I like chocolate. No, let me be honest, I love chocolate. I love chocolate the way Elon Musk loves publicity. I’m insatiable.

My favorite brand is Mirzam. I wrote about them here. It’s worth a read.

The fact of the matter is, I can’t have just one block and save the rest of a rainy day. I can’t resist having another block. Then another. And another. And before I know it, it’s all gone. Plus, it doesn’t rain in Dubai. And I’m not a miracle worker.

I’m the same way with Instagram. I can’t stop scrolling. Once that phone lights up, I’m a firefly. Scrolling. Liking. Forwarding reels to friends. Blocking pages offering to grow my reach or show me a good time. My right thumb becomes a phantom limb.

There are two very good reasons for this behaviour.

The first is dopamine. Dopamine is a chemical in our brains that’s released after pleasure and reward-seeking behaviors. You scroll. You like what you see. You scroll some more until you like something you see again. And so on. Once you’re in that dopamine loop, it’s near-impossible to get out.

And that’s because of the second reason for this behavior. Your brain does not have a built-in Stop button. That’s why you scroll long past the point of feeling amused or entertained by what you’re seeing.

It requires a significant interruption to jolt you out of that loop. That’s why Apple introduced Screen Time management features. You can set an alarm to remind you that your allocated screen time has ended.

I don’t use that feature. I should. But I don’t. What works for me is really beautiful photography. When I find it, I stop scrolling. I spend time on that page. Look at the rest of the photographer’s portfolio. Find out more about them. Sometimes I’ll even reach out to them. Send them a DM to ask if I can feature them on FLTR.

Like I did with Liana Mukhamedzyanova.

I found out that her hometown is Ufa, Bashkortostan in Russia. That she lived in Saint Petersburg for most of her life. Moved to Dubai a little over a month ago. And shoots with a Nikon D850 and 85 mm f/1.4 and 35 mm f/1.2 lenses. She’s been working as professional photographer for 12 years. And been a cinematographer on some of Russia’s most famous films. And when she is not taking photographs she’s into Interior Design.

All of the photographs featured in this article were shot by Liana. You’ll find her on Instagram here.

Who are some of your favorite photographers? Leave their instagram handles in the comments below.