Exploring how music, art, film, photography, poetry and literature influence how we see ourselves and how we’re viewed by others.

Lens on…West Africa, a new photo series from @AfricaRizing

Lens on… is a new photo series inspired by our journalists’ journeys to areas less traveled throughout West Africa. Through these photos, you’ll meet individuals who reflect the diversity found within our shared culture and experiences. You’ll get to see them exhibit their passions through moments of everyday life and share personal moments that demonstrate the extraordinary in the ordinary.

We hope you’ll enjoy our 1st collection of portraits found on Instagram and Facebook from our Travel Diaries series and look for more photos in the weeks to come.


The weirdest place I’ve ever been, and why I loved it

From the road, Kayes is the first city outside Senegal in neighboring Mali. It’s 12 hours north east of Bamako and 16 to 25 hours from Dakar, depending on whether the fruit sellers who board the public transport every other village actually get off. The dry, gritty red earth kicked up by the backs of sandals and motorbike tires gives the entire place an airbrushed effect. The city is divided in two by the Senegal river but Kayes is really a region spanning 28 communes.