Security Officer Turned Photographer

He was a security officer for almost 7yrs with the then-renowned Oceanic Bank. After I was recommended to him by a mutual friend, He approached me 4 years ago about how his passion had always been to run a photography business. He asked how I could be of help to his vision and I remember giving him a bill that would have discouraged others from forging further; he refused to be deterred.

Believing all things to be possible, he sourced for the funds, quit his day job and came to eloPhotos Academy for his foundation photography training and internship. 9 months went by like a breeze and it will go down has one of the most fulfilling year he has ever lived.

That was over 2 years ago. Today, he’s come a long way as one of the Nigerian photographers I respect. Yes, he might not be know to the world yet but I envy his love for God and his humble heart. His passion for children photography made me invite him as one of the speakers of the recently concluded Nigeria Photography Expo & Conference (NiPHEC).

His name is Afolabi Oloyede of and today is his birthday. Here’s to wishing him greater years ahead.

Street Shooters Photowalk: Destination MILE 12

This is to inform you that the Street Shooters NG are set to go out on another photo-walk on September 5.

This time around, we are looking at the overcoming Nigerian; not the struggling Nigerian. We are looking at people that have remained
resilient & dogged in making their lives & families work. We are looking at people whose lives are faced with challenges but who still dare to stand & put all challenges aside. Therefore, we have decided to work with the theme: UNBROKEN.

Unbroken are the road sweepers, keeping the streets clean to make a living. Unbroken is the guy selling gala in traffic so that he won’t steal. Unbroken is the boy selling bread along the bus-stop. Unbroken is the recharge card seller. Unbroken is the car wash boy. Unbroken are the people hawking in traffic. The list is endless.

Even the qualities & brands of cars in Lagos shows the exceptional unbroken spirit of Nigerians. Hotels, filling stations, constructions
of all kinds going on, shopping complexes springing up everywhere shows we are unbroken.

Photographically speaking, this theme alone is broad. Unbroken has a lot of emotion. Unbroken suggest something that has been tested, tried, trusted, rugged & righteous.

We are saying that despite all that has threatened to break us both as individuals & as a nation, we have remained unbroken. It is a communication that we all need to reunite; to reassure ourselves again, that we are all Nigerians. Our spirits cannot be broken, not by ethic or religious divide.

Come Thursday, 5th September 2013, the Street Shooters NG are going to Mile 12 to capture images of hard-working Nigerians engaged in various money-making activities.

The best 100 images from this walk will be compiled & printed into a photobook which will be sent to the Lagos State Government.

To be a part of this event, just show up at Mile 12 by 11am on Thursday, 5th September 2013. Meet-up is under the Mile 12 bridge where the blue BRT buses park.

RSVP: 08060435734


“You are too serious”
“Try to smile always”

I get these comments a lot; even my boss and colleagues tell me the same. It’s not like I’m a rigid person but I guess I just find it somewhat funny to smile when I am not amused. I heeded their advice & I’m all smiles now. As I am writing, sorry, typing this article, I am smiling knowing this will be my first write-up that will make it to eloPhotos website. 🙂

Monday morning and Lagos traffic are best friends made in heaven. As if I had not been through enough stress, I got to Agege and discovered that the Acme ‘keke’ park had been demolished. I felt lost because that was the only place I knew to get transport to Acme except of course the dreaded ‘okada’. So I seized the only available option, walking.

Fortunately for me, when I got to Pen-Cinema roundabout, I got a ‘keke guy’ who was kind enough to drive me back to their new park. I had to join the queue too; apparently there were others waiting in-line before I got there.

Our devotion that morning was excellent, thanks to Ronke for that. She read from Colossians 3vs23-24, ‘Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people…’. A lot of us do what we do half-heartedly. That’s why a customer care representative will talk to a client snobbishly. It’s why a photographer will not package a client’s job well; giving the excuse he was not paid well while forgetting he was paid what he asked for. Always remember it’s between you and God.

Tuesday was supposed to be just a regular day, until Mr Seun Akisanmi fixed an appointment for me with Matt Damon. I was to see ELYSIUM with a colleague, (yeah! yeah!!! I was at the cinema). All work and no play makes Tayo a serious photographer. Before I go on about the movie, Tuesday is always a good day to see a movie at Silverbird Cinemas (Ikeja) because the ticket comes with free popcorn and drink.

I have known Matt Damon since ‘the Bourne series’ and it feels like I know him personally. Seeing him on the trailer of Elysium, I was hoping he won’t fall short of my expectation. The movie was so amazing that I couldn’t pick out any low point or so I thought. The Elysium is a luxurious space habitat; home to the very wealthy which separates them from the poor who lived on an overpopulated, devastated Earth. It cuts across themes such as love, health care, immigration and class issues which to me are some of the issues we have in Nigeria. I really wish I could see the movie again though.

Wednesday was one of those fast days, more like the way lenses work; it zooms in on you and almost immediately zooms out too. Fast as it may be, my photographic spirit still ministered to me to do a shoot on, ‘A Graduate’s Reality’.

Knock! Knock!! Special Thursday, reporting for duty sir. I refer to it as a special Thursday because not every day do you get to shoot Mr Seun Akisanmi. Like every photographer, I think he likes being behind the camera. He was my model for the ‘Graduate’s Reality’ shoot and he
played the depressed graduate part well. The pictures attached within proves it all.

We started the shoot with my camera acting up and Ronke thinking I was nervous because I was shooting our boss. It was fun. We came up with different concepts and Mr Seun got to shoot his own crazy idea too.

Friday was one those errand days. I had to pick up NiPHEC certificates at Duduprintz, and also buy some stationery at Ikeja.

I am Babalola Michael Tayo and I am no longer a SERIOUS photographer.