Bwire Mark, 26 and Matovu Rashid aka Sammy, 25 are photographers. The two met a photoshoot and have since united to start their own company “Soul Art Image”. Moses Abeka sat with the two and here is there journey behind the lens.
What was your first experience with a camera?
Mark: About seven years ago. I had worked as a graphic designer for four years in a photography studio. I later got bored with editing photos and took on the camera.
Sammy: I was in S3. One day in my neighbourhood, there was this guy with a laptop editing photos. I was so amazed by what he was doing with the photos. I picked interest and he introduced me to editing and photography. By then, I only knew of camera men.
Nice one! Whatâ€™s the difference between camera man and photographer?
Mark: Let me answer that! A camera man works in video shoot. His work is to set the camera. A photographer is a composer so you can be one even without holding a camera!
Sammy: By camera man, I was talking in lay-manâ€™s language. The actual term is different. It is not that guy who moves door to door.
How did you guys acquire the gadgets?
Mark: We started without gadgets. It was by borrowing, hiring and steadily we made progress.
When did you guys decide that this is the right path to pursue?
Mark: Like I stated earlier, I got bored with editing. By then there was a great difference between photos of bazungu and the ones I was editing. I decided to try it out myself. That is when I started learning a lot like YouTube tutorials; self taught!
Sammy: The passion started in S3. I spent my holidays in the photo studio. Unfortunately at campus (KIU), I had financial problems and had photography to lift me from the disappointment and I never looked back.
How did you guys meet?
Mark: We met at Irene Ntaleâ€™s photo shoot. I loved his skills and work. We got together and formed â€œSoul Image Artâ€�.
Whatâ€™s your niche?
Mark: We do photography content production for individuals, companies, schools, organizations. We do all types of photography; portrait, events, weddings except wildlife.
What are some the challenges you face?
Sammy: Equipments are quite expensive!
Mark: Some clients still donâ€™t appreciate photography. They want high quality work but want to offer very little.
Sammy: Another challenge is that they are some guys with the big names but have low quality work. They make people to lose trust in all photographers.
There is a rumour that photographers have numbers of all our girl friends and the slay queens
Sammy: (Laughs) The girls ask for our numbers to get their photos. For example at events like birthday parties. There is nothing elseâ€¦May be Markâ€¦
Mark: (Laughs) We donâ€™t do anything to them! They need content and most times its free service so we tell them to give us â€˜Photo creditâ€� on social media.
Donâ€™t you guys feel threatened by the love of selfies and people using their phone cameras instead?
Mark: Phone companies are selling cameras. They are actually promoting photography because now, there is a clear cut difference between a photographerâ€™s work and the rest.
Sammy: Photography is art
They say most photographers are camera shy
(Laughs) Except me. Sammy is.
Whatâ€™s the future of photography?
Mark: To Mars! (Laughs)
Sammy: Itâ€™s the future!