Hello lovelies, welcome to another episode of the Feature Friday, been a while since we had this and I was very happy when I got the opportunity to interview the face behind Innovative Fotography, Ijila Itunu Deborah.
Itunu is a beautiful lady with a tiny voice. The first time I met her, ( after knowing each other on social media for a while), I was pleasantly amazed; the young amazing photographer with an MSc in Physics aiming for a PhD already (oops, wait to read about it yourself).
I’m still gonna be a Dr. of Physics someday, “cos I intend to leave an impact in science too” – Ijila Itunu
So, here it is, an exclusive interview with the Lead Photographer, Innovative Fotography, Ijila Itunu Deborah.
Kindly note – TEP means The Esthitude Place.
TEP: Hi dear, it’s great to have you here. Can we meet you, please?
Itunu: Hello. My name is Ijila Itunu Deborah. I am a photographer.
TEP: Okay, tell us more. Can you brief us on who you are, your education etc?
Itunu: I recently completed my masters in Physics at the University of Ibadan and I’ll soon be proceeding with my PhD.
I am passionate about empowering young adults outside the walls of the classroom. I am a goal getter, an incurable optimist and a God-girl.
TEP: Wawuu, that’s huge. BSc in Physics, MSc in Physics, and then a PhD soon, topped off with photography!!! Awesome, just how here you able to achieve this and how do you aim to combine both?
Itunu: I’m combining that already.
My photography journey started as a hobby when I was an undergraduate, although I was a complete amateur then, but here am I as a Master’s degree holder still practising photography.
TEP: Awesome. Did you always want to be a photographer?
Itunu: Well, I had dreams as a child…big dreams. I wanted to be renowned, I wanted to change my world but along the line, while growing up, I fell in love with pictures, I started taking beautiful images and one day I realized I was already achieving my dreams.
TEP: Tell us about Innovative Fotography.
Itunu: Innovative Fotography started more like a hobby, a pleasant pastime until it became a full-blown business. I was still an undergraduate then and was basically freestyling and messing around with different photography software. One year ago, I enrolled at a photography academy and here we are.
TEP: Great. So what niche can Innovative Fotography be classified into?
Itunu: Weddings and I do a personal project on macro photography.
TEP: So how has photography been? Is this your full-time job? Do you plan to delve into other things?
Itunu: The beauty of wedding photography is that it happens on the weekend and sometimes during weekdays, so I can do other things, my academics for example with my free time.
TEP: True that! So if not photography, what would you do?
Itunu: I’m still gonna be a Dr. of Physics someday, “cos I intend to leave an impact in science too”.
TEP: Wow, great dreams you have. How does photography as a career look, especially in Nigeria? Do you think we should start having photography as a course to be studied in the university?
Itunu: Photography is a lucrative business. Once you carve a niche for yourself, and you excel at what do, you’d be fine.
I support the school of thought which says photography should be taught in schools especially somewhere like Nigeria where the white-collar jobs are not forthcoming. Students need to be empowered with skills they can use outside the classroom.
TEP: What major challenges have you faced so far in your journey into photography? How have you been able to overcome them?
Itunu: Every business has its unique challenges. When I initially started, I didn’t go for a formal training until about 6 months later. Before that time, I made lots of beginners mistakes I feel I shouldn’t have made and I damaged a camera lens in the process.
It’s annoying, cos camera lens is expensive and I destroyed the one I had because of a minor indiscretion.
At that point, I knew I needed to go for a formal training to avoid making silly mistakes which I did, and somehow, I stopped having those minor challenges.
TEP: What are your best memories growing up?
Itunu: As a first child, I was pampered by my dad, he’d feed me before going to school (I was in secondary school then, winks) and give me piggyback rides from the church. I had a beautiful childhood, growing up was plenty of fun.
TEP: What would you say your hobbies are?
Itunu: Photography still remains my most favourite pastime. When I’m not somewhere shooting a wedding, I’m at home taking macro photographs of insects and flowers. I love dancing (even though I’m a terrible dancer, lol). I’m also a novel freak and I love good music.
I’m passionate about what I do, that’s my driving force. I love it when a bride sees a picture of herself and screams ‘wow, I’m beautiful’ – Ijila Itunu
TEP: Smiles, looks like we have similar hobbies, the good music, novels and maybe a little dancing. Can you share with us what drives you?
Itunu: I’m passionate about what I do, that’s my driving force. I love it when a bride sees a picture of herself and screams ‘wow, I’m beautiful ‘. I love taking amazing photographs.
TEP: Where do you see innovative photography in the nearest future?
Itunu: Seven years from now, Innovative Fotography will be the most sought after photography brand for decent/Christian Brides.
Then personally, I would have done an exhibition or two of my personal projects in photography.
TEP: What do you have to say to would be photographers or current photographers?
Itunu: To would be photographers, I’d say, follow your heart. Shoot, delete, and shoot again.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, you’ll get better that way. There are various niches of photography, find a niche and stick to it. Be consistent. You’d be fine
TEP: Uhmm, deep words. Thank you for your words of wisdom, it’s been great connecting with you. What message do you want to leave for our audience?
Itunu: I’ll say thank you for reading my interview. I hope you were inspired.
Also, always remember that the only person that can stop you from achieving your dreams is you. Don’t be afraid, your dreams are valid. You are meant to shine as light. It’s time to let your light shine brightly.
Finally, keep reading The Esthitude Place blog. There are lots of beautiful and inspiring stories there.
Thumbs up Esther and thanks for this interview.
TEP: You are welcome, dear, it’s been a pleasure interviewing you. Can tell us how we can reach you?
Itunu: My official pages are:-
Instagram – @Innovative_fotography
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, you’ll get better that way. There are various niches of photography, find a niche and stick to it. Be consistent. – Itunu