow managed to do all of it.

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Thank you all for your warmth and encouragement. Thank you for cheering my ideas on. To all my clients and collaborators, thank you for supporting my work and believing in my vision. I look forward to going even harder in 2017. Good luck to you all!

With so much love,
Atif

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THE MAKING OF THE OSCARS STAGE

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THE MAKING OF THE OSCARS STAGE

I was offered an incredible opportunity to create a film document the making of the Oscars stage for Swarovski. (wow, even typing that sentence is a bit surreal). Jobs like these really challenge me and push me to do my best. And at the end of it I'm humbled and it further strengthens my belief in telling stories. The camera takes me amazing places and gives me experiences I would never be able to have, and this is why I keep doing what I do.

Shot and edited by me. 
Music by @amaadbhatti

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CARSON STREET 2.0 STORE OPENING

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CARSON STREET 2.0 STORE OPENING

My homie Brain Trunzo just opened Carson Street, a beautiful menswear store in SOHO. Last night was the opening and took the OSMO with me to shoot a few visuals, I ended up filming a bunch and cut together this little recap. 

Go check out Carson Street at 20 Greene Street, NYC. 

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Professional Bull Riding at Madison Square Garden

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Professional Bull Riding at Madison Square Garden

Never did I think I would end up at Madison Square Garden shooting the Professional Bull Riding Competition. They contacted me and told me they wanted me to shoot this competition in the same style I shoot fashion shows. It kind of made sense, both live shows, high energy, everything time sensitive and fast paced - without hesitation I signed up to do it. Such a great experience. 

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Grown Ups Playing Dress Up

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Grown Ups Playing Dress Up

This blog can't all just be about work, feel me? Must balance work with play.

Last month we went to our friend Vicki's Burning Man themed birthday party and the dress code was strictly enforced. Perfect excuse for me to pull out the cheetah hoodie and throw some eye liner on. 

Vicki is a new addition to our social circle. We met her at Camp No Counselors and hit it off with her pretty hard, she's probably one of the only people that we met there and are still tight with. I really don't like summing up people in a few words on a blog post but anytime we see her its all love and positive vibes, she exudes happiness but at the same time she's a no bullshit type of person and will keep is 100 with you, the type to make you check yourself. You need people like that in your life. 

She's recently quit her job and currently traveling the globe, something I cant wait to do one day. Here's a card we gave her on her way out cheering her on ->

Aside from being a truly warm person she is a great writer and storyteller, you can check out some of her work here

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NOVEMBER BTS

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NOVEMBER BTS

A little behind the scenes action at some of the shoots from November. 

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Interview with Cherish Chai

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Interview with Cherish Chai

In the last year, I guess since I launched the HALAL-HARAM project, I get hit up often to do interviews which range from students working on their thesis projects about art and muslims, blogs, podcasts etc. And I enjoy doing these because I love having conversations about my work with all different types of people living all over the word. Its great to gain their perspective and share mine with them. 

I do a terrible job of cataloging these interviews but I recently had a conversation with Ramna Safeer who started a blog called Cherish Chai. She was very interested in my outlook on balancing my Pakistani heritage with living in America and the various projects I've been working on. Check it out here. 

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DANIEL ARSHAM AT YOUNGARTS MIAMI

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DANIEL ARSHAM AT YOUNGARTS MIAMI

I saw an overwhelming amount of work at Art Basel while in Miami. It's literally all around you during this week. Every party you go to, every restaurant you eat at, all over the streets, everywhere. This exhibit was extra dope to see because I've been meaning to check out Daniel Arsham's work in person and he has it set up on a way where you can pick up, feel and draw with the pieces pictured above. Unfortunately its not up any longer but if you have a chance to go see Daniels work, you must. 

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TRAVEL MOVIE . MIAMI ART BASEL

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TRAVEL MOVIE . MIAMI ART BASEL

I've been to Miami a bunch but never during Art Basel. I kind of had the impression that it was one big party and the art was just an afterthought. If you plan poorly then that's probably what you experience would be, however there is so much great art and music from all over the world that everywhere you turn there is something interesting to experience. 

I really enjoyed it and I particularly enjoyed meeting people from all over the world and exchanging perspectives.

It's worth checking out, see you there next year?

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DJI Osmo Test Footage

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DJI Osmo Test Footage

I ordered the DJI Osmo the day that it dropped and it finally came in this week. I really got a chance to play with it over Thanksgiving and shot this test footage at the Whitney. This really is an amazing device that produces really smooth footage. It has its drawbacks though and I'll probably go into all of that when I do a full on review on my site. 

Tell then check this out and share your thoughts below.

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CURATE by Melo-X at Baby's All Right

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CURATE by Melo-X at Baby's All Right

I havnt seen my homie Melo-X perform in a while. Dude has been on the grind releasing all sort of innovative experiences showcasing his art and music, really next level stuff. His current EP, Curate,  is not only streaming online but also comes in the form of a interactive mobile app.

I'm glad a got a chance to come out to Baby's All right and see how far he has come and the evolution of his musical performance. Very dope. Check him out.

A video posted by Atif Ateeq (@atif) on

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BERGDORFS X SWAROVSKI

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BERGDORFS X SWAROVSKI

I'm Shooting the making of the Bergdorf Goodman holiday windows which are being done in collaboration with Swarovski. The video is on its way but I wanted to share some photos that I took while on that shoot. 

I had never been to Bergdorf's before this really, especially not in the women's store. I was really impressed with how beautifully designed it is. This is exactly what a department store should look like. Every floor I went on and every corner I turned was incredibly beautiful. 

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Museo Frida Kahlo, Mexico City

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Museo Frida Kahlo, Mexico City

The Frida Kahlo Museum in Mexico City is so charming and unique. It's in the house that Frida was born and died in and still has most of the rooms preserved in their original state. The whole space was quite and interesting experience into the life and work of Frida. Her story was told really well however I wish there was more of her work in there. 

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Museum of Modern Art Mexico

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Museum of Modern Art Mexico

Here is my take on this museum, its only worth going because its right across from the Anthropology Museum and was only $2 to get in. As a whole the collection was a bit weak and didn't really have anything impressive but worth a very quick stop if you visit the Anthropology Museum.

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Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City

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Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City

I love going to museums, especially when I'm in a new city. I think it teaches you a lot about the local culture and vibe. Most of everyone that I asked for recs told me to check out the Anthropology Museum and it did not let down. It is housed in a really impressive building (pictured above) which in itself was worth checking out. Other things worth noting : the Mayan and Aztec exhibits were the most interesting and the outdoor area at the back of the museum was really well designed and a fun experience. This place was def worth a stop.

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Seeking The Best Local Food in Mexico City

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Seeking The Best Local Food in Mexico City

The first thing I do when I land in a new city is ask the taxi driver where he likes to eat, then I ask him to take me there. I'm an enthusiast of eating where the locals do. The fancier 5 star yelp reviewed places never really measure up. I like hole in the walls that give you an authenice experience of the local cuisine. Its a bit difficult to find if you don't speak the local language but with some work you will get there and it will be worth it. 

I didn't really get to do as much food exploration as I wanted to but in my recommendations post I highlighted a few places that I really liked.


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Teotihuacan  :  The Pyramids of Mexico City

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Teotihuacan : The Pyramids of Mexico City

I haven't really been to many places in the world that let you experience and be surrounded by remains of ancient civilizations. That's why going to Teotihuacan, the site of the ancient Pyramid of the Sun and Moon, was a particularly special experience. I strongly recommend going here if you are in Mexico City - try to go early in the morning though, right when it opens (I think 8am). There is really no one there at this time and its really surreal walking around by yourself hearing the echo of your own foot steps. You cant help but think about how thousands of people came together to build these structures with no technology whatsoever and would live, worship and play here. Wild.

There is an incredible amount of fascinating history behind this place that you can read about on the wikipedia page

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Mexico City Recommendations

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Mexico City Recommendations

I was in Mexico City on assignment with Swarovski and luckily was able to add 2 free days to kick it and explore the city. 2 Days really isn't enough time to get a good feel for Mexico City or see enough of it but I tried to do as much as I can.

It's a really big city that is very populated and busy. Traffic is hell, specially if there is something going on in town, we were there during the Mexican Grad Prix, shitshow! Budget more time than less getting places, it takes forever. I was told not to hail a cab off the street as they will try to rip you off. They have Uber there, which was cheap and super convenient. Use that. Or goto a hotel lobby or designated taxi stand to get cabs. 

It probably one of the safer places in Mexico. I didn't feel threatened or unsafe anywhere we went no matter what time of day it was. The city is alive and lit till late - we did a lot of walking around at night and felt fine. But then again we really did stay in the main areas, didn't really venture too deep into the neighborhoods. 

Oh, and everything is pretty cheap.

I know its not much but here are some places I was able to check out and enjoyed : 

FOOD

  • Tacotento : There are a few of these around town and had the best tacos I've had in a long time. The spot had a very local authentic vibe to it and was super cheap. Prolly not the best place for a full meal but a great spot for a quick taco. 
  • Tostadas Coyoacan : Tucked away in the middle of a local bazar near the Frida Kahlo Museum this spot had all sorts of meat and toppings for tostadas on display for you to chose from. Turned out to be the best tostada I've ever had. Def make the trek out here, hit up the museum and then come here for food. Also, I had some of the most bomb elote en vaso at this bazar, def start with that. 
  • Pujol : This is racked as one of the top 10 best restaurants in the world. Everyone I asked for recs told me to check it out. It was about $100 per person for a 6 course meal, which was very reasonable considering the food, ambiance and experience was pretty on point. 

SIGHTS AND MUSEUMS

Mexico City Foursquare list with more reviews, photos and tips. 

 

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