Osborne Macharia, Nairobi based, is another-worldly photographer. He combines real world issues (gender abuse, ivory poaching and victims of war-torn regions in Africa) with fictional stories. According to Osborne his work (this far) is governed by 3 key principles; Identity, Culture and Fiction. Each project has a story that the people in the photographs can identify with. He believes that beauty can be found in diversity, and that it surrounds us, even though the very act of searching for beauty can make us blind to it: “beauty is found in the things we take for granted.” His career (switch) was highly influenced when he saw the work of Joey Lawrence.
“One thing is for sure, I want to show the world the rich and exceptionally diverse culture we have that many a times is mistaken for poverty, barbarism and violence (Interview African Digital Art).”
Osborne has a huge portfolio. A very brief selection of his work (left – right) is shown below:
People living with Albinism has been a fragile subject in Africa and most have unequally been discriminated. This project is a bold statement of who they are, their values, ambitions, dreams and most importantly to show they are not different from anyone else.
Kenya’s League of Extravagant Grannies
Who were once corporate and government leader in the 1970’s but are now retired. They now live the retired high life traveling to exotic and remote areas within Africa to explore, Party and enjoy in exclusivity.
Hands Off Our Elephants
Campaign sponsored by the wildlife conservation organisation Hands Off Our Elephants and Wildlife Direct to create awareness of Elephant poaching in Kenya.
Watchmen by Night, Hip Hop Heads by Day
This is the story of 4 gentlemen in the heart of Kariobangi (one of Nairobi’s informal settlements) who call themselves Kabangu. A group of real hip hop heads from the 80’s who meet up regularly to educate and mentor upcoming young talent venturing out into the hip hop industry. They teach them on values such as peace, equality, prosperity and social justice.
Osborne Macharia is a self-taught commercial and advertising photographer born in Kenya. He has a Bachelor degree in architecture, but has worked as photographer for years now.
“I have been on this photography journey for nearly four years now and I have been privileged to work with some of the top local and international brands such as Coke, Guinness, Samsung, Kenya Airways, etc. I have also worked with international agencies from London and the US and that has given me hope that African photographers are slowly making an impact. When there’s a break from my commercial assignments, I love working on my own personal projects. I get to define and refine my work more and more (African Photography Network).”