FIELD DAY AT EVERGREEN GARDENS.

The day started in exhilaration at 6.00 AM where our students gathered in Uhuru Park’s viewpoint to capture the beautiful sunrise over Nairobi. As soon as everyone arrived, one of our tutors Gibson Maina familiarized himself with the students so as to allow more engagement. He then took them through camera basics before they got a chance to document the amazing emerging of the sun across Nairobi
city. Once they were done, breakfast was organized for them as transportation was prepared for the
next venue.

By mid morning, we were all at the lush Evergreen Gardens which we have a partnership with for our outdoor practical sessions. The incredulous joy of the students was obvious from the look of their faces. Gibson Maina went ahead to use practical scenarios such as wedding where the bride and her parents are walking into the church so as to teach about focus. The students got to practice as the school also provides cameras for them to have firsthand experience as they learn theory.


They were also taught how to track movement through a concept called ‘panning’ which is basically being able to freeze a subject’s movement while they are moving. One of the students was asked to run and the rest took photos in an attempt to ‘pan’ her movement. Next, they got to practice shooting each other after being taught how to modify lighting when shooting outdoors through use of a speed light, reflector and scrim.


Lastly, David Macharia introduced himself to the students before teaching them about posing. He had one of the students pose on a seat and he took photos for them to see how various traditional posing rules are effective when working as a photographer. The students also took turns to photograph their friend and get feedback from Macharia. It was an engaging session where students were being corrected on set and they were able to keep trying until they get the best shot.

Most of the afternoon was used to practice what they had learnt. They were instructed to go around Evergreen Gardens and take photos of each other using the tips they had learnt from the two tutors. They spread out and some even took photos with the horses around as some got next to the water and the boats. After one or so hours of a practical session, they were allowed to have their lunch.


The evening session were more of a review of what they were done. They were asked to submit their best photos taken that day. These were then projected on a TV Screen and Gibson Maina went through
them while correcting their mistakes and advising them on how to improve the craft. To say the least, it was a fun day well spent. These students will make some of the best photographers in the world thanks to the unique approach that the school uses for their eight-weeks’ course.

For more information on how you can join, kindly visit https://schoolofphotography.co.ke/enroll/

Evolution Of Photography In Africa

Evolution Of photography In Africa

Photography is a way of describing things, a way to express yourself and to show people how you feel. It is one of the most revolutionary additions to the advancement of human artistic expression since the days of black and white photos and today colored photos. In Africa we have the opportunity to tell our own stories in a unique way. Photography has been made easy with the use of smart phones, everyone is now a photographer. Its high time we learn how to capture images that create emotions and tell a story.

Versatile Photographers journey started during the film cameras. With the little resources we had, such as internet we adapted to the new technology. Digital cameras has made us to learn more about information technology to be able to use software that make our work stand out in commercial, portraits, Fashion, wildlife, events, conceptual and architectural photography.

Recently, we have invested in cameras that have wifi to enable us share our images in real time.

The Front Interior of our New studio at village Market 2nd Floor.

The Vintage Night presents the Evolution of photography hosted by Versatile Photographers at Village Market. Versatile photographers is celebrating a big milestone, a lifetime achievement as you get an opportunity to Network, Interact, share your business ideas, learn professional skills from corporates, existing businesses, and be introduced to the New Photography World.

Versatile Photographers

Versatile Photographers won the Most Innovative Photographer 2018 award in Kenya during the 2018 Business Excellence Awards. We have several innovations since we started and we look forward to partner with more professionals, governments, private sector and NGOs. Following are some of the ongoing projects.

Trophy awarded to Versatile Photographers for being the most innovative

Versatile school of photography

Versatile school of photography, which won the Best Photography school during the Kenya Wedding Industry Awards has produced creative whom lives has been transformed. We believe that everyone should be fully equipped and capable of exploring their world to find what is good in it, capture it and use it to tell a story that inspires others.

The major part of our course is practical assignments and photography projects to ensure you have refined and portfolio-worthy photographic skills by the time you complete the course.

The Versatile School of Photography won the Best school of photography award during the Kenya Wedding Industry Awards

Versatile Adventures

Versatile Adventures creates awareness of the fast depletion of wildlife and positively mobilizes people to join the conservation revolution through content generation using photography, videography and articles based on wildlife and their natural environment

There is an event which happens every month at Nairobi National Park, dubbed #PhotographyInTheWild a partnership between Versatile School Of Photography, Kenya Wildlife Service, Bigfoot Adventures, Camera Kenya, Hafla Events, Negesa Trails and Shish Events Kenya. David Macharia offers training on photography skills. During the Vintage Night there will be tickets to be won for #PhotographyInTheWild and you will get to have an experience of the wild animals, learn their behavior and wildlife ethics.

A team of Photographers, hobbyists, conservationists and tour guides during the #PhotographyInTheWild

 Versatile Art Gallery

Versatile Art Gallery is a collective of exclusive images captured in Kenya. The art gallery was established from the Worth More Alive campaign 2016 of the ivory burning which was participated by world leaders who are against poaching. Images are captured by local photographers and the sales made from the images sponsors a needy student at Versatile School Of Photography. You can support the project by buying a piece of art.

The Versatile Art Gallery at Hazina Towers branch in Nairobi CBD

Africa Stock Images

Africa Stock Images is a stock photo company aimed at enabling photographers and designers around the continent to showcase, tell stories and sell their creativity about Africa through our platform. Africa Stock Images is not only a company but a market platform that gives the world the taste of the African way of life. We are focused on delivering to our customers the best content available from our premium quality images.

One of our authentic African image with african people for sale for commercial purpose.


Versatile TV

 Versatile TV is a platform that engages different clusters of people in different niches in life by telling their story through photography and video. We focus on three areas that is; Entrepreneurship, Leadership and Mentorship programs. Many iconic businessmen in Africa have made it despite various hardships and the challenges never crumbled their vision and persistence in what they believed in. Lets transform lives through mentorship.

Eric Muriithi, CEO Blaze consulting offers business etiquette and soft skills.


Versatile Etiquette

Versatile Etiquette is a team of photographers and make up artists who teamed up their artistry to produce priceless images.  Make up artist apply and teach how to apply professional make-up to individuals. They also offer masterclass to upcoming make up artist who want to venture into weddings, glamour, special effects and Tv production. We also offer soft skills training in entrepreneurship, personal branding and business etiquette.

Sammy Kamau, our lead make up artist applying make-up in our state of art studio during a photo shoot.

 

Versatile Creative Hub

Finally, creative meet corporate. Versatile Creative Hub is a platform where creative minds come together to solve a problem in this trendy time of new technology. For so many years, corporate has operated with complex structures and due to technology like social media, they have no choice but to adapt the changing times.

This is where most young people fall in where they bring their creative skills to solve a problem. The Hub hosts photographers, designers, creative directors, film makers, make-up artists, event planners and any other creative category. With the new business trends, technology has created new jobs that are not yet in our formal school curriculum, Versatile Creative Hub creates a platform to learn these skills.

We have partnered with professionals such as Pepp Talk, LifeLine International, CateChris Limited to offer training in soft skills, personal branding, financial literacy, entrepreneurship among others. Membership fee is Ksh3,000 which include membership card, collective bargaining, mentorship, workshop and listing of your business in our website portal.

 

David Macharia, one of the main mentors of entrepreneurship to upcoming creatives

Asili Yetu (Coffee Table book)

David Macharia is a Creative lead Photographer at Versatile Photographers. His passion to wildlife photography started as soon as he learnt photography skills. His work has been nominated for several awards. Don’t miss this event as he launches his first book Asili Yetu and share his photography journey how to capture images that tells a story.

Here is the link to details about the Coffee Book.

The Asili Yetu Afrika coffee book entails the life, behavior and ethics of the wild animals in Kenya which is available on order.

Exhibition

David will host an exhibition of his exclusive Images for auction during the event. The images are printed in high quality canvas and Frames. All proceeds go towards raising funds for the #PhotographyInTheWild and Versatile School of Photography projects. The project is a teamwork of photographers, bloggers, designers, event planers and tour guides.

David’s Macharia exclusive images exhibited at Nairobits Go-down centre. 

 

To be part of the event, Book your ticket by Wednesday 4th July, 2018.

Contact Person:
Kerren Irungu

Cell: +254722220978
Office: +254 721330767
Email: village@versatilephotographers.com

Designation: Key Account Manager

VERSATILE PHOTOGRAPHERS

Paybill 525676

Account No. -Your Name

Bank: Branch: Account Number: Barclays, Moi Avenue, 0751454287

Note: Sponsorship & Booking deadline dates are 30th June, 2018- The earlier your sponsorship the more the chances of visibility before the show. Get in touch with us for more informa on.

To be part of the event, book your ticket before Wednesday and support Versatile Photographers.


Note;Every ticket purchased, will help a student in need at Versatile School of Photography.

Nairobi #TheEnkare City Under the Sun

Kenyans are a hard-working lot, and this picture is a glimpse of their resilience. Barely 100 years old, Nairobi city has grown to be the modern sea of lights that it is. With the back born of Kenya being agriculture, This City Under the Sun has grown from the hard work of people who believe that working together will make life easier for them than if they do so individually and the flood of lights is a reflection of this.

 

This magnificent skyline of Nairobi city is home to thousands of Kenyan businesses highlighting some of the city’s most important work and industrial streets such as Moi avenue, Koinange street and Kimathi street, that hold majority of cities SME’s, and large companies. The future is brighter for this night; technology, commerce, specialization, services, healthcare, food establishments, education…are all on the rise. Nairobi is truly one of the best places to do business in now.

This pictures’ warm tone truly gives a welcoming, calming, breathe taking feeling. One would say that this is a true description of what it’s like to be in the city of Nairobi and is what any visitor coming into the country would experience from our friendly people, places, food, and entertaining nightlife.

This exclusive photo has 25 pieces printed on high quality canvas size 1 metre by 2 metres, with 4 already sold and 21 remaining. The cost of the image is $1200 and proceeds from the sale  will sponsor deserving students to study Professional Photography, Film making and entrepreneural skills at Versatile School Of Photography.

Below is the list of the clients who have purchased

  • Eric Wainaina-Musician Kenya
  • Versatile Photographers – Kenya
  • Nairobi Art Buyers Exhibition
  • Phillip Chikwiramakomo – Zimbabwe

This picture was taken by David Macharia, December 2016.

David Macharia is a renowned East African Photographer, his most recognized work is being the official photographer of the Obama Visit to Kenya as a sitting US president. He is credited as having changed the photography business in East Africa by starting the Photographers Association of Kenya (PAK), as well as the first school offering hands-on skills in photography in Kenya that attracts students from all over Africa. He is also the lead photographer at Versatile Photographers.

#SHOWYOURLOVE

Have you heard of the Hashtag #SHOWYOURLOVE this valentines? This year we want to make your valentines special and  more memorable than any other. Kenya National Blood Transfusion service whose mandate is to collect, test and process and distributing blood across our hospital in collaboration with CateChris limited, Digital humanitarian and our team Versatile school of photographers to bring you how to celebrate this valentine in a special way by showing your love to people you even don’t know neither met.

#SHOWYOURLOVE is an initiative from the KNBTS and other partners to help people show their love through blood donating changing the culture of the old valentine of only sharing flowers, gift cards and other gifts with friends, relatives or even family. The event will be happening  from 8Am to 6pm at KICC and this time will be sharing our love through donating blood. This will not only be happening in Nairobi county but across other counties, our appeal is that as much as we will be enjoying ourselves,visiting your county donation centre donate since someone is in need of our help.

Kenya has always had blood shortage in our hospitals, with this initiative we are saving thousands of lives in need of the blood.#SHOWYOURLOVE to that child,mother,father who really need that blood.The best part about  donating blood the is that you don’t have to pay anything, its absolutely for free.At times people have fears of donating blood since of the myths and misconception they may have heard from different people thus holding back their generosity to give and safe a life. Once you come to donate blood you are guided on how to ensure the entire process is effective and also that your health is safe.

Kenyans were are known for our generosity therefore our appeal to all Kenyans is that lets come out in large numbers and spread the love more differently this year  even to people who never know.Pass by with your partner to your nearest  blood donating centre and show your love as well  and after that your can go enjoy the rest of your day with loved ones.

Today all we are doing is showing the love through blood doesn’t matter your tribe, religion or color we are one Kenya binded by love for each other, let’s donate blood and save a life, #SHOWYOURLOVE through donating.

Story by
Tyson Kiiru

Introduction to photography

The first class of January intake was the introduction to photography and learning all the basics you need to understand before getting into the practicals. Gibson who is a commercial photographer was in charge of the introduction class relating to photography with an experience of more than 10 years.

Among the key issues were parts of the camera that helps it function properly and how they are operated. During this class students are given cameras both Nikon and Canon so that once a certain part is mention they are able to see in real time. Some of the parts include Power button, lens, the body, batteries, ISO, White balance, Focus, Shutter button, View finder, Menu among many more.

Camera care was also  discussed where students were taught on how to take care of their cameras so once they want to sell them they will be as new. Through cleaning of the lens once is able to achieve quality pictures without finger prints appearing on the lens. Once you properly maintain your camera you will enjoy longer service and low business running costs since your camera is reliable and nice performance.

Students were also taught on how to handle the cameras while shooting so as to avoid damaging the equipment. A camera strap is very important as a photographer since it helps you hold your camera firm and less chances of misplacing it. Another precaution as a photographer always places your camera in a ventilated areas to avoid fungi on your lenses.

Cleaning your camera is very important as a photographer, this is a precaution that you need to carry more often to ensure your camera is in good situation. There are specific cleaning equipment that is used in cleaning your camera starting from the camera body,the lens as well as other critical parts of the camera. Gibson gave a stun warning for those cleaning their lens using their clothes instead they should buy a special cloth used to clean the lens.

As a photographer you need to invest in storage devices be it memory cards, hard disk and other back equipment to ensure your have enough space for your work. If you don’t have enough space you end up taking little footage limiting you to having sufficient work for creativity.

Mr. Gibson also insisted on ensuring that you buy original equipment and even gave the students a recommendation on where they could buy original equipment. The equipment range from the cameras, Charger, Speed light and Flash, Triggers, Camera Bags and many more. He also gave a stun warning especially on the bags students intend to carry their camera while in the public saying some of the bags attract smugglers.

Finally once you have taken all the precautions as a photographer you need to ensure they take an insurance cover for their equipment. This would help a photographer be compensated if your camera was stolen, it’s very important to insure your equipment at all times.

Story by
Tyson Kiiru

Exposure in Photography

Did you know for a picture to look great and appealing all you need is light? I know you wondering how light can be the only necessity to good images let me teach you. Light is always your best friend and worst enemy as a photographer since is all you need to compose the perfect image.

Exposure refers to the amount of light allowed to compose an image, also can be defined to as the camera settings used to capture a particular photo. Exposure can be in three categories when composing an image; over exposure, normal exposure and under exposure.

Over exposure refers when an image is exposed a lot of light thus affecting the colour of the image as well as losing the details. Normal exposure refers to when an image is properly exposed to light achieving the best quality images. As a photographer always ensure that your picture is nicely exposed for your images to stand out. Under exposure means an image has not received the required amount of light resulting to dark images and losing details as well.

There are three elements of exposure; Aperture, Shutter and ISO they are the key basics when dealing with composition of a picture. Aperture deals with the opening and closing of the lens and controls the amount of light passing through to reach the sensor or film. The aperture also helps in changing the depth of field which means the area in a photo that has sharp focus.

Shutter is responsible for controlling the opening in the camera body that opens allowing light to pass through to the sensor hence capturing a photo. Shutter speed is the duration that the shutter remains open allowing light to reach the sensor and it’s controlled in seconds. It’s with this shutter speed that one can use to freeze and blur images in action and sports.

ISO refers to the sensor or film sensitivity to light, the higher the value the brighter the photo and vise versa. One disadvantage of ISO is once it’s increased your image starts having some grains hence distorting your image.

Finally we have the exposure modes while dealing with photography for one to have your picture stand out among the rest. AV(aperture priority) here the camera selects the appropriate shutter speed needed to achieve the correct exposure.

TV(shutter priority) this is where you select the shutter speed and the camera selects the proper aperture to achieve the exposure needed.

P(program) here the camera selects the aperture and shutter settings needed to have the proper exposure but the photographer can manipulate the settings if he/she wishes.

Exposure compensation used to alter the exposure chosen by the camera metering so as to brighten or darken the photo according to the photographer’s satisfaction.

Once you understand the function of each of these settings then be sure to achieve quality and detailed pictures that will market you. Again practice will always enhance your understanding to these parts even more.

Story by
Tyson Kiiru

Nairobits Graduation 2017

Friday marked yet another graduation ceremony for Nairobits organization where more than a hundred students from of class of 2017 graduated. Nairobits is an organization that aims at changing lives of underprivileged youths and those from informal sectors through Information Communication Technology, Entrepreneur and life skills.

The organization was established back in 1999 and has trained over 7000 students who are mainly from informal settlement within Nairobi. This year’s graduation more than 100 grandaunts finished their training at Digital garage and the media lab categories.

Madam Magdalene, who is the managing director at Nairobits, awarded the students their certificates and also encouraged the students to use the skills they learn during their training. Creating your own opportunity and becoming self-employed was the key emphasis from other speakers to the students.

Apart from motivating the students, some of the best students in both categories were given different awards as a way of appreciating them. Some of those who received awards have come up with brilliant ideas, one of who has invented an application for ordering a motorbike within Nairobi city. He says this will help reduce the hustle for waiting for a motorbike as well as reduce the time one takes from one place to another.

Nairobits also has a programme, Nairobits trust which seeks to raise over 250,000 Kenyan shillings by January next year. The programme is all about empowering people especially those living in the slum and transforming their lifestyle. So far they have raised over 170,000 Kenyan shillings and have transformed many lives within a short time they started.

Nairobits says that they are dedicated in transforming as many lives as possible to see that those from informal sector also get recognized by the society. They say through this cases of unemployment and crime which are associated with people from informal sectors will reduce.

Story by:
Tyson Kiiru

Sports Photography Tips

Sports Photography Tips

Over the years Kenyans always embrace new technology and skills. From money market, media, agribusiness, internet, hands on skills like photography, bike riding. This has been made possible because of the internet in our country and we being open to learn. As a photographer am always ready to learn new skills and this time I learnt about the speed bike racing event through Andrew Kibe’s facebook page. I talked to a few students from Versatile School Of Photography and we decided to attend and learn more about sports photography. As always we researched how to capture the best creative photos that will show case our photography skills. We all did a self drive so as to familiarize with the venue.

The event was beyond our expectation when we discovered how well organized it was with NTSA on board. I have not seen many classic bikers together before. When doing sports photography, it is advisable to look for a strategic place before the event starts and and for speed bikes you have to consider a secure place. Last year one of the Kenyan photographer was involved in accident while trying to get a good shot.

Here are few tips  to learn when shooting sports.

Dress Comfortably

Always dress on comfortable clothes because there will be a lot of lying down, running and squatting. Check out with the weather focus and never forget a rain coat for yourself and the gears. A reflecting yellow or orange top always gives good visibility.

Choose Correct Camera Gear

Different sports have different kinds of shots to be taken. While shooting bikes telephoto lens will come in handy as well as the mini zoom for panning shots. Charge your batteries to avoid looking for power to recharge. If you have more than one gear it is always good to have an assistant to help you out as you concentrate with shooting.

Patience

During sports time, patience is of essence and as a photographer, is always good to include eyes of your subject. Make sure we can recognize the rider or a player when we see the image, wait for them to turn around.

Choose a Strategic Location

Its always good to be punctual, arrive before the event starts to locate places for different angles. Take note of where the sun is and make sure the sun is always on your back when shooting. This will ensure you have your shutter speed on it’s maximum.

Be Different

All the years sports images have similarity and with the latest gears and technology you have so much to explore like aerial shots with drone, allow your creativity to flourish and capture something that everyone else doesn’t have.

Involve fans

Its always good to agree with events managers on which position to strategize yourself to get images of the crowd. For publication  purposes  you will need to show how the event was attended, whether its a stadium full of cheering fans, the surroundings present unique opportunities to capture the spirit of the game without shooting the action itself.

Panning

Most upcoming photographers might not have telephoto lens for sports photography but just a basic camera with a kit lens, captures amazing panning shot. The secret is trying different shutter speed depending how fast is your subject and lock the focus.

Here are more images during the Open Track Day

Story By

David Macharia Mwangi
Versatile School Of Photography
Mentor / Conservationist / Entrepreneur / Photographer

Obama Portrait For Schools

David is a prolific, renowned accredited photographer based in Nairobi city, Kenya. His passion and dream in photography later turned out to be a reality during Obamas visit to Kenya in the year 2015.

When Obama came to the country he was commissioned the photography assignment by the White House to cover his presence at Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) while there he got to learn from, Daymond John, the Amazon team, Akon and our local leaders like Bob Collymore from Safaricom.

As I was the official photographer I managed to have a notebook on the side that I used to record every inspiring thought that was shared from the symposiums or panelists. I could relate it to my business. Since I was already running a business which already had a mentorship program to teach other people professional photography I got a higher demand and this is how Versatile School of Photography begun. Here we train hands on skills and entrepreneurship in photography business.

The Versatile school of photography students and him came up with an art where they share pictures on social media. The project has evolved to donating the images to schools with motivating captions on them. Some of the schools they have donated to include, Mpesa Foundation Academy where we offer mentorship in photography skills, Chania Primary School and Njabini Primary School where David schooled.

We plan to give as many schools as possible to empower and encourage the youth that the time to shine is now because we are now in a global village.

The Obama portrait is also available for sale printed in high quality canvas for institutions, offices, libraries, hubs, NGOs and the like at a cost of USD 450 Dollars. The funds go to Versatile School Of Photography  to support informal settlement youths to learn photography and entrepreneurship skills so that they can transform their lives by being self-sufficient.

Photographers Paradise

Saturday night, After a phone call and excusing myself for calling that late and booking last minute (typical Kenyan style) am booked for what i think will be a great trip to Nairobi Nairobi Park.

Crocodile lying at Nairobi Dam inside Nairobi National Park

Am dropped at the park’s gate some minutes to 6 a.m …. too early probably I think to myself, who wants a visitor this early on a Sunday morning …. imagine a knock on your door at 6 a.m Sunday morning am sure the lions will get pissed off. Probably they had a night out on Saturday and they are busy nursing their hangys …,

Zebras enjoying the heat from the sun on a sunday afternoon

We start our game drive some few minutes past six, and being a wildlife/ nature lover and passionate about photography am sure this will be a good cocktail for me. In less than 30 mins into the drive strangers in this van become friends …. clicking, sharing camera tricks, settings, jokes,  ….. Lenses, extenders ….., the laughs are just contagious ….

A Lion with a Zebra kill at the Nairobi National Park

Photography in the wild 2 turns out to be a big success. The day ends with a cocktail and prize presentation for the best photos …..

Cant wait for Photography in the wild 3 …

Sturdy, spirited and playful zebras at Nairobi National Park

 

 

Photographer:  Benjamin Kays