As the photography industry continues to grow on the African continent, most of those who work in this profession are young people who have discovered that there are many possible opportunities in this industry which is much more oriented to creativity as one of the ingredients to staying longer in this growing and daily changing industry.
To find out how the professional photographers perceive their profession and its benefits to the practitioners and the society, TOP AFRICA NEWS’s DUSABEMUNGU Ange de la Victoire talked to Serrah Galos, who is creating impacts through photography with a focus on Documentary Photographs with an African flavor.
Could you briefly introduce yourself to our audience?
My name is Seraphin Nayituriki. I go by the name of Serrah Galos. Serrah comes from Seraphin. Galos is a name that is easy to pronounce correctly in many accents and countries. I was born in 1995 in Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda.
I am a Rwandan Photographer and I categorize my photos as documentary photography because I document the world as I see it.
Photography is a beautiful art form and the power to keep a moment that has passed has always fascinated me. Since I started an obsession with photography, I see photographs everywhere I look. The Beauty of people, colors, and places. It becomes intense when you start to pay attention. I believe that’s why nothing makes me feel the way Photography does. When I am taking photos, I always hope that the photos will evoke a feeling in the one who is looking at them as it has done to me. And that’s a beautiful journey to which I want to dedicate my time, effort, and energy. I have been doing photography for several years and 2023 is my 10th Year.
How was the experience? What do you feel sets you apart from the other photographers?
In my experience, Photography has opened so many doors for me to get close to people, connect and learn from them. I have photographed former child soldiers in DRC who are recovering from the trauma of war, internally displaced refugees in Wau South Sudan, women making Shea Butter in Tamale Ghana, Early Childhood Development schools in Rusizi, and Coffee Farmers of Karongi Rwanda, Emergency responses in Refugee camps and many other stories from the brave people I get the privilege to meet.
I have met and photographed young and old in different cultures, social classes, and beliefs. And this has contributed significantly to the person I am today. I am beyond grateful to the people who have trusted me and allowed me in their space.
What sets me apart is my hunger for learning and the ability to work in an intercultural context. My photos are colorful and bold and I enjoy the process of creating with my subjects.
What challenges have you met in the past years that have shaped you to where you are today?
One of the main challenges I faced when I was starting, is that Photography was not considered a professional career. So, it has always been hard to explain what It is that I do. And, the lack of guidance was one of the challenges because there were no resources or people that were available for me to learn from.
I have hope for photography as a career in Rwanda. Photography is a career that is providing income for many people around the world, and it has been taken seriously in Rwanda as well. This encourages me because the medium is going to grow to be known and many opportunities will come from that knowledge. Many African stories will be told, and the beauty will be shared.
Photography also can be a good source of income if managed like any other professional career path. With the technological revolution the demand for visual communication has also increased. So, we have to learn to sustain both the art and business side of photography.
Do you think you have maximized your strength or you are still projecting the best ahead?
Definitely the best is still yet to come. It feels like I am just getting started, everyday there is a new challenge to learn from.
What are your future plans?
My future plan is to visit all the African Countries and get to explore different cultures. Tell many more stories of hope, courage and resilience. I am excited to see what the future holds.
What advice would you give to aspiring Photographers in Africa specifically?
In Africa, photography is continuously evolving. Yet it moves quickly. I would advise fellow African photographers to dream big and have ambitious objectives. A tool that can bring people together, raise awareness, and upend the current quo is photography. This implies that everyone can participate in their own special way. Never stop learning is my second piece of advice.
If someone wanted your photography services, how would they find them?
If someone wants my services they can reach me through my website www.serrahgalos.rw and my social media: Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with the handle @serrahgalos