This week on #Thespotlight, we introduce you to a talented photographer Malick Kebe whose story speaks of resilience, passion, dedication, persistence, and grace. It shows that there’s no limit to what one can achieve once one set their mind to do something with an excellent spirit. Malick Kebe, also known as "@fromabidjan.official" on Instagram, is a young and talented African photographer who is breaking boundaries with just an iPhone and a passion for photography.
He doesn't believe in waiting for the perfect conditions to start pursuing his dreams. Dubbed one of the "iPhone Artists", Malick is inspired by Ghanaian artist, Prince Gyasi and Nigerian Akama Paul to capture the beauty of Africa through his lens. He aspires to show the world the true colors of Africa and its people. He is a lively soul brimming with a passion that makes him determined to leave his mark on the world of photography!
With this passion, his works have been featured by Apple, PHmuseum, and Thesmartview. He also participated and won 1st prize in the ‘’fashion’’ category of the PhMuseum grant. Malick’s accomplishments don’t stop there, he exhibited for the first time last July 2019 in Paris at the Terrasse(76 Republic Avenue), and also in the ‘’ArtSwim’’ at the United States in Atlanta in July 2019 (W Downtown Atlanta). He also exhibited in September 2019 at the Abidjan French Institute of Côte d'Ivoire.
In 2020 during the pandemic, he launched #facetimeshooting. The plan was to do remote photo shoots using the Facetime app with models located in Paris, Bordeaux, Los Angeles, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Malick's achievements are a testament to his commitment to putting Abidjan on the global map and breaking down geographical barriers through his art read our interview below:
Please introduce yourself and tell us when you started photography art and was discovered.
My name is Malick Kebe, an artist-photographer with iPhone, I started photography in 2019 and I was discovered by Apple via their official Instagram page with a photo of my art.
How did you feel beingg discovered by Apple then? And how did your mindset change after that?
I was very surprised and very proud of myself that thanks to the hashtag #shotoniphone my photo could be found on their page. After that I told myself nothing is impossible, we can go far thanks to photography. it allowed me to travel to do exhibitions
How did you move from using an iPhone to a camera now? Was the transition easy for you?
I never moved. I stayed on the iPhone for my photos, I couldn't buy a pro camera yet, I think iPhone photography is in my DNA 😅
That's awesome! Do you still use iPhone for all your photographs to date? If yes what iPhone precisely and what model?
Yes yes !!! Now I have iPhone 11 Pro. Although, I started with the iPhone 6
Beautiful! What are the dynamics of working with an iPhone and creating splendid photos for the big brands you have worked with?
With the quality of the camera, the fluidity, and the colors, you are more in motion, faster, and more efficient, after the photo I do my edits on my computer with the Lightroom application to perfect the brilliance of the colors. Playing with warm colors to talk about Africa’s interests and the brands I work with.
That's quite interesting so … How do you think iPhone photography has impacted the photography industry and the way we approach photography as a whole?
iPhone photography has had a great impact on the competition facing the photography industry, we have a very demanding public opposite who always wants more and to be mobile… social networks have also played a very important and active role. Today the world of mobile photography is growing because the giants are improving the quality of their devices every day.
Do you have any advice for aspiring iPhone photographers looking to improve their skills and pursue photography professionally?
The advice I can give them is to always innovate and be more creative before rushing into the tool. develop your creative eye, be curious, and above all surpass yourself!
Nice! So are there no difficulties or challenges with working with an iPhone? If there are how did you overcome them?
If there are difficulties as in any activity, limits I would say at the level of the camera, certain parameters are limited on the phone. As a challenge during the Covid, we were all confined I had to develop the FaceTime shooting from my city Abidjan in Ivory Coast I was doing remote photos with models in France, the USA, and Brazil... we had to adapt to the situation. I had to create and stay creative.
That's wonderful and inspiring, you adapting. Do you want to talk about your upcoming projects and what impact you hope they have on the audience
I want to make a lot of videos always with the iPhone and warm colors, why not documentaries, short films, clips everything is possible! In July I will exhibit my photographs in Morocco in the city of Tangier and at the end of the year I will be in Marseille.
Finally, how do you stay inspired to keep creating and how do you I hope creatives like you stay inspired and they always have the passion to create.
I stay inspired by always looking for ways to do better than I have, going to improve, and being at sea also inspires me. enthusiasts should always be curious and get out of their comfort zone.