“You just de waka dey snap sunset abi”
“U wan turn oyibo”….
That was a friend texting me after seeing my DP. I used a picture I took while taking an evening walk. I told her I loved photography and the next thing she sent me was…
“come back”……….”U be Naija boy”
This seriously got me thinking because I don’t believe this is an isolated case. I believe some other people will hold that belief in this modern age and time. That photography is for white people alone? Who seriously thinks that? I am no expert in photography. I don’t even have the slightest idea what professional photography is all about but I think I know enough to say that this is one of the dumbest assumptions I have ever heard in a very long time (I hope she doesn’t see this post soon).
Wait a minute! I started to give her instances. The few I know, very few really. The likes of Gaz Madu (who I initially thought was a guy!), the likes of TY Bello (who I heard carry around cameras worth almost 600k), or the wonderful lady I met at a conference in Lagos with a camera so powerful I was afraid to touch it. There are countless others I can’t even begin to mention doing stuff with cameras.
Please for those of you who don’t know and share similar belief, photography is serious business. I was actually watching the 2013 Oscar awards when the text came in and I paused the video to write this. Here you see people winning academy awards for making the awesome movies we stay awake to watch. Those are pictures in motion and people invest a lot of time and energy to make them happen.
Photography is a powerful tool that can be used to achieve a lot. A single picture properly taken can tell a story that a whole chapter of a book cannot. A picture is that powerful. Remember the saying “a picture is worth a thousand words”. I remember an encounter with a photographer one time I went for a medical mission. I was to take a picture but the photographer told me to plan my picture very well because my picture should tell a story. I have always remembered that each time I want to take a picture.
Please, photography is not just about taking selfies in restrooms (some ladies do that a lot), or showing off the latest addition to our wardrobes. And it’s definitely not for the whites please!
It’s far greater than that. You can use pictures to tell very compelling stories and create amazing memoirs. Have you brought out pictures you took like 10 years ago? Remember that feeling?
I once shared an opportunity to take part in a photo contest here and I am sure very few people submitted photos for that contest.
Please take pictures and not just pictures, take memorable pictures that you will be happy you took ten or twenty years from now.