Meet Jerrie Rotimi, the 26-year-old portrait and fashion photographer who is capturing human emotions one portrait at a time.
Born Jeremiah Rotimi, Jerrie is the first of five children. He grew up in Ikeja, Lagos where he attended Airforce secondary school. He then went on to study Computer Science at Ladoke Akintola University of Technology.
Jerrie Rotimi discovered photography while hanging out with his photographer friend, Tope. He would accompany Tope to shoots, glad to just be there. As time passed, he picked interest in taking photographs and began to shadow his friend while he worked. Naturally, Jerrie followed in Tope’s path of portrait and fashion photography. Jerrie Rotimi soon fell in love with the art of showing the world his subjects through his eyes. With the support of his family, he purchased his first camera and began the journey which has led him to becoming one of the best-known portrait and fashion photographers in Nigeria.
Starting professionally in 2014, he quickly became known in the industry for his distinct style. In his 3-year career, Jerrie has shot campaigns for brands including Iconolabrand, Anncranberry, ShopMaju, Sisiano and T.I Nathan. In addition,he has been commissioned by The Guardian, Blanck Digital UK, Toshiba, Vogue Italia, and Spice Fashion Channel. In 2015, he was the official photographer for the Elite Model Look Nigeria. He has shot portraits for several high-profile Nigerians including Ann-Kio Briggs, Jonathan Mannion, Zainab Balogun, Chris Attoh, Cobhams Asuquo, Dakore Egbuson, Kunle Afolayan, Omawunmi, Uzodinma Iweala, Denrele Edun and Adesua Etomi.
For Jerrie, who is mostly reserved and shy, photography has helped him get better at interacting with people, and brought him out of his shell. When he meets a subject, even one who is a stranger to him, he befriends them through his lens. His lens is a means of entering a stranger’s world, getting to know them and letting the world see them through his eyes. This is obvious in Jerrie’s stunning portraits, which always capture the emotions and nuances of his subjects.
On what his biggest career challenges are, Jerrie said it’s that people don’t rate photography enough in Nigeria as a career field. “They think it’s simply taking pictures and adding filters, but it’s beyond that. It’s amazing how much bigger the business of photography is than people think. Getting people to understand what it entails and to see it as a real business has challenging.”
Jerrie’s passion for his art is obvious in the quality of his pictures. He says that the need to get better is what keeps him going as he is of the belief that practice, doesn’t make perfect, but gives consistency.
Below are some of his photos;
This article was written by Phidelia Imiegha,
Phidelia Imiegha is a young Nigerian writer and lover of literature. She is an African literature enthusiast and accepts book gifts all year round. She spends her free time adulting and listening to music. You can find her writing on her personal blog www.phideliaimiegha.com, or follow her on twitter @thephidelia_
Culled from Issue 17
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