Onyinye Ubah


I decided to take up photography after seeing how the western world was constantly portraying Africa in the negative, especially in the media. I wanted to capture the image of Africa as an African. My journey into photography started more than twenty years ago but began my brand, Chellah Tukuta photography about ten years ago. Building my brand to where it is now was not quite easy at all. Life was hard right from the first day I set out to build my brand as a fashion and documentary photographer though people also hire me to cover event. In the beginning, there were days I had to hire cameras for some time and low income and high bills to pay. It was a time of setback for me.

One notable thing was the fact that my setbacks did not affect my passion for photography which kept me moving. I always have this saying that ‘when one follows their passion, money will definitely follow them.’ Whenever I wanted to give up, I would meet someone who would remind me of how good I was in photography and eulogise my expertise.

Along the way, I was contacted by Forbes. They saw my work online and asked if they could have my works featured. Somehow, that was how my works went global all the way from Zambia. Photography in Zambia is growing gradually though there are still people who do not value the art of photography and that is where social media comes in. Social media is a very powerful tool and the publicity gets me clients even outside Zambia and Africa.

As a photographer, one of the major factors that stand me out is my style and the fact that I do not edit pictures to the extreme. As a photographer, I have been inspired by Karl Taylor who is also a photographer in the United Kingdom.

Memories of my journey into photography remains priceless to me but the most unforgettable and deepest of them all was the day I won my first local award. It helped me realise people really appreciate what I do.

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