CREATIVE CORNER

Morenike Ajayi

Meet Morenike Ajayi, a Nigerian photographer and graphic artist, based in Toronto, Canada.


Nikky: Hey Morenike, welcome to creative corner. Tell the readers a little bit about yourself

Morenike: Hey Nikky. Umm I like dodo, I fry dodo at odd hours of the morning 3/4am hahaha.  I also like long walks to the bank lol. I’m a very shy person too.

Oh I’m a photographer in a self discovery bubble.


Nikky: You started off with a hat line known as Out of Gidi, then you went into photography and finally graphic art. Can you talk a little bit about the journey so far?

MorenikePhotography has always been my first love. I just started figuring out what I was good at, I figured I could design merchandise so I worked with my friend Valentine on Out of Gidi. I learnt a lot from that in terms of who your market is, who is paying attention and, most importantly, who was buying at that point. It was a bang, people loved the hats.

My graphic art/design phase I’m still experiencing.

I remember one day I had a shoot with WundaB and gunnazd,which is rare, and that day it hit me. All these pictures I just shot can’t be just regular pictures. This was sometime in 2015.


NikkySo, at what point would you say you started seeing yourself as a creative?

Morenike: When I held the first Out of Gidi hat samples. It was seeing the designs and ideas being brought to life.

NikkyI can only imagine how fulfilling that must have felt.


Nikky: Have you faced any challenges since going into graphic design?

MorenikeYesssss, laptop issues! Hahaha my 13” MacBook Pro couldn’t handle the stress, it was always overheating. I could use it to fry eggs some days. I was frustrated to create which shouldn’t be the case, cause sometimes the laptop would go off on its own.

Nikky: Lool I know the struggle cause my laptop has a lot of issues. How did you handle this challenge?

Morenike: Hahaha I kept on denying the struggle to be honest, then one day I just backed up all my files on my hard drive and sold it, then I bought an iMac.

NikkyLol smart move!


Nikky: So, where do you get your inspiration from?

MorenikeThat’s a great and tough question lol. A lot of things and people inspire me. From the stranger on the bus having a conversation like we’ve known each other from time, to my peers, to music, to the weirdos downtown.

Nikky: I definitely feel that, everything is art so it’s hard not to get inspired by even the most random thing.


Nikky: So, you had your first exhibition back in Abuja, Nigeria for the TedXMaitama convention. How was that experience for you?

MorenikeOh, that was surreal. I was just doing my thing sharing my work and that happened. In my mind, I could only accept it was done after the show. It was like “okay, first attempt…I just did that!” Surreal.

Nikky: Moments like that make all the work worthwhile.


Nikky: You recently had your follow up exhibition alongside other artists! Congratulations on a successful event! What can you tell us about how that event came together?

MorenikeThank youuu! Synth343 was teamwork and showcasing what it is we actually do. We had a theme “Synthesis” which connects the music, art & chemistry we have. Initially, we planned a 2-day event and then realized 2 days weren’t going to be enough, and then we made it 4 days.

NikkyEveryday was amazing! Job well done!

 


Nikky: So, how did you know you were ready to showcase your graphic artwork?

MorenikeFunny story. I went back to Lagos for Christmas and I was showing Valentine some Out of Gidi merch designs and he stumbled across my edits folder, and he was upset I didn’t share anything, then I told myself I’ll take it seriously.

Some artworks were sitting on my hard drive for almost 2 years.

I don’t think anyone will know when they’re ready. You just have to try.

I also have friends that studied art & design, so I asked for advice as well.

NikkyYeah, trying, I think that’s the bottom line.


Nikky: What would you say is your biggest driving force in life?

MorenikeAh another tough question o!

My parents are my biggest driving force and umm I’m just trynna get this moneyyy (lol jokes.) Being alive is also another important driving force.


NikkyWhat is one thing you hope to accomplish in the next year in terms of your art?

Morenike: Taking a day at a time. Improving the art in every angle. I’m creating everyday, I don’t sleep. I don’t be on social media often. I’m learning, I’m improving & I’m discovering myself. Tomorrow same routine repeats.

Ask me this question next year, maybe I’ll have a more definitive answer.

Nikky: Haha or I could just watch out and see how your art grows. Actions speak louder than words.


Nikky: Do you have a quote you live by?

Morenike“If everything I did failed, just the fact that I’m willing to fail is an inspiration, people are so scared to lose that they don’t even try.” – Kanye West


Nikky: What advice would you give to sixteen year old Morenike?

Morenike: Hahaha I’d tell my 16 year old self to believe more in yourself.


Nikky: Lastly, what advice would you give to fellow creatives out there?

MorenikeShare your work.


NikkyThank you so much for coming on Creative Corner!

MorenikeThank you for having me, Nikky! God bless.

 


Be sure to check out Morenike’s website to view and buy her artwork, if you see something you like. Also, keep up with her by following her on Instagram and Twitter!


Be you. Do you. Stay true.