Nana Yaw Oduro: Everything Is Beautiful

Artist Nana Yaw Oduro

Words Christian Ruess

His use of color and contrast makes Nana’s images look almost iconic. He currently focuses on boyhood years, masculinity, social acceptance and self-confidence. Well, we had a little chat with him. Welcome to the world of photographer Nana Yaw Oduro. And here is the link to his editorial.

How are you? And how do you spend your days these days? 

I’m doing very well. These days I spend my time on research and getting busy with being reflective upon planned out projects. Since not much can be done outside in these times.

What did you do before you sit down for the interview?

I’ve been reading through my old journals and diary of late to be aware of my younger self and my thoughts back then, to measure growth and then to draw some inspiration. I was just doing that.

Tell us something about you. Why and since when have you been photographing? Do you remember your first pictures?

I have been photographing since my high school days since 2013, through to University until now. 7 years so far. I used to write poetry only but I needed to show a more vivid narrative. And that’s when I started photography to show the reader what I’m saying in my poems and also to compliment it. My first images, I don’t quite remember since they were taken on an iPhone and I don’t have the phone anymore.

Where do you get your inspiration? And where do you currently find it?

My inspiration, I get that from a lot of things, mostly poetry, what I see and hear. Also I tend to draw a lot of emotions from my past years. Something I’m always reflective upon when creating.

How do you define beauty? What does beauty mean to you?

Personally, I don’t think anything should perfectly define beauty. As I always say ”everything is beautiful. it all depends on what you want to see”

What is the perfect picture for you? And what ingredients does it need?

A perfect picture could be anything. But for me should be real. One that seems true to the creator and means something to the people. It should have some story and message to it and somehow seem mysterious.

Let’s take a look into the future: Do you have a picture of yourself in 10 years? Which way do you develop as a photographer? Or have you already reached the final destination of your photographic journey?

No, of course I have not reached anywhere close to where I want to be. I believe it’s a learning process and I’m just so willing to go through it to evolve and hopefully find my final self in the end.

What are upcoming projects that you are currently working on? 

Currently I’m working on projects ”GOODMAN”, ”NOBODYS FAVORITE COLOR IS RED”, ”SEANCE” and others. Some continuing projects and some new.

Thank you very much for your thoughts.