I was first introduced to his work through Facebook and I didn’t really know much about him then, all I knew was that he was very good at what he was doing, so I sent him a friend request and little did I know, I was going to get a unique and sophisticated photography experience every time he constantly posted his recent photographs which left me keen to see more.
Lonwabo Zimela is a 23 year old talented, artistic, fashionable, influential and modern day Renaissance fashion photographer from Durban. He went to boarding school at the age of 10 years old and years later he studied IT to maintain himself and his photography career, he is currently working as an IT Technician.
He was introduced to photography by his sister Zukiswa Zimela, whom he mentions that, she played a huge role in his love for photography and steered him to the right direction. He first bought a point & shoot camera in 2014 to get started, his newly found hobby was building up more enthusiasm in him and since that day he hasn’t stopped taking pictures of everything that caught his eye. His expertise are mainly street fashion and portraiture in most of his elegant photographs which always depict a sophisticated modern generation style.
His outstanding work features different collaborations of people whom he finds their styles and aesthetics (aesthetic which means Tasteful/artistic, or a philosophical theory as to what is beautiful) are admirable to him and this is evident in most artistic people because they don’t work if they don’t feel inspired, that’s why every piece of work done, should be organic. Below its one of his recent collaboration with Neville Tricket which left me totally impressed.
His career received a lot of media coverage in 2016, his photographs have been featured in the personal style diary on an article about Sfiso Dlamini also known as Sfeesoul on the decks and an article about Amaroto, a Durban-based style collective, both of these articles were published by GQ online South Africa.
He also did small interviews with SACreativeNetwork.co.za and AFashionFriend.co.za which elevates his profile and archivements so far this year. He said “Contributing to GQ South Africa online has been the biggest highlight in my career so far, I’ve been reading GQ South Africa for over 4 years” on an article at SACreativeNetwork. He has worked with Victoria Graaf-Raw, Zethe a Jazz and Neo Soul recording artist, to see more you can visit https://issuu.com/sirzimela
His intricate/different style of combining Clean and Grunge (Grunge can be defined as anything unclean: stain, filth or dirt) where he captures quality masterpieces of classy formal fashionable individuals while converging that style with the raw local street apparel which is simply amazing.
His work shows us that he is really inspired by fashion and style, which is really fascinating to observe in these modern days where style and fashion have evolved to a form of culture and has become a very significant role in how we chose to be identified, I managed to get in contact with him so that he can give me more details about his work and even though he had a tight schedule he managed to answer a few question I was very curious to ask him.
Me: What kind of techniques or style do you use in your photographs and are you still ambitious to experiment with more styles or are you content with what you doing now?
Lonwabo: I’m refining my current style, I’ve experimented quite a bit before to get where I am. My style is hard to define, it’s a combination of grunge and clean.
Me: What kind of effect do you want your work to have in the modern day Renaissance society we live in?
Lonwabo: I want my work to have an influence and depict the current state or “wave” that we’re in.
Me: You know photographers are always stereotyped with an image of just being photographers but since I see you as a part of the blakk Renaissance, what are you planning to do to show people that photographers can achieve same standards just like any other artist?
Lonwabo: The grand plan for me is to travel the world and document different ways of living in my travels, which will be exhibited. I want to show the world that photography is also an Art form.
Me: Many photographers are always out at events, do you attend events and if so which ones are your favorite?
Lonwabo: I do, my favorite ones are the ones where people are dressed up and are enjoying themselves .Locally my favorite event is called “CoolOutVintage” it’s inspired by 90’s hip hop and RnB.
As good and professional as he is, Lonwabo is also a very humble and inspiring person, He studied and graduated but that didn’t stop/hinder his desire of becoming a photographer and not just ordinary photographer he said but an artistic one. BlakkRenaissance.wordpress.com will be previewing more of this Renaissance, artistic fashion photographer’s work he will be offering in future.
Click Below to connect with Lonwabo Zimela