By Stella Nassuna
He is Uganda’s best fashion photographer of 2013/2014, and you would imagine that he has hundreds of photos of himself in his photo gallery.
But having been in the business professionally for 25 years, Giulio Molfese surprisingly remains camera-shy despite moving along with his camera just about everywhere he goes.
The Uganda-based Italian photographer recently won two awards from two independent awarding entities – Afrikan Fashion Walk Awards (AFWAs) & Men’s Xplosion Fashion & Style Awards (MXFSAs).
But he admits he finds it hard to have his own photos taken.
He doesn’t think he makes more 20 photos of himself in all, most of which he says are taken by other photographers at events he is often contracted.
Giulio Molfese has a vast experience in fashion photography. Here, some of his works
And he won’t mince any words with his confession. He is camera-shy, he admits.
Despite this rather surprisingly trait, Guilio’s works clearly reveal a man who has braved it all. He has taken on assignments not many of his profession would fancy going for. He has done photography in conflict zones in Africa like Somalia, Guninea-Bissau, and others.
The passionate cameraman saw himself settle in Uganda a decade ago, after his last assignment in the Horn of Africa – Somalia.
And he has since fancied it here. He owns a safari company too.
Guilio might be the camera-shy type, but you bet he is not love-shy too. He recently got engaged to a Ugandan model, only he won’t disclose her name – yet.
His venturing into photography spans back several years while he was still in Italy. And as you would imagine, the road to where he finds himself today hasn’t been smooth all the way.
He covered the conflict in Kosovo . . . .
. . . as well as in Guinea Bissau
Starting out as a 15-year-old photographer, Giulio needed money to buy films and develop them. And that sure came at a cost. He had to put aside a lot of things he wanted as a teen in order to save up money to be able to buy the films and also develop them.
Another challenge was intuitive in nature – he found difficulty in determining, from his pool of photos, which picture was not good enough. Back then, digital photography was still an unborn baby.
A low moment in his life came when he lost his Italian friend he had partnered with to run the tour and travel company. In fact, that was a turning point of Guilio, inspiring in him courage to re-venture into photography.
He then gave a shot at fashion photography, although he did not have many clients at his disposal.
But things instantly turned around the moment he worked with two of Uganda’s famous models – former Miss Uganda Beauty Queens, Sylvia Namutebi and Dorah Mwiima.
It’s now three years since then and the Italian is counting many more clients in his experience as a fashion photographer. He hopes to add more years of professional work to it – to tell the fashion story of models and designers.
Only recently, the local fashion industry saw one of its own win the first ever Africa’s Next Top Model contest.
Stacy ‘Queen’ Aamito beat Michaela from Angola and Opeyemi from Nigeria, who had all reached the final held in New York City.
Such is the kind of story that Guilio wants to tell through his photography. In fact, he has also stretched his camera lens into the music industry.
The Italian photographer has also had music shoots. Pictured here is Lenny Krevitz on the guitar
He has also photographed Jethro Tull
He has done photo shoots with prominent musicians like Bob Dylan, B.B King, Aerosmith, Lenny Kravitz, Femi Kuti, Patti Smith, Black Crows, Chuck Prophet, Steve Wynn and many more.
He has exhibited at the 1998 “Overcome Racism Now” in Rome, London, Madrid, Berlin, Bruxelles, Marseille and Frankfurt.
He has also had his works displayed at the 2002 Kosovo, 2004 “TABANKA” The Lost Cities, and 2005 Tira Postal in Guinea Bissau.
Besides, the 41-year-old photographer also lectured at the University of Naples on photography and social vision.