The very first time i saw the name ‘STJ PHOTOGRAPHY’ was on Instagram. Almost every picture of any Covenant university student i saw was with the watermark ‘STJPHOTOGRAPHY’, and so i searched for him and i found more of his woks. I was lost in awe that i couldn’t stop admiring them.
Fortunately for me, my best-friend knows him quite well so he decided to hook me up with him for an interview.. Anyways, we got talking. At first, i had judged him to be proud but then i was amazed at how down to earth he was all through the interview. What i admired most in Sipo was his exceptional love for God, i found it amazing.
Sipo talks about his photography career, School,his love life and life in general.
Kezzygrace: Tell us a bit of yourself ?
STJ: My name is Sipo, a creative Photographer born on the 2nd of june 199* from Ekiti state who loves to take pictures of God given beautiful people .
KG: So how exactly did the name ‘STJ’ come about?
STJ: STJ is my full name;Sipoloore Tope-Ojo Joshua, so i just added photography to it *smiles
KG: How cute. How exactly has the struggle been to be and remain one of CU’s best photographers?
STJ: Well I’m not competing with anyone in CU , I just do my thing . no need for competition. Everyone is good in their own way , so being one of CU’s best photographers is not a struggle , there are so many photographers in CU now that sometimes you just look and wonder what’s going on with their works . But every one’s doing his or her thing so no struggle really.
Works by Sipo
KG: How exactly did you get into photography was it something you had always wanted to do ?How did your career in photography start?
STJ: Well i won’t say photography has always been my passion (smiles) it hasn’t . It was something i just felt i could use to show Gods beauty in people , especially girls . So in 100level second semester, i got into photography. I learnt all that was there to learn about the basics and i’m still learning .
Works by Sipo
KG: Any challenge as a student photographer?
STJ: It’s hectic really, having to think of books and both creative ideas*Arrgh. Seeing that i’m studying a course that’s not even really to photography.Honestly, its just God helping me. Asides that, i don’t think i have any major challenge except the normal con’s of being a photographer , like not getting clients sometimes , or even when you have clients but they be haggling price with you , location to shoot , the need for one or two more equipment things like that.
KG: So do you have a mentor ?
STJ: I don’t have a mentor , asides God . Though i look up to some few modern and 1950’s photographers,but i wont neccesarily call any of them my mentor.
Works by Sipo
KG: What’s the wort remark you’ve gotten from someone about your work?
STJ: When i first started, someone told me to give up and that i didn’t have any hope in the game. Sometime last year too, i posted a picture and a photographer messaged me and told me that i only have the right gear but i don’t know how to use it for anything good. But i just had to let go and stay focused.
KG: Was there ever a time you wanted to give it all up and just end it ?
STJ: Yes! I had a creative block at some point and my school work wasn’t going too well and almost everything was happening too fast .But then i had to calm down , i took some time off, chilled and got myself back. Sometimes all we need is a break.
KG: Okay on a lighter mood,do you believe in love at first sight?
STJ: Love at first sight , yes i believe in love at first sight.I believe in circumstances. Love at first sight could be that type of circumstance where you’ve been looking for the right person then you set eyes at someone for the first time then it sparks something within you.
KG: So have you crushed on any of your models?
STJ: ???????? you want to cast me sha. Anyways, yes i’ve crushed on one of my models.
STJ: its confidential ?
KG: *smiles…Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
STJ: In five years, i should be living abroad as an accomplished freelance and travel photographer
KG: What’s the most challenging issue you’ve had these few years of being a photographer?
STJ: Time frame, editing pictures and all that.
KG: What is it you love most about photography?
Works by Sipo
STJ: The fact that its a language , a medium of expressing one’s self in a creative imagery way . Like they say a picture speaks a thousand words.
KG: Any Hobby ?
STJ: Asides photography ,i enjoy drumming , eating , playing the trumpet , and oh yes i love talking.
KG: Why exactly do you think you are different from other photographers?Or why exactly do you think you stand out from others?
STJ: Well , most photographers have a particular “style” or theme. But I don’t . I edit pictures and take pictures the way I feel , my mood at that moment . I don’t have a particular work flow , i go with the way the picture speaks . So yeah, i guess that’s different. Plus , with God , you will stand alone and be outstanding.
KG: Any you would love or rather die to work with?
STJ: Yes! LexonArt , Dani Diamond , Karl Taylor and as for Nigerians – TYbello , MrObinnaObioma and then some Nigerian models like;Jojolara , AdukeBey , Mide among others.
KG: Three Nigerian photographers that inspire you?
Works by Sipo
I: Mr Obinna Obioma, Emmanuel Oyeleke, Tope Horpload.
KG: What or who motivates you?
STJ: GOD!!!!!!!!! He’s the only reason i’ve come this far and trust me if you let him lead you, there would be no way you’d slack.
I think it’s best i end the interview right here with such beautiful advice. When you let God take charge of your business, he’ll make everything work out for your good though people would try to pull you down and all but God would fight for you. I mean, even the bible says ‘if God be for us, who can be against us?’.
I hope you enjoyed the interview as much as i did ? please feel free to check out more of Sipo’s works on Instagram @STJphotography_ and let me know what you think about him or his works.
And yes! i’d totally recommend him for your events( fashion shoots, weddings, event, etc) and i’m sure you wont regret it.
Thanks for reading!