Botswana enjoys a growing number of heavy metal aficionados. Albeit small, the enthusiasm is no less. Actually, probably because the heavy metal community is so small across Africa, the dedication seems all the time more intense.
Performing and listening to heavy metal is only a part of the whole experience. When attending concerts and festivals, most African heavy metal fans go all out, and transform into their hard rock alter egos.
They talk differently; using slang and often a different tone of voice.
They dress differently; wearing leather, black clothes, spikes, chains, masks, wigs and facial paint.
They act differently; not only acting, but truly becoming their alter egos.
They use heavy metal and their alter egos to remove themselves briefly from their everyday lives; forget about their problems for a while and simply start headbanging. This escapism holds an outlet for them, without any inequality or division, but that instead unites through a shared fondness for the heavy metal music, the performances and the lifestyle.
I focus on human interest documentaries and stories that are worth telling the world. An eye for detail and telling the story behind the observations play an essential role in this.
In 2007 I started my professional career as documentary photographer at The Parool in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. I am currently based in Johannesburg, South Africa. Since I live in South Africa, I don’t have a shortage of topics for new series. Currently Africa is in motion, and the responses to this motion is determent for the direction the continent will take. This has a major impact on people’s lifestyles and how they view life and how they interact. This impact is both visible and tangible and manifests itself in various ways, which I want to capture with my photo series. [Official Website]
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