Magic with the lens

Kitso Ramono
AN EYE FOR THE EXCEPTIONAL: Raphael is happiest behind the lens

From Harry Potter to Honey Badgers

Growing up in the mining town of Letlhakane, there was not much to keep young Matthews Raphael entertained.

To pass the time, Raphael spent many happy hours hooked in front of the TV, devouring movie after movie with hungry devotion.

His appetite for films led to curiosity about how they are made.

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This interest remained well after childhood, becoming the driving force behind Raphael’s studies and ultimately his career.

The 30-year-old film maker-cum-photographer is the proud owner of Honey Badgers, a multimedia company he founded in Francistown in 2014.

With a studio located in the heart of the second city, opposite Metcourt Hotel in downtown Francistown, Raphael’s bread-and-butter is clients seeking professional pics and videos of their milestone moments, be it: birthdays, weddings, christenings, graduations, corporate events etc.

It is the dream job for a man fascinated with pictures, both moving and still.

“I loved watching movies back when I was still a child. That love grew to an extent where I wanted to get to know how they are made and even want to see the behind the scenes. The urge grew stronger and in my mind I knew what I am going to be when I grow up,” he tells Voice Money.

As well as the passion, Raphael has the talent to back it up.

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In 2012, the self-sponsored student left for the Scottish capital to study Film Making at Edinburgh University.

It was during his student days in the United Kingdom that he earned a magical, life-changing opportunity.

“While still studying at the university, I felt like I needed to be out their practicing the profession; I felt like studying was not enough. With luck I got a part-time job at Harry Potter studios, where I got the opportunity to practice my first love, which is filmmaking and taking pictures,” he says.

Returning to BW upon graduation, with the money he made working at Harry Potter, one of the biggest film franchises in history, Raphael invested in camera equipment and launched his dream business.

Celebrating a decade in existence this year, the road to sweet success has been littered with many sour obstacles for Honey Badgers.

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“Within a year of opening Honey Badgers all my equipment got stolen, and I was back to square one. Luckily they couldn’t steal my editing skills [chuckles darkly]! I then had to get tenders from other photographers helping them with editing their pictures and videos to try and get back on my feet.”

Fortunately, the Ministry of Youth answered his cries, buying him an expensive new camera. It proved the helping hand he needed.

Business is now flourishing, with bookings coming in thick and fast, a testament to the excellent work Honey Badgers have become famous for.

With three employees and rentals to pay, Raphael supplements his company’s income by repairing computers as well as creating and designing websites for clients.

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