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    A Fascinating Look Into Africa's Vanishing Photo Industry

    Photography studios are disappearing all over Africa. Photographer Adrien Tache shares an intimate portrait of an industry in flux.

    For the last several years, French photographer Adrien Tache has travelled around Africa, photographing local portrait studios and the owners who are struggling to keep their businesses afloat.

    Adrien Tache

    “Outback Photographer. Debecourroumba, Mali.”

    Adrien Tache

    “Studio, Senegal.”

    These business owners have made a living by shooting headshots, passport photos, weddings, birthdays, and other ceremonies important enough to be preserved on film.

    Adrien Tache

    “Studio Africa, Nouakchott, Mauritanie.”

    Sadly, as with most photo studios today, these businesses have felt the economic strain brought forth by digital imaging.

    Adrien Tache
    Adrien Tache

    There's not always a need for a professional photographer when digital cameras are now so cheap and easy to use.

    Adrien Tache

    In an interview with Lensculture, Adrien opened up about his work:

    "Nowadays, digital photography is used (almost) all around the world. But these photographers are still equipped with old silver-based cameras, equipment dating from the 70s and 80s."

    Adrien Tache

    “Identity, Old Photographer from Tougouri, Burkina Faso.”

    Adrien Tache

    “Portrait, Seydou Kané, Ségou, Mali.”

    "I met them everywhere: Mauritania, Guinea Conakry, Senegal, Mali and Burkina Faso."

    Adrien Tache
    Adrien Tache

    Many of them have no formal training. Most are self-taught photographers who have started their businesses from the ground up.

    Adrien Tache

    “Studio, Burkina Faso.”

    Adrien Tache

    One photographer told Adrien, "We never had any photography training in our lives, we only learnt how to use our camera by ourselves. Once everyone gets their own camera, they won't need us anymore."

    Adrien Tache

    “Inside a studio, Nouhadibou, Mauritania, Yagfa’s studio, photographer and archivist.”

    Adrien Tache
    Adrien Tache

    Adrien goes on:

    "Feeling that I was between two pages of African photography history, I wanted to immortalize them with their third eye, inside their kitschy studios or outside, during wedding or ceremonies."

    Adrien Tache
    Adrien Tache

    "Pride, shyness, fun—hidden behind their lenses, each photographer had his own way of reacting, of looking at me, of holding his camera."

    Adrien Tache
    Adrien Tache

    "These photos are my way of showing the realities of a business, a way of life, an era that is almost over."

    Adrien Tache

    Adrien Tache is a photographer, currently based in France. To view more of his work, check out his Facebook and website at www.adrientache.com.

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