1.When did Peter Irungu start out his art career and was it always photography centered?
I’ve always loved art, I owned a small book when I was small and I remember drawing a lot of Cartoons especially Jerry (from Tom and Jerry), people never understood why I loved Jerry and he always lost to Tom, but Disney characters and cars were my favorite things to draw
2.You have a fascinating site http://www.irungu.tumblr.com with incredible art.How long have you been running it?How has it assisted you in branding you as an artist?
Yes, http://www.irungu.co.ke came about from just wanting to put more work out there and get people to appreciate and most importantly critique my work. When Creating a brand a website is like your personal space to explore your creative juices so it has helped
3.With the freelance photography market expanding.What is it like for professional photography?
Being an independent photographer is not as easy as it may look, it’s time consuming and drains you flat of energy at times, but it’s the only way into being a professional photographer. Competition is even stiffer in the professional field and you have to be at your very best by the time you decide to become fully professional
4.How has social media platforms helped you in your kind of work?
Social media is probably the best marketing tool we as creatives have. It’s fast, instant and gets you a global audience. Your work can get noticed by basically anyone and opens many doors. However this has also led to a lot of copyright ownership issues with people taking other people’s hard work and posting it as their own as well as very nasty criticism of your work which may not be as beneficial to the artist
5.You’ve been doing projects with Kenyan Instagrammers.Tell us about them
It’s not really projects but just meet ups with other photographers especially from Nyeri. I wanted to interact more with them and learn from them also so that’s why when there’s an Instagram meet up I try to make a nyeri one so that people can join and interact
6.How would you describe your style of photography? The one you find comfort in.
I really don’t have one answer to that I just wanted my photos to resonate with an emotion within any who view it or consume my art. Whatever feeling it gives you I’m happy it touches someone
7.What is that one thing that no one knows about Irungu?
I hate pineapples
8.Aside photography,what are your other interests?
Football, I’m a Manchester United groupie I try watching every game, hopefully I could become there photographer one day Hahaha. Also I love traveling, open wilderness and mountain ranges make me feel happy
9.What kind of digital professional cameras would you recommend to a newbie in this field?Why would you recommend it?
Normally I don’t recommend cameras I usually just tell them to go read about photography first, everything! From ISO, shutter, fstops, compositions, different styles, only then will you find out what camera to buy. It’s the same process I knew what camera to buy and by then you will have known how to use it. No need buying gear and learning, you learn first then go shoot
10.We are approaching the general election campaign period.There is a world out there waiting for Kenyan Photographers to showcase this test of political democracy.How is this crucial for you as a photographer?
I’m really looking forward to the elections looking at the history of all the} great photographers Kenya has ever seen events in politics have been the defining moments. I hope to cover the elections in a more creative way also this time.
11.Would you consider your line of work as lucrative enough?
I shoot a lot of Landscapes and Timelapses and the market is not that big, they are however a niche market and the few clients who understand it do understand how intensive the work we put into making our art so are willing to pay for it
12.What are some of the projects you are currently working on.
Well my first major project was called Nairobi a Timelapse Portrait (I highly recommend you watch it) which we shot for 2 years with two of my friends, we call ourselves XI.XO Collective. Currently we are working on the second version of it. We are also working on a black and white timelapse showing the rush hours of Nairobi, and also some other timelapses about the many malls in Nairobi, so hopefully by the end of the year
13.As a photographer you get to travel a lot.How is it for you?
Satisfying I must say. Kenya is immensely beautiful and I recommend you guys travel, the landscapes, our wildlife the coast, literally everything you call nature is found in Kenya.
Stop looking for motivation to achieve your dreams, wake up every day and force yourself to work towards achieving it! Go out and shoot!