One interesting thing about this profession is the name we’re seldom referred to: artists. To an artist 1 + 1 is not always equal to 2. In light of that “creative” fact, let me first be clear on one thing: this session actually didn’t take place in Senegal. But the title got you inquisitive enough for you to decide to click, right. 🙂 Mehn, I’m good. Ok what really happened was that I had a session with a citizen of Senegal and since I was in the presence of a Senegalese (I hope that’s what they’re called), I figured I was in Senegal.
It all started about 9 months ago. While exhibiting our works at the Shoprite mall in Surulere (you might want to consider that location for an exhibition), I met a potential client from Senegal. We met on a saturday and she wanted a photo session the next day because she was traveling back to Senegal on Monday. Apparently she had been searching vigorously “all over the world” for a photographer that can take GOOD black & white pictures. First of all, I didn’t know black & white pictures were difficult to take. According to her, she hadn’t met a photographer that pleased her in that aspect. So she saw our b & w pictures at the exhibition and fell in love with us.
I drove to her hotel on sunday afternoon and we had a 30-minute session at the pool side of Southern Sun hotel, Ikoyi. The three framed pictures she eventually ordered practically covered 90% of the cost of exhibiting at the mall. Talk of a quick turnover. It was just as if I didn’t “spend” any money to get this client. To my surprise (really, I was surprised), she loved the pictures.
Fast forward to March 4, 2012. After attending church service, I picked up my BB and got a message @ 2:06pm from this wonderful client of mine:
Hi, in lagos at southern sun, some colleagues would like to take some picx like me…are u available?
Ofcourse I was available. I was planning on resting but decided to reschedule that task. 3 hours later, I found myself at the hotel once again. Same swimming pool section, same spot.
I thought her friend, Fatim, was gorgeous. I told her how pretty she was and was told most Senegalese ladies are very beautiful. The session lasted for about 20 minutes and she ended up choosing the following pictures in black & white. We talked for an hour after that and I learnt so much about Senegal.
I was of the notion that she was 25 yrs of age when she suddenly showed me a picture of her 3 children, the oldest being 18 (so don’t even bother asking me for her bb pin). I was shocked. We talked about marriage, family, life in Senegal and if you had met us there you would have concluded we were great friends.
Now, under normal circumstances I’m very shy when it comes to relating with women but photography & my camera has been a self-esteem booster. Now I can boldly talk to any lady as long as my camera or complimentary card is nearby. After delivering the printed pictures, I was given an invitation (not on paper though) to come to Senegal to photograph her family. What a honor. That definitely meant she loved them.
Pictures taken with Olympus E3, 12-60mm lens, 50-200mm lens, Nissin Flash & a few kind words of affirmation.
N.B. If you consider yourself an “international” photographer practicing in Nigeria, it makes sense to also open a dollar & GBP account. You never know what currency your client might pay you in. Enough said, enjoy
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