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Lungisani’s Photos Capture the Imagination of the Nation



Lungisani’s Photos Capture the Imagination of the Nation

Lungisani’s Photos Capture the Imagination of the Nation. His efforts to capture the beauty and history of his charming home village, Nongidi Kwamachi in Harding Town on the edge of KwaZulu-Natal, are capturing the nation’s imagination beyond his wildest dreams. Mjaji (26), a second-year Commercial Photography student at TUT’s Faculty of Arts and Design, is captivating the nation’s imagination beyond his wildest dreams. Earlier this week, a photograph of his smiling niece holding a loaf of Albany bread, part of a project called My Footprint, went viral on TikTok and attracted the company’s attention.

Lungisani’s Photos Capture the Imagination of the Nation

A personal initiative for documenting and capturing my village’s beauty and history, My Footprint began in 2019. Besides showcasing my mother’s daily life, the film also highlights the vibrant personalities of our village and her tireless efforts for our village’s people. I also want to focus on the children, who will be the future creatives in the village. The young photographer hopes to inspire the next generation of creators to follow their dreams fearlessly by capturing their innocence, joy and potential through his lens.

Lungisani’s Photos Capture the Imagination of the Nation

Lungisani Mjaji (26) is a student in the Commercial Photography programme who is capturing the imagination of the country with his photos documenting the beauty and history of his home village

A visual representation of his village’s daily life inspired the image of his niece, Lethukukhanya (3). Lethukukhanya symbolizes the innocence, hope, and boundless potential that resonate within the children of our village. In conveying the essence of our community, I wanted to emphasize the importance of the young generation in the present and future. I sought to celebrate their role in shaping our community’s narrative through her,” he said.

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A meticulous plan was in place for the photoshoot, with every detail pre-planned. To obtain props for the photoshoot, Lungisani approached his mother, who has always been a source of encouragement and support throughout his journey.

I used the funds she provided to purchase an Albany loaf that became a key component of the composition. I am constantly seeking out items in town that my mother believes will enhance my photography as part of her unwavering support, which extends beyond financial aid. She showed tremendous encouragement and support by saying, “We Luh ngipkuphathele izinto ongazishutha.”. My plan was executed with unwavering determination, capturing the essence of my vision and telling the story I had imagined.”.

Lungisani’s Photos Capture the Imagination of the Nation

The photo Lungisani took of his niece went viral on social media and has also caught the attention of a well-known bread brand, Albany.

Lungisani says he is overwhelmed with gratitude and joy after receiving recognition and support for his work. The positive response and impact my photographs have had on South Africa have exceeded my wildest expectations. This recognition validates my skills as an artist and photographer, highlighting the beauty and culture of our village. My work resonates with people and elicits such heartfelt appreciation, and it is humbling to see this. “I am immensely grateful for the support I receive from my nation and community.”

Life-changing experiences like this are unquestionably rare. Seeing the results of our collective efforts has brought me and my mother immeasurable happiness and pride. A sense of indescribable satisfaction fills my heart as I watch my mother cry with joy. In addition, this recognition has reaffirmed my choice to become a photographer and boosted my confidence. Photographic careers have been transformed from being unsustainable and unviable. My journey has inspired me to follow my creative dreams fearlessly and I hope that it will inspire others, especially the younger generation.”

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His future plans include continuing his studies at TUT’s Department of Visual Communication while dedicating each day to photography. I am dedicated to my craft with unwavering passion and dedication, and I see every day as an opportunity to be creative. Although I haven’t specified my specialization, I want to inspire others through my work and make a difference. I also intend to work with prominent brands and showcase their products against the backdrop of our village through commercial photography. The goal is to highlight the beauty and untapped potential of rural communities while also emphasizing the importance of media representation.”

“My Footprint and my story serve as beacons of inspiration for others, motivating them to chase their dreams relentlessly. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to share my story and aspirations with others. As I continue to make a positive impact through my photography, I am eager for what the future holds.”

As runner-up in last year’s Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) Africa 2022: Photo Competition, he has a solid background in landscape photography. The photo he submitted, titled Light, won him the prize. The scene was also captured in Nongidi, which provides a panoramic view of the Eastern Cape. With the photo, Lungisani earned $200 US.

For more information on the Tshwane University of Technology, please contact Phaphama Tshisikhawe, Corporate Affairs and Marketing.
Tel: +27 12 382 4711  Email: [email protected]

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