Yusuf Atef

Yusuf Atef
Yusuf Lorika is recognized nationally as one of Uganda's finest image-makers, his best known for his evocative color photography. In the finest documentary tradition, Yusuf captures the essence of human struggle and joy. Born in Karamoja, Yusuf graduated from the department of Mass Communication at Makerere University. He left for Southern Sudan to freelance and witness the peace process. It was here that his pastoral affiliation drew him closer to pastoralist communities in Southern Sudan. His career shifted somewhat to the humanitarian fold. He noted that, “it felt strange to focus and shoot people and children in pain.” He chose to dip his hands in the ground and use his pictures to solicit aid for ‘his’ people. Having worked for 3 years, he crossed the border into Northern Kenya where he worked with the Turkana Pastoralists while crisscrossing the border further north to Ethiopia for 4 more years supporting pastoral communities in livelihoods, disaster risk reduction and communication. He noted that, “the struggle for cattle, water and pasture among pastoralists, can mean the difference between life and death.” Yusuf has covered the civil conflict in Southern Sudan, Somalia and the perennial pastoral clashes for natural resources. He focuses on the human consequences of war, not only showing what war impresses on the landscape, but rather, on the human face. Today, while serving as a communications specialist at UNICEF Uganda, he continues to practice his passion, - photography. Although he has opted to focus more on happier moments in life, i.e. shooting weddings, he continues to expand his work into land scape, nature and wildlife photography.
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