So I received a phone call from a very good friend of my sister some weeks ago. She requested for my photography services for a surprise birthday party for her boss, which was to take place at Sheraton Hotels and Resorts on Sunday for three hours. The date of the event was just five days away. With her request I had to visit her at her office the next day in order to give her the brief and also to agree on terms of payment.

Getting to her office, I was surprised to be left with the Companies Accountant and the Personal Assistant to the Chief Executive Officer to negotiate. Being my first time in such an hot sit of negotiation as a photographer, I made a lot of flaws, that almost resulted into my accepting an offer that might affect my service and product negatively in the near future with the client and the company at large.

Returning to the office, I informed my boss, Seun Akisanmi and my colleagues of my flaws. I remember one of my colleagues asking if I was a learner. Mr Seun gave his advice on what to do, so did Mr Samuel Ijiyokunola. At their words and my personal conviction, I had to call the client to disagree with the initial agreement, thank God it has not been documented.

I had to explain in a very soft and polite manner in order not to get the client discouraged about my services, the reasons I would not be able to deliver such a service they requested for. At the end of the conversation, the client agreed to pay a fee three times higher than the initial agreement. Waoh! You say, it is God’s grace that found me. I had to write the agreement sharply in order for the client to approve, and this she did gladly.

Everyone at the office was happy for me, having such an opportunity of a photography job while being an intern. Without stress colleagues were ready to assist me on the job. With much ado, the thought of how the event would be successful engulfed me, to the extent that I could not sleep at nights after a very busy day.

The day of the event soon came. The day was a sunday, I had to be in church and since it was the first sunday of the month, it was a thanksgiving service. I do attend, The Redeemed Christian Church of God, where I have to be in church before 7am for the workers meeting which lasts for 1hour 30minutes every sunday before the sunday school. After which I would have to set up the instruments for the service, apart from being a member of the choir and the organist.

During the service, my eyes was almost fixed on the wall clock just in front of me. Sincerely speaking my spirit was far away, only my body was active. All my thought was at the days event, although the event was scheduled for 4pm, my thought was just on the success of it all. My spirit, sorry my imagination was tested with different scenarios.

At exactly 12:30pm, I left the church almost immediately after the grace has been shared, for the venue of the event. I live at Ikorodu and with the thought of the traffic in mind, I did not want to arrive late; one core value I would never forget from eloPhotos. I eventually arrived at the venue about 2 hours early. Assisting me was Tayo and Ronke.

These two have never been late for any event I have had opportunity to cover with them, so that was not surprising to me that they came early. Mr Seun Akisanmi also came to assist, though he said he only came to have dinner and he appreciated me for arranging such a sumptuous meal for dinner. And together we all teamed up to give our best shots, just as we had been trained to do.

Despite the delay in getting started, due to the celebrants late arrival, the hall which was well arranged and organized for the estimated number of guests was almost filled. Few minutes later, the event started as the celebrant came into the hall looking confused yet surprise at the faces of family and friends he was looking at. He was overwhelmed to the extent that he had to kneel, prostrate and held his head with this surprise look on his face.

During the introduction, we were informed of how the whole surprise package was carried out by some colleagues of the celebrant at his office. How he was invited for a 10minutes talk as a guest minister at a program scheduled to hold at Sheraton and the follow up on the celebrant for a month till the day the celebrant realized that it would be his birthday and that would be a great privilege for him to preach the gospel to someone and probably win a soul for Christ.

At the celebrants response and talk, he pointed out how he was supposed to attend another meeting with his wife who was also a member of the surprise party. That the wife had to persuade him to be at Sheraton first before journeying to the other place. He agreed to show up at Sheraton, not knowing that, it was all a plan to surprise him. He ended with the topic he had planned for the 10minutes talk, which stated that “how many lives do you affect positively, for Christ daily”.

The event rounded up few minutes past 7pm, at least it was not so long a time added. Probably, due to the venue used. At the end of the event, I realized that my burden and worries of the success of the event has been lifted and it was really obvious that Ronke had to comment on our way home, “ you look like someone whose load was taken off him”. Indeed, a load was lifted off me.

This past week, the job was delivered even before the due date of delivery. Despite being given a 3-weeks deadline for delivery, I delivered less than two weeks and this made the client more happy with the service I rendered. I see this as one thing we all should try to do. If the job can be delivered all things being equal, before the due date, there’s a higher probability that client would appreciate the service.

Once again the celebrant was surprised to have the images of his expressions well documented during his ‘surprise’ birthday party. I am grateful to God and everyone He used for the success of my first paid job as a photographer. The journey has just begun. Looking forward to brighter days in the photography industry. Also attached within this article are 2 pictures of a sunset at ikorodu. What do you think?

Composed by one of the Weirdos at eloPhotos,
Awosanmi Emmanuel.


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