I love photography and admire a lot of photographers and how they are able to conceptualize a shoot in their head and bring it into to reality. So I decided to talk to one to find out how they come up with their ideas and concepts and so many other things I have been itching to know about photography. In this chat with nedum, a Professional photographer, model, cook among many other things and he gave answers to some those questions that had been in my head for some time now.
As a way of introduction, tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Asoh Stephen Chinedu and I started photography when I started a modelling agency in 2006. I discovered that I wasn’t okay with the pictures that the photographers took of my models, so I decided to try and take the pictures myself. I got a small camera and took the pictures and I liked the output because I was concerned about the angles of the pictures and that was how I grew from taking pictures of my models to doing fashion shows etc.
Incredible! So what Inspires you, how do you get your ideas?
God inspires me. As a photographer you need to produce what you see on the inside into the image. I depend on God to give me insight especially because I am not one that likes to copy. I like to visualize the beginning to the end and make sure that my pictures are original.
What are your areas of Specialty?
Weddings, Portrait, fashion, Baby and basically events.
So what Inspires a good shoot?
A good brief basically. Once I know what my client wants, I try to be creative with it. I plan 80% of my shoots ahead so I need the brief to know the elements and direction of the shoot.
What are the challenges you face in your trade?
The cost of equipment’s which we use are crazily expensive and the fact that we have to buy most of it outside of the country especially with the pounds not helping matters is a huge problem and most of the manufacturers keep upgrading the camera so you have to update what you have. For example, a full frame camera cost from a 1,000-3,000 dollars and to buy a really good leans it is from 1,000-10,000 dollars and now we have drones instead of hiring a chopper to take a picture of a Skyscraper.
What are your goals, lets start the short term goals?
I would say that I have achieved my short term goals which is to have a Mini-studio/Lab where I can make my own album.
Nice! Long term goals?
Train a 100 photographers within the next 5 years and also have a world class photo studio lab where I can shoot good musical videos and movies because I Intend to go into cinematography in the next 2 years.
How lucrative is photography?
It is lucrative because you have four Saturday’s in a month and each Saturday you have a million people around the world getting married, having birthdays, cocktails, parties, housewarmings, burials and so on and if you up your game you should have 4 to 10 events every month which should give you thousands of naira if not dollars.
How would you encourage young people who want to go into photography?
You need to attend photography school to learn the basic on how the camera works and what makes a good image.You don’t go into photography because of beautiful women. Most times I stand for 8-10 hours shooting and I am not tired and that is because I love what I am doing. Passion is also key.
You need to be passionate and have amazing insight. You also need to be a reader and read a lot of books and learn new tricks and trades of photography as new things are developed everyday.
How do you advertise yourself or trade?
I don’t. I have been able to get jobs through words of mouth and the thing is that I give my clients 110%. I see each client as 10 clients. So you need to make your clients happy and give them your best.
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