19-year-old Yaw Biney, a student at the Ghana Technology University College, is documenting the people of Accra one day at a time. The self-styled photo enthusiast's project, Humans of Accra, takes cues from American photo blogger Brandon Stanton's wildly successful Humans of New York — a multi-platform visual documentation of the everyday people in New York.
Biney, who doesn't even own a camera of his own, posts his photos of Accra's inhabitants on social networks including Tumblr
. But taking close-ups of random strangers in an African metropolis is not a walk in the park. “My first day experience, I will never forget. I had the impression that it would be easy getting photos of people out there, but it wasn’t. I had a lot of people rejecting me because either they didn’t like the idea of being photographed by a stranger or they didn’t want to be on the internet for any reason. It really got to me but I had to psych myself up for the future because it is not everybody who will want the photo taken,” Biney says.
Still, the young Ghanaian's enthusiasm remains unbridled: “I have met many great people who have shared amazing stories and experiences with me. One was about a man who was homeless. Another favourite is the encounter I had with an old man who has been selling used clothes for over 18 years. It really humbled me I should say. I hope I continue to meet great people who will keep sharing great stories with me.”
See photos from the project below.