LAGOS, NIGERIA | On Saturday the 19th of August, CORA/ Arterial Network Nigeria and CopyrightX Nigeria Alumni (CNA) joined the rest of the world to celebrate the World Photo Day 2017. The venue was the enchanting art gallery of the African Artists’ Foundation, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Those present to witness the medley of educative lineup of events included Prince Yemisi Shyllon of OYASAF, Aurelien Sennacherib (French Embassy Nigeria), copyright expert Dr. Ifeoma Shodeinde, Fola Martins, Ozi Okoli, Okoroji Jamike Ugochukwu, Jahman Anikulapo (Arterial Network Nigeria Chairperson) and Chief Olabintan Famutimi, to mention but a few.
The programme explored the theme of “Photography and Copyright Issues” and functioned as a veritable channel through which the intricacies of copyright laws and practices in the country were dissected by means of presentations and participatory sessions between connoisseurs of intellectual property laws and acquisitive practitioners and stakeholders who showed up in order to be updated on the latest developments in the field.
In the opening remarks, chairman of the event, Chief Olabintan Famutimi of the Tricontinental Group, while commending the efforts of the organisers, bemoaned the lack of proper attention to the industry in the country despite its enormous prospects. Speaking further to adduce to his points, the chairman posited that “if the Nigerian Civil War (1967-1970) was properly documented in pictorial illustrations, I believe the ill-informed youth of today will not be willing to relive the gruesomeness the war witnessed.”
A highpoint of the event was the presentation of the programme theme by Dr. Ifeoma Shodeinde, Intellectual Property academic of the Faculty of Law, University of Lagos and one of the supervisors for the CopyrightX course. During this phase, she took participants on an interesting voyage down memory lane explaining in detail how photography evolved from its elementary stages to the contemporary sophistication the art has now garnered.
Meanwhile, giving a distinct outline between the Nigerian Copyright Acts and that of the United States of America, she explored authorship and the exception of contractual agreements. Also cited was the not compulsory, but expedient requirement of notifying the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) of works as an advantage in the event of dispute of ownership, among other variegated subtopics she delved into during the extensive presentation.
Uche Okpa-Iroha, Executive Director of The Nlele Institute and an ace photographer, oversaw the practitioners’ perspectives/ contributions segment. He used the avenue to express his concurrence with the earlier position of the event chairman on photography being denied its pride of place in the country. However, he averred differing view on the non-availability of the civil war pictures as a contributing factor to the current wave of Biafra resurgence. As a matter of fact, he noted that archives are chock-full of the pictures but “what restricts their usage is censorship, being that the government doesn’t want the gory pictures commonplace.”
Special guest of honor Prince Yemisi Shyllon, Founder of OYASAF and a foremost art collector, expanded on the protection of images for online exposure. With a repertoire of over 75,000 photographs as reference point, he revealed the high-security measures on his online works, using watermarks, makes it impossible for anybody to use them without his prior consent.
While also stressing the enormous economic benefits of photography, Omo Oba Shyllon believes that photography one of the arts mediums which could impact our economy positively through generation of revenue from everything in historical past through pictures.“Yes, tourism can replace oil and photography forms an integral part of tourism in the world,” he explained. “The two countries that have invested heavily in the arts are Spain and France whose economic activities are hinged on preservation of events in the past”.
At number 25 amongst the largest art collectors in the world, Shyllon lauded CORA/ Arterial Network Nigeria and CNA initiative in putting the event together saying that Nigeria needs such activities so the citizens don’t lose relevance in the comity of nations and therefore urged them to continue with the good works.
A practical segment on the use of watermarks as safety measure was presented by Ralph Obot of the OYASAF foundation, a presentation he did with flair on three separate watermarking techniques thus:
- The drag and drop technique
- Photoshop brush troll customisation, and
- Photoshop window action- batch technique
The segment heralded a highly interactive Q&A session moderated by Fola Martins, pro tem chairman of the CNA. The presentations had spawned several questions from the audience and the anchor (Ralph) did not leave any stone unturned in answering the myriad of questions directed at him. Also handy to assist in the Q&A was Omo Oba Shyllon whose citation had earlier been read by Sola Alamatu of Arterial Network Nigeria.
The event came to a glorious end with an award presentation ceremony where the contribution of the various sponsors comprising individuals and corporate entities was acknowledged with a token of appreciation from Arterial Network presented by Jahman Anikulapo. Those on the honor list were: Efetobo Awhana (MD Avartgarde Tours), Prince Yemisi Shyllon, the African Artists’ Foundation, and Uche Okpa-Iroha, Executive Director of The Nlele Institute, Lagos.
Written by Samuel Osaze for Arterial Network Nigeria
25 August 2017
1 & 2 - Arterial Network Nigeria
3, 4 & 5 - Jahman Anikulapo
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