I stumbled upon Jimi’s work when VSCO featured him and I wondered how and why I was just seeing his work for the first time. His portraits are stunning and you do not want to look away. I approached him for an interview of sorts and he let us into his head for a bit.
–Tell us about Jimi Agboola. (Nationality, occupation, country of residence and anything else you’d like to share )
My name is Jimi Agboola, I’m a 19 year Nigerian photographer based in Lagos. A student at Covenant University studying Civil Engineering.
-How/when did you get into photography?
I started doing photography proper about a year ago. I was hanging out with a friend and we decided to take pictures. Fell in love with the first couple of pictures I took of him, with time I learnt more about photography and I believe it’s an incredible art form and I’m totally in love with it.
– I’ve noticed you particularly love portraiture. What is it about this kind of photography that appeals to you and what’s the inspiration for your aesthetic?
I love to capture creative moments with people that aim to be different and certainly out of the box. I am fixated on the idea that photography is art and art should push conventional boundaries and naturally connect to people in the most simple or even the most complex ways.
I love taking portraits of people because they are simply beautiful to me. I believe each person is filled with emotion and different stories. It isn’t just about taking the picture; I believe it’s also about trying to pass across a certain message or a whole lot of messages to the person viewing the image.
-Any photographers who inspire(d) you?
There are loads of photographers who inspire me. I study the works of Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Kadara Enyeasi, Viviane Sassen, Mustafa Sabbagh, Rog Walker, Ade Okelarin, Fifo Adebakin, Jay Olowu, Thompson Ekong and Jenyo Johnson just to name a few.
-What are your thoughts on the large creative presence in Nigeria and Africa in general currently?
Well I’m not really peculiar about the amount of creatives. Having a lot of creatives isn’t the issue; it’s what they do that matters. Are they creating the right culture? Are they telling the right story of what it means to be a creative in Africa? And are we not only selling African culture but also a global dynamic to it in this fast paced world where having global ideologies can help you grow in your art. Basically it’s pretty cool to see people getting a lot more interested in these things but I’m much more concerned with how the number is impacting the culture
-Proudest accomplishment with regards to photography thus far?
Well my work was recently featured by VSCO. They are an art and technology company aimed at empowering people to create. They recently released a collection a presets called the alchemy collection and I used it in the creating presets for some of my photos. I told them about it and they honored me by sharing my work for the world to see. That was pretty inspiring and it’s given me the urge to keep creating and doing what I love,
– Any advice for people interested in photography?
Well I’d say just keep creating, you can only get better lol.
Jimi has recently started a new photography series titled “About ME” ( The Seal of Approval )
It is inspired, he says, by the urgent need for self-approval, love and acceptance in Africa. The need for each individual to recognize his/her own individual beauty and worth. Jimi believes that going through life is easier when a person can love himself/herself.
Here are some photos from the series:
Jimi’s portraits have a unique, evocative feel and leave you wanting more.
**See more of Jimi:
Tumblr : jimiiagboola.com
VSCO Grid : jimiiagboola.vsco.co
Instagram & Twitter : jimiiagboola
Email : [email protected]