Why a little bit of Kanye in your voice and action can do you a little good.
It’s been weeks of contemplating the topic of exposure and having this post gather digital dust on my desktop. Because the topic is so complex, it was hard to put it in black and white. I’ve come to the realisation that due to there being so many perspectives and aspects to this topic, there’s no way to reach a conclusion without a little grey and possibly some other colours too.
If you’re an aspiring writer, blogger, photographer, filmmaker – an artist, you know about the creative hustle. Thinking back to the beginning of my journey as a writer and now a photographer I found that there are always challenges, and when it’s in the creative industry you’ll find that all crafts share similar trials and tribulations that’s swelling up just enough to awaken a creative revolution soon. Just last week, the #CreditThePhotographer trended on Twitter after Johannesburg photographer, creative, artist, Austin Malema decided to voice his distaste with celebrities who do not credit photographers. Pearl. Of course.
It was interesting to watch the dialogue happen before my eyes, and every now and then when I could not contain my thoughts, blurted a few tweets to alleviate my fumes. Whether you agree or do not agree with #CreditThePhotographer is not what really matters, it’s the fact that artists such as photographers who are often mistreated, not credited/praised for their craft finally spoke about an issue – there was dialogue. I found new faith in the craft and the industry in which it operates after recognising and siding with fellow artist who faced the same challenges, whether aspiring or established, whether pro or novice, there was a community, a conversation, a “me too” moment happening, there was finally a discussion around the creative hustle.
Of course, there have been many initiatives that open up a platform for creatives to express and exchange their experiences. But for some reason when attending some of these sessions I found that there is still some sort of hierarchy that misted the atmosphere and prevented artist like me from really voicing our thoughts, because after all what do I know? Maybe the problem has been that we have been talking too much amongst ourselves and not expressing those energies out into the world.
While I do not always agree with what he says, Kanye West sure knows how to “put it out there”. He is the pioneer, I believe, for creatives who speak their mind, ask for what they want, and simply doesn’t give a fuck.
The Austin Malema saga has led me to believe that everyone has a little Kanye in their heads. That proud and confident little voice needs to come out every now and then. I’ll give you an example of those instances, such as when you gotta name your rate, yes, when you have to say no to “exposure proposals”, and other bizarre things.
Thanks to the smart use of the #CreditThePhotographer, and love to see other creatives succeed, Austin has opened a dialogue, encouraged other photographers to be open and confident, he told the world, he unleashed his Kanye. For that reason, he has been inundated with angry twelebs, but most importantly inspired photographers across the digital world to speak up.
That's all for now folks, until next week!
Check out this awesome photographer, Austin Malema on Twitter ya'll down below
Photographer, Video Editor, Austin Malema