One thing I know for sure is that Adebukola Ibirogba tells amazing stories with her unique and advanced selfies. If Adebukola’s creative work were edibles, they’d taste like chocolate. To be specific, dark, sweet chocolate.
She believes creativity is more about letting your mind flow freely. “It’s more refreshing that way, because you would be surprised at how many out-of-the-box ideas you can come up with.”
Despite having a Law degree, Adebukola pitched her tent in the realm of creatives because of an almost uncontrollable urge to work with her hands. I should actually add that she has consistently said this over the years. Sitting behind a desk doesn’t really satisfy her urge.
When asked how she got into what she does creatively, she had this to say:
“I was looking to let out creative steam, actually. Art (through various media) has always come easily to me. When I found out I could share my gift with the world and make some money while at it, I couldn’t resist.”
Adebukola thinks she should be able to teach what she does as long as there is interest on the part of the individual seeking to be taught.
Do not be surprised to find out that life and beautiful symmetry in objects inspire her.
And to get into her creative zone, she spends some time listening to old songs from the 90s – early 2000s or scroll through Pinterest before creating anything. Of a truth, music triggers passion and emotion.
Adebukola’s favourite accomplishment is an old one though. In 2016, she did a pencil portrait of Ifeoma Idigbe; the Chairman of the Board of Directors of WIMBIZ at that time.
“She sent me an email thanking me and encouraging me to continue on the path I have chosen. It has been a major highlight of my creative journey.”
On creating hidden meaning and messages in her work, she tries to do that with her smartphone portraits.
“When I conceive an image in my mind, before I go ahead to shoot, I plan the elements; props, poses and what message I could pass across with the pictures that I produce.
For example; my most recent self-portrait which has a bright pink balloon in it, contains a hidden message about hope for women struggling with breast cancer.”
On Sharing Her Work
Adebukola prefers sharing her work with others and this wasn’t always so.
“For a long time, I was so afraid to share what I could do with the world. I didn’t want criticisms or judgements. However, I had to learn to face my fears and the criticisms have actually made me grow.”
In as much as she pays attention to strong reactions to her work, she ensures that it doesn’t seep into whatever she plans to create. That’s some discipline.
“I do a lot of re-touching after I take the advanced selfies. The fact that I do all re-touching/photo manipulation on my phone gives an organic feel to my pictures.”
I check out photographers or artists that I admire and aspire to work with. I follow up on their recent projects and try to see how it can influence my creative process and make my work better.
Talking about discouragement, Adebukola acknowledged how she had to deal with that a lot of time. She re-emphasized how the longest streak creeped in when she returned from Law School. “I felt like all my creative juices had dried up. Nothing was flowing and I was stuck in that phase for over 2 years. During that period, I couldn’t draw or write as I used to before then. It was what prompted my discovery of smartphone photography.”
Her favourite colour is Red. And I think it does describe her energy.
“Red is a fierce colour and I like to think I can be as fierce as a lioness when I need to be.”
TBI would want to be remembered as art that beautified life.