“Google to Start FREE Photography & Makeup Services”


Now imagine you wake up on #Nigeria‘s #Independence day celebrations to discover that #Google just gave Nigerians a birthday present. Imagine they just announced that they’ll be starting, effective #October1, a #photography & makeup service arm of the multi billion dollar company. To make matters worse, imagine that you – the reader of the supposedly-good news – are either a #photographer or a #makeup artists.

HOW WILL THIS ANNOUNCEMENT AFFECT YOUR #BUSINESS?

My goal wasn’t to intentionally deceive you with a blog title that has the #potentials to render thousands of #photographers and #makeupartists #jobless. My goal is to bring to our conscious awareness the fact that it’s becoming paramount the need for us to reinvent everything we know about photography, makeup & business generally. Most of us never undertook any serious level of business education before starting our businesses and it’s affecting us whether or not we acknowledge it. My campaign is for us to have a serious rethink of how we run our artistic businesses.

I know for sure that many of us will be terribly affected if Google decides to launch such services. Their concept of #FREE will cause many of us to either sell our gadgets to survive, or move into other unconquered Google fields so we could barely survive. Imagine they start by #advertising that #passport pictures is for free. Anyone who goes to Google #Photos can get up to 200 free passport photographs yearly. Anyone who goes to any of their branches can have a free #portrait #session and get all their high resolutions softcopies for free. Anyone who visits their makeup saloons will get their first 10 sessions absolutely FREE. Truth is it won’t be funny at all. Many of us will literally cry, complain and declare that the #Antichrist has come in the form of an unmercifully evil company.

This may seem like an extreme example to give but if we don’t rethink everything we know about how to run a photography/makeup business (or any other business)…….. Everything about #pricing, #marketing,#copyrights, #negotiations, customer service, #EVERYTHING…..the end will definitely be upon us.

I’ve had my own share of challenges this year (& still going through some now) and my rethinking process has been the reason why I’ve not been active on some online social media platforms. My rethinking process has even led me to sell a few things many people consider as assets in order to invest in a BIGGER dream process. Trust me selling off our ********** wasn’t funny at all but I believe without doubt there will be results in a few months…. Many of us (myself inclusive) spend too many unproductive hours daily on #Facebook, #WhatsApp, #Twitter, #Instagram begging for people’s approval and attention when all we need to do is to spend time to invest in something so radically different that will make the likes of Ty Bello, President #Obama, Bayo Omoboriowo, Kelechi Amadi Obi or Santa Claus call us for advice. Some of us need to take 1-4 weeks off to restrategize and rethink our processes before the unthinkable & unbearable comes upon us.

Please note that this message is NOT for everyone. I don’t write it as someone professing to know much. It’s just a challenge to a few people who care to take note to invest radically in new #inspirational ways of doing things.

The #books we’re #READING and the friends we’re KEEPING (or #mentors we’re FOLLOWING) will very well be a BIG determinant in how we’ll be #LIVING in 2 -10 years. A word, like they say, is enough for the wise. What will you do if #Google decides to move into your industry and provide the #products & #services you presently provide? Well if you’re travel consultant or tour guide, you might want to unbiasedly analyze how Google’s new baby, #GoogleTrips, will affect your business. Happy Independence day to everyone.

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For those that couldn’t make this year’s Nigeria Photography Expo & Conference (NiPHEC), all he videos have been uploaded to our YouTube channel for you to download. Even if you attended, you might still want to watch it over again at youtube.com/niphec

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THIRTY AND SEVEN YEARS: Oluwaseun


hdb facebook creative [1024x768]It was October 31st

Many years back

The whines of the new baby filled the room

He brought joy that hearts could not resist

And songs of gratefulness on the lips of all

The Akinola-Akisanmi-heir had finally arrived

Oluwaseun!

“Omo oko ni”

The true son of his father

With traits passed on; the world couldn’t deny,

That another Akisanmi had just landed the earth

Proof that blood is thicker than water

He grew;

Wise and brilliant, resilient and ambitious

Like Joseph, full of dreams waiting to be birthed

and like Jesus, with purpose paramount on his heart.

He had grounds to break,

Heights to climb and impossibilities to dare

And these things, he had resolved to do

When the burdens, responsibilities and trials hit hard,

And no succour was in sight,

Then the Light came,

And they walked it all through.

PS: they still walk that path through

His youth, full of experiences

His busy fingers never failed to pour

His journal; daily encounters still receive

Some revealed, many stuck in pages

“It’s not just possible”

How his ears so detest to hear the words

Because the entirety of his living

Has defied the impossibilities

Role model, teacher, mentor and father

Just one left; loving husband

The sands of time have received a man; yet great

The previous years, I must say have been;

Years of building scars,

And raising a star,

Fighting battles,

Winning some; losing some

Your humility, resilience and integrity

These things amaze me

Your pursuit of excellence

They’ve not been fruitless

Your writing, words and actions,

Blessings indeed they have been

In all these thirty and seven years

One thing I must say

Oluwaseun

#HBDMrSeun

Boluwatife AKINDELE

*omo oko means one’s legitimate child

*Oluwaseun: All thanks be to God

3 Lessons from the night shoot


It all started when I and a fellow colleague decided to try out some stuff during the night at the office. Thursday soon came and we had discussed earnestly on how we wanted to put so many things to practice and work on during the night. It didn’t take quite long before the day ended and everyone else departed from the office. We had dinner and then started some work. We started with shooting some videos inside the studio till we concluded on the concept we wanted to get outside. In no time, we got our equipments ready and moved into the dark to shoot. He modelled for me while I was behind the camera. As we began to shoot into the night, my mind began to notice somethings around. I looked away in order to focus on the shoot but was till determined to get something out of them. The moment the shoot ended, I pleaded with my colleague to give me a few minutes as I decided to translate those moments into what I had in mind. Those things I saw earlier were lights; lights from the different bulbs in the surrounding. I immediately knew what those lights could translate into so I set my camera and I began to shoot. I had always seen bokeh pictures severally on the internet but had never had the opportunity to produce anyone myself. I leveraged on the opportunity I had then and began to make those dream pictures of mine. After I took a couple of pictures, we retired into the studio, copied the pictures to my system and then retired to sleep as it was going early into the next morning at that time. I decided I was going to work on the pictures the next morning because I was feeling so sleepy already.

I honestly felt like I hadn’t slept enough when my alarm rang at around 4: 00am which made me put it off and continue my sleep. I can bet that virtually everyone has had that sleepy experience before. Later on, I woke up and prepared for the day which had eventually come. Fast forward to when I began the editing of those pictures. It was at that time some stuff began to dawn on me. I was beginning to see so many things that I had not noticed at all during the shoot. I would be sharing just 5 lessons from the shoot.

  1. LIGHT IS ALWAYS NOTICED!

Whether the light is as small as that coming from a nokia torch or as wide as that of a car’s headlamp, one thing I noticed was that, the light was always noticed. I feel that many times we get too carried away by the quest to be popular and famous that we forget to shine our light. Impact is a form of light and should be the goal of each and every one of us. Hence, we not only impact, we can get the fame and popularity that is embedded in being lights. I think I’d rather chase impact and get both impact and popularity than chase popularity and end up frustrated. There’s no how you chase impact and you wouldn’t be famous/ popular. This just makes me remember a part of the bible; Matthew 5:14 – 16 that says

“Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick: and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

  1. LIGHT ELIMINATES DARKNESS

However or whenever a form of light is introduced, it eliminates whichever form of darkness that it in the surroundings. Darkness flees whenever light is introduced. I began to think that the reason why some things could seem dark or misunderstood to me was because light had not been shone on that sphere.

  1. LIGHT HAS A SPHERE OF INFLUENCE

Even the sun does not light up the whole world at the same time. It works on some parts and then, when the earth revolves, the other parts of the earth are lit. Be it in business, art, education, entertainment, there is a sphere of influence that each of us occupies where we can always shine as lights. We obviously cannot shine everywhere but we all have been placed in strategic positions where we can shine and reflect the glory of God.

The lessons to learn from the night shoot are too numerous to write in one article. I have learnt quite a good number of things and I hope you have too

I am Boluwatife Akindele and I am a photographer.

ON YOUR MARKS, GET SET GO – My first day at school


SUNDAY, 5TH JULY 2015. 9:37 pm

I had just finished a chaper of Don Soderquist’s The Walmart way – The inspiring story of one of the world’s biggest (or biggest if I’m not mistaken) retail store and more than ever I felt so inspired to be a part of the eloPhotos experience (My internship programme) and give whatever it takes to be at the top of my game at school which had been scheduled to kick off the next day!

Still sunk in memories of the book, I began to pen a few things in my jotter which would form the basis of what I planned to achieve during my stay at eloPhotos! As much as I was eagerly passionate about it, I was worried! Well, not until I remembered God’s word for me in 1 Peter 5:7 encouraging me to cast all my cares on Him.

I concluded to myself that I was going to take things as they come and give my best at everything I would lay my hands upon. I tried reading… couldn’t just concentrate as many images and ideas bugged me real hard… The last time I had this experience was probably when I was to resume senior secondary school which was my first boarding school experience. No doubt, the next day was gonna be the beginning of a life changing encounter. I just couldn’t wait for it!

MONDAY, 4TH JULY 2015. 4:20 AM

Waking up very early in the morning wasn’t quite of an issue; having to hand over everything to God simply does the trick for me. With my mind set on the goal – not getting to school late, I did every single thing with respect to time. Don’t ask me why I didn’t want to get to school late. If you’ve done your assignment well, *Lol you’d know by now that Mr. Seun hates late coming with a passion. Sometimes I wonder whether he had once had a terrible experience with late coming. I had waited for this moment all my life and here it was. In no time, I was ready to go to school and for me, I was beginning to “smell” fulfilment even though for me it was still miles away.

Anyone who had seen me going to the park would have thought I was almost late for a flight. All that occupied my mind was the experience that was about to begin.

Fast forward to when I alighted at First gate bus stop (The bus stop just few meters away from eloPhotos). Walking, jogging, running, sincerely I don’t know what I was doing. At that moment, I felt like Paul in Philippians 3:14 “pressing on towards the goal”.

“Akin!!!” (My surname is Akindele, hence the use of Akin as the call in this story) My heart skipped a beat. I would recognize Mr. Seun’s voice even in the deepest of oceans. I had heard that voice over and over again even in my dreams. Come to think of it, I think I had a dream the night before about Mr. Seun. Now I can’t even properly recollect. I took a walk back to meet him and his first daughter (the famous Anuoluwapo). The details of our conversation, I won’t reveal. Now before you think anything, it was just one of the normal teacher – student instructions oh and nothing more!

Monday, 4th JULY 2015. 8:00 am

I heard voices singing and for a second I thought of the angels singing Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord. In a few minutes I knew it was the morning devotion I had read about for so many months now. I joined them in worshipping and it reminded me of the quiet time I had some hours earlier in the day. It’s quite funny how my brain works; how that virtually everything reminds me of something else. I believe I’m weird; quite strange and unusual. I enjoyed every single moment of the worship. It was led by a colleague I later got to know is named Tunde. Then, the moment of truth was here when we had to sit and hear our boss of life (Mr. Seun Akisanmi) talk to us. Just before you think of another thing it reminded me of, just let me continue my story. My mind went places again. As we laughed and laughed, I almost imagined how interesting it would have been for the 12 disciples listening to Jesus sitting in rounds. He wasn’t Jesus but for real, we were and still are his disciples! Over time, I have discovered that I never get bored listening to Mr. Seun. I always love looking into his eyes as he talks. It has formed a great inspiration for me personally. I was almost thinking of just remaining in eloPhotos for a life time. I felt quite strange in the midst of these guys; it was my first time and I was unfamiliar with anyone except of course the one and only Mr. Seun. Mr. Seun had to introduce me to the whole class as the newest intern and I had to join everyone in narrating how the previous week had gone. This for me, helped my accountability life. I now knew that apart from God, there still is someone I need to report myself to every week.

Oh no, don’t tell me I forgot to tell you this, just during the introduction, Mr. Seun dropped the shocker; Anuoluwapo, his first daughter had told him that I looked like a secondary school student! Strange right, well I guess that was a pointer to the fact that I needed to… no. I’d just be myself. I wished I had given her the little gift in my bag though.

After the disciple experience, we had quite a short time to “flex” just before our class began. The class was taken by Mr. Toye Peters and we had a great time, I must confess. I wished this experience would just continue – for us to listen to photography gist on and on and on. Oh…did I tell you I saw the spectacular Miss kike. She was also around for our devotion even though she wasn’t FULLY with us. Every day I get an opportunity to take a close look at her, I’m always awed ‘cuz to me, nothing is special about her o – just small, light complexioned and all but she has such a big brain, big heart and tack sharp images *Lol (I learnt that also from http://www.elophotos.com). Of a truth, as a lady, she inspires me. She makes me just want to go the extra mile in photography. By the way, her full name is Kikelomo Koleosho and the name of her outfit is Red 19 photography (I bet that rings a bell).

So, back to 12b Fagba crescent Agidingbi, (That was just a proverbial way of mentioning eloPhotos studios); I had a real time familiarizing myself with the environment and of course with the interns learning photography. We had a bit of practicing with the camera and all. It’s really funny how time just flies when you’re at eloPhotos especially when you have to talk business with Mr. Seun; you just get inspired all the way. I felt like spending some more time but then, I had to go home.

I was tired, weak and hungry but at the same time joyful, inspired and fired up! My first day at school sorry eloPhotos was an experience to be written in one’s diary. I got home a bit late – You know how traffic can be in Lasgidi nah but I was really happy to have made such a great decision. I couldn’t wait for the next day to come

I am Boluwatife Akindele and more than ever, I’m proud to be a photographer and to be associated with eloPhotos academy!

NiPHEC 2015……… 69% Loading….


Over 25 Workshops, Over 20 Facilitators, Over 2000 Photographers, 2 cities, ONE Conference. Kindly download and share the following graphics on your social media platform and help us spread the good news of photography. Click HERE for registration details.

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The Year I MARRIED 2 WIVES


The year was 2006. The day was August 19. The time was 12:05pm. I had just uttered the words “I Do” after a Reverend in a church in Benin City asked me if I was serious about taking to wife a princess/damsel/friend/sweetheart called ELOHIAGHE. A few minutes later we were introduced to the world as Husband & Wife.

I had met my wife at a mutual friend’s place at 6:30pm on February 26, 2005. In May 2005, I was sure she was the person I wanted to spend my life with. Our courtship started immediately and the climax of the relationship would be the exchange of vows on August 19, 2006.

Little did I know that I would fall in love with another entity that would eventually rock the foundations of my marriage. I wasn’t conscious of it until my wife uttered the words 3 years ago: “You’re married to this your PHOTOGRAPHY more than you’re married to me.” I was quick to deny that blasphemous statement. I would eventually check the dictionary definition of MARRY and surprisingly stumbled on an interesting definition: TO COMMIT YOURSELF TO SOMEBODY.

Although I usually hate admitting it when my wife was right, I silently swallowed within me the realization that I was not only committed to somebody called ELOHIAGHE; I was also committed to “somebody” called PHOTOGRAPHY. Infact, it would seem that I had paid more attention to the latter wife (of whom I had courted since I was 10 years old) than to the former wife.

How else would you explain my hunger & thirst to buy more books for “Photography” than for “ELO”. I would eventually buy over 200 books on photography and less than 20 books on marriage. Come to think of it, its this same love I have for both entities that made me think of a way of combining both parties’ names to form a business name. The first three letters from my human wife combined with the words “photos” from my mental wife forms the word eloPhotos. It was borne out of an understanding within me that I was being poetic.

8 years has “waka” gone and I would realize that the resources I’ve committed to my Photography wife has made me to be a better photographer than a better husband. Infact, I realized that most of the people (over 80%) I considered as mentors usually have more marital problems than “photography” problems. Some even go the extra mile of divorcing their wives just so they could focus more on their “secondary” wives: PHOTOGRAPHY.

A lot was going through my head a few days ago when I was invited by Yemi Royal to speak at World Photography Day celebration at Freedom Park, Lagos. I found myself asking within myself a lot of questions.

Could it be coincidental that my wedding anniversary also happened to be the day photography was invented?
Could it be destiny that my calling is to be committed to both my wife and to photography? Why are many of my proteges not at this gathering to learn?
What is the future of Photography in Nigeria & the World?

Although I knew in my heart the answers to many of the questions, I felt a huge responsibility upon my shoulders. Will I be able to effectively LEAD a family of 3 ladies & 1 guy (wherein I’m a minority) while simultaneously helping to shape the foundations of an industry. Will I be considered a success by my wife and daughters on the same scale as I’m being admired & adored by my photography “children”.

Its more of a burden than I envisaged. Especially when I find myself having visions of my photography escapades in 142 years from now…. Especially when I find myself having portrait sessions for 3 of my favourite great men of the bible: Jeremiah, John the baptist & Joseph…. Especially when I find myself thinking of the type of conversations I’ll be having with them to bring out their serious side and their jovial side.

Getting back home from the World Photography Day Celebration, I found myself ruminating on the wise counsel of speakers like Seyi Body-Lawson, Kelechi Amadi-Obi, Don Barber, Ade Plumptre & Olusola Akeredolu & Mr Adeboye. It was as if I had returned from one of those sermons that Jesus preached and half of his followers stopped following Him. Was I ready to take this photography to the next level? Can I simultaneously succeed in photography and in family.

I would eventually find myself in my office at an hour wherein I ought to be cuddling my real wife. Am I really ready to do WHATEVERITTAKES to standout? On this and many more questions I meditated on until I woke up the next morning in my office. The time was 5am, August 20.

A new day has dawn in my life, marriage and photography. Never before have I been clearer about my purpose. I’ve made many mistakes….I’m still learning…. But at the end of it all, I pray for grace to fulfill destiny in my photography & in my marriage.

My name is Seun Akisanmi and I’m not even sure if the title of this posts correlates with what has been written thus far. Just airing my heart. All will be well.

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Contact us on 08120129149, 08023008873 or info@elophotos.com for a detailed list of options of classes to take at eloPhotos Academy. It will be the best investment you’ll make in your journey to photography greatness. A new session begins September 1, 2014
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POOR PEOPLE DON’T LIVE HERE


Earlier this year, I was privileged to have been invited by Yetunde Babaeko to her house for a “small” social gathering. Apparently she didn’t like the way top photographers only saw each other during NiPHEC 2013; she wanted to create a networking atmosphere where we could keep in touch with each other without having to wait for a conference gathering like NiPHEC.

Present at the friday night gathering were photography mentors like Kelechi Amadi-Obi, Leke Adenuga, Seyi Body-Lawson & Uche James Iroha. Looking back, I’m not sure what exactly I had done or achieved to have been invited to such a meeting…..but that’s a thought for another day. It will turn out to be quite an insightful networking experience that I’m glad I was present at.

I listened ardently to the gist every other photographer was bringing to the table. From SEX to cigarettes to clubbing in New York to photographing stingy clients….it was as if I was in a seminar titled “How Great Photographers Think”. As if trying to soak in everyone’s gist, I found out in retrospect that the words of my mouth were few that night. I was there to appreciate and know more about how these photography colleagues of mine THINK. I had no regrets whatsoever.

I particularly enjoyed almost every discussion Kelechi Amadi-Obi brought to the table. Although some of our values were not in total alignment, I found myself praying to God for a mind as crazily creative as Kelechi’s. One of the experiences he shared with us was about his experience with a particular security man about a decade ago.

In what seemed like an attempt to understand how the rich think, Kelechi decided (in the early 2000s) that he would use the services of a creche located inside Shonibare Estate in Maryland. For those of us that might not know, owning a property in Shonibare Estate implies directly or indirectly that your net worth is over N1billion: only the rich live there.

The security men at the entrance of the estate would easily identify someone who doesn’t live in the estate by the type of car the person was driving. In those days, the reputation Kelechi’s car had was nothing to write home about. Nevertheless, he knew what he was looking for by attempting to “enter” the inner circle environs of the rich.

On one particular day, a security man stopped him at the 2nd entrance of the estate and after a quick psychological analysis of Kelechi & his car he blurted out (perhaps without much thought) “Poor People Don’t Live Here….where are you going?” He then told Kelechi that people like him (I.e. Kelechi) are not welcomed in a rich man’s estate like Shonibare Estate. Besides, he continued, that particular entrance was strictly for the use of residents of the estate. After much pleading by Kelechi to enter the estate (because he was going to pick up his child from the creche situated within), the security man insisted that he should turn back and use the main entrance.

Kelechi was offended especially because he felt that the economy status of the security man did not warrant him to make such a statement especially since he (I.e. The security man) was not considered to be in the class of rich men. He would think of what to do to make him realize that “Kelechi isn’t a poor man” (though his car might suggest otherwise).

The next day, Kelechi decided to use the same entrance where he was denied entrance. Upon discovering that the security man in question was not on duty, he gave those on duty N1000 and told them to have a great day. The day after, he did the same thing. On the third day, upon arriving at the same entrance and meeting the security man, Kelechi willingly put his “rich” car in reverse and headed for the next entrance. While reversing he noticed that the other security men were pleading with him to go ahead and enter but Kelechi would not bend to their pleas because according to the “rich” security man, “Kelechi was a poor man”.

Kelechi continued with his plan for about a week until the other security men started getting angry with their colleague for insulting a “rich” man like Kelechi in such a manner. Apparently, even the rich residents of the estate don’t tip them in such a way and here comes someone that treats them “well” but is being denied entrance by one security man because he didn’t have a beautiful car. Eventually the same security man approached Kelechi and apologized for making such a blasphemous statement. Kelechi’s point had settled in.

The moral of the story might not necessarily have anything to do with photography but I got an insight on how to handle situations in a non-conventional (but creative) way. You might take this the wrong way but I thought within myself that what Kelechi did was wisdom. He used wisely his actions to prove wrongly what someone said about him. I learnt that one shouldn’t be quick to reply people’s accusations with words. In most cases, its wiser to “do” than to “say“. If people “say” you’re a fool, prove them wrong by your “actions“. If people say you’re “poor“, let the combination of all your actions ultimately make them regret saying that.

Ofcourse, the ultimate wisdom is to realize that you can’t be stopping at every junction in life to be “proving” yourself to people that might think otherwise. Just focus on doing what you know how to do best and eventually they will see the results of your labour and change their minds about what they “thought” or “said” you were. Some people thought photography as a profession was going to be my worst decision ever. The same people that “thought” that have paid me millions of Naira for my photography services.

Enough of my babbling. Whenever you meet people that think you don’t deserve something, take it as an encouragement “pill” to make you focus on your vision and destiny. Ultimately and in due season, those who thought you don’t deserve it will realize that its actually people like you (Yes, YOU) that really deserve it.
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Plan to take a photography course at eloPhotos Academy. Visit eloPhotos Academy for a detailed list of options of classes to take. It will be the best investment you’ll make in your journey to photography greatness

When Thousands of Photographers Speak….


WHEN THOUSANDS OF PHOTOGRAPHERS SPEAK, THE WORLD MUST LISTEN.

A picture they say represent a thousand words, but a collage of heart quaking pictures speaks for generations. Experience history again at NiPHEC 2014.

Nigeria Photography Expo & Conference (NiPHEC) is the largest photography and imaging show in West Africa. It is a platform where photography enthusiasts & professionals have the opportunity to explore photography-related products from different exhibitors, attend conference seminars, keynote presentations, special events & much more.

NiPHEC is an annual photography event for professionals, students, educators and advanced amateurs interested in the photography and digital imaging industries such as commercial, editorial, advertising, wedding, portrait and art photography, among others.

Since a teacher is a light in the dark, classes, seminars and workshop would be taught by seasoned professionals and award winning veterans in the industry. You have the opportunity to choose from over 30 educational workshops and intimate hands-on labs led by top talent with keynote presentations from Uche James Iroha, Don Barber, TY Bello & Kelechi Amadi-Obi.

Subjects such as lighting and posing, wedding photography, business and marketing, social media, software and workflow, video and multimedia would be treated.

NiPHEC 2014 will be holding in Lagos from April 29 to May 3, 2014. For questions and suggestions regarding being a part of this monumental photography event, please feel free to contact them on the following channels.

www.niphec.com

Telephone: 234-8028629706, 234-8036105170, 234-8023008873, 234-8184543364

BB Pin: 74423C2C

Twitter; @NiPHEC
Email: info@niphec.com

NiPHEC Headquarters
12b Fagba Crescent,
Off Acme Road,
Agidingbi, Ikeja,
Lagos State, Nigeria.
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Plan to take a photography course at eloPhotos Academy. Visit eloPhotos Academy for a detailed list of options of classes to take. It will be the best investment you’ll make in your journey to photography greatness

A Day in My Life in 2020: Sotunde Olajide


I think I can remember some of those times in class when our teachers would ask us, ‘What would you like to be when you grow up?’. Our responses were usually like, ‘I would like to be a lawyer, I would like to be a medical doctor, pilot, nurse, engineer, police’ and so on. Very few ones would choose a less attractive profession. In few cases would you hear professions like ‘teacher, civil servant’ etc, and the reason would be that, the parents of those that would choose such professions were actually in the profession. Well, some of us did become what we wished to become and some, a twisted fate, which was either as a result of our actions, or unforeseen circumstances.

I’m sure you are wondering what my own wish then was, or used to be. Well, I used to consider the Law profession, in actual fact that was what I wanted but deep inside me, being an artist was more of it. I was allocated a specific time for personal studies in the evening but while my guardians would think I was studying to become a lawyer, I would actually be making a lot of sketches from comic books, and every other attractive picture I could lay my hands on. With that, I was deriving pleasure and satisfaction in being young and reckless. I never thought I needed to give it a lot more to realize this dream. Well, all that is in the past now, I am a photographer in the present and we are looking at the future which brings us to the main discussion; where I see myself in the year 2020.

Well, its always good when you have these kind of discussions, in the sense that it ‘gingers’ you or wakes you up from your slumber. The first time I saw a documentary on Kelechi Amadi-Obi whom till present is a renown photographer and an artist, I found yet another  reason to rekindle my love for art and a better reason to be whom I have always loved to be; an artist or to be more precise, a ‘photo artist’.

In the nearest future, say in 2014, I see myself having my own photography studio somewhere in Lagos. I would employ people whom together, we would be working to actualize our dreams. Also, I would be striving harder, exploring all there is in the world of photography and art in the pursuit of actualizing my dream of being a renown ‘photo artist.’ In two to four years or so, I should have been well established in business and so, move to the next plan which is having my own gallery.

By 2016 or 2017, I think I would have prepared a good ground for having a world class/standard gallery, especially when I probably would have got all the support I could from my boss Seun Akisanmi, and the bosses I am yet to have, (Kelechi Amadi-Obi and the rest. Don’t get it twisted, I mean support in terms of ‘how to’), I think I wouldn’t have any problem in that area. By then also, I should have had connections with a lot of world class models whom I would have met everywhere in and outside the country. Oh! I forgot to mention that I would have traveled abroad in a quest to gain more knowledge on how to be a good ‘photo artist’ so don’t worry; if you are a model or are planning to be, we might work together soon.

Then by 2018, I would be thinking of how to expand my coast. I would have had photo studios located in Lagos, Abuja, Calabar, Kano and Jos too. By this time I should be in UK or USA trying to see how I can establish businesses in those places also or may be would have. Let me also mention that my investments will also cover sales and rentage of photography equipment such as professional cameras, lenses, lights, photo papers and ribbons etc. By 2020, I should be participating in photo exhibitions alongside the Kelechi Amadi-Obis and Seun Akisanmis, and by then also, you all would be having my piece hanging on the walls of your homes and offices, so help me God.

 

A MEDICAL DOCTOR’s Photographic Perspective: wHaTeVeRiTtAkEs


My name is Femi Adewuyi. I am both a medical doctor and a professional photographer. I started out as an amateur photographer in 2003 , the year I gained admission into the medical school. I  have since developed my expertise over the years and have a number of accolades on my head.

I have always asked a few questions to my mentors and senior colleagues in this business of photography ” How do I get to sell my pictures at a good price ?” , “How do I ensure that my brand remains in business while competing with colleagues who photograph at prices that are too good to be true?” I got answers to these business questions and many more at the whateverittakes seminar. A summary of the seminar in three words would be  HUMILITY, INTEGRITY and PROFITABILITY

Humility
As a photographer in the service delivery business, my customer’s experience while relating with me goes a  long way in determining if I would be hired.  Client satisfaction is hinged on how good our customer service is not just on technical competence. Satisfied clients will bring more referrals .

Integrity
My character  has a direct influence on my photography business. I learnt to be on time with my appointments and in delivery of clients work . Learning to be accountable for my mistakes was another twist to the lecture. A client can end up being a friend and  champion marketer of my business if I show integrity in my dealings.

Profitability
I learnt basic accounting techniques for tracking my income, expenditure and profit.  I was also shown how to identify my ideal client and  get a formidable marketing strategy to guarantee more sales. Learning to write a business plan and budget was quite new to me.

Other things taught include how to start a website at minimal cost, how to overcome our fears and learn to question stereotypes.

In less than a week, I’m starting to see business in new light. I am relating better with my clients and already working on my online presence.  If I have the chance to go to whateverittakes again, I  won’t go alone. I am taking my photo assistant along.
Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (3) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (4) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (5) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (6) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (7) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (8) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (9) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (10) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (11) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (12) Whateverittakes Lagos Workshop (13)

 

My Unforgettable Learning Experience at WHATEVERITTAKES Lagos


The much talked about WHATEVERITTAKES workshop finally held in Lagos after making its debut in Warri. This was to be the workshop that would help photographers stand out in the industry and I must say it delivered.
I was privileged to be a part of it. Four of the twelve participants were ladies much to my excitement. If you missed it and you are wondering if you missed anything, let me break it to you softly; you really missed out big time!  It would have been nice if I could share all I learnt with you but it’s like trying to describe what flying in an airplane feels like to someone who’s never seen the inside of an aircraft.

A lot of the valuable lessons I learnt are the kinds you don’t learn in photography books or even books that teach business skills. The words “Integrity” and “Profitablity” now carry new meanings for me. During the workshop, I had to think of why someone like Aliko Dangote would have banks lined up, trying to loan him money while those same banks might not be too eager to loan other businesses. It has little or nothing to do with the guy’s bank account.

The great thing about a workshop like this is the fact that you not only learn from the facilitator,you learn from colleagues at the workshop as well. It provided good networking opportunity. I was privileged to meet Dr Femi Adewuyi in person. He’s someone who has intrigued me ever since I heard of him; a medical doctor who does photography professionally.

The major questions I was faced with at the end of that day were those that might seem difficult to answer but are at the very core of success in the industry. Questions like: how long do I plan to stay in the industry? What kind of impact do I want to make? What are my plans for the next three years? Am I only in photography because of passion or do I carry a vision that inspires me enough to take action and do WHATEVERITTAKES to stand out and impact my family and the world at large? These are the questions I seek to answer for myself. How about you? What will you do? Will you read this article and move on to the next or will you take time out to answer these questions for yourself too? Remember, the future starts now!

by Ronke Alao

 

WHATEVERITTAKES: The elo Experience in WARRI


My trip to warri in Delta state was as eventful as the training I attended. Elophotos had advertised on their website inviting Professional Photographers and hobbyists for a training in the Business aspects of Photography. I must say, this was rather uncanny but caught my curiosity as I had never thought that photography could be studied and modeled as a going business concern. What I mean here is, I was used to seeing people run around with cameras at functions snapping away to earn a keep. A few had a semblance of studio facilities while others worked freelance.

On this fateful day, while browsing away my time on the computer, eloPhotos popped up with this bright perspective of a training program in Warri. Now, Warri is not my usual hangout due-in-part to my inhibitions about militancy and youth restiveness in that beautiful domain. As you are all aware, practically every comedian in Nigeria makes jest and get their material from the nuances of the Warri folks. That, in a nutshell, sums up my early impression of Warri. Going there was another kettle of fish.

So, following Seun’s directive after paying the relevant fee, I packed myself and I through the help of Bob Izua motors to the oil city. The program started at 9.15am with the Resource person / host welcoming the participants to the program. A brief of the training outline was made after the relevant opening courtesies of self-introduction.

It was interactive with a view to giving the participants the opportunity to make their contributions and get pertinent questions answered. I must say, it was an eye opener.
The training covered such topics as Marketing, customer relations, Negotiating, sound book keeping and budgeting, using the internet platform to energize your business portfolio and reaching out to the world. It further touched on the subjects of HIP ie; Humility, Integrity and Profitability.

The resource person touched on making projections and setting business goals in the short, medium and long term as these will serve as a pivot and guide to aching great results sustainably.

Participants were admonished to be frugal, professional, and constantly upgrade themselves as the business environment changes with time. Above all else, keeping ones business strategy close to heart was of prime importance.

Finally, we were, encouraged to interface regularly and exchange ideas with a view to moving the industry forward. The training came to a close after a group photograph was taken with Mr. Seun Akisanmi. I got back to Benin City by 7.00pm.

My name is Ema O. Ndon  (www.ndonema.blogspot.com) & I’ve made a commitment to do WHATEVERITTAKES to stand out in the photography industry

WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (1) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (2) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (3) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (4) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (5) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (6) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (7) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (8) WHATEVERITTAKES THE WARRI EXPERIENCE (9)

 

Introduction to PHOTOPRENEUR 101: A Lecture by Dangote’s Photographer


Accounting is a subject I have never really liked, probably
because my dad is an accountant and if I had shown interest in it, it would have led to a lot of father-son debate while growing up (if you know what I mean) or I don’t like the fact that it’s not dynamic. With that in mind, you could actually picture how I felt when Mr Seun
called to tell me that his dad would be coming to take us on ‘being accountable’ this week. As fate would have it, it turned out to be a life changing experience.

Bright and early Monday morning, Mr Akin Akisanmi was in our office 30min before his scheduled appointment. And to find out later that he was coming from Ijebu that morning, and still made it on-time for his engagement was not surprising(talk about like father, like son). So, not to come across selfish, I have decided to share some cogent point of the lecture with you this one time before I begin to charge for it anyway.(Stop rolling your eyes)

KNOW GOD
You are probably wondering what this has got to do with accounting, so before you start to think I am sick in the head, let me set the record straight. No matter what you do, you have to put God first and to put God first, you need to have a relationship with him.

What baffles me about this is that am not sure if most of us actually realize that having a relationship with God is for our own selfish reason. To have a relationship with him means to know God through his words, abide by his principles and be appreciative of whatever God has
done for us. When God is in it, it works better. I think I need to stop here on this point and let your professional Pastors take it from there.

CAREER
Normally before you start talking money and accountability, you obviously should have a career generating the income but I am not sure what abnormally will look like because I have never tried it thou. As a career person, your number one selling point is (& should be) timeliness.

When you give an appointment, get there ON TIME; it saves you the stress of giving excuses and stands you out as a serious business person. Get to work early (I have never heard of someone, punished for being early) and stay much longer if need be.

As an entrepreneur, you need to take proper care of your business. Never allow the output of some people affect your input. An example; say you design a photobook and send it to the lab for printing. Picking up
the print at later date, you discover they had messed it up. Make them pay for the reprint and not you.

Keep your product in the mind of your client by little gesture of kindness; like calling them on their birthdays, wedding anniversaries or even every two weeks. That way they keep remembering “Lagbaja photography are nice people, they actually called me on my birthday”.

KEEP RECORDS
For you to determine that your passion can pay your
bills, you need to keep records. This means separating your business from your person for evaluation sake. At the beginning of a business year, sit-down and write out your spending profile for the whole year. Calculate how many jobs will get you there. Write down the maximum and
minimum value you will charge your clients with respect to the number of jobs. Oh! Not to forget, never go below your minimum price for any job. You know what they say ‘like begets like’.

This is getting boring and my fingers are begging for mercy; those are cues for me to stop writing. However, if you feel you need more, kindly enroll for the master class: WHATEVERITTAKES.

I am Babalola Michael Tayo and I am a photopreneur on the verge of doing WHATEVERITTAKES to stand out. By the way, isn’t the title of this write up a funky one? What do you think?

Doing WHATEVERITTAKES To Standout


WHATEVERITTAKES WORKSHOPimage

I’ve met a number of photopreneurs in the last few months who are struggling with their business. After having gone bankrupt with the organization of the recently concluded Nigeria Photography Expo & Conference (NiPHEC), you might as well consider my business as topping the list of photographers running business at a loss (in accounting terms). I’ve learnt so much (about business, life, marriage, politics, friendship & family) in the last 365 days than in all my previous years of living.

Photography for me as been a passion beyond what words can express. Ever since I got my first camera in December 1998, a sense of unconscious fulfillment seems to subconsciously overwhelm me whenever I take. pictures. Turning the hobby into a business has brought its challenges. Nevertheless, there is no doubt in my mind that photography is where I belong; Photography & I are here to stay.

At this junction, I challenge many photopreneurs in this industry (including those about to start a career in photography) to stop for a moment and ask yourself if you’re ready to do WHATEVERITTAKES to stand out in this seemingly crowded & congested business. What if you were told that shaving your eyebrow, (something most men reading this have never done in their life), would help take your business to the next level, would you do it? What if you were told that you don’t need an office or a business loan to get out of the financial mess you’ve gotten yourself into, will you believe that? Are you ready to do WHATEVERITTAKES?

Knowing that there’s no immediate plan B for me gives me no choice but to be more determined to make sure the legacy I leave behind, (as a businessman, father, husband, son & friend), can be likened to the impact Steve Jobs had on the technology industry. More importantly, I’m conscious of living a life that will hopefully lead men to the one that has given me a reason to live: Jesus Christ.

If your goal is to run a successful photography business, I invite you to subscribe to this site and watch out for more inspiring notes I’ll be sharing with you. For those that will like to take it a step further, you can register to be a part of the 7-hours workshop I’ll be running in 7 cities (October 23: Warri, October 28: Lagos, October 29: Ibadan, November 2: Lagos, November 5: Ilorin, November 7: Abuja, November 19: Port Harcort & November 12: Kano) in the country beginning October 23, 2013. It’s a one day workshop where I’ll be sharing practical steps you can take (a process of which I’ve gone through & presently going through) to build a world-class business structure. We’ll be discussing the following topics:

*Impact of Social Media Implementation (Facebook, Twitter, etc) on your business
*Financial Accountability and your Business
*Marketing Techniques of a Desperate Businessman
*Customer Service in a Photography Business
*Creating Multiple Streams of income as a Photographer
*& other pressing issues (as time permits)

Workshop fee is N12,500 and you can send a mail to info@elophotos.com for more details. For those that are looking at a more comprehensive training that includes the techicalities of handling a camera, plan to attend the last session of our 10-day course on Photography (November 25 – December 6, 2013) and you can get 30% off the training fees. Send a mail to info@elophotos.com (or add me on bb: 271e3bc8) for more details or visit our ACADEMY page

Get ready to do WHATEVERITTAKES to stand out.

Knowing When to FIRE Your MENTOR


It’s a dicy issue to talk about. But there comes a time when you have to move on with whatever mentoring relationship you have with someone you respect and admire. Knowing that “right” timing is very key to your growth as an artist or individual.

When I got back from America and decided to venture professionally into photography, I met a few potential mentors. One will still remain a mentor till this day: Kelechi Amadi-Obi. Though known by a few to have his own issues or “weaknesses”, Kelechi is someone who has built a brand you will consider successful. Though some will argue that he has been “over-celebrated”, one thing that stands him out from some other top photographers is his desire to share his knowledge wholeheartedly with any hungry soul. Coupled with the fact that he has a track record very few Nigerian photographers can compete with, this has made him a photographer many enthusiasts and young professionals will love to be like “when they grow up”.

That being said, I’ve known a few people who believe that he’s not all that. One apprentice even confessed to me that the last day she worked with Kelechi was the day she witnessed him take pictures of NAKED women. “How can he engage in such an ungodly act”, she exclaimed. That was something the apprentice could not comprehend as “right” in her christian mindset. Truth is it isn’t something my christian mind can comprehend either. As a minority in my family, I have the privilege of being surrounded by 3 beautiful female beings; I do not need to see any more naked textures of a lady outside my family. My mind is just too creative to remain stable after my eyes have feasted on………..

That being said (or should it be “that being written”), relating with a mentor like Kelechi for me can be likened to eating shark fish; you need to sort out the bones and eat the delicious flesh. Very few people I know are picky enough to consider it too much trouble to eat most fishes or meat because of too much bones. In some cases, the bones are even digested after the main meal.

Relating with a lot of my mentors has been a continuous & deliberate act of focusing on their strengths instead of digesting their weaknesses. However, you can choose to be like my cousin who does not like eating chicken at all because of the stress of going through the bones. You can choose to dislike a mentor once you discover he/she has a weakness that your stomach can’t seem to digest. When such a reality dawns on you, it is expedient for you to quietly “FIRE” the mentor rather than have the weakness torment your relationship.

By “FIRE”, I’m referring to a way by which you will quietly close the door on the relationship instead of “SLAMMING” the door. You never can tell when you might need to go back through that same door. Besides, relating with mentors should also bring to your reality that they’re also as human as you are and sometimes with more flaws than people know. It is better to quietly end the relationship than to be an agent that specializes in marketing the weaknesses of others. What you sow, you will reap.

Sometimes I wonder what it’s like for those that look up to me afar off and when they finally join eloPhotos as interns, they realize that I have serious issues I still struggle with. They know my weaknesses and still decide to stay their full tenure. Can’t they see that I can be a workaholic who sometimes forgets that he’s married with 3 ladies to cater for. Can’t they see that I have a weakness of spending my last N1k to watch a movie called ELYSIUM even though I’ve watched it twice already. Can’t they see that although I studied Accounting in an American University, I still can’t make my balance sheets balance. They see all these and still choose to stay.

If the knowledge of your mentors’ weakness becomes too much for your soul to bear, its time to make a decision that might help save your soul. It’s time to become a distant fan and not a close protegee. I’ve had to become an admirer to at least 5 of the people I once considered mentors. For me the deal breaker is when the weakness is a major character flaw that I consider inexcusable (e.g. lying, cheating, adultery, etc). It’s just hard to see that person as someone I’ll like to be like when I grow up.

Severing the relationship can be painful but slamming the door on the relationship can cause more harm than good. When you get to the crossroad where all you see constantly is that person’s weakness, perhaps you should consider prayerfully FIRING the person. Its way better than bad-mouthing the person in front of others.

Perhaps I might be wrong on my stance. Perhaps I might be right. It’s your call to decide if this mentor of yours will FOREVER be your “role-model”. Or what would you do if you discover that your mentor of integrity confessed to embezzling bank funds entrusted to his care? What will you do?

Yours faithfully,
Your Photography Mentor in need of a BlackBerry Q10,
Seun Akisanmi

 

Photography Classes at eloPhotos Academy (May 2013 – December 2013)


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At eloPhotos Academy, our ultimate goal is to raise world-class photographers. We do this through a series of workshops, trainings, and internship programs. You can visit out YOUTUBE CHANNEL to watch videos on a few photography topics. Contact us to learn more about our other trainings. Below is a breakdown of some of the courses (we call them modules) we offer at our academy

Module 1: Introduction to Digital Photography Gain control and confidence in your digital photography – with a strong emphasis on exposure. This course is designed to help you appreciate the different functions, controls and options in the exciting digital dimension. The class will also examine how aperture and ISO settings work together with shutter speeds to create different photographic effects.

Key Features
• Camera Wheels, Deals, and Decisions
• Aperture – Depth of Field & more
• Shutter Speed – Fast or Slow, Which Way to Go?
• White Balance
• ISO Settings
• Focusing – Understanding focus and how it relates to your image
• Flash – How to make the most from your flash, but not letting the flash make a mess of your image.
• To Shop or Not to Shop – a potential shopping list of accessories and other photo gear you may want some day.
• How to take better digital pictures.
• And many more.

Duration: 3 days
Course Fee: N40,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: May 27 – 29, 2013 OR August 26 – 28, 2013 OR November 25 – 27, 2013
Weekend SETS: May 25, June 1 & June 8, 2013 OR October 5, 12 & 19, 2013
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 2: Lighting & Composition Whether you want to create compelling head shots, professional group or family portraits, or interesting self-portraits, you can learn how to successfully light and compose your subjects in an indoor, controlled studio environment. In this class we’ll teach you how to make the most of studio lights. Effectively use “Natural” light, Learn how to be sensitive to light, one of the two main ingredients that go into making great photographs. In this class you will find out how to become a “pro” at working with natural light. You will learn to use natural light to take your images to the next level – to having them be seen as fine art. You will explore topics that will immediately transform your work, such as backlighting and window light.

Duration: 1 day
Course Fee: N20,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: May 30, 2013 OR August 29, 2013 OR November 28, 2013
Weekend SETS: June 15, 2013 OR October 26, 2013
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 3: Business of Photography In this course, you’ll be deciding whether or not you need a studio. We’ll discuss the importance of documented agreements. Other topics to be discussed include: negotiating for a job, Creating a business structure, pricing your work, customer service, branding your photography and the importance of Packaging.

Duration: 2 days
Course Fee: N40,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: May 31 & June 3, 2013OR August 30 & September 2, 2013 OR November 29 & December 2, 2013
Weekend SETS: June 22 & 29, 2013 OR November 2 & 9, 2013
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 4: The Digital Darkroom In this course you’ll learn the components of a photographer’s digital darkroom. You’ll also learn how to edit with Photoshop. Master the nuances of this powerful image-editing software. Do you find reading software manuals frustrating? Are you struggling to overcome the infamous learning curve that comes with Adobe Photoshop? Then join us as we deliver a great introduction to the program, and we always excels at answering your questions and critiquing your photos.

Key Features
• Basic Setup & Workflow
• Rotating and Cropping
• Layers and Levels
• Retouching with Cloning and the Healing Brush
• Curves, Color Balance, and Hue/Saturation
• Resolution, Image Sizing and Sharpening
• Fun, friendly introduction to Photoshop.
• Learn the basic functions, as well as special tips for enhancing and adjusting your images.
• Gain confidence in using Photoshop.
• Learn how to design an album with Photoshop
•Printing technologies, types of photography print papers, deciding to print in a Lab or at home.

Duration: 3 days
Course Fee:
N50,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: June 4 – 6, 2013OR September 3 – 5, 2013 OR December 3 – 5, 2013
Weekend SETS: July 6, 13 & 20, 2013 OR November 16, 23 & 30, 2013
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 5: Website & Social Media for Photographers In this course you’ll learn how to design & manage your photography website using WordPress. You’ll also learn the importance of using social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc) as a necessary branding and marketing tool.

Duration: 1 day
Course Fee:
N20,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: June 7, 2013OR September 6, 2013 OR December 6, 2013
Weekend SETS: July 27, 2013 OR December 7, 2013
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

REGISTER FOR ALL 5 MODULES & SAVE N20,000. REGISTRATION CLOSES WHEN A CLASS OF 20 STUDENTS HAS BEEN REACHED.

VENUE:
12b Fagba Crescent, Off Acme Rd, Agidingbi, Ikeja

After making payment into our company account, send an email to info@elophotos.com to get a copy of the application form. Download the form, print, fill and bring it on the first day of class to the venue with two passport photographs along with the teller of the bank deposit. For further inquiries, contact us on 234-8079243366, 234-7038244433, 234-8101590358 or info@elophotos.com

You can also visit our Facebook page www.facebook.com/elophotos for more information

For the Digital Darkroom Module, it is recommended that you bring your laptop for editing your pictures

Refreshment & Course materials will be provided along with a professional digital SLR camera for each participant for practice sessions. Please note that the camera is for practice purposes during the training and would not be taken home by participants

Payment should be made into out Stanbic IBTC account 7200147969 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises) or our GTB account 211744703110 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises)

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TESTIMONIALS
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The basic course in Photography is the best thing that has happened to me this year. When I decided to take the course, I didn’t know what to expect, but now, I must say it has been worth my while. I have learnt so much already I can’t wait to go out there and start making magic through pictures. Big ups to Emmagination, Damilola “DAMELL” Elliot & Shola Animashaun, they really inspired me. Please, keep up the good work.
Desi Okiemute

I have always thought of photography as a form of artistic creative expression. When I first began using a camera nearly 30 years ago, I always wanted to be able to take pictures that showed the beauty and variation that is the life experience all around us at all times. After the uncertain results that came out of my self taught efforts over the years, I finally got the opportunity for proper lessons with the Basic Course in Photography offered at eloPhotos Training Institute. After the first 3 lessons, I had already learnt some critical lessons that will enable me take the kind of pictures I have only previously dreamt of taking.”Painting with light”! That is a definition I have gained from the course.The course is a relaxed, practical and interactive one with several tips from experienced photographers. Very commendable training! Now it is up to me to decide to what level I want to take my photography – competent beautiful pictures as an amateur or as an artistic professional!
Dr. Olayinka Longe

I really enjoyed the business aspect of the training. The lectures on character, integrity, packaging, good customer service and branding were awesome. In a nutshell, it was a wonderful decision I made by attending the training because I absolutely got more than my money’s worth.
Oloyede Afolabi

eloPhotos is the place to be. Within the 8 days of the training, I’ve been able to acquire sound technical and theoretical skills in photography. The training package is so educative such that all the ingredients necessary for growth and development are included. I especially enjoyed the Branding and Marketing aspect of the training. In fact, I have decided to inform all my relatives and friends that they should not bother trying to get me a job in the telecommunications, or banking and oil industry; I’ve finally gotten a JOB.
Olumide Oshikominu

…raising world-class photographers

The Multi-Million Naira Photography Brand: A Photography Workshop


REGISTER FOR A PHOTOGRAPHY MODULE BEFORE December 28, 2012 and get 50% OFF. CLICK HERE for more information
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Our bimonthly gathering of professional photographers is here again. Come network with over 200 photographers in the industry. Come learn what it takes to grow an irresistible world-class photography brand.

Facilitators:
EMMANUEL EFFIONG-BRIGHT: Branding can sometimes be a very complex concept to teach. Without much hype and publicity, Emmanuel Effiong-Bright (Emmagination) has grown to become one of the most creative facilitators on the subject of ideas and brand development.
For someone who has facilitated human resource development sessions for top brands like SAMSUNG/IYF, TOTAL, LM ERICCSON, METRO EYES and FIRST BANK, it’s not difficult to see why he brings the same level of commitment to SME brand education and development.
ELOPHOTOS, ASHERSMITH DESIGNS and FLAWLESS are just some of the envied SME brands Emmagination has helped re-engineer. Visit his site at www.emmaginationconsulting.com

RICHARD BAMIDELE-EKO: He has been instrumental in the building of the Kelechi Amad-Obi Studios brand in the last five years, which has not known a better last year. His wealth of experience in the business side of the photography profession will be of great benefit to all who seek to improve the processes that invariably grow world-class brands.

Date: Sunday November 4, 2012

Time: 2pm – 7pm

Venue: Our Place, (A2W New Corporate Head Office) 7 Olufunmilola Okikiolu, off Toyin street, off Allen Avenue, Ikeja

Fee: N2,000 before October 31, 2012. N2,500 thereafter. Make payment into our GTB account (0007361345 elophotos studio enterprises)
After paying, Send an SMS to 08101590358 with names of participants and/or photography business name. Bring teller/payment confirmation to venue. For questions/inquiries, contact Favour (08024494106) or Tosin (08022935383)

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Get your copy of Nigeria’s 1st Photography Magazine PICTURE THIS
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Plan to take a course at our ACADEMY
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Why I Would Not Be A Great Photographer


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My name is Lagbaja Alakori Tamedo, chief photographer at Lagbaja Alakori Tamedo Photography. I am one you would consider a professional photographer: one whose main source of livelihood comes from providing people with the photography services they need & want. I’ve been in the business now for over 1 year and I think its safe to say that I’ve “paid my dues”.

I recently sat down one saturday morning and attempted to diagnose the source of some of the symptoms I seem to be experiencing in my life and business. I realized that business has not been “moving” in the last 6 months as much as I thought it would and I decided to pen out reasons why I don’t think I will turn out to be a “GREAT” photographer in this industry.

First of all, I realize that I don’t seem to rub minds with photographer friends and colleagues that have been labeled as “successful” by many standards. I mostly hang out with fellow photographers that don’t challenge me to be a better person all-round. I realize that even though I’ve been to seminars where the likes of Kelechi Amadi-Obi, Scott Kelby, Shola Animashaun and Tunji Sarunmi have lectured, I still haven’t seen the effect on my business. Could it be that I procrastinate on the implementation of the advice given me by these people. I think so. I prefer gossiping with my fellow like-minded compatriots on how much better “technically” we are compared to those so-called “successful” photographers that depend on the use of Adobe Photoshop to make their works stand out. Heck, my pictures are wonderful straight out from the camera. ….Yet I seem not to make a comfortable living from this booming venture.

Secondly, I realize that I’m not too keen on making my customers satisfied no matter what. On the contrary, I seem to be meeting a lot of customers that complain and nag about how they want their face airbrushed or the background of their pictures changed to the White House. Why can’t they just understand that I don’t like any form of “advance” editing that will distort the state of my original artwork. Yes, I know they’re the ones paying but for heaven’s sake, I’m the one creating the images…I’m the artist.

All these people that call themselves “clients” are just so hard to please. I’m tired of returning their missed calls or calling them just to say hello and wish them “Happy Birthdays” & “Happy Anniversaries”. Their complains break my heart. If only they know how much I try to please……. Perhaps I should really consider reading the 2 books recommended by my psychologist Sam Adeyemi: 1) How to win friends & influence people by Dale Carnegie & 2) You can negotiate anything by Herb Cohen. Maybe the books will help. Maybe not. I would never know until I read them.

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REGISTER FOR A PHOTOGRAPHY MODULE BEFORE December 28, 2012 and get 50% OFF. CLICK HERE for more information
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Thirdly, I can’t seem to remember the reason why I decided to go into photography in the first place. Was it the passion I thought I had or was it because I was inspired by how much money could be made when I saw photographers like Yomi Siffre & Fred Eikonworld charging big bucks for weddings 5yrs ago. Was it just for the money that I ventured into this business. I can’t seem to remember. All I remember was getting a $4000 loan from my uncle Bill Gates Tamedo to buy the Canon 5d MK II kit that I started my business with. May God help me

Lastly, I seem not to have the capacity to collaborate with people that are bent on promoting the industry for good. For example, one would think I would be glad to witness the recent launching of a Nigerian photography magazine, PICTURE THIS. The first thing that crossed my mind was “who is this Igbo guy trying to rip us off by selling in print what we already know about”. Then to make matters worse, the publisher chose to use Kelechi Amadi-Obi as the front cover of the first edition. By what standard are they even using to say that he is a role-model. If only they know how much better my works are than Kelechi’s…… The point is, it’s just difficult for me to support or be a part of anything that will help the industry grow beyond catering for my bank account.

These are some of the reason why I feel I “MAY” not turn out to be a great photographer. Maybe I should consider being a make-up artist or carpenter….. May God help me. Perhaps more importantly, I should seriously consider attending the photography workshop organized by eloPhotos on November 4, 2012 at Ikeja.

This is my plight. This is my dilemma. Or what do you suggest I do to remedy my situation?

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Get a copy of Nigeria’s first photography magazine: PICTURE THIS. Click here for a list of agents near you
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

The Gathering of 201 Nigerian Photographers


REGISTER FOR A PHOTOGRAPHY MODULE BEFORE December 28, 2012 and get 50% OFF. CLICK HERE for more information
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So we witnessed the largest gathering of Nigerian photographers on August 26, 2012. Attached herein are a few pictures taken at the recently concluded workshop on “Running a Profitable Photography Business”.

Facilitators included Kelechi Amadi-Obi, Yetunde Babaeko, Leke Adenuga, Shola Animashaun, Emmanuel Effiong-Bright, Folake Ojeikere & Ade Plumptre. If you missed this gathering of 201 Nigerian photographers, don’t miss the next workshop slated for November 4, 2012.

The Photography Revolution has begun.
Get a copy of Nigeria’s first photography magazine: PICTURE THIS. Click here for a list of agents near you

 

FINALLY OUT: PICTURE THIS Magazine


REGISTER FOR A PHOTOGRAPHY MODULE AT eloPhotos Academy TODAY. CLICK HERE for more information
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The long-awaited foremost photography magazine for hobbyists & professionals is out: PICTURE THIS.

For N1k it should be available in all major bookstores & magazine/vendors’ stands (in Lagos) within a week. However you can also arrange to get your copy from any of the partners listed below depending on the area that is closest to you.

Feel free to call us on 234-8079243366 or 234-7038244433 if there’s a location not listed herein that you can help out with. Like I mentioned earlier, more bookstores and magazine vendors will be added in a few days. For orders of 5 or more copies, kindly give us a call and we’ll deliver to any address within Lagos State. Feel free to share on your social media network.

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UNILAG, Akoka. Dolapo 08029494655 bbpin 238388A3

UNILAG, Dept of Mass Comm. Abiola Oladeinde 08025687884 bbpin 296E30C1

SURULERE:
1) Samuel 07038244433 bbpin 21894759
2) Michael 08063482462
3) Tosin 08028629706 bbpin 22CEF99A
4) Lara 08038930888 bbpin 2371B3F2

ABEOKUTA: Damilola 07066490511, 08027636933
bbpin 28B60E72

APAPA/AJEGUNLE: Maximus 08095001309
bbpin 271DF530

EGBEDA: Segun 08137544841 bbpin 294747E1

OGBA: Olusegun 08055591040 bbpin 227D6448

LEKKI/AJAH: Furz 08133215368 bbpin 229DF347

SHANGISHA: Dmayo 08080806882 bbpin 29F26582

BARIGA: Lekan 08035649655 bbpin 2775FEC1

FESTAC/AGO/OKOTA: Shade 08121110627 bbpin 28C98C5C

BERGER: Olamide 08024583984 bbpin 231798AC

AJUWON/AKUTE/IJU/CANAANLAND: Kikelomo 08028599886 bbpin 222C59E3

AKUTE/LAMBE: Favour 08024494106

AKOWONJO/IYANA IPAJA/ EGBEDA: Yemi 08023255066

IKEJA: Godson 08022313820

OGBA: Tosin 08022935383 bbpin 21F62AA8

WARRI,DELTA STATE: Michael 08025378879 bbpin 235A85A1

Mr Bode Adeosun
Business Centre
1,Thomas Laniyan Street,
ANTHONY VILLAGE, Lagos.
08068891515

Mr Bernard Ogbonna
TrippleSkills Communications
3,Thomas Laniyan Street, ANTHONY VILLAGE, Lagos.
08023939189

Lisha’s Books & Stationery Store
1, Alade Lawal Street, ANTHONY VILLAGE, Lagos.
08027563270, 08024228126

Mr. Joseph
QuickShop Supermarket
16, Oyedele Ogunniyi Street,
ANTHONY VILLAGE, Lagos.
08083278508

Mrs. Savini
Books 4 All Stores
28, Olorunlogbon Street,
ANTHONY VILLAGE, Lagos.
08033018080

Miss Blessing
HealthServe Pharmacy
4,Alhaja Oluwakemi street, ANTHONY VILLAGE, Lagos.
08165520994

Happiness alli
Airport hotel, awolowo way, IKEJA
08187665743

Oge
17 kodesho street, opp KFC, IKEJA
07035707027

Orji
44 awolowo way, IKEJA
08038184672

Mrs. Bukola Bolaji – 08033128835, 07023331224
S. Mofenik
9, Ajose Street, Mende-Maryland,
Lagos.

Hope – 08066005770
Branama Kitchen
11, Ajose Street, Mende-Maryland,
Lagos.

Mr. Olufemi A. Taiwo – 08033512502, 08055895167
Yes! Photography
11, Lateef Jakande Road, Agidingbi,
Lagos.

Chinwe – 08033030779
Mr. Kenneth, CEO – 08033079056
Ebili Junior Stores & Supermarket
18, Olorunlogbon Street, Anthony Village, Lagos

The Hub Media Store
Palms Shopping Mall
Lekki, Lagos

Laterna Ventures Limited
13, Oko-Awo Close, Off
Adetokunbo Ademola Street,
Victoria Island,
Lagos State, Nigeria

If you cant find a location near you and would like to be a distributor or sales agent, contact us on 234-8079243366 or 234-7038244433
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

HELP!!! My Family Don’t Appreciate My Photography!!!


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He sent me a bb message asking to see me urgently. He was frustrated. After finding his way to our office 24 hours later, he was getting ready to explain the ordeal he had been through.

His name is Lagbaja Tamedo & his cousin had approached him to ask for his photography services as his contribution to the forthcoming wedding. Since Lagbaja was financially broke, he had told the cousin that instead of making a financial contribution, he’ll give him a whopping 60% discount off the photography bill. The discounted bill would come to $320 (N50,000). He figured that should be enough to cover his basic cost of production for the album he’ll be delivering to the cousin. The cousin agreed to his terms.

3 weeks after the wedding, the cousin was calling my Lagbaja to ask for the wedding album. My friend asked him for the $320 payment he ought to have received before the wedding and an argument ensued. The cousin argued that he did not agree to pay such an amount and that he thought that the photographer will be giving his photography services free of charge. The cousin started insulting our photographer friend and that infuriated him (I.e. Lagbaja). This wasn’t the first time a family member will treat him thus. That was when he pinged me for my advice.

My first response was that he should accept responsibility for what has happened. I strongly advice against being so quick to “donate” one’s professional services to family members just because they’re family members. In my experience, it’s usually those closest to you that don’t seem to appreciate the creative juices flowing in your veins. Just ask Jesus when he attempted to do miracles in his hometown.

I asked him why he didn’t put it in writing so as to reduce the chances of an argument later on. I asked him why the cousin didn’t pay the discounted bill weeks before the wedding date. The chances of getting your bill paid by a client are significantly reduced if they don’t pay 80% of the bill 2-4 weeks before the wedding date: it will end up being another prayer point that the host of heaven will have to deal with. Like my mentor once said, God gave us a brain so we’ll give God less work to do.

I told him that one of the few people on earth I don’t bother writing an agreement for is my father: his memory is as sharp as Usain Bolt is fast. ALWAYS put everything down in writing. You’ll be grateful you did.

I asked him to go ahead and deliver the album to the cousin whether or not he pays because the photographer’s reputation will still be at stake. Although this was a hard pill to swallow, I knew that a disgruntled customer (or cousin) will be a better marketer of his/her experiences with you than a satisfied customer. An unsatisfied customer will tell 10 other people while a satisfied customer will testify to less than 5 people.

Finally, I convinced him to attend the forthcoming photography workshop on Running a Profitable Photography Business. He’ll have the opportunity learning great business tips from the likes of Kelechi Amadi-Obi, Leke Adenuga (QF), Shola Animashaun, Folake Ojeikere & Yetunde Babaeko.

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REGISTER FOR A PHOTOGRAPHY MODULE BEFORE December 28, 2012 and get 50% OFF. CLICK HERE for more information
———————————–
Get your copy of Nigeria’s 1st Photography Magazine PICTURE THIS
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

 

Running a Profitable Photography Business


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Our bimonthly gathering of professional photographers is here again. Come network with over 100 photographers in the industry. You’ll have the opportunity of knowing how the following “Photography Businessmen & Businesswomen” operate profitable businesses in the photography industry: Kelechi Amadi-Obi, Leke Adenuga, Yetunde Babaeko, Shola Animashaun & Folake Ojeikere. Be one of the first in Nigeria to get an autographed copy (by Kelechi Amadi-Obi) of PICTURE THIS Magazine which will be launched on that day.

Date: Sunday August 26, 2012

Time: 2pm – 7pm

Venue: Best Western Lagos Ikeja Hotel, 12 Allen Avenue, Ikeja

Fee: N1,000

Facilitators: Seun Akisanmi, Kelechi Amadi-Obi, Leke Adenuga, Shola Animashaun, Yetunde Babaeko & Folake Ojeikere

Send an SMS to 08101590358 to register & confirm attendance. Text should include names of participants and/or photography business name. Registration closes August 24, 2012

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Plan to attend the next session of Basic Course in Photography
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Photography Courses at eloPhotos Academy


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Module 1: Introduction to Digital Photography Gain control and confidence in your digital photography – with a strong emphasis on exposure. This course is designed to help you appreciate the different functions, controls and options in the exciting digital dimension. The class will also examine how aperture and ISO settings work together with shutter speeds to create different photographic effects.

Key Features
• Camera Wheels, Deals, and Decisions
• Aperture – Depth of Field & more
• Shutter Speed – Fast or Slow, Which Way to Go?
• White Balance
• ISO Settings
• Focusing – Understanding focus and how it relates to your image
• Flash – How to make the most from your flash, but not letting the flash make a mess of your image.
• To Shop or Not to Shop – a potential shopping list of accessories and other photo gear you may want some day.
• How to take better digital pictures.
• And many more.

Duration: 2 days
Course Fee: N40,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: December 3 & 4, 2012 OR January 7 & 8, 2013
Weekend SETS: September 1 & 8, 2012 OR January 12 & 19, 2013.
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 2: Lighting & Composition Whether you want to create compelling head shots, professional group or family portraits, or interesting self-portraits, you can learn how to successfully light and compose your subjects in an indoor, controlled studio environment. In this class we’ll teach you how to make the most of studio lights. Effectively use “Natural” light, Learn how to be sensitive to light, one of the two main ingredients that go into making great photographs. In this class you will find out how to become a “pro” at working with natural light. You will learn to use natural light to take your images to the next level – to having them be seen as fine art. You will explore topics that will immediately transform your work, such as backlighting and window light.

Duration: 1 day
Course Fee: N20,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: December 5, 2012 OR January 9, 2013
Weekend SETS: September 15, 2012 OR January 26, 2013
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 3: Business of Photography In this course, you’ll be deciding whether or not you need a studio. We’ll discuss the importance of documented agreements. Other topics to be discussed include: negotiating for a job, Creating a business structure, pricing your work, customer service, branding your photography and the importance of Packaging.

Duration: 2 days
Course Fee: N40,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: December 6 & 7, 2012 OR January 10 & 11, 2013
Weekend SETS: September 22 & 29, 2012 OR February 2 & 9, 2013.
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 4: The Digital Darkroom In this course you’ll learn the components of a photographer’s digital darkroom. You’ll also learn how to edit with Photoshop. Master the nuances of this powerful image-editing software. Do you find reading software manuals frustrating? Are you struggling to overcome the infamous learning curve that comes with Adobe Photoshop? Then join us as we deliver a great introduction to the program, and we always excels at answering your questions and critiquing your photos.

Key Features
• Basic Setup & Workflow
• Rotating and Cropping
• Layers and Levels
• Retouching with Cloning and the Healing Brush
• Curves, Color Balance, and Hue/Saturation
• Resolution, Image Sizing and Sharpening
• Fun, friendly introduction to Photoshop.
• Learn the basic functions, as well as special tips for enhancing and adjusting your images.
• Gain confidence in using Photoshop.
• Learn how to design an album with Photoshop
•Printing technologies, types of photography print papers, deciding to print in a Lab or at home.

Duration: 3 days
Course Fee:
N50,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: December 10-12, 2012 OR January 14-16, 2013
Weekend SETS: October 6, 13 & 20, 2012 OR February 16, 23 & March 2, 2013.
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

Module 5: Website & Social Media for Photographers In this course you’ll learn how to design & manage your photography website using WordPress. You’ll also learn the importance of using social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc) as a necessary branding and marketing tool.

Duration: 1 day
Course Fee:
N20,000
DATES:
Weekday SETS: December 13, 2012 OR January 17, 2013
Weekend SETS: October 27, 2012 OR March 9, 2013.
Registration closes when a class of 20 students has been reached

REGISTER FOR ALL 5 MODULES & SAVE N20k. REGISTRATION CLOSES WHEN A CLASS OF 20 STUDENTS HAS BEEN REACHED.

VENUE:
12b Fagba Crescent, Off Acme Rd, Agidingbi, Ikeja

After making payment into our company account, send an email to info@elophotos.com to get a copy of the application form. Download the form, print, fill and bring it on the first day of class to the venue with two passport photographs along with the teller of the bank deposit. For further inquiries, contact us on 234-8079243366, 234-7038244433, 234-8120129149, 234-8101590358 or info@elophotos.com

You can also visit our Facebook page www.facebook.com/elophotos for more information

For the Digital Darkroom Module, it is recommended that you bring your laptop for editing your pictures

Refreshment & Course materials will be provided along with a professional digital SLR camera for each participant for practice sessions. Please note that the camera is for practice purposes during the training and would not be taken home by participants

Payment should be made into out Stanbic IBTC account 7200147969 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises) or our GTB account 211744703110 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises)

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TESTIMONIALS

The basic course in Photography is the best thing that has happened to me this year. When I decided to take the course, I didn’t know what to expect, but now, I must say it has been worth my while. I have learnt so much already I can’t wait to go out there and start making magic through pictures. Big ups to Emmagination, Damilola “DAMELL” Elliot & Shola Animashaun, they really inspired me. Please, keep up the good work. Desi Okiemute

I have always thought of photography as a form of artistic creative expression. When I first began using a camera nearly 30 years ago, I always wanted to be able to take pictures that showed the beauty and variation that is the life experience all around us at all times. After the uncertain results that came out of my self taught efforts over the years, I finally got the opportunity for proper lessons with the Basic Course in Photography offered at eloPhotos Academy. After the first 3 lessons, I had already learnt some critical lessons that will enable me take the kind of pictures I have only previously dreamt of taking.”Painting with light”! That is a definition I have gained from the course.The course is a relaxed, practical and interactive one with several tips from experienced photographers. Very commendable training! Now it is up to me to decide to what level I want to take my photography – competent beautiful pictures as an amateur or as an artistic professional! Dr. Olayinka Longe

I really enjoyed the business aspect of the training. The lectures on character, integrity, packaging, good customer service and branding were awesome. In a nutshell, it was a wonderful decision I made by attending the training because I absolutely got more than my money’s worth. Oloyede Afolabi

eloPhotos is the place to be. Within the 8 days of the training, I’ve been able to acquire sound technical and theoretical skills in photography. The training package is so educative such that all the ingredients necessary for growth and development are included. I especially enjoyed the Branding and Marketing aspect of the training. In fact, I have decided to inform all my relatives and friends that they should not bother trying to get me a job in the telecommunications, or banking and oil industry; I’ve finally gotten a JOB. Olumide Oshikominu

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…raising world-class photographers
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Get your copy of Nigeria’s 1st Photography Magazine PICTURE THIS
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

The Wedding Kelechi Amadi-Obi offered to cover for $600


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So while discussing with a photographer colleague the other day, I asked him how much he enjoyed covering Celebrity X’s wedding. He laughed it off and went ahead to give a break down of the deal. Now before you proceed, please note that this is not fiction: it happened to people I (and perhaps U) know very well. We’ll call the photographer C & the celebrity X.

Photographer C first met Celebrity X earlier this year when he came seeking for the services of a professional photographer. C came highly recommended and the meeting was arranged. Upon arriving at the studio of C, X was shocked when he was given a bill of $500 for the session. “But it’s just a few soft copies I need” X exclaimed. “I know this one photographer J that can give me this same session for $80″, he continued. C explained that that was the worth of the value he was bringing to the table and that photographer J was probably also charging what he felt he was worth”.

After much discussion and pleading, photographer C decided to do the session for Celebrity X without charging a dime. Knowing that Celebrity X was very popular, perhaps it will go a long way in establishing a rapour that will bring more business in the future, he thought. The session came, the session went and over 30 soft copies later, Celebrity X was convinced that there are PHOTOGRAPHERS & there are photographers. He loved the pictures. I loved the pictures. The resulting pictures were so beautiful that I even considered going for a training session with Photographer C on how to use “studio” lights.

Fast forward to a few months later, Celebrity X came back for some more. This time he was getting married and required the world class services of photographer C for the wedding day. But first, Celebrity X needed a pre-wedding session so the pictures could be used to “advertise” to the world that “Lagbaja & Tamedo” are getting married.

Once again, Celebrity X was shocked at the bill that was presented him for the pre-wedding session. “Haba, don’t forget that you’re the one covering the main wedding”, he kidded. “Do you want to scare me away now?” After much pleading and nagging, photographer C gave a discount for the session. He figured that since he’ll be covering the wedding, he has little to loose.

Once again, the pictures that ensued proved to Celebrity X that photography was indeed the Divine calling of photographer C. The pictures were (according to the choice of words used by one of my clients) “tastefully finished”.

Alas, the wedding day drew nigh. It was time to finalize the photography details of the main day. Once again, Celebrity X shouted when he got a bill of over $2000. Now at this point, the gentleman in photographer C was already getting angry. “What does this man take me for?” he asked himself. What made matters worse was when Celebrity X blurted out that “even Kelechi Amadi-Obi has offered to collect $800 for covering the wedding”.

The indirect question being posed to my colleague was thus: “Who are you to charge me more than what Kelechi has offered to take?” To say that photographer C was furious will be an understatement of the year. He nicely told Celebrity X to proceed with using the services of Kelechi Amadi-Obi since his (i.e. Photographer C) bill is not favorable.

Now at this point you need to understand that Celebrity X is the type of client that although I would have turned down since the first meeting, many photographers would have considered it a privilege to be his official wedding photographer. He was well known. He’s still very well known.

Although I knew (just like photographer C) that Celebrity X was lying through his teeth, I decided to call and confirm if indeed Kelechi covered the wedding. I called Kelechi Amadi-Obi’s studios 3 days ago (June 25, 2012) and discussed the issue with them. I wanted to confirm if it was indeed true. His project Manager laughed me off and said “that is a BIG LIE”. He told me that the minimum Kelechi takes for a wedding coverage and delivery of soft copies on a cd is $6000. (WoW. When I grow up, I definitely want to be like Kelechi.)

So what lessons are to be learnt here? You be the judge. But whatever it is you’ve learnt from this, please make sure it includes not being ridiculed or tossed to & fro by a potential client that might look or talk like Celebrity X. I eventually met a photographer that saw the wedding pictures of X (let’s no longer call him a Celebrity): the pictures were “nothing to write home about” for a person of his class.

Buttom line is this: know your worth, price accordingly and don’t take sh** from anyone that seeks to ridicule your great work (assuming ofcourse it’s great) by comparing you to another photographer.

By the way, if you were Photographer C, what would you have done in each scenario of meeting X. (This is definitely an interesting simultaneous equation in which it isn’t necessary to Find X).

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Discover 5 reasons why you should learn photography at eloPhotos ACADEMY. A new weekend session begins January 12, 2013. Register before December 28 & get a 50% discount
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

The Maiden Edition: PICTURE THIS Magazine


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Wow, its been interesting and challenging so far. Transitioning from being a photographer to being a publisher is not a small task for me. Attached is the front cover of our maiden edition, a glimpse of what will soon be a reality in a few weeks. Your input, advise and contribution are still welcome. Let us know what you think. Thanks to the team at Kelechi Amadi-Obi’s office: it was no small task attempting to give a photographer a photo shoot. However, Dipo Odetoyinbo (Black Child Photography) specializes in photographically dealing with such challenges. Thanks to Dipo and his team, we’ve been given a glimpse of what it’s like when the tables are turned around and the photographer becomes the “photographee”.

Also you can still send in you company details for a free complimentary listing in the maiden edition. Most of the responses we’ve gotten so far are from photographers. There are still other businesses in the industry that have not been listed. Print labs, photo equipment stores, frame sellers, etc. Spread the word. Make it your blackberry dp. Place the info on your social media network. Let’s help preach the gospel of photography and let the world know that plenty good can come out of Nigeria.

Kindly send any contributions/suggestions to info@elophotos.com & we’ll really appreciate it.
Remember that listings should have “NPD listing” and should be in the following format

CATEGORY: PHOTOGRAPHERSNAME:OMODEE
PHOTOGRAPHYOFFICE ADDRESS:SUITE B28,
PRIMALTEK PLAZA,PEN CINEMA, AGEGE,LAGOS.
TELEPHONE:08023542111.
WEBSITE:www.omodeephotography.comE-MAIL:funke@omodeephotography.com

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Discover 5 reasons why you should learn photography at eloPhotos ACADEMY. A new weekend session begins January 12, 2013. Register before December 28 & get a 50% discount
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Busayo & Omotayo’s Wedding


Photographs taken by Busuyi, Bright, Favor & Tosin


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Discover 5 reasons why you should learn photography at eloPhotos ACADEMY. A new weekend session begins January 12, 2013. Register before December 28 & get a 50% discount
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Take your photography business to the next level


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Come learn what it takes to move your photography business to the next level.

Date: wednesday June 13, 2012

Time: 9am – 1pm

Venue: elophotos studios office
12b fagba crescent, off acme rd,
agidingbi, ikeja

Fee: N500

Facilitator: Seun Akisanmi

Send SMS to 08101590358 to confirm attendance. Txt should include names of participants and photography business. Registration closes June 10, 2012
———————————–
Discover 5 reasons why you should learn photography at eloPhotos ACADEMY. A new weekend session begins January 12, 2013. Register before December 28 & get a 50% discount
———————————–
For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Nigeria’s Photography Directory


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Attention all Photography-related companies. Calling all photographers, makeup artists, printing labs, videographers, album designers/makers, camera & photography equipment sellers, computer & sellers, photography schools, camera repairers, advertising & modeling agencies and photography bookstores. We’re presently working on the forthcoming release of a bi-monthly photography magazine called PICTURE THIS (http://wp.me/p1meHy-12V) and a segment in the magazine is called “Photography Directory”. In this segment we’ll be listing the contact details of organizations/companies that provide products/services that promote directly or indirectly the photography industry.

Send an email to picturethis@elophotos.com with the subject title NPD listing if you’ll like to include your company details. Listing is free for the maiden edition and costs N6k for subsequent editions. Kindly follow the following format when sending in details as submissions that don’t meet guidelines will be disqualified.

NPD Listing

CATEGORY: makeup artist (or any other category)
COMPANY NAME: moore makeup
ADDRESS: 9c Jide Ayo close Omole Phase 1, Ojodu-Ikeja.
TELEPHONE: 2 phone nos.
Website: 1 website address
e-MAIL: wemimoore@gmail.com
BB pin: 22221111

Pls be sure you have a functional website before submitting. If your business does not have an active website, don’t include the website address in the submission. Kindly forward this info to anyone you know might be interested. For further inquiries: 234-8079243366 or 234-7038244433. Deadline for submission has been moved to July 6, 2012. (Businesses must be based in West-Africa). The Publisher reserves the right to exclude any category submission if it doesn’t meet the required guidelines. If you’ve already submitted and your submission meets the guidelines above, you don’t need to send another email.

Photographically yours,

Seun Akisanmi
CEO elophotos.com
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Plan to attend the next session of Basic Course in Photography
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

TOP SECRET: Nigeria’s 1st Photography Magazine Premiers


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Greetings great artistic & creative citizens of the earth. We’re working on a photography Magazine (Picture This) that will be launched in mid-July and I thought it wise to let you in on the secret. A segment of the magazine will be featuring creative and beautiful pictures taken by Nigerian amateurs and professionals. We’ll appreciate if you can kindly forward any “wow” picture that is considered “creative & beautiful” (& you’ll love us to publish) to info@elophotos.com

Please be sure you have the rights to the picture and high resolution pictures should be sent. Kindly also include a brief explanation on how & when the image was gotten. Only pictures that meet our standards will be published in the 5-page segment.

There’s also a segment we call “Photography Directory”. In this segment, vendors in the photography industry have the opportunity of letting the world know how they can be reached. For the 1st edition, you can be listed for free if you can send (to info@elophotos.com) the name of your company, main services rendered, address & phone numbers For example:
Elophotos Studios
Event & Portrait Photographers
12b Fagba Crescent, off acme rd, agidingbi, ikeja
08023008873
http://www.elophotos.com

All correspondence should be sent to info@elophotos.com.

Deadline for submissions for the 1st edition is June 15, 2012.

Much Thanks to the individuals that are already on board for the success of this project: Theophilus Emmanuel, Segun Alawode, Akin Ibitoye, Dipo Odetoyinbo, Lekan Made Fotos, Abiola Oladeinde, Richard Bamidele Eko, Shola Animashaun, Olusegun Ogunyemi, Segun Adebiyi, Kikelomo Koleosho & Kelechi Amadi-Obi.

Contributions and suggestions on how to make this a world-class magazine are welcome.

Attached are sample covers of the 1st 4 editions. Please kindly drop a comment and let us know what you sincerely think and how we can make it better. For advert placement & sponsorship opportunities, kindly contact us on 08101590358 or 08023008873 or send us an email at info@elophotos.com
Spread the word and share on your social media
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Plan to attend the next session of Basic Course in Photography
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Photography Bootcamp for Kids (Ages 6-19)


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In this course, your children will learn how to:

* develop technical proficiency with a compact camera
* create impact with photography
* compose pictures
* develop a photography “style”
* effectively tell a story with photography
* effectively photograph people
* know the right equipment to use for any situation
* edit images using Adobe Photoshop CS5 (FOR AGES 11-19)
* correct tone & color using Adobe Photoshop CS5 (FOR AGES 11-19)

DATES
Set 1
July 23 – August 3, 2012 (10 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 10 students in a class
Course fee: N60,000
Registration closes July 16, 2012 or when class limit of 10 students has been reached

Set 2
August 13 – August 24, 2012 (10 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 10 students in a class
Course fee: N60,000
Registration closes August 6, 2012 or when class limit of 10 students has been reached

VENUE
eloPhotos Nigeria Ltd
12b fagba Crescent,
off Acme Road,
Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria

Send an email to info@elophotos.com to get a copy of the application form. Download the form, print, fill and bring it (or fax) on the first day of class to the venue with 1 passport photographs along with the teller of the bank deposit.
You can also visit our website at http://www.elophotos.com for more information
Refreshments & Course materials will be be served. However children will be required to bring their digital cameras for the course. Contact us for details on the type of cameras to get.

Payment should be made into our Stanbic IBTC account 7200147969 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises) or our Guaranty Trust Bank account 211744703110 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises)

For further inquiries, contact us on 234-8101590358, 234-8120129149, 234-8191474348, 234-8023008873 or info@elophotos.com

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Plan to attend the next session of Basic Course in Photography
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

AN EXPERIENCE WORTH REMEMBERING: eloPhotos Academy


Its quite amazing how dreams come true so soon.
Exactly six months ago, I had prayed and panted (just like the deer pants for water) to be under the tutelage of a personality I met and highly respect. Since my encounter with the CEO of eloPhotos Studio (Mr Seun Akisanmi) at the D-SAP photography training last year, I had dreamt of having an advance training under him so has to equip myself with more knowledge in the field of photography and most importantly to learn the right attitude and dispositions to clients and the photography business which an average Nigerian Photographers tend to neglect or lack.

The long awaited training kicked off on Monday, 19TH March, 2012 at eloPhotos office situated in Ikeja. With so much anticipation and determination against all odds, I left the city of Abeokuta and crossed the border of Ogun State to Lagos State to participate in the training. Before now, I knew I wasn’t going to be the only trainee so I was not disappointed when I got there and met other trainees from different parts of the country well sitted at the reception (which was well decorated with frames of creative pictures and a bookshelf stacked neatly with books on photography business and I was like WAOH! This is a serious venture.)

The first day was more of an introductory and interactive class where we got to meet ourselves, share basic life information and ultimately share our passion for photography. Our instructor was not left out as he did the bulk of the talking sharing his different experiences from how he decided to follow his passion (Photography), the need to read books to getting the right mentor for one’s area of specialization in photography. He also stressed the importance of having the right business mindset in photography. Interestingly, every of his words were an eye opener in one way or the other and my passion grew the more for this high calling.

The days following were devoted basically for learning and handling the camera, our “weapon of warfare”. The technicality of the camera was taught & justice was done with regard to different shooting modes, types of lenses, light meter, exposure value compensation, Depth of field, white balance, business photography and so on.

I realized right there that photography and taking pictures was beyond pressing the shutter button. It entails a wide range of things from the technicality of it to creativity, composition, being friendly, honest, & humble with clients. At this junction I began to have a clearer understanding of how the few pictures delivered by some photographers are not WAOH enough while some on the other end are great. It all boils down to having the right composition for your subject and knowing the right settings for different exposures.

It seems the week tends to end faster when you have creative stuffs like this going on for you or maybe its my notion but honestly, friday arrived faster than the speed of light. Another week of training surfaced and was devoted to the DIGITAL DARKROOM. I especially loved the MAGIC that Photoshop was capable of creating. Kudos to the inventor of this software. I mean, I love Photoshop! But like my instructor said “try as much as possible to get the best picture from camera because you will save some time in Photoshop”. I totally agree with that because a bad picture from the camera cannot deliver the best not even after serious editing with the magical Photoshop.

At this point, I cannot but draw attention to the rapid developmental changes occurring in the digital photography industry. There’s still so much to be done in the industry and I sincerely want to be among those that will keep the flag flying. One of the most crucial things I learnt at eloPhotos Academy is the importance of giving your picture a voice of its own.

As we approached the end of the training, it dawned on me how much I was going to miss my colleague photographers who just like myself had sacrificed a lot to attend this training. We were about to go back to our various destinations transformed to becoming greater photographers who will impact the world photographically. I am definitely convinced we will meet at the top where the Kings dine and wine.

In conclusion, I will like to extend my sincere gratitude to the able organizers of this training especially to the CEO of Elophotos Studio for allowing himself to be used by God to pioneer one of the best Photography training Institute in Nigeria, giving room for a person like me to have an in-depth knowledge in the field. My heartfelt gratitude also goes to his beautiful wife and his supermodel daughter Anu , who voluntarily posed for my practice sessions. Much thanks also goes out to other in-house photographers (Afolabi Oloyede & Adetunji Oremosu) who did so well in putting us through whenever we were “stranded” with the camera settings. Love you all and God bless you.

Photographically yours,

Oluwatosin
Set 10 eloPhotos Academy
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Plan to attend the next session of Basic Course in Photography
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Basic Course in Photography (June 2012 – December 2012)


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At eloPhotos Academy, our ultimate goal is to raise world-class photographers. We do this through a series of workshops, trainings, and internship programs. You can visit out youtube channel (www.youtube.com/elophotos) to watch videos on a few photography topics. Contact us to learn more about our other trainings.
In this course, you’ll learn how to:
* develop technical proficiency with your camera
* create impact with your photography
* compose pictures
* develop your style
* effectively tell a story with photography
* be a master of “light”
* effectively photograph people
* know the right equipment to use for any situation
* make a good income in photography
* edit images using Adobe Photoshop CS5
* correct tone & color using Adobe Photoshop CS5
* produce outstanding printed images
* effectively market and brand yourself as a photographer
Set 8
January 23 – February 1, 2012 (8 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes January 16, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached
Set 9
January 21 – March 3, 2012 (7 Saturdays)
9am – 3pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes January 16, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached
Set 10
March 19 – March 28, 2012 (8 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes March 1, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Set 11
March 24 – May 5, 2012 (7 Saturdays)
9am – 3pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes March 12, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Set 12
June 4 – June 13, 2012 (8 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes May 21, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Set 13
June 2 – July 14, 2012 (7 Saturdays)
9am – 3pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes May 18, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Set 14
September 3 – September 12, 2012 (9 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes August 24, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Set 15
September 1 – October 13, 2012 (9 Saturdays)
9am – 3pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes Aug 17, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Set 16
December 3 – December 12, 2012 (9 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes November 23, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Send an email to info@elophotos.com to get a copy of the application form. Download the form, print, fill and bring it on the first day of class to the venue with two passport photographs along with the teller of the bank deposit. For further inquiries, contact us on 234-8101590358, 234-8023008873, 234-8120129149, 234-8191474348 or info@elophotos.com

You can also visit our Facebook page www.facebook.com/elophotos for more information

For the course, it is recommended that you bring your laptop for editing your pictures

Refreshment & Course materials will be provided along with a professional digital SLR camera for each participant for practice sessions. Please note that the camera is for practice purposes during the training and would not be taken home by participants

Payment should be made into out Stanbic IBTC account 7200147969 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises) or our GTB account 211744703110 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises)

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TESTIMONIALS

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The basic course in Photography is the best thing that has happened to me this year. When I decided to take the course, I didn’t know what to expect, but now, I must say it has been worth my while. I have learnt so much already I can’t wait to go out there and start making magic through pictures. Big ups to Emmagination, Damilola “DAMELL” Elliot & Shola Animashaun, they really inspired me. Please, keep up the good work.

Desi Okiemute

I have always thought of photography as a form of artistic creative expression. When I first began using a camera nearly 30 years ago, I always wanted to be able to take pictures that showed the beauty and variation that is the life experience all around us at all times. After the uncertain results that came out of my self taught efforts over the years, I finally got the opportunity for proper lessons with the Basic Course in Photography offered at eloPhotos Training Institute. After the first 3 lessons, I had already learnt some critical lessons that will enable me take the kind of pictures I have only previously dreamt of taking.”Painting with light”! That is a definition I have gained from the course.The course is a relaxed, practical and interactive one with several tips from experienced photographers. Very commendable training! Now it is up to me to decide to what level I want to take my photography – competent beautiful pictures as an amateur or as an artistic professional!

Dr. Olayinka Longe

I really enjoyed the business aspect of the training. The lectures on character, integrity, packaging, good customer service and branding were awesome. In a nutshell, it was a wonderful decision I made by attending the training because I absolutely got more than my money’s worth.

Oloyede Afolabi

eloPhotos is the place to be. Within the 8 days of the training, I’ve been able to acquire sound technical and theoretical skills in photography. The training package is so educative such that all the ingredients necessary for growth and development are included. I especially enjoyed the Branding and Marketing aspect of the training. In fact, I have decided to inform all my relatives and friends that they should not bother trying to get me a job in the telecommunications, or banking and oil industry; I’ve finally gotten a JOB.

Olumide Oshikominu

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…raising world-class photographers

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Plan to attend the next session of Basic Course in Photography
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Take your photography business to the next level


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Come learn what it takes to run a successful photography business.

Date: wednesday April 4, 2012

Time: 8am – 12pm

Venue: elophotos studios office
12b fagba crescent, off acme rd,
agidingbi, ikeja

Fee: N500

Facilitator: Seun Akisanmi

Send an SMS to 08101590358 to confirm attendance. Registration closes April 2, 2012

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Plan to attend the next session of Basic Course in Photography
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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos), add us on your bb: 271E3BC8 or follow us on twitter at www.twitter.com/eloPhotos

Photographer of the week: Dipo Odetoyinbo


Transcript of the interview session with renowned Photographer, Dipo Odetoyinbo (Black Child Photography)

When did you KNOW you wanted to become a Photographer?
My journey into photography has been a love affair. I have always been artistically inclined. I’ve been into fashion, I’ve done a bit of drama and I sang for a long time. It was when I went to serve in Kano state, on the way from the orientation camp to the village where we were posted, there was this beautiful scenery. The journey lasted about an hour and was over in the blink of the eye. It was the beauty of the scenery that struck me and I felt I had to capture that beauty. I guess that was where that ‘knowing’ first started because I knew I wanted to share this beauty with the whole world.

Tell us more about your career in photography and the challenges you experienced.
I studied Microbiology in the University of Ibadan, but from my second year I knew it wasn’t it for me. I needed to do more with what came to me naturally. I needed to do a little more self discovery. I had good grades and all that, but I knew art is where I am really very good at. That very point, I decided to make it a career. I started out as a hobbyist taking pictures of landscape and nature and a few portraits. I started posting my pictures and it seemed people liked it and wanted more. A lot of people asked me to come and take their picture and I said no, no.
I was so strong and I had to do something about it because even as an amateur a lot of people felt I could take it professionally. I decided I could, but I didn’t know what the business side of it will take. Although I had been into business before I knew running a business wasn’t simple. I knew I could do whatever it takes and that I could imagine myself still doing this at age seventy.

The challenges I had are the same that faces most of us artists. The case of doing something you love so passionately, but when it comes to the end of the month it’s not like someone is going to pay you. The real challenges were the business side: how do I create this beautiful work of art and get someone to pay me for it? I also came to the point where I knew I had to do something that was relevant to as many people as possible. Art is a medium of self-expression but I found after a bit of research that I had to be more relevant.

Who were your mentors when you were starting out?
It’s funny people can inspire you but you haven’t met them personally. I have largely been self taught. But I read the works of so many great people for inspiration. I read a lot of Bryan Peterson’s books and Scott Kelby. I knew more of what was going on the international scene for a year of so. But since I was to be based here in Nigeria, I needed to know what people around here were doing. I met Mr Leke Adenuga of QF and he showed me quite a bit of how to go about the business side of it. Also through HO9 I met Kelechi Amadi-Obi, I met Barret Akpokabayen, and a few others & they have been very instrumental in helping me out.

Getting into wedding photography, I remember meeting Mr Seun Akisanmi who really showed me the ropes of the business side (before that I had made many blunders!) and it was like a corrective measure. I also had a few assists from Michael Adebiyi, who went with me to some weddings and would help cover some and he was really instrumental.

Which Photographer on earth do you admire the most?
Strictly speaking Work and personality wise, one of the people I admire most is Kelechi Amadi-Obi. Just looking at his works alone has been so inspirational. It’s because of the aesthetics and the fine-art. Meeting him one-on-one has also inspired me and because he makes me feel like I can do it too.

Tell us your worst photography experience so far?
I think I have had so many experiences that have made me re-consider this business. I remember a few years back I was called for a series of jobs by the same client, a party, portrait session, two events and so on. After we spoke he deposited some money into my account, promising that he will pay the balance later. So I focussed on delivery and I did all that I could, including getting a make-up artist for all the coverage. So when I delivered everything and it was time to get my balance, he started dragging.

The mistake I made was that I did not sign a contract with him and delivering all without collecting much. I had invested my own money for a lot of the work and it [must have] seemed like I had a lot of money and I had made my profit and that was why I still had so much balance to collect.
That has been the nastiest experience so far and till date I have not collected that money.

What is that one WOW “client” experience that you wish could be repeated with all your clients?
I won’t site one client in particular. I have several clients who have become big-time marketers for me. That just really excites me; when you work for somebody and they go out of their way to ensure that every one they know hires you, if they can afford it.

How far are you willing to go with this “Photography”?
Like I said , it was a love affair for me initially, and I didn’t stumble into photography just like that, but I made up my mind that whatever it takes I am going to make it work. I believe it’s finding out your own niche and doing what makes you stand out and not doing what everybody else does. So many people are coming into the industry, (that’s good because it gives it a prestigious look) but having so many more graduates who are leaving their degree and coming into the business, shows that it is such a fantastic industry and it requires differentiation and stating in your area of strength for it stand out.

Why should a client hire you amidst the sea of photographers in Nigeria?
For me I like to ask a lot of questions and find out a lot about the client to be able to fashion out what works for them to bring out the best. A lot of people want to look exactly the way some of my works appear and I have to explain to them why I took the pictures they’re looking at in a certain way. I think my attention to detail stands me out. For my pre-wedding shoots, I usually want to go all out.

Are you affordable?
I think I am quite affordable. That is relative, because I have a lot of very good work out there that I am sure of. So I have created different packages for weddings. On the average it starts at $900 (N150k) and goes up depending on the options that go into the package based on what the client needs. It all depends on what the client needs although we have a whole gamut of packages that cover what clients usually expect.

What is your advice for newbies coming into the industry?
I would say spend time learning and training. It’s not every one that holds a camera that is a photographer. Learn how to take pictures, learn the art and very importantly learn the business side of it. The business aspect of it is very important to whatever it is you are doing.

Assume you wake up on Feb 20, 2020 what will your dream day look like?
I have always loved travelling. I guess it would be the day I get a call from South Africa to come do a shoot there. I said South Africa because a lot of photographers are trained there and peoole still come from all over the world to get their training there. By then , I would [want to] have an outfit that has really grown and I would have a lot of people under the same umbrella and I would have branched out into a few other fields I won’t mention now. Photography is the good foundation for the other things that come with it.

Any plans for a training platform for apprentists?
I keep getting phonecalls from people saying they want to come learn photography, but I have learnt that talk is cheap! Then I remember approaching one of my mentors once for that kind of request and I had to do a re-think when I realised I wouldn’t have the kind of time it was going to require. I had to look for another way around it. So as much as I love to create a platform for others, not everyone fits in and even though you have just a few rules, they take it for granted. I love to share knowledge so I have an internship program right now but that can’t accommodate many people, but as time goes on I intend to take on more people.
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Black Child Photography is a Visual Communication Outfit geared at providing our esteemed clients with high quality images that speak to the viewer and passes across pre-planned specific messages to targeted audiences.

www.blackchildphotography.com
Email: blackchild247@gmail.com
Telephone: +234 80-2360-1026, +234 80-9056-9305

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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos) or add us on your bb: 271E3BC8

A Photo Session with the Twins at 2


So my nephews (or is it nieces) were 2 about 2 weeks ago and being the official family photographer I was compelled to give them a 2nd photo session (the 1st being their 1yr old birthday) that lasted for 2hours. It was a tumultuous session that made me realize the importance of being a patient person. Amidst cries & laughter we attempted to get a few nice pictures depicted below.

At the end of the session, I had more respect for the wonderful parents depicted in therein. Although I know they’re not identical twins I still find it difficult to differentiate Fadeke from Folake. Maybe 2yrs of living in the same house with them will solve that challenge. Either way, it was fun doing the shoot & I can’t wait for the twins to be 3.

Pictures taken with Olympus E3, 12-60mm lens, Bowens 500 gemini light kit, a few chivita fruit juice & an abundance of patience & love.

Looking at the pictures, don’t you just feel like having twins? 🙂 it is well

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For tips on growing your photography business, “like” our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos) or add us on your bb: 271E3BC8

A Good Reason to Give an 80% Discount


So I met with this client in her office in Ikoyi. She is the president of the Parent Teachers’ Association of a high profile school in Lagos. They’re planning a family fun fair and want professional photography coverage.

One interesting thing about the school was the fact that the percentage of Nigerians that are students is about 14%. Americans account for about 40% while the remaining 46% comprises of 53 other nationals. They wanted a scenario where the students that come in, have their picture taken and get a printed & framed 5 by 7 copy before leaving. They also wanted a photobook that will be presented as a summary of the 5hr event.

Considering the size of the school, we were going to be looking at a team of at least 4 photographers to do the coverage. Another 2 photography “editors” will be manning the 2 computer systems that will be responsible for churning out prints within a turnaround time of 15mins. I explained to her that the type of photobook package we would deliver will cost them N250k: one 50-paged 8by12 inches book. Unknown to her I was actually planning on delivering our 500k package. This is because I really want to wow the directors & parents of the school knowing that I will get more jobs thereafter. I further explained that for each student that wants a printed picture, they’ll have to pay N1k with an assumption that if about 200 students how up, that will make it worthwhile.

It was at this point that she “shouted” that the school didn’t appreciate photography enough to have allocated such an amount to it….that the amount budgeted was N100k…..that even the amount budgeted will be her personal contribution to the fair. I paused. I was shocked.

N100k under normal circumstances will not cut it. This is because I plan to pay my 6 photography assisstants for that day N10k each for their help. I’ve not even removed my other overheads.

She further explained that the school presently has a photographer that can print the same 5 by 7 picture for N250 for the students…that if I wanted to charge N1k, I would have to contribute N200 back into the PTA’s fund. I explained to her that my overhead for delivering my type of quality will not allow me go less that N1k. If they want to remove N200, then maybe I should charge them N1200. I explained that even the N1k each student will be paying is a token compared to what they will be getting and what we will have to gone through. She said she’ll present it to the Directors and get back to me.

One of the things that surprised me is the fact that the school was considering bringing Whiz Kid for the show but my own photography bill was too much. Its ok to pay Whiz Kid over N1million for his 15minutes+ performance but its not ok to pay the photographer N500k for the 5hour coverage. Wow. Even the N1k I was charging will only pay me if a minimum of 200 students show up. There was no guaranty that 200 of the schools’ over 800 students will show up. It was a gamble for me.

I eventually told her that I would still work with her budget of 100k for the photobook but for this time only. Considering the fact that it isn’t the school that will be footing the photography bill & that we were the ones that covered her husband’s birthday a few months back, I would work with her budget.

More importantly, I thought it will be a great avenue to meet the type of clients that I’ve always wanted to work for: the elites of the society. Don’t let’s even start mentioning the school fees each student pays (in $) per term. Don’t let us also mention that the United States government has a big interest in this school. Let’s talk about the fact that this could be my opportunity to eventually be one of the photographer’s that will be covering President Obama’s child naming ceremony in a few months. Let’s talk about the fact that this could be an opportunity to eventually be photographing events for the United Nations. Let’s talk about that. Now that’s enough reason to break my rule of not giving anyone discounts. I think its a good risk to take.

The 80% discount I’ll be giving them (considering the fact that I still want to present the 500k package) will be my cost of advertisement to reach a new class of clientele. Let’s hope I’m right. May God help me. May God help us all

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For tips on growing your photography business, like our facebook page (facebook.com/elophotos) or add us on your bb: 271E3BC8

A Colorless Photo Session With Bisola & OMJ


It all began on January 31st, 2012. I tweeted that I felt like giving someone a photo session. She was the first the respond with a good reason. I sent her an email with my conditions

…there’s a good chance that we’ll choose some of the pictures taken to showcase on our blog, website, exhibitions, competitions or future books I’ll be writing. We’ll watermark the pictures that will be put online so that will reduce the chance of it be used by anyone else. We will never sell your pictures to anyone. If I’m the one that will be taking the pictures and will not have the right to use the pictures for these purposes, it significantly reduces the level of creativity I’ll be bringing to the table…..except ofcourse you’re paying an amount that will really motivate me. Just tot I be frank with you upfront. Let me know what you think and we can take it from there & decide on a mutually convenient date

It was ok with her. 2 weeks later we were having fun with her handsome boy in our studios. I decided to go colorless. The rest is history. Let the pictures tell you the story of what went down. Pictures taken with an Olympus E3, 12-60mm f2.8 lens & Bowens Gemini studio lights kit.


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5 things you probably did not know about Kelechi Amadi-Obi


So I was able to finally get another meeting with Kelechi for an interview session. We chatted for about 65minutes and I discovered more of his interesting personality & lifestyle. The following are discoveries that you probably never knew about KAO

1) He has 4 children: 2 boys & 2 girls. I was always of the assumption that someone like him will be too busy to have more than 2 kids. I was wrong. He seems to be a caring father and is very proud of his 4 children

2) He Gets at least 240 messages daily on his facebook page. Infact if you really need to reach him, don’t bother. Sending a message to his facebook page: he rarely checks it. With over 10,000 unread messages, you’re better off giving him a call on 080******** if you really need to reach him (fill out the contact form on http://www.kelechiamadiobi.com/contact)

3) He doesn’t have a BlackBerry phone. With enough resources to buy BlackBerry Porshe for all his staff, I was surprised when he said he doesn’t have a BB. He would later explain to me that a Blackberry is one of those technologies that “wastes” people’s precious time. If he got one, he would have to add countless celebrities as his contact and they might get offended if he doesn’t reply their pings. He figures that if someone really needs him, they’ll contact him the “old-fashion” way by calling. A part of me agrees with him, the other part………………….

4) Has the most beautiful photographer’s office I’ve ever been to in my life. His office is designed and decorated in a way that will make his type of clientele comfortable. By the time he’s giving a client an invoice, the client will know that he is not your average “papapa” photographer: he’s comfortable & he means business. Its the type of office that motivates and challenges me without him talking.

5) Walks everyday from his home to his office: a 30minute journey. In an attempt to keep fit, he considers driving to work an unnecessary luxury. He rather walk to the office and later go to the gym. That’s why he could afford to show off the “six pack” I thought I saw behind the firm shirt he was wearing. It is well

Just a few info for you to know what it’s like to be in the shoes of a photographer in high demand. Now get to work and make your photography business and world-class brand.

To read the entire transcript of the interview, check out the link http://wp.me/p1meHy-LB
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The Dangers of Seeking Approval from Peers & Mentors


WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THESE PICTURES?
I’ve had quite a number of photographers who have recently sent me some of their works. They want to know what I think of their pictures. Most importantly, they want to know what I don’t like about the pictures. Sometimes I wish I knew the criteria for being a photography judge/critique. Is it by the fame one is perceived to have, or is it by the type of clients one is known to service….I’ll know the answer one day.

Please don’t misunderstand me; I’m not casting down anyone for asking me to critique their pictures. On the contrary, I feel honored. Its just that many people don’t handle criticisms (or the lack of it) very well. Truth be told, most people that have asked for my opinion (one way or the other regarding their pictures) have great collections. Most people that take photographs that are considered “ugly” or “bad” usually know that within themselves. They know its bad enough not to ask for people’s opinion.

Many times we want to hear a large amount of people tell us how great our pictures are (myself included) so that we can feel good with ourselves and reaffirm what we feel we already know: I’M A GREAT PHOTOGRAPHER.

Sometimes, I feel getting constructive criticisms go a long way in helping us get better. Sometimes we get depressed because we feel our works are not “appreciated” enough.

The following are a few comments I’ve heard read from critiques:

“Take it easy with the editing”
“I think the picture would look better in black & white”
“The pictures are too sharp”
“The picture is not sharp enough”
“Wow, I’m stupified by these pictures”
“Well done, great job”
“I’m so proud of you”
“God will take you to greater heights”
“May Allah bless the works of your hands”
The list goes on.

But this is the point I’m trying to get at. I feel a lot of us should be conscious of the fact that the photographer that’s your mentor may have a different style from yours. He (or she) may prefer black & white pictures and you may become sad because he didn’t click the “like” button on your colored pictures. He may dislike the fact that you made the background out of focus and you might be sad.

Yes, we may argue that our mentor knows better but we forget that we are all artists. Even the gentleman (or lady) that designed the Japanese flag must have gotten the “disapproval” of his creative mentors. How else can you explain logically a small red dot on a white background. But the government of Japan loved it enough to compensate the fellow for his work of art.

And that’s my point exactly: ultimately the opinion of the person that matters the most is the potential client that will be paying for your services. Sometimes the photographs you take that they fall in love with are the ones you wanted to throw in your recycle bin. Now you’re thinking twice because there’s a $1000 cheque in your hands that proves you were wrong.

Peers & mentors are good guides but they may sometimes not agree with your creative tendencies. Take their advice, but still carve out a niche for yourself. Don’t just take pictures that look like those of Jide Alakija, Tunji Sarunmi, Aisha Augie-Kuta or Kelechi Amadi-Obi. Take pictures that look like U: your style is your art. Sometimes I save some of my “blurry” pictures because one day they could be used for an exhibition somewhere. Hope I’ve not been misinterpreted thus far….

By the way, what do you think of my pictures? 🙂
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PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE WEEK 5: Kelechi Amadi-Obi (TRANSCRIPT)


We met with Kelechi on Valentine Day’s eve and had a heart-to-heart talk. He just concluded a photo session with Jay Martins and was eager to share with us about his journey so far in photography. The following is the transcript of the 45-minute interview that ensued

Tell us who you are & how you got into photography?
My Name is Kelechi Amadi-Obi. I went to secondary school in Government college Umuahia, after my primary school (Library Avenue primary school, Umuahia again) so I pretty much grew up in my city. Right from childhood , I had always been fascinated with visual arts, usually the best artist of the class in primary school. My primary school was next to the library (hence it’s name), in fact my mum was the headmistress of the school.

My house was next to the school. I had developed the habit of research early and going to the art shelf in the library. Whatever craft I needed to learn I knew early on that I could learn it on my own. I discovered great wisdom hidden in all the books. I became obsessed with trying to master the wisdom of any book I was reading.

By the time I finished secondary school it was obvious I could communicate through the art of the visual though I never thought about how to make a living from it. I didn’t see any gallery or museum or art school in my area. I’d never met a real artist and only read about them in books. So I thought it was something only done in Europe. So back then, when I would make a drawing, I would tell my little sister then that ‘This is a masterpiece!’ I tried to visualise myself [being] like Rembrandt, Van Gogh or Picasso, but it all seemed like a fantasy world.

But when it came to choosing my career, this was story: My family is a family of lawyers. My father was a high court judge and only two professions were recognised in my house; you were either a medical doctor or a lawyer. So I chose law after passing my JAMB examination and gained admission into University of Nigeria (Nnsuka) [UNN]. It was there, [UNN] that my eyes were opened and In fact, I attended ACCA exhibition in Bonna gallery in Enugu then. I was in the midst of real artists. I thought ‘this is it! People actually live this kind of life!’ I immediately grew comfortable with that, and while I was studying law, I was practising my art, and became popular for it. I chose a brand name De’ Zulu (from a movie Chaka De Zulu, who I thought really kicked ass) for business name.

It was in my third year I made the decision I would become a full time artist after I finished law school. But I was not going to be a drop-out because people would misunderstand me. I also found out that in law, there were some things that would benefit me.
After finishing law school, I settled in Lagos with my aunt (Aunty Nnena) and by then my father was late. The only thing I could afford then was a cardboard paper and pencil. So I said, “Great, let’s start making art!”
Freshly out of law school, that was a stubborn and ridiculous thing to do.

It was atop my aunt’s balcony I started making art-works. The first time I went to shop for frames for the artworks the owner of the frame shop asked, ‘’Are these works for sale?’’ I answered, ‘oh, they are N10,000 each” and he bought all five of them! I thought, wow! From nothing to N50,000…. I blew N25,000 immediately on art materials.
I went back to continue with painting. I was amazed at how easy it was to sell those artworks. A friend of mine who was also a fellow artist, came around and found what I was doing interesting. So he said he knew a few people who are collectors. He packed all the works I had that morning and in the evening he came back with N100,000 cash after collecting his commission. Incredible! It became clear I could make a living in Lagos as an artist.
Eventually I had an exhibition, followed by another, and the rest is history. I became popular and was absorbed into the art world of Lagos.

Gradually I was using the camera to take photos for my paintings as reference materials, and as I did I realised I needed to master lighting. More of my paintings were of the human figure and I needed to photograph models for them. I liked to look at the way light falls on the body in the different shapes and forms. I got deeper and deeper into controlling the way light goes into the shutter, through the aperture to make an exposure. So I could thoroughly underexpose a picture or slightly over-expose it to get a kind of feel [I wanted].

While doing that I had mastered the little intricacies of photography. It struck me that some of the photos I was making were already finished artworks. I started hanging out with more artists. I would visit the likes of Don Barbar (even he had collected some of my paintings he found interesting) and he would take me to his dark-room to develop some prints. I was amazed that what I saw was just like my paintings. I then started using Uche James Iroha’s dark room while he was working in Dolphin Studios in Surulere to process my works which I shot in black and white. Soon after, I got my own dark-room. This made my interest in photography come up even more.

It was all just fun, and I wasn’t making a dime from photography at the time. Until a guy (also a photographer himself) came in from Germany to curate an African art exhibition, as part of the biennial, in Bamako Mali. He wanted to have eleven photographers. Someone had told him about my collection of nudes and he came around, looked at them and found them quite interesting. And since he thought they were good enough for the exhibition, I got invited to Bamako Mali. Uche James Iroha, TY Bello, Amaeze Ojekere (representing his dad) and others from diaspora, Mali and Senegal, South Africa were all participants in this exhibition. It was like an art exhibition Olympics for Black Africa!

There were curators and scouts from all over Europe. Some of the curators from Italy came over and after liking my work, they invited me to come and exhibit in Italy. They took my contact [info] and sent me tickets .
Upon returning, myself, Uche James Iroha, TY Bello and Amaeze Ojekere came together to form a group called Depth of Field – a collective of artists who wanted to spend time creating work. And soon we were exhibiting in France, Germany, England, New York and we became very popular. That even sucked me deeper into photography. While this was happening it was my work as a painter that was providing my upkeep.

Gradually people & advertising agencies came to me with briefs for an artistic advertising shoot. When they came I would say, Sure, I’ll work with you, but these are my terms…… Then they would say no, and propose things like N30,000 per scenario. My response would always be , ‘Sorry, I don’t work that way. If you want to call me, you pay for my day and that starts from N150,000 to N200,000. You want me to work for you, it means paying premium for my time. I had gotten advice from Don Barbar about the advertising agencies not having respect for photographers and how not to let myself be treated that way.

So I would walk away from big jobs, but when I did get a job [on my terms] and the brief was given to me, I wouldn’t sleep over it. Even if it was a brief on Still Life photography, I would spend the night, the next day, and so on, studying about it, test-shooting it and then do some more reading again until I mastered it… just to make sure I deliver on my promise.

So if I had been given N150,000, I will make sure I deliver a N250,000 – quality of work. The philosophy then was if I gave the client more, the extra that I was giving them was actually payment for advertising. This is because the person I was shooting for will then go round telling others, “this guy is awesome!” It worked like magic. So while I didn’t get many jobs, the ones I got took a lot of time, a lot of people banged their phones on me, saying who is this guy? Because I would not shoot at the price they were calling. I told the ad agencies, ‘the guys who were doing jobs at N20,000 0r N30,000 per scenario were shooting themselves in the foot by doing too many jobs, and having no time for research to perfect their skills or even money to purchase equipment.’ In the long run you advertisers will run out of good material to work with and you will be compelled to import photographers from the UK, costing you more than three times my bill. So I am actually saving you money!”

As if I was clairvoyant, it happened just as I said. The ad agencies got stranded when big clients came from overseas looking for a certain quality of work and very few photographers who could deliver that quality.
That was how I began and continued to grow, and since then I have not changed [my principles]. Over the years I have been researching continuously to learn new tricks to push the threshold of my craft. I want to be in the place, where the most difficult challenge is what I want to face, so that when I conquer it, it becomes normal [to do so], and then I look for another challenge, more difficult and I face it.

So as time went on, I started enjoying my own personal shoots and I make sure that even in spite of all the commercial work one is doing, I find time to express myself as an artist and that is where I am now.

Please enlighten us about how the issue on copyrights apply to photographers in the Nigerian photography industry
Under the copyright act , the rights to a work of art, resides in the person who makes the work of art. In relation to photography, it is the photographer. It does have exceptions, where such rights are limited, like if it is an image of an individual, there are circumstances where you must obtain a release from the individual. You don’t go shooting somebody’s photo and then go selling it for a corporation to do an advert with. THAT WOULD BE INFRINGEMENT and you could be sued. Somebody’s right ends at the point where another person’s begins. But if you got a model release that tells you that you can do whatever you want with the image, then there is no problem.

If you are taking pictures of landscape or even people in a crowd, you won’t get sued. In terms of doing commercial work it Is still applicable. Whenever you do a shoot, under the law, the rights to those images still reside with you. Photographers are advised to, in writing, give their clients license to use their images for definite time duration within a definite geographical area. That is what you are being paid for in addition to your expertise. If it is not written, the right still resides with the photographer automatically.
How do I deal with this? When I am having a client relationship, my interest is to make sure the client gets what he wants. A lot of people who are into advertising don’t even want to use the images for more than 6 months. But if they indicate that they want to use all over the world, say for twenty years, then you bill them accordingly. The usage matters and that is why I advise that you put this into consideration.

Even though it is a shoot that is for one scenario, it is the usage that determines the billing. It is based on what you have told me that it is to be used for a product [packaging]that I come up with my bill of N1.5 million. If they complain that “isn’t it just for a single scenario?” – I tell them If you have commissioned me to shoot the image for use on your product [branding] I cannot restrict your usage in terms of location (country), time duration or even format. In that case it will even be a disservice not to give them the rights, but your client should know that different types of usage attract different kinds of fees. It is as simple as that.

Once an oil company called me to do a shoot for their oil rig. After we had discussed on the fees, they were like after the shoot is done, I will sign a relinquishment of all rights to the images. I said in that case therefore the agreed bill then increases by 800%. If I am not to have any relationship with my work forever after, even to put it on my website, then I will bill you for it. I ended up not working with them and I was very glad I didn’t.

I think what we do serves a purpose beyond just taking photographs. We are people with opinions. As a photographer, you are a storyteller, a chronicler of history, and our work also promotes social engineering and influencing culture.

For me, photography is your first impression. When someone says Nigeria has a bad image, I take it very literally. What Nigeria has is bad imagery. Bad photography. We do not have enough people being patronized by the right people. So you may visit the Nigerian embassy in France and see booklets about Nigeria, full of tourists’ photos, pixellated because they were stolen off the internet, with absolutely no regard for the photographer, while at the airport in Capetown, I see uncountable numbers of coffee table books in a mad duplication of excellence. Amazing South Africa, so many [different] books [with pictures] taken by excellent photographers who have spent hours trying to duplicate (recreate) these images over and over again!

This reflects in their economy as people see the place [South Africa] and keep trooping there in spite of the violence. We haven’t even started [over here] with photographing our environment – I tell you! It’s amazing!

Could you explain your typical workflow from when a client engages you to when you deliver the images?
The first thing is you get a call. Usually it goes like, ‘’Mr K, we have this brief we want you to shoot – please can we know the price?’’(The price is the first thing they jump to…) continues ‘’It’s not a complicated concept, can you tell us how much you will charge?’’ I will respond that at this stage I don’t think we should be talking about price, but you can send me a written brief of the concept so I can go through it to see if it is what I can deliver to you adequately.

So I stall, and if they are people I have not worked with before, I try to set up a meeting to discuss their concept. Because whoever is on the other side [of the phone] is probably comparing your price with those of others he has written down on the paper in front of him. To him you are just another photographer over the phone, until they see how you are going to execute their brief and solve their problem. I believe this is more important than the price I am going to charge.

So when we meet, and I see the brief, I will itemise what is needed (costs) e.g location and let them also know the latitude of the most extreme scenarios (unforeseen) of the cost of equipment and time! At this point, they may say “it’s just three people smiling!”… I say that means three scenarios and this is what is required, the lighting needed, the method of making them smile and so on, the casting for the kind of feel needed and even for the seemingly simple smiling requires the right type of model.

So through it all I am trying to bring my own expertise into the brief and by the time we are through [discussing] I give them the bill and tell them they have to pay 75% – 80% upfront or we don’t have a deal. (Ad Agencies can make thirty days turn to sixty days and you start wondering, has their client paid them? And they could have been paid a long time ago and be telling you that they are still being owed).

So we establish with the client that they are ready and the date agreed is solid. When they come for the shoot, when it’s done, we have a little time for re-touching (most ad-agencies want to do their re-touching themselves) and then we look through the images and give them the best ones in high resolution.

And if you are shooting PR images for an individual say maybe an artiste, again it starts when they call, concept is discussed and we set up a date and they pay their cheque. On the day of the shoot, we do our work and we give them low resolution files that are watermarked ‘for view only’ for them to review in the comfort of their home and decide the specific ones (up to the number that comes with the package) that they want (I rarely go beyond 20 images), so that we can edit them.
For weddings and events those now include physical media like books and even CDs that will attract different prices.

How do you market to get your clients?
I’ve found out there is no better marketing than referrals [from satisfied clients]. Unless you want to do mass marketing and you have a factory of photographers that cater for everyone. You are the premium brand. You are not just a commodity, you are a brand. It is each person that has experienced your work that goes to tell 10 other people that you are good. So the dilemma now becomes how do you convince someone who has previously used a service similar to yours for N150,000 to pay N1.5 million? Well I could include a discount say 20%, but I never start negotiating without a rock bottom walk-away price that I will not go below in my head already.

The way to become a brand that attracts premium fees is as simple as this: be a promise-keeper over and over again. Let everyone that uses your services always come back when they see that you have over-delivered beyond their expectation. And it’s not just coming back alone but telling others with passion about how they think they underpaid you the worth of your work. So my best advertisers are my clients who I have paid for their advertising by giving them more than they came expecting to get. I will not charge N5, but if I charge N2 million I will make sure he [the client] gets quality work that he cannot bring Nick Knight from New York for N10 million to do! That will leave him wondering, did I underpay this guy?

Even if it is a free job, forgetting about the money, make sure you convert that client to a moving billboard. Whatever you do, make the client happy and satisfied. Also some clients may not be happy with their job, and I may even offer them a refund until I find a way to give them the satisfaction needed. It is all about integrity and client satisfaction and once people know that is what your brand is you can charge whatever you want.

What do you want to tell newbies in the photography industry?
Passion is required! But passion is not enough. You must understand that this is not a lazy man’s job. So it is passion that makes you do all the [grunt] work happily and gives you advantage over the person who lacks passion.

Some just want to photograph beautiful ladies without understanding the details of how the camera works and all that.. the physics, the mathematics and f-stops and all that doesn’t make it so seem so glamorous. So fiddle with the camera and learn how it works and if you are sure that this is what yo want to do, do not sleep – shoot!

With every squeeze of the shutter release, you must strive to take a better shot than the last. Put in your all. If it was easy , everybody will be good at it. If you have passion for it, you will succeed.

What where you attempting to achieve with the introduction of MANIA magazine?
It is one of my projects that developed out of frustration. I love shooting fashion, though the local fashion industry is not as lucrative as the other advanced economies that have understood the economies of scale. They can design a shirt and Prêt-à-porter & 2 million units of it are sold in one week. Crazy amount of money! The Dolce & Gabbanas are dressing the world in jeans, selling belts and perfumes. So on the catwalk they are merely having fun, the big money is in the factories in China churning out their products. So when it comes to paying a photographer they don’t bat an eyelid paying you N200 million!

Over here the industry has just started and it’s lacking that kind of energy and money. But I love fashion. A lot of the magazines cannot afford the work I would love and that made me feel limited. So I created that magazine to open that creative box to show what is possible so I could break the glass ceiling above my head. So far it’s been beautiful, tough but beautiful. We were publishing bi-monthly before but now we are going monthly.

What final words do you have for fans & clients that are watching/reading this?
Do what you love, work at it! But don’t ask me for pocket money!

To view more of Kelechi Amadi-Obi’s works, visit his website at www.kelechiamadiobi.com

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For tips on growing your photography business, like our fecebook page (www.facebook.com/elophotos) or add us on ur bb: 271E3BC8

Sample Contract for Event/Wedding Photography


I’ve had a few photographers ask me for a copy of the contract/agreement we give couples to sign before we cover their celebration. I decided to put it up here knowing it might help to “enlighten” potential clients also. You’re free to use and adapt to your specific needs. It will help reduce the conflicts between photographers & clients after the pictures have been taken.

Agreement for Wedding & Event Photography

eloPhotos Studio Enterprises hereby agrees to photograph the wedding of

On December 30, 2008 & January 3, 2009.

Bride’s Name:Groom’s Name:
Date of Birth: _____________________Date of Birth: _____________________
Venue of Engagement: __________________________________________________________Time:
Venue of Church Wedding: ________________________________Time:
Venue of Reception: __________________________________________________________
Couple’s Future Address ________________________________________________________________________
Bride’s GSM:                                         Groom’s GSM:

Description of Photographic Services to be Provided
20 hours/2days of photography coverage, 1 60-page magazine-style album, 2 13” by 19” framed pictures, and uploading of pictures to http://www.eloclients.com

Charges: The package fee is based on the Photographer’s Standard Price List and includes the photographs described therein. If the fee is not based on a package but is a session fee, all photographs shall be billed in addition to the fee and in accordance with the Standard Price List. In addition to either the package fee or the session fee, the extra charges set forth below shall be billed if and when incurred.

[ * ] Package Fee (1 60-page album, 2 13”by 19” frames) ………………N220,000

Extra Charges (when incurred)
8” by 10” glass frames ……………………………………………………………………….. N5,000
Extra Album………………………………………………………………….N70,000
Special retouching (per extra picture ordered)…………………………………………… N1,500
Overtime (per hour)………………………………………………………………………………. N3,000
13” by 19” canvas frame N15,000
SubtotalN220,000
Less depositN100,000
Balance DueN120,000

Balance Due Date: December 16, 2008N80,000
February 2, 2009N40,000

Package Delivery Date: Album pictures shall be uploaded to http://www.eloclients.com on February 2, 2009 by 12noon. The album shall be printed and delivered not later than one week after the pictures have been approved by the bride & groom.

The parties have read the conditions of this Agreement, agree to all its terms, and acknowledge receipt of a complete copy of the Agreement signed by both parties. Each person signing as Client below shall be fully responsible for ensuring that full payment is made pursuant to the terms of this Agreement.

Bride’s Signature__________________________ Groom’s Signature _____________________________

Photographer ________________________________________ Date _____________________

This Agreement is subject to all the terms and conditions on the following page (please read carefully):

1. Exclusive Photographer. The Photographer shall be the exclusive photographer retained by the Client for the purpose of photographing the wedding. Family and friends of the Client shall be permitted to photograph the wedding as long as they shall not interfere with the Photographer’s duties and do not photograph poses arranged by the Photographer.

2. Deposit and Payment. The Client shall make a deposit of N50,000 to retain the Photographer to perform the services specified herein. The balance shall be due 3-4 weeks before the date of the event. Refusal to pay the balance before the date of event will result in delays in the date of delivery of the album (s). No part of any order will be delivered or uploaded to the internet until payment is made in full. If the Client refuses to pay the necessary deposit within thirty (30) days after the event, Client shall be in default hereunder and shall pay 5% monthly interest on the unpaid balance until payment is made in full. Payments shall be made either in person or cheque/cash deposit into our Guaranty Trust Bank account 211-744703110 under eloPhotos Studio Enterprises.

3. Order Changes. Once a service is chosen or an order is placed and all necessary payments made, the sale is final and nonrefundable. No verbal changes will be accepted. Any schedule or order changes must be documented, submitted, and signed by both the contracting party/parties and the eloPhotos for confirmation and mutual authorization.

4. Cancellation. If the Client shall cancel this Agreement sixty (60) or more calendar days before the wedding date, any deposit paid to the Photographer shall be refunded in full. If Client shall cancel within sixty days of the wedding date and if the Photographer does not obtain another assignment for that date, liquidated damages shall be charged in a reasonable amount not to exceed the deposit.

5. Photographic Materials. All photographic materials, including but not limited to negatives, transparencies, proofs, and previews, shall be the exclusive property of the Photographer. The Photographer shall make proofs and previews available to the Client for the purpose of selecting photographs. The Photographer may, with the Client’s permission, make the proofs available on a Web site or CD-ROM.

6. Copyright and Reproductions. The Photographer shall own the copyright in all images created and shall have the exclusive right to make reproductions. The Photographer shall only make reproductions for the Client or for the Photographer’s portfolio, samples, self-promotions, entry in photographic contests or art exhibitions, editorial use, or for display within or on the outside of the Photographer’s studio. If the Photographer desires to make other uses, the Photographer shall not do so without first obtaining the written permission of the Client.

7. Client’s Usage. The Client is obtaining prints for personal use only, and shall not sell said prints or authorize any reproductions thereof by parties other than the Photographer. If Client is obtaining a print for newspaper announcement of the wedding, Photographer authorizes Client to reproduce the print in this manner. In such event, Client shall request that the newspaper run a credit for the Photographer adjacent to the photograph, but shall have no liability if the newspaper refuses or omits to do so.

8. Failure to Perform. If the Photographer cannot perform this Agreement due to a fire or other casualty, strike, act of God, or other cause beyond the control of the parties, or due to Photographer’s illness, then the Photographer shall return the deposit to the Client but shall have no further liability with respect to the Agreement. This limitation on liability shall also apply in the event that photographic materials are damaged in processing, lost through camera malfunction, lost in the mail, or otherwise lost or damaged without fault on the part of the Photographer. In the event the Photographer fails to perform for any other reason, the Photographer shall not be liable for any amount in excess of the retail value of the Client’s order.

9. Photographer. The Photographer may substitute another photographer to take the photographs in the event of Photographer’s illness or of scheduling conflicts. In the event of such substitution, Photographer warrants that the photographer taking the photographs shall be a competent professional.

10. Inherent Qualities. Client is aware that color dyes in photography may fade or discolor over time (usually after 20yrs) due to the inherent qualities of dyes, and Client releases Photographer from any liability for any claims whatsoever based upon fading or discoloration due to such inherent qualities.

11. Photographer’s Standard Price List. The charges in this Agreement are based on the Photographer’s Standard Price List and are only guaranteed once deposit is made. This price list is adjusted periodically and future orders shall be charged at the prices in effect at that time.

12. Client’s Originals. If the Client is providing original prints, negatives, or transparencies owned by the Client to the Photographer for duplication, framing, reference, or any other purpose, in the event of loss or damage the Photographer shall not be liable for an amount in excess of N2000 per image.

13. Miscellany. This Agreement incorporates the entire understanding of the parties. Any modifications of this Agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties. Any waiver of a breach or default hereunder shall not be deemed a waiver of a subsequent breach or default of either the same provision or any other provision of this Agreement. This Agreement shall be governed by the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

Sample Wedding & Portrait Price List/Packages


Attached is a copy of the OLD list of different packages we offer wedding and portrait clients. It is very crucial for a professional photographer to have a STANDARD price list and not just randomly give five different clients different prices for the same product. Use this as a guide to draft yours. It’s up to you to decide whether or not you want to give a client a discount. Just make sure you’re not short-changing yourself. Enjoy

eloPhotos Price list for 2009

WEDDING PACKAGES
Paparazzi Package
1 45-page magazine-style leather-bound customized album
1 day coverage (10hrs),
1 Photographer
2  8” by 10” glass-framed pictures
Pictures on our clients’ website (www.eloclients.com)                             N200,000

Glamour & Glitz Package
1 magazine-style leather-bound customized albums (60 pages)
2 days coverage (20hrs),
1 Photographer
2   8″ by 10″ glass-framed pictures
2  13” by 19” framed pictures
Pictures on our clients’ website (www.eloclients.com)                             N290,000

Red Carpet Package
2 magazine-style leather-bound customized albums (45 pages each)
2 days coverage (20hrs),
1 Photographer
2   8″ by 10″ glass-framed pictures
2  13” by 19” framed pictures
1 multimedia VCD
Digital Negatives on CD
Pictures on our clients’ website (www.eloclients.com)                             N360,000

Paradise Package
1 magazine-style leather-bound customized album (90 pages)
2 days coverage (20hrs),
2 Photographers
2   5″ by 7″ glass-framed pictures
2   8″ by 10″ glass-framed pictures
2  16” by 20” framed pictures
1 multimedia VCD
Digital Negatives on CD
Complimentary Pre-Wedding Session
Pictures on our clients’ website (www.eloclients.com)                             N420,000

FAMILY PORTRAITS
Package 1
2-3 hrs Session @ any location in Lagos state
2  13” by 19” framed picture
1  16” by 20” framed picture                                                                    N100,000

Package 2
2-3 hrs Session @ any location in Lagos state
4  13” by 19” framed picture
2  16” by 20” framed picture
1  20” by 24” framed picture                                                                    N200,000

Package 3
2-3 hrs Session @ any location in Lagos state
4  8” by 10” glass-framed picture
4  13” by 19” framed picture
4  16” by 20” framed picture
2  20” by 24” framed picture
1  30” by 36” framed picture                                                                    N370,000

OTHERS FEES
Pre-Wedding Photo Session
20,000

Makeup per person
7,000

Leather Album
70,000

Customized Standard Album
110,000

Event Coverage (4hrs)
70,000

Extra Photographer per event (10hrs)
50,000

Multimedia VCD
7,000

5 by 7”   Glass-framed Picture
5,000

5 by 7”   Canvas-framed Picture
6,500

8 by 10” Glass-framed Picture
7,000

8 by 10” Canvas-framed Picture
8,500

10 by 12” Framed Picture
9,000

12 by 16”     “         “
15,000

13 by 19”     “         “
19,000

16 by 20”     “         “
30,000

20 by 24”     “         “
45,000

30 by 36”     “         “
82,000

36 by 48”     “         “
104,000
Travel allowances apply for coverage outside Lagos state & Nigeria. Please contact us to make other enquiries that are not mentioned above.

Basic Course in Photography (January 2012 – April 2012)


At eloPhotos Academy, our ultimate goal is to raise world-class photographers. We do this through a series of workshops, trainings, and internship programs. You van visit out youtube channel (www.youtube.com/elophotos) to watch videos on a few photography topics. Contact us to learn more about our other trainings.In this course, you’ll learn how to:* develop technical proficiency with your camera
* create impact with your photography
* compose pictures
* develop your style
* effectively tell a story with photography
* be a master of “light”
* effectively photograph people
* know the right equipment to use for any situation
* make a good income in photography
* edit images using Adobe Photoshop CS5
* correct tone & color using Adobe Photoshop CS5
* produce outstanding printed images
* effectively market and brand yourself as a photographer
Set 8
January 23 – February 1, 2012 (8 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes January 16, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached
Set 9
January 21 – March 3, 2012 (7 Saturdays)
9am – 3pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes January 16, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached
Set 10
March 19 – March 28, 2012 (8 Weekdays)
9am – 2pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes March 1, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Set 11
March 24 – May 5, 2012 (7 Saturdays)
9am – 3pm
Maximum of 20 students in a class
Course fee: N150,000
Registration closes March 12, 2012 or when class limit of 20 students has been reached

Send an email to info@elophotos.com to get a copy of the application form. Download the form, print, fill and bring it on the first day of class to the venue with two passport photographs along with the teller of the bank deposit. For further inquiries, contact us on 234-8101590358, 234-8120129149, 234-8191474348 or info@elophotos.com

You can also visit our Facebook page www.facebook.com/elophotos for more information

For the course, it is recommended that you bring your laptop for editing your pictures

Refreshment & Course materials will be provided along with a professional digital SLR camera for each participant for practice sessions. Please note that the camera is for practice purposes during the training and would not be taken home by participants

Payment should be made into out Stanbic IBTC account 7200147969 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises) or our GTB account 211744703110 (eloPhotos Studio Enterprises)

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TESTIMONIALS

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The basic course in Photography is the best thing that has happened to me this year. When I decided to take the course, I didn’t know what to expect, but now, I must say it has been worth my while. I have learnt so much already I can’t wait to go out there and start making magic through pictures. Big ups to Emmagination, Damilola “DAMELL” Elliot & Shola Animashaun, they really inspired me. Please, keep up the good work.

Desi Okiemute

I have always thought of photography as a form of artistic creative expression. When I first began using a camera nearly 30 years ago, I always wanted to be able to take pictures that showed the beauty and variation that is the life experience all around us at all times. After the uncertain results that came out of my self taught efforts over the years, I finally got the opportunity for proper lessons with the Basic Course in Photography offered at eloPhotos Training Institute. After the first 3 lessons, I had already learnt some critical lessons that will enable me take the kind of pictures I have only previously dreamt of taking.”Painting with light”! That is a definition I have gained from the course.The course is a relaxed, practical and interactive one with several tips from experienced photographers. Very commendable training! Now it is up to me to decide to what level I want to take my photography – competent beautiful pictures as an amateur or as an artistic professional!

Dr. Olayinka Longe

I really enjoyed the business aspect of the training. The lectures on character, integrity, packaging, good customer service and branding were awesome. In a nutshell, it was a wonderful decision I made by attending the training because I absolutely got more than my money’s worth.

Oloyede Afolabi

eloPhotos is the place to be. Within the 8 days of the training, I’ve been able to acquire sound technical and theoretical skills in photography. The training package is so educative such that all the ingredients necessary for growth and development are included. I especially enjoyed the Branding and Marketing aspect of the training. In fact, I have decided to inform all my relatives and friends that they should not bother trying to get me a job in the telecommunications, or banking and oil industry; I’ve finally gotten a JOB.

Olumide Oshikominu

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…raising world-class photographers

Take your Photography Business to the next level


Come learn what it takes to run a successful photography business.

Date: thursday feb 16, 2012
Time 8am-11am
Venue: elophotos studios office
Voluntary Fee: N500
Facilitator: Seun Akisanmi

send an SMS to 08101590358 to confirm attendance. Registration closes Feb 15, 2012

PICTURE THIS: Episode 8. CLIENT SATISFACTION VS. PERSONAL SATISFACTION


Today our discussion has to do with something every photographer needs to address and the sooner the better – Client satisfaction or personal satisfaction, which do you value most?

Do you prefer that your client be more satisfied with your job than you are or vice versa?  Let me share a personal experience from a job we did for a client. We covered his wedding in November. He flew in from Canada where he is based two weeks to the wedding date. It was then I met him for the first time. We had to do a pre-wedding shoot quickly, and when I delivered the pictures he expressed some dissatisfaction with the editing. This [according to him] was because we did not remove some sideburns, some backgrounds and that he was expecting more [graphic] editing than we did.

I explained to him that yes, we can do that; but the type of editing we do is minimalistic, noting that what he wanted us to do with Photoshop could cost a lot more. But he still insisted. True, he had paid a reasonable amount as fees (equivalent to about $2200.00) for his wedding coverage.

This was a rare scenario, because I wasn’t accustomed to this type of editing (request from clients). So it begged the question, ‘should I please him or should I insist on what I want?’

I eventually had to re-edit all the pictures and it took longer than we planned. So we delivered the pictures a few days before the wedding. I felt satisfied that we accomplished it, but it did not end there. When we did the design for the wedding albums, we sent him a proof. He wasn’t pleased with half of the pages of the album and raised issues like how he did not want certain pictures to appear and how his sideburns (again) were not edited to his satisfaction. It left me thinking maybe it would have been better if he had contracted someone else for skin surgery before the wedding and save me the amount of time and detail required for editing. But I had concluded this is a client I was going to serve and chose to please him no matter what. We recently concluded the re-editing on his album and hope that he will be pleased this time.

I have met a lot of photographers who have faced clients who want this editing and that editing, portraiture, skin smoothing, background editing and some other editing that does not fit their style of photography. I think first of all, all the explanation of what is involved should have been done in writing before taking responsibility to be the client’s photographer and before acceptance of a photographer’s fees, because once this takes place, it means you have agreed to go the whole nine yards.

But even with all the documentation you will still encounter clients who still insist they want something more. It’s up to you to decide if you want to please your client or if you want to please yourself. Every photographer needs to address this. Personally, what I do is ask myself who pays my bills at the end of the day? And while a lot of photographers might feel differently about this there is a good chance that it might determine if they will remain in the photography business a few years from now.

Another experience I’ve had is with someone whom I hired to make a customized shoe for me. It turned out very tight when he delivered it. He explained that he’s only satisfied when he likes shoes that he’s made for clients and seeing them wearing the shoes, and that given another two months, the pair he made for me will expand.

I was like, ‘I am not comfortable in them, and I am the one paying for the shoes so I should care less whether you like the shoes or not. I should be satisfied because I am the client.’

Ultimately it is when the client is satisfied (I believe), that you get more referrals. Eventually I convinced him to take the shoes back since I was not satisfied, even though he tried to persuade me that they were ok.

That is something I try not to do with my clients. Many times when I take their pictures and they’re asking me which one they should select, most times I let them make that choice, as they will have those pictures in their homes for the rest of their lives. The ones I suggest anyway are usually not chosen. I could say,’ I like this picture where you are smiling’ and they would be like, ”No! my teeth are too out in the open. I would rather have you frame this one where I am not smiling….” Even though I don’t like it, my head is thinking, who pays for my overhead at the end of the day?

This should be addressed. I have met  many photographers who complain about their clients and they were never forced to take the clients on anyway. But once payment is received, it is binding, legal and almost like a vow, to have to satisfy the client.

This is my opinion, the more satisfied clients you have, the more likely you are going to be in business for a while to come. Interestingly the more difficult the client is and you strive to make sure he is satisfied, the more referrals you are likely going to get from such a person.

So a client might be asking for things that are seemingly unachievable, if it comes with additional cost, explain it to them and if they are insisting that they will not pay extra, still do it! Go out of your way to do a job that they will be pleased with at the end.

Client satisfaction or personal satisfaction? You may have to create a balance between the two. But ultimately if the client is satisfied, in the long run you too will be satisfied.

One other terrible experience that comes to mind happened when I did a job for a client who was a commissioner in Abuja [Nigeria]. When I met her to collect the payment for services I rendered, she actually threw the money (about $1,000 cash) at me, asking to take the money and get out of her presence. Apparently she was upset prior to my meeting her and she’d  had an argument with her personal assistant. That would normally make some of us angry, and feel undignified but it is in scenarios like this we need to act maturely. I tried to be patient and counted the money to be sure it was complete, and thanked her before leaving.

Try to be patient with your clients, make them satisfied and ultimately your business will be grateful [to you]  for it.

BB Pin: 271E3BC8

Have You Photographed Any Popular Person?


That was the question asked by one of the children I teach in church. Some were a little repulsed to hear that I am a photographer. Most of them want to become doctors, lawyers and engineers. Photography, to them, fell within the profession of barbers, hairstylists & mechanics who were considered to be “poor”. They even made it a prayer request that “I will never become a photographer in Jesus’ name, Amen.”

I attempted (and hopefully succeeded) in explaining to them why photography, like any other great profession, is a noble one and that one could become a millionaire as a photographer. Most of them doubted me & laughed at me…..and that’s when a 9-yr old girl popped the question: “So have you ever photographed any popular person?”
I paused and thought within. I was almost in Jesus’ shoes when tricky questions like these were hurled at Him.

I explained to the girl that being popular is an objective opinion. By “popular” I reckoned she was referring to the known celebrities in town. Also, the fact that someone is popular does not mean they are willing to pay your photography bill. Interestingly, some celebrities in this part of the world usually want “free” photography because of their celebrity status. They argue that it is a priviledge for you (I.e. the upcoming or established photographer) to be photographing them. They argue that they are helping your career by giving you such an opportunity. May God help them.

I remember an example Kelechi Amadi-Obi (www.kelechiamadiobi.com) once gave about a celebrity artist he once encountered. The gentleman walked into Kelechi’s office and requested for a photo session. To his dismay, he was shocked that Kelechi would dare charge him for the session. The following “brief” discussion ensued.

Artist: Don’t you know who I am? Don’t you know it is a priviledge for you to photograph me?
Kelechi: (showing him the door), I’ll appreciate it if you kindly leave my office. It’s obvious you’ve come to the wrong studio

Anyway, I concluded my response (to the girl that quizzed me) by telling her that my strategy was to raise an army of photographers that will photograph popular people. I am yet to take pictures of POPULAR people but will be fulfilled knowing that someone I mentored is taking those pictures. Enough said, I proceeded to teach the main curicullum for the the sunday school class & hoped that one day I would be given the priviledge to photograph a popular person (in exhange for CASH).

N.B. If you’re a POPULAR person (or know one) in need of world-class photography services, don’t hesitate to contact us. Don’t worry, our fees won’t give you a heart attack. Looking forward to hearing from you. 🙂

BB Pin: 271e3bc8

12 Nigerian Photographers to watch out for in 2012


English: Hotel photographer and a hotel guest ...

First of all, please note that the photographers mentioned here are in my own opinion. There are photographers that I know deserve to be on this list & if your name isn’t here, PLEEEAAAASSSSSEE don’t take offense.

Most of the photographers mentioned here are actually new in the industry & might not be known by many at this point. Their future is so bright that you’ll need sunglasses to view them. Also, I’m not being compensated for mentioning them. Most of them didn’t even know I was going to write about them.

Although they all have their weaknesses, I’m looking beyond that and presuming they’ll address them in the coming year. One common characteristic of every one of them is the fact that they don’t have a backup plan for 2012; its either photography works out for them or photography works out for them. I like that. I like people who burn bridges and put all their energy into whatever they’re doing.

Therefore, in no particular order of importance or priority, I present to you the 12 Nigerian photographers that are about to threaten the reign of the top names in the industry in 2012….. Get Ready.

1. Shola Animashaun (www.sholaanimashaun.com)
Forget Kelechi Amadi-Obi, forget TY Bello. If it was legal to steal a photographer‘s portfolio, I will gladly steal Shola Animashaun’s entire collection. His clientele & portfolios in comparison to mine makes me look like an intern. Let’s just say if I’ve spelt PH, he has spelt PHOTOGRA. An award-winning photographer, he was the official photographer for a number of celebrity shows in the past few years including Hip-Hop Awards & MTV Awards.

With the resources he has on photography (some of which has been useful to me) you’ll be angry with him for not presently running a Photography school. He says he wants to completely spell PHOTOGRAPHY before starting & I insist he shouldn’t wait for the perfect scenario: just start. Visit his site, follow him on twitter & Facebook and see why I want to be like him when I grow up.

2. Adio Olla-lekan: Made Photography (www.madefotos.com)
This guy is the undiscovered “Whiz kid” of the photography industry. He even looks like him too. He’s just less than a year in the industry and has taken pictures that I wished I took in my 3rd year as a photographer. Hence the reason he considers himself MADE. Just call him Mr MADE. I love one of his slogans: Forget Superman, trust MADE. Now, isn’t that catchy? Well, I think it is anyways.

He’s someone who will prove to you that it’s not all about the camera but mainly the person handling the camera. Although his website is just over 1 week old & might not have enough pictures to make you spend over 10mins viewing, watch out for him in 2012 and you will be ……………… (Fill in the blank in December 2012)

3. Lara Tiamiyu: La Royal Concept (www.laroyalconcept.com)
One of the best female photographers I’ve had the honor of working with, Lara is in a class of her own. Her beauty might be what will make you ask for her complimentary card but once you see what she can do photographically, you’ll definitely want her to be your lifetime photographer. Let’s just say if she covers your wedding, you can rest assured that award-winning images will inevitably be the results.

She’s one of the very few people who I can ask to cover an event on my behalf and not worry about what she’ll deliver. Her touch is almost……ROYAL. After her recently concluded exhibition at Eko Hotel, you can’t but wait to see what she’ll be up to in 2012.

4. Samuel Ijiyokunola: Living Memories Photography(www.livingmemoriesng.com)
Now this guy is interesting. In less that 6 months of starting, he has covered over 6 major events (5 of which are weddings), made over N500k & does not yet have a camera he can call his own. Call him a businessman, he’ll rather use $50 to rent a camera than to use $1000 to buy one. Give him a bag of cement & 3 months and he might as well present to you a completely built house. He’s very diligent and I won’t be surprised if he buys his first house in 2012 from the proceeds of photography. Though his website is not complete yet, stay tuned to his channel in 2012 and you’ll be surprise on how far a good business mindset can get a photographer within 12 months.

5. Olamide Oluwagbemile: Lamzy Photography
I can still remember the first day she walked into our training academy. I was teaching a class and almost forgot my next line. I thought to myself “Who is this model & what does she want with photography?” 3 months later, she would eventually turn out to be one of the most interesting students we’ve ever had. Her pictures are reflections of who she is: BEAUTIFUL & STUNNING. Although she doesn’t have a website yet that will convince you of her potentials, watch out for the next TY Bello in 2012.

6. Babatunde Ogunjobi: JOBI PHOTOS
A Unilag graduate of Physics, he decided to pursue his real passion 1 year ago. So far he has no regrets. When he presents to your wedding album, you’ll be amazed at his ability to make your wedding more beautiful than the wedding day itself. One of his strength is in album design & I’ll gladly give him any album to design on my behalf (although he still thinks he doesn’t know much). You can check back by the end of January for the link to his website that he has been working on.

7. Lilian Novo Isioro, Novo Images (novoimages.com.ng)
By the time 2012 is over, it is photographers like Lilian that will prove to Nigerians that what a man can do photographically, a woman can do better. Her passion for photography goes beyond the pictures she takes in the day; she even dreams about photography when she sleeps. As I write this, I just finished answering her question on what default settings to put her Photoshop in & the time is 1am. Her looks is to her advantage also; she’s likely to win a bid for a photography job with her looks alone. Hey, that’s my opinion. She doesn’t ‘hustle’ to take pictures; she takes her time. We’ll have the whole of 2012 to see how much territory she’ll cover. Guys, fasten your seat belts because Novo Images is on the horizon.

8. Afolabi Oloyede, 4Labi 4Fotos (www.4labi4tos.com)
His specialty is children photography. I mean he has photographed more children than Ansel Adams photographed landscapes. With the patience and endurance he has for children, he’s bound to emerge as the official CHILDREN PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC of NIGERIA. His present challenge is in trying to sort out the pictures to showcase on his new website. Give him until January to resolve that. He might not look like it but be on the lookout for the guy that firmly believes “anything is 4ssible.”

9. Dipo Odetoyinbo, Black Child Photography (www.blackchildphotography.com)
Dipo assisted me in the training of 59 new photographers in October, 2011. He’s so competent a teacher that I felt comfortable coming to class late many times; I knew he will take charge. He happens to be my mentor in all things fashion. His dress sense is so “successful” that its hard to believe that he’s just over 3 years old in the industry. His photography is as breathtaking as the designer blazers he has in his collections. With a training academy in the works for 2012, he’s bound to be a potential mentor for the floodgate of photographers that will troop into the industry come 2012. Watch out

10. Shade Ishola aka Sha-Sha, SazzyE Photography (sazzyE.shutterchance.com)
If you ask me, I think this lady is not on planet earth. She has such an interesting mind of her own that makes her…..misunderstood. After forsaking the destiny of a fashion designer, she’s bent on making it in photography or else….. Her hunger and thirst for righteousness photography will definitely get her somewhere if she hangs on. Even if you think her gallery is not enough to wow you at the moment, be on the lookout for the top lady fashion photographers in 2012. I’ll be on the lookout for her myself.

11. Deola Oludimine, Freez Photos
If there was an award for the fastest album designer, Deola will win 2 years straight. After a recent trip to Kenya where he trained some youths on Photography (courtesy of the Redeemed Christian Church of God), he’s considering starting what he calls Freez Business Institute. I wish him well. With another training engagement booked for Zambia in March 2012, he’s bent on making Photography an enviable profession. His website, freezphotos.com, should be up & running by the end of January. Stay tuned

12. Damilola Kuku, Supzie Xpression
With a stature that will make potential clients think she’s still in secondary school, Damilola’s specialty is bent on getting some mouths remain wide opened. When she recently told me she wanted to specialize in Nude photography & New Born, I was taken aback. Its one area that few Nigeria photographers dabble into. Apparently (according to her) there is a high demand for such pictures and not enough supply. May God help her in meeting the demand. Although I am yet to see a picture she has taken, I’m taking a big gamble that she will stand out. I pray she proves me right else my prophetic photography career might be over before you know it. Anxiously awaiting the arrival of her canon 5d kit, you should be anxious to see what will become of her in 2012.

13. Seu….., sorry I forgot it ends at 12

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So that’s it for my biased opinion of 12 Nigerian photographers to be on the lookout for in 2012. It has already been labelled interesting, political & funny. What do you think?

 

 

Marketing your photography when there’s not enough money to market your photography


We continue from where we stopped last week on a subject that a lot of us shy away from: MARKETING. It is important to first note that you should not wait until you’re “broke” (resource-wise or client-wise) before you start marketing your business. It should be a continuous & deliberate effort that should be spurred by a detailed business plan. Most importantly, I think this might benefit more of the creative professionals that are just starting out in the industry. One of the topmost challenge faced by newbies is financial resources that “seems” to be insufficient to take the business to the next level. If you ask me, I think this is a blessing in disguise. Far too many business owners start with the notion that you actually need money to make money. I beg to disagree. This was one of the bottle-neck mindset I had prior to starting and running eloPhotos. After encountering people like Sam Adeyemi, Myles Munroe, Kelechi Amadi-Obi & Bishop Oyedipo, my mindset was be altered forever (for good ofcourse). Put simply, to make money, we need KNOWLEDGE. I learnt from all these mentors (among others) the importance of using what I had presently to get to where I was going (in the future). It is with this mindset I share one of the “marketing” efforts I’ve undertaken that has yielded enormous returns. It is also an attempt to answer the question many photopreneurs have asked (& are still asking): how do you market to your potential clients when you don’t have money? Thank God you asked. I’ll use the example of the exhibition we had in 2008 at transcorp hilton hotel, Abuja, Nigeria. We held a 5-days exhibition at the lobby of the hotel in November 2008. Prior to that time I had concluded in my heart & mind that the type of clients I wanted to cater for were the type that patronized a luxurious hotel like the Hilton: the elite of the society. These were people that were happy & willing to pay between $300 & $3000 just for a room per night. I desperately wanted to understand the logic behind the thinking of such people; hence my decision to cater for their photography needs. Besides, meeting the photography needs of these class of individuals is likely to enable me achieve my financial dreams in record time. Or how else do you think I’ll be able to buy the BMW 7 series that I’ve been dreaming about. Yes, I’ll love to be able to afford the best things life has to offer. Back to transcorp hilton. So I got a call from the public relations officer of the hotel asking me to come for a meeting in Abuja to discuss at length what it will take to have me “shoot” them. That meeting will go on record as one of the most interesting meetings I’ve ever had. I flew to Abuja with the 7am flight, met with the man for 30mins (during which I showed him some of our printed works), and came back to Lagos with the 4pm flight. By the way, I didn’t have much on me but had someone “loan” me money to be able to attend the meeting. I’m usually not an advocate of borrowing money to meet your needs but I felt strongly within that this was a meeting with DESTINY & I had to do whatever I can to be there. Upon concluding that the hotel was the place I wanted to exhibit my works, I wrote the management to find out what the ongoing rate was. This was in March, 2008. I was shocked when I was told that it costs N150,000 (approximately $1,000) per day and I must book for a minimum of 7days. You do the maths. That was so much money that my bank account did not have at that moment. Heck, I didn’t even have money for 1 day & they had the guts to tell me I had to book & pay for 7 days. But then I held fast to what my mentor, Sam Adeyemi, once said: “if you desire it long enough & believe in it long enough, God will fulfill your heart’s desire in due time if it is His will.” So during the “negotiations” I was asked how much it would cost Hilton if I were to photograph the hotel for their 2009 calendar. I explained to the gentleman that for such a BIG hotel, it will take me not less than 7 days with my team to adequately photograph every major part of the hotel….and that it will cost them N150,000 per day after which I’ll present the high resolution soft copies on a DVD. Funny right? Truth is I had never done such a job before talk-less of charging that amount. I can’t remember clearly but I think talking with Kelechi Amadi-Obi & Ade Plumptre gave me some courage as to how to charge. It was at that moment I discovered that the hotel didn’t want to spend that much for the job. Such an irony: they charge some guests as much as $3000 per night and still felt that my photography fee was on the high side. So it was at that moment the idea crossed my mind…u know kind of like when a bulb lights up on Tom’s head (in Tom & Jerry). I proposed that I can still do the job for them (despite the fact that they felt my fee was ridiculous) & in exchange for the shoot, they’ll give me their lobby for 7 days to hold my exhibition. You should have seen how fast he accepted my proposal. Before you know what was happening, he brought out a calendar and was asking me: “So when should we book you down for the exhibition?” We concluded the deal based on what my secondary-school commerce teacher will call a “trade by barter”. I didn’t have the money to exhibit (or market) at their lobby, I offered my services in exchange for the exhibition space & voila (as the french slang goes) I did my exhibition. Ofcourse they will later call me to say that the government needed the lobby for 2days out of the days I chose……either way, I ended up with 5 days of exhibition, sorry 5 days of marketing my products & services to the type of people I felt could afford it. And that “marketing” effort will go down in history as the most successful we’ve ever had. And it didn’t cost me a dime (or kobo or cent or…..). So the moral of the story; if you think very well (pray & fast if you have to) there’s always a way you can market your photography without having much financial resources. Trust me, there’s always a way…..