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Connecting Africa’s Skilled Professionals
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ReConnect Africa is a unique website and online magazine for the African professional in the Diaspora. Packed with essential information about careers, business and jobs, ReConnect Africa keeps you connected to the best of Africa.


Videographer and Photographer Matthew David talks about his journey from owning his first camera to building a business in photography and graphic design.

ReConnect Africa: When did you get your first camera?

Matthew David: To be honest, I don’t really remember when or why I got my first camera; I just remember taking loads and loads of pictures of family and classmates starting from around the age of 13 or 14 years old. Growing up, I was a complete creative; from drawing to pyrography to writing poetry filming videos to playing the piano and flute. However, my two main things were music and photos. I had a home darkroom set and I used to take black and white pictures and develop them in my bedroom.

I also built a home studio where, together with a friend from school, we wrote and recorded songs. At the same time, I was a keyboard player for ten years in a Christian band founded by my then Sunday school teacher (as a footnote, that was how I met my wife, but that is a story for another time). Funnily enough, despite all of that, I never knew of any genuine full-time creative, so it never occurred to me to try to be one… and so I got myself a job.

ReConnect Africa: What encouraged you to see taking pictures as more than a hobby?

Matthew David: The short answer is my ‘My Wife”. It was through her that SRD Photography started. Shortly after she had completed her Fine Art degree, (she minored in photography) she was asked by a family friend to photograph their wedding, and it just continued from there. At that point, I was a telecoms technician by trade, so my role was initially as technical support, encourager and enabler. The funny thing was that as I was enabling my wife, she was enabling me to do things I had never considered as an actual profession.

“It takes a lot of hard work - and sometimes not a lot of sleep, but when you love what you do, you love what you do.”
ReConnect Africa: What kind of training did you undertake to improve your technical skills?

Matthew David: I was hugely self-taught, whereas my wife studied both media and design before continuing on to her degree as a Fine Art painter whilst minoring in Photography. But once we decided that photography was what we enjoyed doing together, we took evening classes and short courses together to sharpen our skills.

ReConnect Africa: How did people around you respond to your desire to make a business out of what some people might consider a hobby?

Matthew David: Because we ran parallel lives and were always busy, people were used to us always having a camera. Comments were more often about how we found the time not only to do all the things that we do, but to still do them with excellence.

ReConnect Africa: How did you land your first client as a photographer?

Matthew David: From the beginning, we have been fortunate to be able to grow through word of mouth and personal recommendations.

ReConnect Africa: What have been the key challenges for you in growing a business around your skills?

Matthew David: Parallel lives. Having a 9 to 5 job which paid the mortgage, also owning a shop where my wife makes and sells natural beauty products, both of us taking a very active part in our church worship team…not to mention just finding time to just be a couple! It takes a lot of hard work - and sometimes not a lot of sleep, but when you love what you do, you love what you do.

ReConnect Africa: You describe yourselves as a couple that loves couples. What do you think makes your business partnership with your wife so successful?

Matthew David: When couples see us work together in a fun, friendly, personal and yet very professional way, it’s an encouragement to them. We don’t just do this for the finance, we really love weddings and believe that it’s our job to capture their moments in history in a beautiful and creative way.

ReConnect Africa: What are your plans for SRD Photography and Design and for growing your business?

Matthew David: At the moment our main focus is growing our brand name, skills and client base, both here at home and abroad.

ReConnect Africa: What advice can you offer to others who would like to take the path you have chosen?

Matthew David: Love what you do; always strive to be better at what you do. Hard work always rewards you in the end.

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