Bringing joy in many different ways - Tony Maake
It is hard to be ambitious – sometimes there are simply not enough hours in a day to accomplish all the goals you have in mind. However, we know that nothing is impossible. We would like to introduce to you a smart, intelligent, stylish and kind guy, who manages to do almost everything while staying himself.
Tony Maake, but well known as Tony Mac, is a founder of photography brand Tonys Houz by being a passionate photographer. He was born and raised in Joburg city in Katlehong, South Africa, a time from which he still gets most of his inspiration from. He currently studies Molecular Biology at University of Stellenbosch and works at a wine institute biotechnology as wine microbiologist. As an ambitious person, he still finds time to be an assistance lecturer in Photography at Stellenbosch center for photographic services.
In 2013, he has been awarded as the best photographer of the year by creative photographic society in Stellenbosch for a photo challenge. In 2015, he was one of the finalists of the photo contest Swedish Innovations South African Interpretations and received certificates from Transparency International. He even hosted exhibitions in Germany, USA, Johannesburg and Stellenbosch.
Among these activities, Tony is the founder of Tonys Houz Children’s foundation. While photographing for the project ‘Behind the smile of an African smile’ he became motivated to initiate a children’s foundation for community services. Now this foundation creates programs to help communities and schools in Townships by empowering them with necessary academic and living tools.
And last but not least: he is a fashion stylist, a menswear influencer to grow the AfroDandy movement. He does this by being a Dandy and sharing his passion for dressing stylish every day, everywhere. Because of this, he recently has been featured and documented as one of the Classic Elegant Gentlemen around the world in the book “WE ARE DANDY”, based from New York, by the photographer Rose Callahan and writer Nathaniel 'Natty' Adams.
Tony: Fighting to be the best in everything I did at primary and high school.
Where do you live now? What is the best about your city?
You have a wide range of activities: a photographer, scientist, storyteller… Whom do you consider yourself first of all and?
“Dressing up is part of who we are”
Tony: Pitti Uomo 91 & 92, Elegant wine and Chocolate tasting I hosted in April and Ballantines & Afrocentric Gentleman hosted by Menzi Mcunu.
Can you tell us some of your favorite places in the world?
What sparked your interest in fashion?
How would you define your style?
Sprezzatura, what kind of style is this?
What are your primary sources of inspiration?
You took a part in “We are Dandy: The Elegant Gentleman Around the World” last year. What did it bring to you?
What is it like – to be a Dandy?
“I fight to be unique”
Tony: AfroDandyism it’s not a new fashion style in our country, it existed long ago during apartheid era. Perhaps the style was named Afrodandyism as time went by. The special thing about AfroDandyism, is that you become unique and proud as an African. It is another way that helps to deliver our own personal styles which was integrated by our elders to be a special queer persona without having any sexual preference.
What is special about your personality?
Tony: They are minimal and creatively handcrafted, they are classic and unique. Moreover, they are suitable for both daily wear and special classical occasions.
What is your way to bring joy to the people?
Share a secret.
The best advice you have ever received
Your final word?
BeWooden - Be “the greatest”
We would like to thank Tony for the great interview,
wish him all the best in the future and to continue inspire us.
Author: Carmen Veltman
Photo credits to: Thabiso Tsotetsi