Lyra Aoko Photography – Nairobi Street Photography

I recently got invited to a night time photography session by my IG mate, photographer and cool kid “The Masked Bandit” This was a means for me to step out of my comfort zone of shooting people, flowers and more people and I openly embraced the chance to become Mutual Matheka (@truthslinger on IG) for an and evening.

I have to admit that I was a lot bit hesitant about the invite because I was and will always be SCARED OF THE POPO!! The fact that Kenyan police are notorious for asking for non existent licences whenever they see film or photography equipment which they eventually confiscate is common knowledge but I was assured that that would not be the case on that particular night.

After praying for my kit with Holy Water I set out to meet up with the bandit for our little photography adventure. My model for the day was my beautiful comrade and tribes mate Olive. No sooner had we reached town than God decided to have a super duper shower. I swear I saw an airbender child in the middle of all that chaos… Windy rain is not and will ever be the business, that. rain. was. on. crack!

We were held up in Tribeka in town during that wannabe blizzard (p.s Tribeka really isn’t. such a bad place to be stuck in during a rainy tornado) but I had come out of my hole with the intention to drin shoot so we waited patiently to achieve this goal. I think now would be a good time to mention Maina and Muga who also braved the rain for the expedition.

100years later…

We set out…

Although there was a slight drizzle, the rain had cleaned the streets up in such a beautiful way. In addition to this the lights from the streetlights and the adjacent restaurants in the CBD reflected on the ground giving a nice and soft glow which could easily be captured on camera.

These are some of the images I managed to capture…







Bumaye! I am definitely lookin forward to shooting more out of the box concepts and ideas this year! I am really excited to be on this journey… Real talk *Taylor Swift Voice* Because nobody is realer than Taylor Swift.

Excuse me while I go laugh at what I’ve just written.

Thank you for reading.


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  • Reply salmajmd January 22, 2015 at 3:35 am

    Hi, lovely pics and loved reading your post. I met truthslinger on an Island near Tanzania (Mbudya) cool dude. I felt the feeling you had when joining some photographers in dar es salaam while climbing on top of a building. View was amazing but took me 10 minutes just to convince my self I can climb up and now its something I want to continue doing.

    • Reply Lyra Aoko January 22, 2015 at 11:11 am

      Thank you so much for reading and liking my post @salmajmd πŸ™‚ You have met him?? OMG! I am so jealous. I get mini heart attacks every time he likes one of my images on IG I swear I would die if I ever met him in person! Pushing your limits as a photographer is so essential and epic because you get to experience new things and see new sites which you would never have captured. I am so glad you still want to continue with it. Keep shooting and see you in Mbudya hopefully one day πŸ™‚

      • Reply salmajmd January 22, 2015 at 11:15 am

        Lol he is a cool guy. Whats your instagram user name. Mine is shama2

        • Reply Lyra Aoko January 22, 2015 at 2:21 pm

          Mine is @lyraoko πŸ™‚ Now following…

          • salmajmd January 22, 2015 at 2:24 pm

            Ohh i do follow u πŸ™‚

  • Reply kalemela January 22, 2015 at 5:15 am

    I love the street photography taking place in Nairobi. The images are so captivating, and capture sublime and honest moments of the city and its pulsing ebbs and flows. I have always been curious though about how photographers deal with safety, not only of their equipment but of them sleves. You mentioned the swindling police , but what about having your camera snatched or being mugged? Cameras are not the most inconspicuous of objects to be carrying and thus can make one an easy target to get robbed. How do you keep your babies away form prying hands? I am very intrigued.

    • Reply Lyra Aoko January 22, 2015 at 11:20 am

      I love how you’ve described the street photography because I felt the same way before I eventually set out to try and capture my own images ad the experience was more than amazing! This was my first time shooting at night so I can’t really explain how photographers usually handle themselves but I can tell you of my own experience on that night… first and foremost we did not get any disruptions from the members of the public which was very surprising. I have to admit that I was very paranoid throughout the whole experience and had my camera inside my big hoodie anytime I wasn’t shooting. I looked pregnant! Hahaha It had also rained that evening so I guess the police were not so eager to stand outside and bully us. I had a few moments where I really thought I was going to be mugged but most of the times it was just curious bystanders asking us what we were up to. Once we explained it to them they went about their business as usual. The scariest moment for me though was seeing a dead rat in City market! HORRIFYING!!!

  • Reply Halisee January 22, 2015 at 6:27 am

    Awesome read! I love how you take us on a journey with your words and pictures.. *I’m also still laughing at the last remark you made!!!

    • Reply Lyra Aoko January 22, 2015 at 11:23 am

      Thank you so much for reading and enjoying my blog post! I really appreciate it πŸ™‚
      p.s I am so in love with your images on “An African Wedding made in Germany” post… IN LOVE!

      • Reply Halisee January 23, 2015 at 7:58 am

        Waaaaaiiiit Lyra.. You revamped your site? Ama I am the one who wasn’t keen enough when I came here first? It looks really awesome! And that cover…sweeeeeeettttt!! And I’m glad you liked the post, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the love affair continues πŸ™‚

        Keep making greatness.

        • Reply Lyra Aoko January 23, 2015 at 11:47 am

          Hahaha I actually did πŸ™‚ Thank you for noticing and liking it! I really appreciate it πŸ™‚
          Likewise Halisee!

  • Reply Peter Oluoch February 3, 2015 at 6:33 am

    Lovely work. Lovely photos, Lyra Aoko. I like. Regards, Peter Oluoch,

    • Reply Lyra Aoko February 3, 2015 at 6:00 pm

      Thank you so much Peter! I really appreciate it πŸ™‚

  • Reply [Relationships] This is how it ends; Clarie Gor | the Magunga February 24, 2017 at 12:22 am

    […] Image credits; Photo: Nairobi Street Photography byΒ Lyrao Aoko.Β  Model: Olive Place: Kimathi […]

  • Reply Dark Prince February 24, 2017 at 1:43 am

    I first saw you on Ligi Soon video then later listened to your tracks on SoundCloud….now I just found this. You’ve done well with yourself Lyraoko.

    • Reply lyraoko March 26, 2017 at 8:10 pm

      What a throwback! Thanks a lot for the encouragement! I really appreciate it.

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