By MAGNUS EZE
As a businessman, he had his fingers in a few pies gainful enough to keep him going, until his unquenchable love for the game of rugby brought him in contact with the camera.
Since then, Tolu Jinadu’s life has not been the same again. His present passion – photography 1-1 has not only brought him instant fame, but placed him face to face with Nigeria’s movers and shakers.
Though Jinadu would still want to be addressed as a businessman, he now has a new business name, letter headings and business card bearing, “The Snipographer”. Snipographer is his coinage from the words ‘sniper’ and ‘photographer’. Asked the meaning, he said: “My lenses work like the snipe, they catch subjects unannounced. So, because I act like a sniper, I see myself as a snipographer.”
From hobby to vocation
He recalls how he later got obsessed with what was initially a hobby for him. His words: “It was in 2011. I am a rugby fan, so I was heading for New Zealand to watch Rugby World Cup and on getting to London, I told myself that I must get a camera because when I get there, I will find everybody carrying camera. I ended up buying a very sophisticated camera and I wondered how I would operate it. So, I decided to go for a three-day training course on how to use camera. Eventually, I went to New Zealand, took pictures and came back to Nigeria.
“Back home, I approached my pastor and told him that I would want to be a worker in the church. He asked whether I had identified the area I can serve, and I told him I have a camera. Before I could finish, he shouted, “Lovely, we need a photographer’ That was how I started taking pictures. And each time I travelled out to see my three children schooling abroad, I would buy a better camera, go to school and I will improve on my taking photos. Now, I have this camera made by Canon, with the lenses. It is worth about N8million.
“These days, doing contracts is fading away and many people have asked me to follow my passion. My pastor has urged me to open a studio, even Governor (Rauf) Aregbesola of Osun State, whenever he is in Abuja and has an event, he would ask me to do the photo coverage; that he likes how I take photographs. He has asked me to open a gallery and turn this thing to something else.”
Jinadu, who recently staged a five-day photo exhibition at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja confessed that it was his first time of publicly showcasing his works. The event themed, “The Reason…One Nation” was a photography exhibition of the journey of All Progressives Congress (APC) to victory in pictures.
The creative expo which was opened by the President’s wife, Mrs. Aisha Buhari, attracted heavyweights in national politics and business, such as former Vice President Atiku Abubakar; Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola; Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi; Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mallam Shehu Garba; business mogul and son of the late M.K.O Abiola, Kola among others.