May 29, 2022

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From tunes to stills | Culture | Savannah Information, Activities, Eating places, Tunes

4 min read

A single of Savannah’s most loved photographers conducts his craft with a musical mind.
Somi Benson-Jaja is the founder of Shot by Somi Studios positioned in the Savannah Mall, 14045 Abercorn St. Shot by Somi Studios is a business portrait images studio that specializes in brand name and portrait images which includes headshots, maternity, loved ones, weddings. They also host activities and do food photography.
Shot by Somi Studios has obtained neighborhood accolades like Connect Savannah’s Most effective Of Savannah 2021 ‘Best Photography Studio’ in and Savannah Morning News’ Most effective of the Very best.
The photographer claimed that when he was youthful, his job pursuit experienced truly generally been tunes.
“In substantial college, I was in the band,” Benson-Jaja reported. “I loved band lifestyle. I cherished enjoying my trombone, I loved marching. I went to Jenkins for Substantial Faculty. ‘We are the marching warriors. We are family members,’ was our motto. ‘We’re the greatest in the land.’ Band, band, band.’ That’s all I lived and breathed by high school.”
Benson-Jaja even went on to show up at Armstrong University — in advance of it turned Georgia Southern’s Savannah campus — for Tunes Education with a objective and desire of turning into a high school band director. He performed in the university band, the jazz band, and sang in the gospel choir.
“I was full on immersed in songs education and learning,” Benson-Jaja mentioned.
Nevertheless he often experienced a enjoy for music, the digicam was generally in his hand as nicely, the photographer shared.
“When I was a child, I did not like staying in pictures,” he said. “In a household that liked photos, out of five siblings, I usually volunteered to choose the pictures.”
In superior school, he even obtained the nickname ‘Kodak’ for generally remaining the dude to volunteer to choose photographs. Nevertheless, immediately after he graduated college he taught elementary faculty audio at Gadson Elementary even though subsequently training band component-time at Garrison University for the Arts.
Finally, Benson-Jaja began to see the probable for photgraphy as a facet-hustle.
“It didn’t blossom till I had been training elementary school songs for about 6 several years and a single of my buddies in college or university reported that her sister required photos for promenade,” he mentioned.
Soon after the request, he purchased a camera from Ebay to get the images, and inevitably it turned a weekend interest.
“I imagine my to start with shoot was $50,” Benson-Jaja explained. “It was just a pressure reliever and my aspect-hustle as a teacher.”
Benson-Jaja shared that he had hardly ever been one particular to settle for mediocrity. Even though he obtained a formal education and learning in tunes only, he leveraged the expertise he made amid the songs instructional structure to build and improve his images craft. He said he never required to appear to be like the underdog in any industry.
“There’s songs principle, so I researched photography concept,” he said. “There’s audio composition, so I researched the composition components to make a photograph. I also investigated the historical past of pictures, so I was not a newbie. I could discuss to photographers that went to university for it.”
To make his function even higher, the photographer states he even leverages skills he learned exterior of tunes instruction to engage in photographer-consumer relations. The photographer explained he formulated a lot of his people techniques when he served as president of the college student govt group at Armstrong University. He said, during that time, he had a aim to meet up with as a lot of individuals as attainable and what he discovered is that folks heat up when they can obtain some sort of connection.
“I ask them what they like, what they love, and what they do,” Benson-Jaja explained. “Then they quickly turn into self-confident and they neglect they have jitters and nerves because they are speaking of some items that they are proficient about.”
Benson-Jaja enjoys his do the job as artwork, but he also usually takes it severely.
“Photography is fifty percent organization and half art and you will need to know the two to get in the game,” he mentioned.
The photographer stated he will work on individual jobs to keep on to ignite his imaginative fuse whilst simultaneously staying away from the 5-year-burnout span of the normal photographer.
“Photography is the manipulation of light-weight so I want to be able to distribute light-weight on factors from the perspective of my have inventive expression,” he stated. “One venture I did very last calendar year was my homeless collection named ‘Stories from Savannah.’”
All through the undertaking, Benson-Jaja explained he located persons that were being living on the street and questioned them queries pertaining to their individual processes including how they got to where they are now and how they are surviving.

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&#13 &#13 Photograph Courtesy of Shot by Somi&#13 &#13

&#13 Shot from ‘Stories from Savannah’ homelessness series&#13

“It was definitely eye opening,” he said. “It confirmed me that folks are still individuals despite their circumstances. They all however smiled and it confirmed me that they have hope and resilience.”
In that light-weight, Benson-Jaja would like to encourage youthful people today to stick to what they love and find out how to do it properly.
“For the younger photographer, artist, musician, painter or anything at all that you’re accomplishing as a youthful entrepreneur, consider time to understand your craft. Get time to study to get to exactly where you want to go,” Benson-Jaja claimed. “Meet as quite a few people that can lend a aiding hand to get you to where you want to go due to the fact that possibility is out there for you, and there shouldn’t be anybody that claims you can’t do it.”
Pay a visit to to discover additional about Somi Benson-Jaja and his photography studio.

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