Behind the Lens: Spotlight on Videographers
Ever wonder who are the creative geniuses behind your favorite YouTube hits? Videographers are the silent creatives working behind the scenes to turn musician’s concepts into complete visual experiences; including the entire pre and post-production process.
This art has brought creativity in the music scene to a whole new level. Kenyan videographers have been making waves with amazing ingenious works. Four of the best Kenyan video producers have not only worked with Kenyan artists but also crossed continents. Let’s take a look at them:
He is one of the pioneers in the scene. He began his career as part of the music group Boomba Clan. They were so disappointed in the quality of the video for their song that Mboss decided to shoot it himself. The result was the video for Do Not Touch My Car, and later, Chonga Viazi, which won the best video award at Chaguo La Teeniz 2006. Apart from his own music, he has directed a considerable list of celebrity names including: Jaguar ft Iyanya, One Centimetre Remix; Rabbit, Kichinjo; Nazizi ft Ginjah (from Jamaica), Brother Sister, Wyre ft Cecil, She Said Dat Remix; Cannibal, Legend; Jay A ft. Amani, On Me; Wyre ft. Jua Cali, Khadija.
His ability to infuse humor in his videos has earned him a reputation as one of the most fun and engaging videographers. He has branched into TV and advertising, with his most notable mainstream media work being part of the team that produced the Tusker Project Fame season 6 auditions.
Enos Olik started out as a photographer. He is one of the most sought-after creative directors in Kenya today. He made a name for himself when he directed his first song Ni Msoh written by Kelele Takatifu and Holy Dave. He has worked with top notch artists like Sauti Sol for their songs, Nishike, Sura Yako, Still the One and Nerea; Jaguar’s Kioo; Octopizzo’s Ivo; Elani’s Milele, Ali Kiba’s Nagharamia; Vanessa Mdee’s Come Over; P-Unit’s Weka Weka; Eddy Kenzo’s Maria Roza and Nameless’ Letigo.
These songs were big hits on the African continent and completely redefined the videography game. His fusion of African and international influences, clear visuals and a love for color sets him apart.
Jibril, also known as J Blessing, has truly mastered the art of video directing. He is continuously working on local hits like Sage’s So Alive ft. Octopizzo; P-Unit ft Alicious’ Mobimba; and Kristoff ft Frasha & King kaka’s Dandia. Apart from being a top videographer he is also the CEO of Link Video Global. He shares his knowledge through mentorships for young budding video directors like Young Wallace. His passion is to see growth in his mentees. He also works in TV- he produced the second season of NTV’s Churchill show. J Blessing has really branded himself and is definitely one of the best.
His journey begun at Jomo Kenyatta University of Technology (JKUAT) as an actuarial science student. He fell in love with music and began rapping and writing his own music. Lacking the financial ability to pay for videography, he got a job in a cybercafé and spent his time teaching himself how to edit videos. He saved up KES 5,000 and shot and edited his initial videos on his own.
He finally got his big break when J Blessing spotted his talent and hired him. He mostly works with gospel artists but has done some secular work. He has worked on; Barua by Bahati; Tam by Willy Paul and Size 8; Dawa ya Moto by Grandpa Government; Wafula by Alaine and Churchill; Nabeba Mawe by Eric Omondi; Take it Slow by Willy Paul and Sauti Sol; Kingston Girl by and No More by Wyre; Kamua Leo by Kidis, DNA, Wyre and Ameleena; Story Yangu by Bahati and Dennoh and Sijafika by Willy Paul, Gloria Muliro, Kambua and Size 8.
His songs communicate his story telling prowess and ability to interpret artiste’s songs quite well.
Although these videographers face immeasurable challenges from production to government support, they have managed to create some great visual memories and will no doubt continue growing to make even bigger impacts in the music industry.