Fhatuwani Mukheli is one-third of the Soweto-born and bred creative collective, I See a Different You (ISADY). Originally a blog, the endeavour has transformed itself into a fully fledged creative agency that’s redefining the world’s image of Africa
Words: Tshiamo seape
Fhatuwani, along with his twin brother, Rendani and their partner, Vuyo started their journeys in the world of advertising. Having been frustrated by that lack of accurate representation of their beloved home, they took it upon themselves to create a portal that more accurately depicted the vibrancy and authenticity of Soweto – “The Soweto we know and love is an exciting and dynamic place filled with uniquely South African experiences, stories, creativity, and poetic contradictions.”
I See a Different You started as a photography blog that quickly gained traction. The success allowed the group to travel, and so their influence grew, (read more in our interview:http://bit.ly/2pBz26I). Their audience expanded quickly and soon they were serving content to and from Africa – not just their base in Soweto.
In his own capacity, Fhatuwani is an art director by day as well as a talented illustrator (he describes himself as “a multidisciplinary artist”). His skills honed between the hours of nine and five have translated seamlessly to his passion project. His Instagram is painted with the colours and textures of Africa. He turns the tropes of fashion photography, food, and travel on their head by delivering a more sincere and revealing portrait of who he is more than just what he’s doing. His work is like an adventure journal that transports the viewer to places they never knew existed, and therein lies the beauty: Some the greatest beauty the world has to offer is waiting just around the corner.
The future is bright for Fhatuwani and his creative partners. ISADY has been around for six years now, and in that time the brand has expanded substantially. The group was previously only involved in photography but has since expanded into the worlds of advertising, fashion, and film. His work with the collective has caught the eye of top brands who are now enlisting the young creative to tell their stories. In today’s world of clutter and manufactured messages, Fhatuwani is a breath of fresh air. Authenticity is the new social currency and he has it in spades.
With passion, conviction, and an honest eye Fhatuwani sees a different world that the rest of us are just now discovering.
Check out more of Fhatuwani's work here: