BCG: Tell me about yourself and how you got into photography!
Fola: Well my journey into photography is one that wasn't planned or even thought about in the past. It's just something that I had a passion for in general, growing up whenever I went to parties and events I was always the one taking pictures. After the events I would always get call backs like "hey, your pictures are really good, you should do it professionally!" So I can say it was never something that I thought I would do, but I just had a natural eye for it. I was just able to capture beautiful moments and emotions, the basic skills that make a photographer good, kind of came natural to me. One day my wife basically pushed me and just said hey, "Just go and do it!!" So that is really what made me get started in photography. From there I took a few photography workshops and classes to get a better understanding of camera and lighting equipment and everything else was pretty much from self-eaching and experience. In my opinion, experience has definitely been the BEST teacher!
BCG: What do you love the most about photography?
Fola: Man, that is a good question! The main reason I got into it is just the PEOPLE! I love being able to capture so much joy, happiness, and fulfillment. It really makes me able to enjoy my life that much better when I deal with happy people day in and day out. Life is not all rosy and smooth but that moment when you can just capture the beauty of life and put it in a time capsule is something special. So that, whenever you are down you can look at a picture of happy times and say "yes this is how happy I felt on that particular day". I just love when I go to events and parties and I can just capture the joy and excitement of the day and it lets me know how much I love to see people happy! I more so like to capture the raw emotions like the way friends look at one another, the groom's expression when his bride walks down the aisle or people dancing and having a good time on the dance floor. I love the people part of photography, that is why my motto is "Life.Passion.Art" because there IS an art in the way I try to capture my photos and it is a passion of mine and I want to showcase people just loving LIFE!
BCG: Do you only do wedding photography?
Fola: No I do weddings, lifestyle shoots (i.e. maternity sessions, baby shoots, proposals, family sessions, etc) I don't do much of club parties or business shoots or anything like that. I'm more focused around family life, weddings, and events.
BCG: What is your favorite thing to shoot? Weddings, maternity, families? What do you LOVE to photograph?
Fola: My favorite things to shoot are engagement sessions and weddings. What I really love about engagement sessions is that it's like no other thing. It is an opportunity for a future bride and groom to kick back and have fun. They get to have fun at their favorite location, not worried about rushing to the reception or anything like that. It's a great opportunity for the couple and the photographer to get to know one another and become comfortable with the way I take pictures and stuff. I'm a very laid back photographer so we just go in there and freestyle. I always tell my couples to be themselves and act how they act on a regular day, however u touch, play fight, show affection, whatever you do on a day to day basis, just do it! I'll just be a guy standing around with the camera documenting it, LOL! That really is when the best pictures come forth, in my opinion! With weddings it is THE day, your beautiful day! It is a day everyone looks forward to, so there are certain emotions that are evoked this day that you wont get any other time, so it's important to get them on camera. Even sometimes when I'm shooting I'll get chills like "wow that was powerful" so it really is a unique experience.
BCG: What motivates you to pick up your camera every day and shoot!
Fola: First thing is the passion! I just love to do it, regardless of how much you pay me to do it, I started off doing it for free so paying me is just a bonus. I just enjoy taking pictures so that alone helps me go through the thousands of pictures I have to edit and lug equipment around. I love to do it so that fuels me. Also, I love having the ability to create something that will make my client happy for a very long time! That motivates me to do my best work on EVERY single image before my client sees it. I hate to disappoint so I always try to go above and beyond, so that way if it is not what the customer might expect I feel okay knowing that I did everything I could for them.
BCG: Who would you say is your dream client? Who would you LOVE to shoot?
Fola: I would love to shoot for President Barack Obama! That would be an opportunity I would leap at. He's something like royalty and I'd love to be remembered as the guy who photographed President Obama.
BCG: What would you call your photography style?
Fola: It is definitely photojournalistic. Which is more of a documentary style because I just follow the day as it progresses. If you see a slide show or blog post I want you to be able to tell exactly what was going on, I want it to tell a story. I don't like when there is a disconnect between pictures so I like for the pictures to have some sort of sequence and I want the emotions of such a beautiful loving day to come out.
BCG: What is some advice you would give readers that are currently looking for a wedding photographer?
Fola: Well my advice is to know EXACTLY what you want! Every bride is different so I know everyone is not going to want the same thing, one bride might prefer a traditional photography style as opposed to a photojournalistic one. But it is important for the couple to sit down and do research to get a feel for what you want. Once that is all taken care of it is important to go through all the avenues to find the right photographers. Make sure to read reviews and interview your photographer. Honestly as a couple you have to LIKE your wedding photographer, you have to be able to get along and laugh and joke in order to have the best pictures. You don't want a photographer that is too pushy and will mess up your sparkle on that day. For example, a more laid back photographer will not mesh well with a bride who WANTS to be told what to do and is looking for a more authoritative photographer. A couple who wants to be free to be themselves, act normally will want to hire a photographer who is less structured and is just good at capturing life as it happens. I would also say to planning couples try not to use price as an indicator of quality. There are some photogs out here that WILL charge an arm and a leg and will not do as good of a job as someone who doesn't charge as much and vice-versa. It's all about getting someone who is passionate for you and will do the best for you not because someone has a celebrity brand name or on the other side, because someone is really cheap.
BCG: Where do you see Fotos by Fola in the next 5 years?
Fola: I definitely see great things! I see us continuing to get better, exceed expectations and just growth. I hope to be able to grow as far as energy, quality of work, and just everything. I want to know we are on the way to being a great global brand. Where as if you say my name in Nigeria they will know "Oh yeah I know Fotos by Fola!" LOL! So yeah I'm just really all about planting seeds right now and watering them to grow and getting better and better in my craft so that all other things will follow.
BCG: Do you have any other parting words to share with our readers, anything I might have missed??
Fola: Yeah, just for anyone who is interested in getting into photography just follow your heart and stay focused. Try to get better everyday and link up with people that are good at what they do and try to feed off the knowledge they have to offer. There are a lot of photogs out here but if you have the eye and passion for photography, there is nothing stopping you!
Thank you SOOOO much Fola for sharing your time with us here and our readers! We pray you continue to increase and grow in your craft! May God bless you! Leave any comments here for Fola let him know what you think!! If you would like to contact Fola you can reach him through these various ways!!
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