My name is Ammi Kifle, I’m a graduating college student. Born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. And I’m a photographer.
My passion for photography was sparked by my late uncle who was a portrait photographer. While he was alive I used to go to his studio and observe him. In 2016, I decided to pursue photography professionally and began teaching myself how to take memorable photographs.
I do photography because it makes me appreciate life and my surroundings more. It also lets me know and understand people on a deeper level. The intimacy and connection with my subjects inspires me and I love it for that.
My photography work focuses on portraits, I believe that portraits are powerful tools that can express my emotions as well as the subject’s, integrated with the colours and contrasts to create a masterpiece that tells a beautiful story.
As a portrait photographer most of my inspirations come from people and their way of expressing their emotions and how they interpret it.
My creative process is mostly planned, I think of what I wanna create in my mind and maybe write it on my notebook. Then just shoot.
When I start shooting, I prefer to be alone with my subject because it lets me and my subject be ourselves without any distraction so I prefer to shoot alone.
For me personally living in Ethiopia as a photographer has not been easy because not everyone understands your art and supports you in a way you want to be supported, specially our parents and relatives and I don’t blame them. After all, they weren’t exposed to art in the same way we are right now. Our generation has a great chance to change the photography industry in Ethiopia. Photography should be given a great place in the society because we have a lot to show to the world. I love how the new upcoming artists are thriving to excel in their crafts and representing our beautiful country. That gives me a great hope.
During this difficult time, for me personally it’s been a great opportunity to work on myself emotionally and spiritually. It enabled me to just breathe deeply and think about myself and what I want as an artist. For everyone out there in self-quarantine, you’re saving the world and you should be proud of yourself.
What I recommend is, rest, exercise, eat healthy, and connect with your God. You might never get this chance again in your life to just stop running and rest, rest without having to be productive, without having to be creative and without having to be successful. Just rest. And of course read books or write one.
The Artists’ Role
Yes, there is a place for art during this time. Creative people can help the community in raising awareness through their art, whether it can be photography, paintings, digital arts and writings etc… And make this difficult time a little bit easier by sharing their amazing art.