Artists such as painters, photographers and musicians often speak of the creative urge or passion – the sudden and overwhelming compulsion to create in their chosen medium. For Lungelo Ngubane, it’s photography.
In a previous interview with IOL Business, Ngubane said he redid matric at the age of 25 to improve his physical sciences results.
Yet, the creative urge had not left the Newcastle-born professional photographer, and he opted for a creative career instead of going into STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths).
Enrolled at Vega School for a high certificate in videography and photography this year, Ngubane said he had always wanted to pursue the course to gain more knowledge and master his craft.
‘’It is my dream as I am unlocking my more creative side. I am very excited but, in the same breath, I am stressed about where I am going to get the funding for my studies,’’ he said.
Ngubane said he hoped to get a sponsorship or financial aid.
He had been contacting anybody and everybody who might assist with his tuition.
‘’If I don’t manage to acquire financial aid, another option I am looking at is that of seeking a job so that I may be able to pay it myself. I am even willing to work multiple jobs if necessary to achieve my goal.’’
Photography has been his passion since childhood.
‘’I had the burning desire to capture beautiful and timeless moments. I could always see the picture in my mind’s eye before I took it.
‘’Even before I could get my hands on an actual camera or smartphone, I was curious about the outcome of such a creation. I would borrow people’s phones and explore capturing and editing images. Then, I sought out phones with the best cameras and it proceeded from there.’’
Ngubane said he had taken numerous photographs he was proud of. One of them, a more recent one, of a cow, was his favourite.
The picture defined 2022 for him, he said, as it spoke volumes and resonated with him because of the power it exuded.
‘’I can’t even put it into words because it’s a picture I randomly took with my iPhone 7+. I was in a rural area at my lowest point and I was very depressed but, somehow, that image gave me hope.’’
“Serious art is born from serious play. Survival lies in sanity, and sanity lies in paying attention. The capacity for delight is the gift of paying attention. Progress, not perfection, is what we should be asking of ourselves. Creativity occurs in the moment, and in the moment we are timeless,’’ wrote Julia Cameron in her book, ‘’The Artist’s Way’’.
Ngubane draws inspiration from other photographers, among them Austin Malema and Trevor Stuurman, and is fascinated with the individual perspectives from which they capture the world.
His favourite international photographer is Jacob Webster who takes pictures of acclaimed rapper and singer Doja Cat.
“His work speaks to me; I love how he uses Photoshop, and takes Doja’s photos. There is a difference between just taking pictures and understanding the subject, model or muse that you’re working with.’’
Although he looks up to the creatives, the young man said he wanted to pave his own way and focus on his artistic style.
Ngubane added that he would chase his dream, achieve financial freedom and pass the torch by helping students who wanted guidance.
He urged those who also wanted to pursue photography to ask themselves whether they have the passion for it, a keen eye for photos and a different way of thinking that could set them apart from the rest of the pack.
‘’You should not want to mimic or imitate other people’s work. You need to see the beauty of your surroundings or human beings. People have perfect imperfections, find the creative inspiration in that.“