Kenya through the lens

HR-Neil-Thomas-4msafiri showcases a selection of photographs that celebrate contemporary Kenya, from the new photography book After 5 – A Photographic Journey in Kenya. Story by Christina Engell Andersen

After 5 – A Photographic Journey in Kenya (Footprints Press, 2016) is a photography book that portrays Kenya in a contemporary light, in collaboration with 22 Kenyan and Kenya-based photographers, compiled by Nairobi-based digital communication consultant Christina Engell Andersen. Christina first launched After 5 as an online photography magazine in 2011. The platform started as a vision to create an online venue where the world would have an opportunity to see not only Kenyan photography at its best but also the beauty of the country: the scenic spaces one can find everywhere, the endangered wildlife whose value is incalculable, and most especially the people whose faces, fashions and cultural forms have featured consistently in every issue of After 5 online. The coffee table book is the culmination of a journey and fulfills a dream for the author.

The book is divided into seven categories that cover scenic spaces around the country, creative contemporary works, documentary, Instagram, portraits, travel and wildlife. The collection of photos features the work of a variety of photographers and photo lovers. Some of the contributors work professionally in the field of photography and film-making while others simply have a passion they wish to share.

Neil Thomas
Photographer Neil Thomas was born and raised in Kenya. It was in the early years of his life that he fell in love with the country: the sounds, the light and its people. Receiving a camera at the age of ten allowed him to photograph everything in his path and made him become more expressive visually. Neil is currently working freelance doing a variety of photographic work, which allows him to have a diverse portfolio of commercial work. He has travelled extensively throughout the world and is based in Nairobi, Kenya.

Samir Dave
Samir Dave is a manager based in Nairobi. He has a distinct passion for portraying Kenya, its people and its surroundings. Not calling himself a photographer, Samir enjoys photography as a hobby but has a defined eye for capturing a rawness in Kenya’s beauty.

Biko Wesa
Biko Wesa is a photographer, living in Kenya, who specialises in fashion and portrait photography. He enjoys taking photographs of everything around him and regards himself as an artist – being ever expressive with his camera as his tool. Biko first started photography as a hobby but it has now grown into a profession that he counts as a blessing and hopes to share his gift with the world.

Teeku Patel
Teeku Patel is a photographer based in Nairobi, who has spent a great many years on safari and is a certified professional safari guide. While exploring in the game parks of East Africa, Teeku learnt a lot about wildlife and the different customs and cultures of the local people. Teeku specialises in nature and landscape photography and has been featured in numerous wildlife and nature magazines. He has also been commissioned by wildlife conservation trusts.

Chiraag Shah
Chiraag Shah is a photographer and businessman, living in Kenya, who has a passion for wildlife photography. Chiraag’s love for wild animals developed as a result of growing up in Nairobi with frequent access to Nairobi National Park. His passion also stems from wanting to create awareness of the harsh realities faced by most majestic animals in their environments. Chiraag’s particular obsession is photographing big cats and capturing intimate moments with the animals. He wants the viewer to embrace the feeling of being in the wild so that they develop an emotional bond between themselves and nature.

All these images and more…
After 5 – A Photographic Journey in Kenya (Footprints Press, 2016) RRP US$50, www.after5.co.ke
Available at the following bookshops in Nairobi:
• Nippon Jomo Kenyatta International Airport
• Westland Sundries Village Market
• Text Book Centre Branches
• Prestige Bookshop Mama Ngina Street