It may not sound like the typical rags to riches story but it’s one that will definitely get you working. This is not my story but I personally saw it unfold. Naison has been my buddy for about five years now. We worked together while we were in Lugansk and I taught him the bit of photography he knows and up until Donetsk war broke out, he tried his best to keep up with the tutorials. The man as I know him is hardworking, and probably the most humble individual I’ve had the honor of knowing.

When Naison left Lugansk in 2014, he travelled back to his home country (Zimbabwe). Upon arrival, things didn’t exactly work out the way he planned. He couldn’t return to school and had to turn to the one thing he spent his last days learning; Photography. Though he was always on my Video shoots, I never really taught him filmmaking, but he picked on a few things on the sets he had the opportunity of being on. Once home, we didn’t get to speak often, but the times he called me, he complained that photography wasn’t helping him in anyway. He further stated that his clients wouldn’t pay him and his attempt at wedding videos wasn’t yielding anything. To make matters worse, the dire conditions in his hometown wasn’t exactly very conducive and made it harder to get anything done. The complaint lasted for a while up until the day he called to say he was quitting and he wanted to dump his camera and do something else. Then I spoke to him– what you love, even if no one pays you to do it

I asked him why he started filmmaking in the first place,”Because I love doing it” he responded, “Then do it for the love”, I added. “Do it even if no one is paying you to do it, have fun doing it, spend as much time as possible on it, develop it daily and when people see how good you are, the money will come rolling in”

There’s no defense against excellence that meets a pressing public need

Naison took my advice and here is the miracle of the whole event. A week after he thought about quitting, he signed up for a contest, to make a music video for a UK based Band (The secret company). The rule is that the best music video gets chosen and the band will pay the filmmaker $3000. When he sent me his submission, I was not only impressed by it, I was astonished at what he could achieve with nothing. Anyways, long story short, He won a contest that even I would not have pulled through.

Naison was one step closer to his gold and just one last hit won him his victory. Take a moment to ponder, what would have happened if he quit? The words written on the blog post after he was selected were

Naison was able to pull off an amazing video considering the unfavorable conditions in the country Zimbabwe. The incessant power cuts and lack of man power”.

When I read those lines, It brought back the conversation we heard over the phone when he complained about the condition of his hometown. The truth is, those same conditions helped him win. By putting the odds in the right channel, he came out strong.

Naison, I can proudly say is an award winning film maker. He earned it and I couldn’t be more proud of anyone. He is now very dedicated to his craft and if you doubt his fame google Naison Gumbo UK. At the end of it all, The people who never wanted to pay him and those clients that turned him down are now asking for his number, because at the end of it all. There is no defense against excellence that meets a pressing public need.

Below is the link to his interview and Video, Take some time to watch and Read it here