VC4 YOU!

Published on: Sep 27, 2018

Every day VC4 has new programs that startups can enroll in.  Here is a list of programs that you’d be interested in. Follow the link for more; VC4

HIVE

HIVE is a 6-month residency program hosting 20 young artists and creators from all over the world. This team of young creatives form a collaborative expedition to explore and hack the future, developing concrete solutions applied to universal issues. Energy, oceans, mobility, education, quality of life… are the kind of challenges. 5 functional prototypes will be the result of the residency. Art pieces, interactive experiences, technological solutions, social innovations, everything is possible as long as your project contribute to a more desirable future and as you work in a collaborative way!

So, if you are artists, makers, coders, engineers, innovation managers, research scientists or a combination of these, if you want to live a multicultural experience of collaborative creation, apply now! Degrees are not a requirement––self-taught candidates welcome!

GRINDSTONE

The Grindstone Accelerator is a structured entrepreneurship development programme that assists high-growth innovation-driven companies to become sustainable and fundable. Grindstone supplies 10 companies annually with knowledge, networks and funding readiness through growth measurement, gap analysis and deep interventions designed to build a foundation for growth, transfer skills, create relevant business networks and enable these companies to take advantage of market access opportunities.

Business support resources and services will include elements of training, corporate advisory, coaching, mentorship and funding. Specific interventions for each company include doing a YueDiligence assessment, building a partner universe, developing pitch decks and teaser documents, financial modelling, intellectual property assessment, strategic and financial valuation as well as populating a data room.

In addition to Knife Capital’s Funding Readiness Course: Find-Make-Grow-Realise, there will be 6 x 1-day workshops over the year…

  1. Culture & Strategy

  2. Sales & Marketing

  3. Market Positioning & Messaging

  4. IP, Product & Technical

  5. Finance, Valuation and Exit

  6. Legal compliance & HR

Through Grindstone, Knife Capital forms long-term partnerships with scale-up entrepreneurs for a shared upside. The business model is a combination of a capital growth incentive from investing in some participating companies cultivated through the programme (on arms-length funding terms), and market-related transaction fees if a third-party investment is secured. Programme partners contribute in services, time and sponsorship. Partners include ENSafricaFNB BusinessM&C Saatchi Abel, Billybo Group, Think room, MPULL Marketing and Creative CFO.

YALDA I-BOOT CAMP

Brief i-Boot Camp Overview:

Today, the internet has not only become a necessity, but has become a window of opportunity for innovation, progress, and change. Currently, Africa has 167 million internet users, predominately youth, who are using the internet as a tool for growth, leading to a better future. As the number of internet users continues to grow astronomically, going digital will bring about benefits for youth, in particular, more access to education, health care, public services and more opportunities to start effective enterprises. At this year’s YALDA i-Boot Camp, youth will be able to propose innovative strategies beyond conventional approaches that take into consideration rapid digitisation for implementing their ideas.  They will leave with the tools and mindset that will enable them to build viable and sustainable enterprises across African borders thereby enhancing rapid digitization from the bottom-up and interconnectivity in Africa, ultimately contributing to the prosperity of our African continent!

Discover: ALLOYS ITEBA (Chromez) Conceptual Photographer + Architect

Published on: Sep 26, 2018

What is your favorite quote?

“If you are working on something that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.” – Steve Jobs

What would the closest person in your life say if we asked them, “What is the one characteristic that they totally dig about you, and the one that drives them insane?”

Too generous and afraid of saying NO to a person

Can you tell us the story of your prior successes, challenges and major responsibilities?

Successes would be of having won a few photography awards in my photography journey.

Challenges of having clients who are not willing to pay for quality. Also struggling to stand out of this over crowded career

Major responsibilities of doing all the work (photographer,marketer,Secretary,messenger,accountant etc) for my business☺

Tell us about a time when you almost gave up and how you felt about that, and what you did instead of giving up.

I lost faith in my dream early 2016. Almost reached a point of selling my photography equipment. But she believed in me and saw only the best in my dream and she was determined for me to see it too. I’m grateful she came into my life.(my fiancee)

What is your biggest motivation?

My family,they are the heart of my pulse life.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

Dating one awesome girl for seven years before I proposed😀

What would someone who doesn’t like you say about you?

I won’t know since I have Zero haters.☺

We are celebrating our first anniversary, what achievements are you celebrating this year?

Having had my very first Exhibition at Art it is Gallery in Johannesburg

Successfully did my very first workshop duped ‘A Fictive Workshop’

Menengai Crater has been a home to 60,000 Maasai ‘ghosts’ who were killed. Local sources say that only 30,000 remain. This is due to deforestation that has been happening in recent times. It is said that when they were killed, it rained heavily and many trees grew on that day. A linkage was formed between them and the trees. Every tree cut down weakens one of them.
Before the remaining ghosts go into extinction, they have to fight for survival. They have sent LOIYAN who has been disguising herself as a ‘flying umbrella’. She can also take a human form at will, to pursue those who are destroying the woodlands. When a tree is cut, her crystal pendant necklace glows showing the position of the victim(s). She traces the victims, holds them captive and takes them to the netherworld caves at Menengai crater for 30 days. You are then made to work and cultivate for their lands forever.
Trees are unsung heroes of our environment. Imagine Kenya without trees? How bad can that be?
Don’t be a victim. Save a tree to save your life.

 

Check Out her past feature in BE Afrika Discovered digital creative magazine here

Discover Creative Organizations: Music In Africa

Published on: Sep 24, 2018

The Music In Africa portal is owned and governed by the Music In Africa Foundation, a non-profit organization formed on 27 July 2013 in Kenya. The Foundation is officially registered in South Africa.

Aims And Objectives

The broad objectives of the Music In Africa Foundation include (but are not limited to):

  • providing reliable and useful information that promotes the African music sector and its operators;
  • connecting and promoting exchange between music operators from, or related to, Africa and its diasporas;
  • promoting and encouraging the creation of content by Africans, about Africa or related to Africa and its diasporas;
  • improving the distribution, accessibility and viability of such content;
  • promoting the spirit of entrepreneurship among the African music sector;
  • enhancing music education;
  • facilitating and promoting, through research, development and education, the use by professionals and audiences of current and future technologies; and
  • providing one single and viable access point for all of the above that links existing initiatives, services and resources.

In carrying out these objectives the Music In Africa Foundation aims, inter alia:

  • to create a website or other online medium to serve as a portal for information collection and dissemination;
  • to facilitate the discovery of existing music in Africa by enabling users to listen to it at its portals;
  • to act as a platform for interaction and sharing of reliable information about the African music sector;
  • to organise seminars, workshops and other events aimed at the African music sector;
  • to commission relevant research in relation to the African music sector;
  • to support the African music sector through capacity building and education; and
  • to conduct advocacy aimed at protecting the interests of musicians through (but not limited to) awareness campaigns and lobbying in the area of intellectual property right protection.

Offices in Africa

The head office of Music In Africa is situated in Johannesburg, South Africa. In addition Music In Africa has regional bureaus in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Nigeria and Senegal. These locations all have editors who work on the content of the website, as well as other duties of the Foundation.

Membership

The Music In Africa Foundation has members in different countries. If you would be a member of the Foundation check the requirements and apply on this page.

Discover: Dananayi Muwanigwa Digital Illustrator/Painter

Published on: Sep 21, 2018

What is your favorite quote?

‘Talent is not given it is Earned.’ -Robot Pencil

What would the closest person in your life say if we asked them, “What is the one characteristic that they totally dig about you, and the one that drives them insane?”

They totally dig  that I’m a ‘what you see is what you get’ type of person.

What they dislike is that I have a tendency of being overly pragmatic and sometimes it comes off as being a know it all.

Can you tell us the story of your prior successes, challenges and major responsibilities?

Last year I was part of the Fak’ugesi Digital-Art festival in Joburg. It was my first time traveling specifically because of my artwork. I got to mingle with amazing artists in a functioning environment which is very different from my home country. The experience inspired me to push my art to a more sophisticated level.

A few months afterwards I held a solo exhibition in Harare. I made use of augmented reality technology to bring my paintings to life when viewed through a smart device.

This year I became a resident artist for Akademie Schloss Solitude which is a German art and media platform.  I explored African Aesthetics through an Afrofuturistic lens.

The balance act of marketing and working on artwork can be difficult especially without a manager. At some point one of the two disciplines suffers as a result of neglect of the other.

Tell us about a time when you almost gave up and how you felt about that, and what you did instead of giving up.

Giving up is just not an option for me. I paint/draw to tolerate myself and life’s inevitable tragedies. I do however get extremely lazy at times. Most of the times i think it is because I would be rushing or overwhelming myself. The best thing to do in that scenario is to stop and do something else for a while and get back to the art later.

What is your biggest motivation?

I’m motivated by the desire to make a mark on the world before I die.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

That talent is an illusion.

What would someone who doesn’t like you say about you?

That I’m a pervert and only draw naked black evil-looking girls.

We are celebrating our first anniversary, what achievements are you celebrating this year?

I’m celebrating being alive and being able to do what I love every day.

Check Out her past feature in BE Afrika Discovered digital creative magazine

 

Discover: Stephen Maithya Photographer

Published on: Sep 19, 2018

1. What is your favorite quote?
“When others sit, you stand up; when others stand up, you stand out; when others stand out, you become outstanding; when others become outstanding, you become the standard measure.”
A quote by the former principal of the Alliance High School, which he always reminded us during the school’s parades and principal talks.
2. What would the closest person in your life say if we asked them, “What is the one characteristic that they totally dig about you, and the one that drives them insane?”
I am a go getter
3. Can you tell us the story of your prior successes, challenges and major responsibilities?
I started small with the Nikon coolpix L25 pocket camera as a point and shoot hobbyist, framing whatever intrigued me with my camera. The hobby developed into a passion. A friend of mine called Freddy would later lend me his office work professional camera on the weekends for me to train with. I went from framing just anything to now focussing on people; their personalities and their emotions. Later on, i bought my first professional camera from my savings as a Biology, Chemistry and Physics private tutor and capital top up from my beloved mother. From all the people that i approached then for capital to facilitate my vision, including relatives and friends, it is only my beloved mother that was responsive( my dad had passed on at that moment). It was a very turbulent moment for us as a family, with the sudden demise of my paps. I did not give up on my dreams; soldiered on with my ambition, passion and vision. From then, it has been a road trodding from grass to glory, thanks to the Almighty God.

 

4.Tell us about a time when you almost gave up and how you felt about that, and what you did instead of giving up

1. Seeking capital, especially when i was starting out. Camera equipment is very very expensive. I was still a student at the moment (at the Kenyatta University pursuing a degree in Analytical Chemistry with Management)

2. Perception on photography from other people; people do not see the value in photography. They do not deem it as a serious profession which can sustain one’s living. It is considered to be a cheap, most likely because almost everyone is claiming to be a photographer. But i am glad that with time, that perception has gradually narrowed, with the emergence of photography mentors who are setting new standards in the country. I am glad that I am one of these mentors.
3. Getting a proficient team to work with; not many people are able to make sense of your vision. I did approach a number of people to team up with, but a majority were not serious and committed. I am glad that eventually, I did get a few individuals to partake in my mission.
In 2015 when I had spent too much on purchasing equipment(with capital from my own pocket) and I was not securing enough returns. It was really frustrating and I felt like quitting and going back to being my Analytical Chemist self. Within me, a voice always told me not to give up and exercise a little more patience, and assured me that my blessing was coming my way very soon, and that one day, I would be an inspiration to so many people. I paid attention to that voice.
5.What is your biggest motivation?
The desire to become the World’s best photographer and film maker; get to shoot with the world’s biggest corporates, magazines and studios.
6. Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
That I am both left and right-handed.
7. What would someone who doesn’t like you say about you?
That I am a stern competitor; always have been since childhood, hehehe.
8. We are celebrating our first anniversary, what achievements are you celebrating this year?
  • Celebrating my fifth anniversary as Stevenchy Photography.
  • Accredited as a Nikon Star by Nikon Kenya
  • Won the Creative photographer of the Year award at the Kenya Photography Awards
  • Won the Fashion Photographer of the Year award at the Swahili Fashion Week Kenya Awards
  • Recently nominated for the Fashion Photographer of the Year award at the Kenya Fashion Awards
  • Featured on the Daily Nation Newspaper
  • Interviewed live on KUtv
  • Interviewed live on Ebru Tv
  • Accredited among the World’s best of the best photographers 2018 at OneEyeland.com
  • Having my work featured among the World’s best entries made so far into the Sony World Photography Awards 2019, being the first Kenyan and African this year.
Check Out her past feature in BE Afrika Discovered digital creative magazine here

Discover Creative Organizations: Creative Business Cup

Published on: Sep 17, 2018

The Creative Business Cup, founded by Rasmus Tscherning in Denmark in 2010, is a global initiative promoting creativity and innovation. It connects creative entrepreneurs with investors, corporates and governing bodies in need of radical transformation for the benefit of business and society. The Creative Business Cup is held in over 70 countries each year and has a strong presence in at least 11 African countries with the Global Finals held every end of the year. Its objective is to empower entrepreneurs in the creative industries, connect them to investors and global markets and strengthen their innovative capabilities to the benefit of industry and society

This past week, the summit came to Kenya to find a creative business that would compete in the grand Creative Business Cup finals in Denmark.

Junior Achievement (JA) Kenya partnered with GEN Kenya, NIC Bank and BLAZE by Safaricom to hold the maiden Creative Business Cup Africa Summit in Nairobi. The two-day summit, which was held at the Strathmore University and Metta Nairobi, aimed to promote the creative economy by bringing together an extensive network of creative minds, government, policy makers, businesses, investors and academia to engage in discourse and spark action that will tap into the potential presented by this economy.

As more youth around the world embrace unconventional careers in sectors such as performing and visual arts, heritage, printed, audiovisual and new media, design and creative services, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has defined the creative economy as an emerging concept dealing with the interface between creativity, culture, economics and technology in a contemporary world, which is dominated by images, sounds, texts and symbols.

Globally, the creative economy is estimated to have created 30 million jobs, generated over 2.2 trillion USD in revenues and is the number one source for the global digital economy. It has been identified as a potential driver of economic growth in developing economies, and a viable solution to some of Kenya’s most pressing issues, some of which the Kenyan government hopes to address through its Big Four Agenda.

The Creative Business Cup Africa Summit was held on 12th and 13th September and featured regional leaders in the creative industries such as a prolific creative industries speaker David Parrish, LazyTown Founder Magnus Scheving, Funkidz CEO and Founder Wanjiru Waithaka, Youth Development Fund Chairman Ronald Osumba, and BLAZE mentors Abel Mutua (actor, scriptwriter) and Caleb Karuga (agropreneur). The two-day event also included master classes in creativity, a boot camp and a pitching competition to select the winner for the Creative Business Cup who will represent the region at the Global Finals in Copenhagen, Denmark on 26th-27th November, 2018.

 

 

FILMAID FESTIVAL- CELEBRATING REFUGEE VOICES

Published on: Sep 17, 2018

PRESS RELEASE: FILMAID FESTIVAL- CELEBRATING REFUGEE VOICES FROM ACROSS THE GLOBE THROUGH FILMS AND DOCUMENTARIES

After a successful week-long public screenings to communities in Kakuma and Daadab refugee camp, the annual FilmAid festival is back in Nairobi . The festival in its 11th year is set to showcase films and hold panel discussions with various stakeholders in the film industry and humanitarian organisations from 17th to 22nd September in Nairobi. This will be followed by the highlight of the festival – FilmAid Festival Award gala dinner.

This years showcase will include screening of 50 selected films in strategic areas within Nairobi targeting urban refugees, Kenyans as well as the international community. This year, the festival received over 1400 submission from creative storytellers, artists, filmmakers, journalists and photographers across the globe.

Speaking on the project, FilmAid Executive Director said, We are thrilled with the submissions we got this year, the numbers improved significantly and this shows our commitment and vision of informing, inspiring and empowering refugees and marginalized populations is bearing fruit.

This year’s theme for the festival is My story. My voice. Your move.” a non-confrontational demand for dialogue, and is a self-confident assertion that refugee voices be included in any dialogue about their lives and their future. The theme also captures the dynamism, determination and ‘swag’ of FilmAid’s remarkable Media Training Class of 2018.

The film festival is held annually and it strives to fulfill FilmAid’s vision of informing, inspiring and empowering refugees and other marginalized populations throughout the world. Through FilmAid’s extensive programming in Nairobi, Kakuma and Daadab, each year, FilmAid is able to train, support and empower more than 100 refugee youth to tell their own stories through the power of film.

This year’s festival will see around 14 student films from Kakuma and Daadab showcased. These include 6 fiction films and 8 documentaries. The refugee films will additionally be shared through FilmAid’s online platforms, including the website, YouTube, Vimeo and linked through social media (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram), and international film festivals.

Discover: Mercy Bilha Ng’endo MakeUp Artist

Published on: Sep 17, 2018

1) What is your favorite quote?
Hard work is the key to success, and keys open doors
2) What would the closest person in your life say if we asked them, “What is the one characteristic that they totally dig about you, and the one that drives them insane?”
The positive energy she has towards life and almost everything, it’s contagious. A quick learner, ability to accommodate all kinds of people and work with them smoothly.


3) Can you tell us the story of your prior successes, challenges and major responsibilities?
My success story is a journey of a thousand miles which I risked taking that 1st step that has got my business, art and skill to where I am right now. The journey is not over yet. I’m still learning and discovering new things that are a big contribution to my growth, sieving the positive from the negative, Positive vibes only. I have had challenges as well, especially growing my business, where no one believes in it so it’s a struggle to make people see and understand your vision. It was draining because at some point we need support. At this point I thank God for where I am and a major responsibility I have is to keep my head high and keep the art alive. People are watching and there are those following lead.
4) Tell us about a time you almost gave up and how you felt about that, and what you did instead of giving up.
This is a story I share to give hope. While I was starting out as a Makeup Artist, I was really passionate and I could work every chance I got, to help improve my skill besides other things. Sometime those chances didn’t come and could go for weeks without working. I remember a time I went for a whole month with no work and that is when I actually gave up. I went to look for a job since I’m also a graphic designer but on every interview I went to, I would really think about makeup and something inside me kept pulling me back. While awaiting on feedback from interviews I went to, things on this other side started looking up. I improved myself, my skill and till date I have never looked back.


5) What is your biggest motivation?
Not knowing what tomorrow holds so I give my best and all today.
6) Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I am an ambivert
7) What would someone who doesn’t like you say about you?
They wouldn’t like my guts
8) We are celebrating our first anniversary, what achievements are you celebrating this year?
I watched an international award winning feature film that I worked on.

Check Out her past feature in BE Afrika Discovered digital creative magazine here

CELEBRATING ALL OUR CREATIVE FEATURES FOR OUR FIRST ANNIVERSARY!

Published on: Sep 17, 2018

It’s been exactly a year since we published our first issue with Pinky Gelani as our cover. We all appreciate her confidence in us. Our magazine didn’t have a confirmed name at the time, just a plan and a dedicated passionate team. From Pinky, to Avril to our most recent cover, we have always tried to do our best with limited resources but limitless dedication. We didn’t want to fail, so whenever we felt that we were about to give up we reminded ourselves that we didn’t want to fail. The thing is, if you keep trying, even if you don’t hit your target on the first, second, or hundredth time, you only fail if you stop working at it.

“I think it’s okay to feel lost in your life. I think it’s okay not to reach that final goal (in your life). You may earn things while being lost or could make something out of it through the emotions you feel. I think it should be your judgement. You don’t have to make someone else judge the satisfaction of your life. I hope that you don’t feel too anxious about feeling lost in your life.” KJH

We have a bunch of plans, goals and no resources except ourselves. We try not to look at the negative side of things, but we are confident that our hard work will pay off in the end. It’s definite that every creative faces that breaking point every day in their career, but it’s how you handle that one of countless moments that will determine your success in the future.

Our very first cover on our first pilot issue

The lack of local financial support is a major impediment to the growth of Africa’s creative economy. According to the UNESCO report, financial institutions are rarely at ease with the sector’s innovation-driven character, notably when its copyright content is high. Venture capitalists, if they exist, are not interested in providing small loans and have a tendency to control rights so that remuneration to producers is lower. The business sector still provides only limited support and in any case prefers larger organizations. Governmental financing is also limited and its grant-based models often lead to unsustainable, subsidy-dependent development. In its Creative Economy Report 2008 UNCTAD observed that businesses in the creative sector face capital rationing at all stages. Start-up financing is often difficult to access because of the uncertain prospects in markets for creative products; forecasting demand for creative goods such as films is generally more difficult than for more standardized products so public and private investors often look upon projects in these areas as too high risk.

Pilot #2 cover with Avril and Pinky. Cover art by Reynolds Mungai

In 2019, we will be launching a project just like Be Afrika Discovered, where it will heavily rely on community. It will be the first step to all our shared dream: lack of resources and financial support in the creative industry becoming a thing of the past.

Till then always remember, to work hard for you and it will benefit your community.

We will be featuring one Creative and an Organization or City a day during this, our anniversary month, to give updates on where they are now and their current projects… Stay and Discovered African Creatives!

Check out all our issues to date here

 

RED BULL MUSIC PRESENTS’ BLANKETS & WINE X 10 YEARS

Published on: Sep 16, 2018

Music Culture has become the essence of the typical Kenyan lifestyle in terms of escape, release and relaxation. Looking back to 10 years ago, the scene has come a long way and has seen many a great artists pave way into the global scene. More mavericks are being elevated to platforms that are creating more live music and curating experiences that continue to be memorable and life changing for both artists and lovers of music & festivals.

This year, Good Times Africa and Red Bull Music have joined forces to curate an event of its kind to celebrate the last 10 years and the strides artists have made in the music creation and performance.

Blankets & Wine has been the core of great performances and continues to be the backbone that connects artists and consumers of music, hence the perfect platform to applaud and celebrate the 10 years with its commemoration of the same; 10 years of growing the live music and overall creative scene. This is a real opportunity to commemorate 10 years of building, serving and learning.

A chance to celebrate artists who have continued to grow their craft and recognizing the magnitude of this staying power in a tough industry. This year’s 10 th anniversary edition takes place at Ngong Racecourse on Sunday November 4 th – Stay tuned for the artists’ reveal!

About Blankets & Wine

The support and development of emerging musical talent has been an important focus throughout the festival’s history and this year will be no different in encouraging audiences to believe in emerging African artists who have talent and vision, and to see where this support and belief can take them in years to come.

Red Bull Music

The world-traveling Red Bull Music Academy has for the last 20 years annually held a semester of lectures, studio sessions and one-of-a-kind music events for a class of emerging musicians from across the globe. Every year the graduating class goes on to be innovators in music back home, with the institution has honed the skills of artists like Culoe de Song, Aloe Blacc and our very own Blinky Bill.

This September sees a new cohort join the academy where it all started – Berlin, Germany – and includes another Kenyan select, rising producer Samuel Sichangi.

“Our shared values of celebration and investing in music and the arts will come alive at this special event to mark a decade of ‘Made in Kenya’ excellence,” says Blankets & Wine creator Muthoni of what is in store for this Birthday Edition; ‘Expect a refined experience of music, food and fashion that will leave you feeling uplifted, inspired and thoroughly entertained!’