Leica Women Foto Project Award recipients are determined by a panel of notable judges based on quality of photography, sophistication of project and a dedication to the medium of photography.

This year, UK-based and Nigerian-born photographer Dola Posh takes home the new Leica SL3, a Vario-Elmarit-SL 24-70mm f/2.8 ASPH. Lens and $10,000 USD.

Dola delves into the complexities of self-identity and postpartum depression, seamlessly blending strength and vulnerability.


What does your history as a photographer look like?

My photography journey was sparked by my parents’ gift of a pink camera; we went to Ikogosi in Ekiti State that summer holiday. I remember taking photos of everything I saw. Since then, I continued practising photography at the University of Lagos. Over time, this ‘hobby’ evolved into a career and artistic expression as I delved into the transformative journey of new motherhood. Despite the challenges of relocating to England, starting over, and battling declining mental health, the birth of my daughter became a pivotal moment that rekindled my creative flame and led me on the journey of healing through photography.


‘OMO MI’ is such a compelling series; what motivated you to create it?

The ‘OMO MI’ series emerged from the depths of my postpartum journey, where I struggled with the shifts in self-identity and the overwhelming demands of motherhood. It became a way for me to navigate through the complexities of this experience, capturing both the joys and struggles in truthful, authentic imagery. As I suffered from postpartum depression and began therapy, I became motivated by a desire to shed light on the often-overlooked narratives of black motherhood and the stigma around postpartum depression. ‘OMO MI’ became a platform to amplify these voices and foster a sense of love, community, and storytelling.

Why did you choose self-portraiture for this body of work?

I didn’t choose it, it chose me. In 2020, during COVID-19, I became a mum. I had no work and was at home with my child. I had nowhere to go or express my creativity, and it was this that made me whole, so I began taking photos with my daughter at home. Self-portraiture became integral to ‘OMO MI’ because it allowed me to immerse myself fully in the narrative, blurring the lines between artist and subject. Most days at home were quiet and cold, but self-exploration gave me light and made me open the windows in the morning. Through each photograph, I was documenting my journey and reclaiming my identity and experiences as a black mother. This intimate approach allowed me to convey the raw emotions and vulnerabilities that come with motherhood, inviting viewers into a deeply personal exploration of a mother’s experience.

What does it mean to you to be a female photographer?

Being a female photographer means embracing the unique perspective and voice that I bring to the photography sphere. It means challenging societal norms and stereotypes, especially within a male-dominated field of photography, and carving out a space where women’s stories and experiences are celebrated and honoured. It’s about using my platform to elevate women’s voices and inspire others to find strength and empowerment through visual storytelling.

What advice would you give to other female photographers?

My advice to other female photographers is to view their femininity as strength, to embrace themselves and what makes them whole, and to trust their dreams and unique vision and the stories they have to tell, as they hold immense power to resonate with others. Additionally, to surround themselves with a supportive community of fellow artists who uplift and empower one another and never underestimate the impact of their voices and perspectives in shaping the world around them.

Do you have anything exciting coming up, or any plans for your new Leica SL3?

I am incredibly excited about the possibilities the Leica SL3 brings to my creative journey. With its cutting-edge technology and unparalleled performance, I cannot wait to experiment and push the boundaries of my artistic practice, exploring new avenues of storytelling. From capturing the intimate moments of motherhood to amplifying the stories of black mothers and our communities, I am eager to see how this powerful tool will further support and elevate my work and allow me to connect with audiences on a deeper level.

See more of Dola’s imagery on her Instagram, Website and Twitter.