This week is our first spotlight on a cinematographer, Vaima Kario. Vaima’s love for visuals is extremely evident by his YouTube moniker LVL Imagery, Lord Vaima Loves Imagery. Vaima Kario is an aspiring filmmaking extraordinaire hailing from Botswana. Currently studying his honours in Cinematography at AFDA Johannesburg, this 22-year-old is racking up quite the show reel. I first came across his work watching short films on Vimeo. It was here where I came across End of The Line; his under-grad graduation piece. Without giving many spoilers, End of the Line is a psychological short that explores the effects of domestic abuse and the traumas that can come with it. This evocative piece is an exquisite showcase of the potential storytellers that lie amongst our generation. End of the Line’s visuals were incredibly arresting and captivating. At 21, Vaima’s cinematography skills are on full display in this short. Each shot felt considered, meticulously planned and executed. From his lighting choices and use of colour to his choice between hand-held and steady shots. Vaima’s cinematography was not only ambitious in scope but was tailored to enhance the intricacies of the story laid out for him.
Vaima has the makings of an auteur. He has a deft understanding of imagery and is showing his competencies in other fields including writing, directing and editing. These are on full display on Gary’s Story, Vaima’s first directorial piece. To my knowledge, this is also Vaima’s first body of work outside his student work. Like End of The Line, Gary’s Story has a very psychological and introspective quality to the way the visuals are portrayed. Vaima has quipped that his authored works tend to extract from different pivotal moments in his life. They are different pieces of him. As he grows there’ll be more pieces to give.
As stated before, Vaima’s currently studying his honours at AFDA Johannesburg. He also aspires to pursue his master’s degree in France, having a strong affinity for the works that come from there. He’s recently entered the music videos market. His first directorial credit, Two Cup$, was released just under a month ago. To catch more of his original content go to his YouTube channel, LVL Imagery. Lord Vaima Loves Imagery but it’s clear that the relationship is a mutual one.