Why The Name

Image 31 Photography?

5 weeks over September and October 2008, what a time.

Little did I know how much these few weeks would change my future.

Growing up watching David Attenborough documentaries and dreaming of Africa, then a close friend suggested some volunteering. Within a couple of weeks I had signed up with Volunteer Africa (no longer exsists unfortunatley).

A little over a year later, I was in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania learning to speak Swahili. It was tough, but I had the basics. After a few days of language training, myself and other volunteers from different parts of the world (who also arrived at the same time as me), were on our way to the remote region of Singida. We had left around 5am, but I stayed awake the whole time just looking out the window at the amazing landscape and it’s gradual change from lush coastal green colours, to dry, sandy, brown colours.

I’ll keep the camp life & village life short. When we arrived in Singida, we met up with the other volunteers who were already there. They had been working for a few weeks already, a great bunch of people. It was now time to take the long 2+hr drive out to the remote village of Mughumbu. When I say remote, I mean this place was in the middle of nowhere and it's not even on the map (well it wasn't 10 years ago).

Mud-huts. Next to no water. No electricty. Sand. Dust. Unbareable heat.
I unpacked, got settled and started taking photos with a small Fujifilm bridge camera I had brought with me. That afternoon and evening we had been invited to a local wedding and what an experience that turned out to be.

Over the next 3weeks at camp was one the best experiences of my life. I’ve been back to Africa since. We (the volunteers) helped build a local staff house for a primary school. Each weekday morning we were woken by the sounds of the school children singing their morning songs. The noises at night were interesting and a little creepy. The sunsets were second-to-none. The people were always happy. The sun was relentless and the bugs were HUGE. I could go on, but I said I’ll keep that bit short.

(the photo above is the photo that started my passion for photography)

After the volunteering work, most of us went our seperate ways. Myself and a couple of others stuck together for the next 6 days. We went on safaris in Ngorongoro Crater and Lake Manyara, then flew to Zanzibar (the East coast is the perfect honeymoon location) and spent a few days there relaxing on the perfect beaches before the trip back to Dar es Salaam to catch our flights home.

When I arrived home, the photo above brought back all sorts of memories and feelings and that it what started the ball rolling. I bought myself a better camera, then taught myself how to use it by watching YouTube tutorials.

I set myself a goal of 3 years, to have a quite well known name in photography, locally. 28 years old at the time, and the goal was set for when I turned 31.

Image 31   =   I'm Age 31

That's where the name comes from and also how everything started for me. Now I have my own business, so things have come a long way, and I'm very grateful for this profession