There are several styles and types of photography and some seem to overshadow some for one reason or the other. We have wedding photography, documentary photography, fashion photography, photo journalism, landscape photography, abstract photography, street photography, black and white photography, events photography, aerial photography, motion photography, portrait photography, beauty photography, among others, each style, unique in its own way.
Most occurrences in our lives cannot be replayed as the moment passes, that is why photographers are important because they capture and preserve memories. In Nigeria however, there are certain photography styles that are appreciated more than others because of the lifestyle of the Nigerian people. We find that photographers with a certain style earn much more than their counterparts practising other styles and they even have more prominence than others.
In Nigeria, due to our perpetual celebratory lifestyle, we give more importance to wedding and events photography. Wedding photographers in Nigeria get a lot of prominence because of the level of importance Nigerians attach to weddings. Weddings have proposals photos, pre-wedding photos, wedding photos and all those little ones that happen before, during and after. Same with events, we fuss about our parties and shows and make sure they are well covered.
Bayo Omoboriowo who is one of the few political photographers and has gradually started gaining prominence, said during his book reading, “It was a challenge in my mind to say most of the successful, brilliant and excellent Nigerian photographers are either wedding and events photographers or portrait photographers. Very few Nigerians that delve into photography are photo journalists unlike the West where most of the very good photographers are photo journalists as journalism is a big deal in the West”.
We can see that it is somewhat money based as Nigerians are a lot more willing to spend money on weddings and shows than to spend on something like landscape photography. I am not saying however that these other styles of photography don’t exist in Nigeria, of course, they do, they are not just given the same prominence as the wedding and events photographers as fewer people see the value in those things and a willing to pay good money for it.
Nigerian photographers are getting bolder, however, breaking new ground and welcoming challenges. There are a lot of young and daring photographers who are more driven by passion than finances that are delving into these abandoned and neglected styles of photography. They are getting to the roots and people are being forced to gradually appreciate them. We have very daring photo journalists to crazy fashion photographers and very soon, these styles of photography will get the appreciation they deserve.