Once more I had the opportunity to meet one of our outstanding Cameroonian artist Syl Annim, in her little corner, bent over in her art work, barely a few hours before she took off for her base - Nigeria. We chatted at length about our passions, interests, goals, dreams... and in her very gentle, polite and soft spoken manner, I saw determination, self motivation, hard work and a vision for her country. She is on her way to Lagos, to arm herself and be back by the first if February to take part in the week long Fashion event in Douala! Watch out for Syl in 2010!
VS:Tell me a little about Syl
Syl: I am Sylvie Mbuta Annim, but everyone calls me Syl Annim, and thats the name for my label, I am an actress and a fashion designer... (laughing she asks, what else?)
VS: What's a typical day like for you in Lagos?
Syl: normally I sleep late cos I work round the clock, but when I'm on set I wake up at six am to go to location, then I come back home to my designing. I travel around sometimes for shooting, and when I do, I go with my hand work, and if I am not on a scene, while waiting, I am knitting or working on my designs.
VS: You have lived in both Cameroon and Nigeria, what are the strengths you think Cameroon processes?
Syl: There is a lot of talent in Cameroon, and we need to get people to help bring out the talent.
VS: What positive aspect about Nigeria do you think Cameroon should copy?
Syl: Nigerians are very industrious and hard working people, they take risks, they get out of their comfort zones and try new things. The country's Economy favours growth. When I look at Cameroon and all it's potential, one of the major set backs on business men, investors or growing businesses, is the tax. Cameroon needs to review it's tax policy to make investment favourable.
VS:What's your goal being in Nigeria?
Syl: I left for Nigeria to get into acting. Back here in Cameroon, I started acting, but the industry is still very young, so to grow, I needed to be in a booming and competitive market. While in Nigeria, being an upcoming actress, jobs don't come by that often, so I needed to try my hand in something else, thats how I started designing. So I am basically in Nigeria to gain all the knowledge available in these areas of art, then come back home, and grow the business.
VS: I know you have plans for the Cameroonian market, please let me in on some of them.
Syl: I plan to start a training centre to make most of my designs, train interested young Cameroonians on every single idea I have. There will be a lot of such ideas coming up from me in the near future.
VS: Wow, Syl, that's sounds really nice, please do call on VS if you need any help, we will be happy to be a part of your crew. So what will you tell Cameroonian youth if given the opportunity?
Syl: Let them believe in themselves, search deep to discover their talents, and work towards it. Let them follow their God given instincts, and take risks, and not just do things because the rest of the world is doing. Let them be bold, and try their hands in everything possible, till they find themselves.
VS: Thank you very much Syl, we hope to have you here again very soon, and this time physically why not? do have a save trip back as well. byeeeee!