Naija in Lights, Training for skills’ improvement of 10 Nigerian photojournalists, support to build a personal project and exhibition

Naija in Lights, Training for skills’ improvement of 10 Nigerian photojournalists, support to build a personal project and exhibition

Are you a professional Nigerian photographer exercising press photography or reportage for the media or on social networks? Are you looking to improve your technical and visual literacy skills and you would like to cover the 2023 general elections? Do you need help to refine your career plan and build your career in photojournalism?

– Project Context

CFI has decided to establish a pilot project in Nigeria focusing on boosting the professional skills of photojournalists in the context of the 2023 general elections. This initiative aims to respond to a need expressed by the Nigerian and international media to be able to offer their audience photographic coverage, of both the electoral process, and of the current affairs. The use of photojournalism as a means of conveying information provokes critical thinking, empathy and solidarity. This initiative therefore also aims to encourage the practice of photojournalism as a lever for reducing political, social, cultural and economic divisions.

– Our aims

CFI, the French media development agency is offering to train and support 10 Nigerian photojournalists to strengthen their capacities to produce quality information photographs and develop sustainable career plans for 10 Nigerian photojournalists. The agency aims to boost the abilities of these 10 candidates in producing high-quality, impartial images that promote social cohesion. The project will give this group of photojournalists from different regions of Nigeria, with varied and often self-taught profiles, the opportunity to improve their technical and journalistic skills.

The aim of this project is also to allow them to develop a personal project related to the general elections in 2023 and with the aim of developing their capacity to make their work as a photojournalist sustainable and profitable.

Project content

“Naija in Lights” is a 12-month project implemented by CFI in partnership with StoryMi Academy, Radio France internationale (RFI) and the Alliances Françaises network in Nigeria and revolves around two main components :

Component 1 – Two 7-day training sessions. The first will be devoted to photography techniques and the identification of an individual project (technical aspects, different styles of photojournalism, reading of photographic images, the ethical principles of photojournalism, the consideration of the principle of gender equality, the history of photojournalism in the world and in Africa). The second will be devoted to the principles of the photojournalism market and the development of an exhibition project (how to develop a viable personal project, identification of economic opportunities, exhibition of work, sell a pitch to editors, present your work in front of an audience).

Component 2 – Remote coaching for the creation of a personal project on the subject of the elections and participation in the organisation of a group exhibition, which will be hosted by the Alliances Françaises network in Nigeria.

The support offered by CFI for the selected photojournalists :

Component 1:

  • One (1) training session on photography techniques and identification of an individual project, 7 days in Kano (to be confirmed).
  • One (1) training session on the principles of the photojournalism market and support for the development of an exhibition project, 7 days in Lagos

Component 2:

  • Remote coaching and support for the development of an individual project (production of a photo report), 3 days per beneficiary spread over 4 months
  • A joint exhibition of photographs organised by the Alliances Françaises network in Nigeria.
– Terms and conditions 

All costs related to the participation in the various activities of this project (transport, accommodation, food) will be covered by CFI.

The training sessions will take place in English and will be delivered by highly-recognized experts, as well as national and international speakers (France, Nigeria and Zimbabwe).

Participation of the photojournalists in the programme requires their full availability throughout the duration of the project. The supervisors of any photojournalists who may be employed by a media outlet agree to release them from any professional obligation during training and coaching days.

Physical sessions will take place in Kano – to be confirmed – (training session 1) and Lagos (training session 2).  They will take place in quiet rooms with a good internet connection, the details of which will be provided appropriately. The teaching tools will be projected onto a screen and the documentation will be provided to the participants during the sessions. Participants will be  asked to bring their own laptop and camera with them if possible.

Coffee breaks and lunch will be organised by CFI as part of the training sessions. All of the journalists will be accommodated close to -or within- the training site, and meals and transport expenses will be provided by CFI.

A provisional timetable for the training and coaching sessions will be provided to the selected media outlets at the start of the programme.

The exhibition will begin in the Alliance Française in Lagos. Photojournalists will be invited to present their work at the opening of the exhibition.

Who is this call for applications for? 

The applicants must be a journalist, employed by one or more established media outlets (private or public and on a freelance or in-house basis), or active on social media and exhibiting a certain degree of influence among young people (a number of subscribers on social networks (< 2k)). The applicants must be based in Nigeria and practising press or journalistic photography for at least 2 years. They sound knowledge of the basics of photography (writing captions, basic understanding of how to read an image, proficient in basic editing, etc.) and desire to become a professional photojournalist and to make a living from this profession. They are independent and creative and apply the rules of independence and impartiality in their photographic work.

The group of beneficiaries will be composed of equal numbers of photographers from the south (South West, South East, South South) and from the north (North West, North East, North Central, Federal Capital Territory) and female applicants will be given higher priority.

Screening process

The selection process will take place in two stages :

1- Analysis of the online form containing the following information 

– An introduction to the applicant, their career plan and their reason for participating in the project (4 pages maximum)
– A description of their photographic work with downloads of photographs with captions (min. 3 and max. 10 pictures)
– At least one reference from a person who has worked with the applicant
– Any other experience of relevance to the objectives and activities of the “Naija in Lights” project
– Letter of consent from the applicant’s supervisor if the photojournalist is employed by a media outlet
– Confirmation of availability for the entire duration of the project.

CFI will preselect applicants on the basis of this file. Those who are preselected will be invited to complete a test to evaluate their ability to read photographs.

2- Test : the applicants will be asked to 

– Choose a photograph produced by another photographer and then assess and analyse it (10-15 lines)
– Submit a series of three photographs taken by the candidate or by a photographer you like on the subject of national unity.

The applications will be examined by a jury, who will assess the applications according to the criteria below. Applications will receive a score out of 100 points, with an obligation to achieve at least 30 points during phase 1 in order to move on to the next stage of the selection process.

The selection process should be fully completed no later than 1st November 2022.

Key dates

30 August 2022: launch of the call for applications
30 September 2022: deadline for receiving application files (18:00 UT)
20 October 2022: publication of the results for stage 1
24 to 31 October: test (stage 2)
1st November 2022: publication of the results
5 December 2022: start of training session 1 in Kano (7 days) – to be confirmed

Amount to be attributed to each beneficiary 420.000 Nairas (equivalent to 1000 EUR)

– Evaluation Grid
  Criterion Number of points
File Complete file Exclusion criterion if file is not complete
1-    Description of the applicant, their work and their motivation
Compliance with mandatory criteria (working in Nigeria, knowledge of the basics of photography) 15
Experience and quality of the photographic work presented 15
Motivation and relevance of the career plan (compared with the project activities) 20

Minimum score to move on to the next stage: 30

2-    Test
Selection and analysis of a photograph 25
Presentation of three photographs on the subject of national unity 25
Sub-total 50
Total   100
Bonus for female applicants 5

30 September 2022: deadline to receive the applications files (18:00 UT)

Any question ?
Please send an email to: laurence.burckel@cfi.fr

Nous n'acceptons plus les candidatures pour cet appel.

Partners :

StoryMi Academy

Locations :

Selection : 10 professional photojournalists, employed by a media or freelance
Contact : laurence.burckel@cfi.fr
More information : https://cfi.fr/fr/projet/naija-lights