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In 1942, Alonge established the Ideal Photo Studio in Benin City. He was a young, hard-working professional who developed a reputation as an honest, trustworthy businessman. The Ideal Studio became “the place” to go in Benin City for your portrait. In the early years, Alonge took portraits outdoors with a large format, glass plate camera and a locally made studio backdrop. With the help of kerosene lanterns, he developed the glass plate negatives at night and contact printed the images on gaslight paper. He learned how to mix his own chemicals with the help of instruction booklets from Kodak and Ilford, and used sunlight to develop his prints. In 1940, Alonge began to retouch, sepia tone, and hand-color his photographs. When electricity came to Benin in 1945, he was able to take studio portraits indoors with lights and develop his photographs inside the studio.
For his commercial clients, Alonge created product advertisements, documented construction projects and groundbreaking ceremonies, and covered business conferences and annual parties for local companies like Guinness Brewery. For the Nigerian government ministry, he would photograph official ceremonies and historical events across southwestern Nigeria. The quality of Alonge’s photography stood out and he distinguished himself as a professional photographer in many circles.
Alonge served as a mentor to young photographers. He taught his assistants how to be good citizens as well as professional photographers.
Alonge produced personalized greeting cards for himself and for special clients to celebrate birthdays and holidays. These photographic collages often included individual portraits, floral designs, poetry, and popular sayings.