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Thursday, April 30, 2015

No to Xenophobia, We are One, We are Africa - Creative Themed Photoshoot

We all heard about, read and witnessed the brutal violence that engulfed some suburbs/areas of South Africa. I personally don't understand the violent killing of innocent civilians; in one video I saw children being set on fire.

As if we don't have enough problems in Africa as it is.

We the whole crew at Cognito Studios decided to put something together using what we know best, to pass a message across, not just against the xenophobic attacks, but against all types of wanton violence - violence against women including rape, abuse of children and ethnic massacres.

After each photo I will write what the photo means to me and the message we wish to pass across, but as with any other art form, the photos are open to your own particular interpretation. Please do share your own thoughts as comments and do share the post with others.


Model: @xanswat (Instagram)
Make Up: @xanswat
Styling: @xanswat, @shawn_cognitostudios
Photography and Edits: @shawn_cognitostudios
Studio Assistant: @TimmyOlaoye
Text: @shawn_cognitostudios

Africa! The Dark Continent! Is it because of the color of our skin, or actually because of the prevalence of ignorance and poverty. The absence of light breeds dark evils such as political oppression, ethnic bigotry and hatred, genocide and xenophobia. Wake up Africa! Arise and let your light shine!

Africa! Who else can love you but Africans? Why do we wait for foreigners to bring help to our shores. Why do we love to hate ourselves and hate to love ourselves? Africa! Your love is within you!

Beautiful Africa! Your beauty is amazing. Your lands filled with jewels, precious people with wonderful talents. Together united we can harness all these powers and transform our lives for good. Africa, you are beautiful!

Africa! Please stop the killing. Stop the violence. Stop hurting one another. Africa raises her arms against the evil slayer. "Don't hurt me. Don't kill my children!"

If only you would open your eyes Africa! See the beauty and power that lies within. See the potential we are blessed with. See that within yourselves lies the power to bring about emancipation and true independence from foreign donors. For many of these 'helpers' are only wolves in sheep's clothing

Africa! Reach out to one another. Reach for the stars. Reach for greatness. Greatness is your birthright!. Your inheritance.

X stands for No. No to xenophobia. No to killings and murder. No to terrorism. No to rape and violence against women. No to child trafficking and abuse. We say No!!

Africa we pray...we pray for peace. We pray for love, unity and harmony. We pray for light - an abundance of wealth and knowledge. We pray against sickness and plagues. We pray against war. We pray for the future of our children. We pray for Africa!

Africa unite! Be bonded not just with your hands but with your hearts. Be one in vision and in life. Together we stand, for a nation divided against itself shall fall. Africa unite!

Thanks to the lovely Zanswat Bowsan, our model for the shoot. Zan is a graduate of English language from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. She loves music, photography and is a low key make up artist. She has worked with Chocolate City Entertainment as well as Leadership Newspapers as a senior correspondent. Zan is gifted with beauty, confidence and the ability to make photos jump! Follow her on Instagram @xanswat