Redefining Photography The Carlos Idun-Tawiah Way

Carlos Idun-Tawiah (b. 1997) is a Ghanaian photographer and filmmaker based in Accra, Ghana who centers African resurgence and preservation of the dynamic lives of Black people. Inspired by Ghana’s rich history of archival and fashion photography, Carlos brings his life-long investment in art into documenting the ever-changing landscapes of Black life across the African continent and the diaspora.

Beyond preserving details about current upheavals in African cultures in and outside of the continent, Carlos is driven by the historical connection that African peoples have to unique art forms. Specifically, he is interested in revitalising and correcting misinterpretations, disfigurations and gaps in long-lasting perceptions about the continent. Although the continent has always been actively involved in the development of the world, its people and their own conceptions of reality are still subverted. Carlos’s work focuses on drawing out these unique understandings of the world around us by capturing Blackness in its purest beauty – from the young artistes whose giddy sounds empower entire generations to the hairstyles which symbolise the boundary-breaking values of community.

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Since capturing Michaela Coel in 2018, Carlos’s work has appeared in the American, British and Italian editions of VOGUE, The Guardian, InStyle, ESSENCE, CNN International, CNN Style, Notion, WWD, Teen Vogue, Pitchfork, Marie Claire France, Vanity Fair Italia, Harper’s Bazaar U.K and Adobe’s Behance. Featured clients include Mercedes Benz, Yale Alumni Service Corps, Alara, Bohten, Maria Borges, Threaded Tribes, Daughter by Ebonee Davis and Naomi Campbell.

Carlos is not a fan of labels. But if he had to pick one for himself, he’d go with “editorial photographer.”The 23-year-old’s fashion photos have graced the pages of Vogue, Essence and InStyle, showing off his vibrant yet composed style.Between the beauty shoots and the fancy car adverts, Idun-Tawiah uses his camera to dispel misconceptions about African heritage.”I just love to document stories that matter, that are important, that go beyond the colors or the framing,” he told CNN.

Credit: Carlos Idun-Tawiah