Starting a business and building a brand from scratch with limited resources and no guarantee that your dreams will take off, is risky. It is said that almost 50% of businesses will fail in their first two years of operation. That did not deter Amogelang Maluleka, an IIE graduate from Rosebank College from seeing his vision through. Amogelang is the proud founder of Lux Photography. He is a go-getter who believed in his dream of becoming a photographer.
Let's get to know this creative.
What did you study, and how did it groom you into the photographer that you are today?
I studied The IIE's Diploma in Journalism at IIE Rosebank College. The qualification gave me a broad view of photography. It taught me the art of telling stories through visuals and words. To a creative like myself, storytelling is everything. I love turning words into pictures, studying empowered me to refine my skill as a photographer. It is essential to have the basic technical knowledge of photography to take beautiful photos. There is a technical aspect of capturing emotions and telling stories through pictures.
How did you manage your studies and building your brand?
I love photography; it's in my blood – so I started my venture while studying. My camera is my best friend, and I take it with me every time I step out of the house. Photography has helped me see new places, make new friends and discover unknown facets about myself. It has helped me make connections with the world, with people, and with myself. Studying while running my business was manageable because when you do something, you are passionate about; time management becomes seamless.
What risks have you taken to build your brand, and do you have regrets?
Photography, like many entrepreneurial ventures, has various risks. The most significant risk for me was to pursue my dream on a full-time basis. I had no guarantees, and I used my savings to get equipment with no certainty that I would get business. I don't have any regrets, and I believe I am in the right space for me. This is my journey, and I am embracing it with everything I have.
What are your aspirations, where do you want to see your brand?
I want Amogelang and my company, Lux Photography, to become a household name in the industry. There is so much to photography, the more I do it, the more layers I uncover. I want to drive impact with my images, and I also want to collaborate with more brands. The internet has empowered businesses like mine. I use social media for advertising, to grow my brand and to manage my clients. A big part of my business is from referrals. Customer service is everything these days; I take pride in what I do and in my clients.
Who do you look up to and why?
There are great people in the industry, but for me, Katlego Mokubyane and Austin Malema are two photographers I admire. Their work ethic and the quality of work inspires me, to keep refining my craft.
Like many others, I had a dream. I am following mine and investing in it. Following one's vision is not an easy journey; there will be many obstacles along the way and naysayers. You have to love and believe in what you do, invest time and money in it and follow through. The biggest advise I would give aspiring photographers is to treat your customers well, referral business is the beautiful result of good customer service.