Thursday, December 30, 2010

Joyeux Noelle

Joyeuz Noelle

Christmas is arguably one of the most celebrated holidays and [with horrific weather forecasts in the North East of the United States] I've spent most of it reflecting, planning and best yet...finally learning to play a musical instrument.

From me to you: Merry Christmas | Joyeux Noelle | Afi hyia pa

This picture was taken at a kids Christmas party at church, the baby seemed unimpressed by Santa and his prodding. With the ups and downs of 2010 he mirrored my sentiments exactly: "Let's get on with it shall we?"

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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Kwabena Kwabena in concert

Recording...

My man Kwabena Kwabena finally performed in the States.

Kwabena Kwabena

For those who aren't familiar with him yet, you've probably heard his songs: "Aso" with Kontihene, "Do no bi" which was the soundtrack for Shirley Frimpong-Manso's "Perfect Picture"

Serenade

One of the things I like about Kwabena Kwabena, I had an opportunity to interview him on a radio show (Drive Time with Komla); is that he is humble, talented and a pleasant person to speak with.

The artist

What I didn't like though, as has become the constant with Ghanaians promoting artists abroad is, was the event venue and set-up. A live band, MTV-unplugged-atmosphere would have been way more ideal than a DJ set-up.

More grease to Kwabena Kwabena's elbows, if you love Ghanaian music and haven't heard of him/his songs, you definitely will soon enough.

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Rugrats in Attendance

Apparently there's never a shortage of naming ceremonies in our community and I'm always ecstatic to photograph happy families with happy babies.

This time though, I was wondering what the new baby's peers thought of the whole ceremony and his/her arrival. Go ahead, you may leave alternate captions for each picture in the comment box, trust me its fun!

First gifts
First gift.

'The star' Eldrick
'The Star' baby Eldrick


Miss I-got-my-own-bread
Caption #1 Miss I-Got-My-Own-Bread

Lady 'say what?'
Caption #2 Lady 'Say What?'

MissToo-cute-for-TV
Caption #3 Miss Too-Cute-For-TV

Parents during the ceremony
The proud parents and friends.

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Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Rev [Jesse Jackson that is]

2 out of the 3 times when I've taken photos of prominent black people, President Barack Obama and Donna Brazile it hasn't been premeditated. This time though a friend gave me minutes notice and thanks to my lowepro back pack that I carry around everywhere, I had the opportunity to get blog-worthy pictures of Rev. Jesse Jackson at the Willard Hotel at a media and telecommunications conference on Thursday. My thoughts when I saw the famous African American...He must be at least 6'4": that's a tall dude, TV doesn't do him justice (pun intended) :-).

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I guess I can officially say I'm now about-that-DC-life.

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Thursday, September 30, 2010

I've got the Blues for you

"One of the things I love about couple shoots is that the affection between the two can be very apparent as the soon-to-be-wed unknowingly pull you, the photographer, into their world."- e.a.g

If you've read any of my earlier posts on Greek life, you've probably figured out that I'm a Theta man and when one of my homeboys from VA, a proud Sigma, asked me to take pictures of him and significant other ( she's a Zeta), I showed up with a brown & gold version of my itake photos est. 1985 t-shirt. True to form the couple's attire, like the color scheme of their planned wedding next year, was blue. And hence the double entendre in the blog post's title.

Blue Couple 01
Paving the way to state his case...

Blue Couple 04
Bra bra thinks he's spitting game...in between shoots the couple share how they met.

Blue Couple 03
Broham's trying to steal a kiss.

Blue Couple 02

One thing I learnt during the fun shoot as the couple were laughing and hugging the duration of the session...it's easy and incredibly promising to look forward to the future with someone you love, especially if that someone is also your best friend.

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Friday, September 24, 2010

Kua - and the mini miracle that happened

So I'm not a huge purse/accessory person (for obvious reasons) and when I discovered for a second year in a row that I had to come up with equally phenomenal gifts for my mother AND...wait for it, my girlfriend's birthdays on Sept 17th, I was almost in despair.

Two years in the game isn't long enough to be adept at hitting a home run when it comes to picking a birthday gift for two women who mean the world in your life. And though I had gotten away with flowers etc in the past, this year seemed to be a particularly more challenging in my attempt to switch things up a bit.

When Ruby Buah, creative genius behind kua designs, called me to cover a shop and mingle event in DC last week, I was cautiously elated. I have been a fan of the photography used to showcase her products on her website (purses on a clothesline, brilliantly African *check 2009 collection on her website*) and was pleased she wanted me to photograph her first DC event ever!

Though I had to cajole my mom that spending a few hours away from her on her birthday would be more than worth it. The purses I got for her, and ahem the girlfriend, did all the convincing!

Enough banter, to the female fans/bloggers: tell me if Ruby's purses don't make a very strong case to be purchased?

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'Kesewaa' - apparently all the bags are affectionately named.

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Nothing like the clothesline, but stacked the purses hold their own weight.

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Angie happens to be an old long lost friend who I finally met at the event, and she loves her purses/style...in no particular order.

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Ruby had African-print-inspired broaches as well.

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An enthusiastic lady who immediately purchased a handful of purses as Ruby smiles on.

Hey, if people appreciated my lovely creations, as they did that evening, I'd be cheesing too! Check out more of the purses at www.kuadesigns.com

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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

and he shall be called...

Baby being named
Naming ceremonies are on of the more prominent occasions in the Ghanaian community. I tell my friends you can find out a lot about a person just by hearing his name: his family's religion, ethnic group, possibly his day of birth and his family's origin. Eg. Kofi Gabriel Adedevor - infers that buddy was born on Friday, his family gave him a Christian name and his father's family may be traced to the Ewes in the Volta region.

I got to cover a few naming ceremonies over the summer and this is one of them.

Grandad (Pop's side) speaking
The baby's grandfather (from the dad's side) shares a word about the family, and in this case shares that there are only boys in his family; he has a twin and two sons and thus relinquishes baby naming privileges to the other grandfather(mom's side) as the baby's mother has only sisters in her family.

Grandad (Mom's side) speaking
The grandfather, whom the baby is named after, emotionally shares the meaning of his name Oheneba...and how proud he is to have a grandson.

Pensive parents
The parents looking on while the family 'elders' share family history, challenges and triumphs.

the Star opens his eyes
The head of the Pentecost church, the family's church, calls the child by his name for the first time...Oheneba.

Teary eyed Parents
The father, smitten by the emotional bug, also expresses his joy and the pride of having his first born son.

Family Pix

Family together with the bride's parents and sisters, in matching cloth. Usually white is the favored color for naming ceremonies, in this case the family patterns are adorned with baby blue too.

Long, long day

After a long day, close to six hours of congratulations, having guests dine with you and wish you well, Oheneba is finally visibly tired....my sentiments exactly! He's a trooper, I wish him all the best and when giving the chance, look forward to documenting his successes.

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Monday, August 23, 2010

the Presidential Effect

Earlier on in the month, my frat brother who works for the Tulsa Shock reserved tickets for the Shock/Mystics game at the Convention Center in DC. Jumping on the opportunity to fellowship with Gator alumn, I was more excited about the stories to share post-undergrad than the WNBA basketball game....and then it happened. Outside the Convention Center word spread that President Obama and his youngest daughter, Malia would be in attendance!

My priorities changed as I wanted to get my first one-on-one opportunity shoot (ahem a picture of) the president of Kenyan (and Hawaiian) origin. Realizing how far away from the court side my seat was and how ill-equipped I was to get decent pictures, I grudgingly took out my camera in hopes of getting any pictures of him to share with you all.

Obama & Malia courtside

The Mystic mascot mistakenly shook hands with almost everyone on the first row except Malia, and was quickly reminded by the audience to go back and greet the Commander and Chief and his daughter.

Fans gawking at the prez

Possibly one of the more famous back-of-the-heads ever photographed. I was envious of how close buddy had gotten to the prez.

Money shot: Prez Obama

The decent 'money shot' of the day and I'll explain why in a bit.

Obama leaving the convention Ctr

Just before this picture, I froze...sigh. I was close enough to President Obama and he seemed to stretch out his hand toward me! So instead of taking possibly my rendition of the HOPE poster picture of my own. I ended up with another pass-me-by picture.

Now if that isn't the presidential effect, I don't know what is. I couldn't beat myself down for too long though, at least I got a handshake from the most powerful man in the world. What did you do that was awesome this month?

7 comments :

Friday, August 6, 2010

Mr. Musicman eh, aya!

Kojo Antwi

The Ghanaian equivalent to Teddy P or Luther Vandross, Kojo Antwi is our multi-award winning romantic songs crooner who I grew up listening to.

Koby Maxwell

One of the opening acts, Koby Maxwell...a local artist in the DMV.

Papa Shee & Mzbel

Papa Shee was another opening act, and surprisingly introduced Mzbel who was in attendance.

Kojo Antwi

Though the venue was trash & the sounds men were disappointing, Kojo Antwi did his thing. For an extensive review of the concert, you should read my man MIghTy African's blog post.

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Thursday, July 29, 2010

A True Worship Experience

A friend from my old church happens to be the prez for True Worshippers....a group of young men and women in the DMV are who are dedicated to putting on an annual gospel concert during/around July 4th (held July 17th this year). I missed the first concert last year cos I was still residing in Florida. When buddy asked me to be the official photographer for the event I jumped at the opportunity to capture the moment, and have front row access to a wonderful praise & worship session.

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Members of the True Worshippers team, including the prez Yaw Osei-Owusu(middle).

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Paster Bezaleel started off with the praise and worship to set the tone of the event.

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Some attendees engaged in the praise & worship session.

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Moses O.K. a young gospel artist from Kumasi, Ghana led the charge!

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Seasoned veteran and former leader of the Soul Winners group in Ghana, Kenneth Appiah took over.

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Back-up singers for the event.

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Nii Okai, another prolific Ghanaian gospel musician also took it home and ushered an anointed presence during worship.

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All in all True Worshippers: A night in His presence 2010 was a fun, charged atmosphere and I had a phenomenal time.

Prior to the concert, Yaw brought Moses O.K. and Nii Okai to Sunlight radio station, one of the projects I'm working on with my dad at Media Afrika LLC, for an interview. Using my alias as Komla the OdadeE I had the opportunity to interview the guest artists before the concert date. To Yaw and True Worshippers thank you...for a concert very well done!

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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Ghana Stars (spoken word & music)

Osekre performance

My home boy Osekre had a book launch in NY a few days back and I had the chance to photograph event. The best part of the nostalgic Ghanaian songs and witty rhymes was the opportunity to also meet Blitz the Ambassador -a black star (no affiliation with the football team) and witness first-hand the Achimota High School graduate's lyrical genius.

Blitz the Ambassador

So I'm still bruised over Ghana's loss to Uruguay but Blitz's salute to the boys in the video below is more than appropriate:

Ghana Black Stars! • yɛ da mo ase (Thank you) from MVMT on Vimeo.

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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Black Stars: KasE VIM!

Ghana vs USA flag display

If you've been following me on twitter or facebook then you've probably figured out that I'm a huge football fanatic when it comes to the #worldcup. I've been an ardent, unwavering fan since the first game between Ghana and Serbia.

In 2006, when Ghana beat the USA to qualify past group stages, I bought a flag and heralded it onto University of Florida campus. Four years and a graduation later, a similar showdown with Ghana being victorious last weekend couldn't have made me happier.

Black Stars @ Dupont, DC

Being the dare-devil that I am, I went to Washington DC, the nation's capital....Dupont Circle where jumbotrons and huge screen tvs showcased the world cup football matches hosted in South Africa. I was surrounded by {obviously} team America supporters with my obnoxious flag and braved 90 minutes plus extra time till, the ESPN described "small country a little bigger than Oregon" beat the super power USA!

I was ecstatic, a little nervous for my well-being but very proud of the young black stars team and the fact that I was born in Ghana, the Black Stars of Africa

Disclaimer: Unlike all the pictures I post here, though taken with my camera I didn't take these pictures...as I am actually in them.

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