Okay before you come for me and the whole Accelerate team, Let me first state that this particular COVER was shot way before we, unfortunately, had to start practising social distancing. That being said, how is everyone dealing with this deadly pandemic? I can imagine how mentally exhausting the lock-down has been. For those of you who live alone and are almost losing your minds, my heart goes out to you.
For the people who live with their parents, I can relate to the struggle: if my mother sends me on another errand while I’m in the middle of a zoom meeting, I’ll lose it. For the married couples or couples that are currently social-distancing together, (aka couple isolation) I hope your relationship comes out stronger.
Speaking of married couples undergoing couple isolation…
Our favourite YouTube couple, Akah and Claire, give us the scoop on how Coronavirus has affected their relationship on this month’s edition of The Cover. Yes, for the April issue of The Cover Magazine, we decided to feature actor and TV host, Akah Nnani and his wife; fashion designer and Illustrator, Claire Nnani (nee Idera). No, trust me, it was just pure coincidence that April turned out to be their anniversary month.
So why did we feature them?
Because they are the cutest couple EVER! If you know me, you know that when it comes to romance, I can die on that hill. Akah and Claire are the epitome of romance. They are the definition and the embodiment of that word. And that’s why I particularly loved shooting this cover. Honestly, I can’t count the number of times I said “God when” during the shoot. If there’s one thing I noticed during the shoot is that Akah and Claire are very affectionate towards each other. They were constantly hugging, touching, sneaking glances, and making inside jokes throughout the whole shoot. It was super cute.
Akah loves Claire.
Let me emphasize that properly, Akah LOVES Claire, and I could see it from the way he looked at her whenever he was either speaking to her or speaking about her. It was so adorable watching Clair blush and roll her eyes whenever Akah flirted with her on set.
Can you believe that they’ve been married for a year, already? (Their anniversary was on Wednesday, 8th of April.) Meanwhile, it feels like just yesterday the whole of Lagos was celebrating their engagement. A whole year after, I wondered if anything had changed during their marriage.
Well Akah learned that love means a totally different thing in marriage.
“I thought I knew how to love until marriage. The love you need in a marriage is a whole different ball game. And if I don’t have God’s heart, I can’t love her right.”
While Claire learned to always put her partner first:
“For me, I’m learning self-control and patience. And marriage is teaching me to not always put myself first. So it’s always the other person first.”.
At this point, Chidinma (the badass producer) got them to ask each other interview questions because she thought it would feel more personal. And she was right.It was delightfully hilarious watching Claire ask Akah how his social life had changed since marriage. Their reactions were raw and refreshing.
These two are actually so adorable. No wonder they argue about mundane things such as Claire telling Akah not to wear bathroom slippers outside of the house. According to Akah, that was the argument they had just before they left the house for the shoot.
Well, there were definitely no slippers in sight when these two bodied their photoshoot from the beginning to the end! They didn’t go easy on us! My favourite look was the one with them on quad bikes.
That was so hardcore and – you guessed it- badass!
Shout out to our fashion editor, Joan, for putting all the outfits & props together and Deolu, hats off to you for taking the fire pictures!
We checked in on Akah and Claire to see how they are dealing with Coronavirus and social distancing as a couple.
On their relationship amid the Coronavirus
AKAH: “We are working harder as a couple. We pray and put in work!”
CLAIRE: “Coping with work amid the coronavirus has been challenging but as Akah said we’ve had to work extra hard and be a lot more creative…”
On their relationship towards the outside world.
A: We’ve become more generous and we are trying to be a lot more sensitive to our friends and family.
Any words for those people going through depression or any form of negativity in this time of COVID-19?
A: Depend on God, Read the word, speak to someone who cares.
As a couple, if you’re so into your work what time are you spending together?
C: We are always in each other’s space…I mean we are both freelancers and so working from home is our norm
On their recent anniversary…
C: It’s meant to be the most important anniversary being our first but sadly we didn’t buy gifts prior to the quarantine so we had to be more creative.
On getting on each other’s nerves,
C: Our minds have grown so much! There’s no… I want to vex and leave the house… there’s nowhere to go. Zero movement.
In light of their anniversary, the couple share their top three favourite things about each other.
CLAIRE’s THREE THINGS FOR AKAH
“I love your smile. I tell him almost every day, he has the most heartwarming smile”
“I love how he’s drawing closer to God, it’s so attractive. I’m even envious about it even”
“I like that he helps me out with house stuff. He’s very supportive in our home and even with my work”
AKAH’s THREE THINGS FOR CLAIRE
“You’re smart.. The only thing is I don’t think you’re aware of how talented and smart you are”
“I like that you’re beautiful. I mean I really feel like I married the most beautiful girl in Nigeria. Take that to the Bank! Like how many MBGNs are finer than her? None”
“ I love that you can cook. I like your food a lot.”
“ And I love that you love me,” to which Claire said “aww baby that’s four.”
I know I’ve said it a lot, but I can’t help but to say it again: these two are too freaking adorable!
Photography: Deolu photography
Cover Story: Dammy Eneli
Creative Director: Tokyo James
Styling: Joan Vincent-Otiono
Costume: (For Akah: Jeff Urban Clothing ,The Urban Nest, Jewel by Tee)
(For Claire: Adey Soilé, Wodi Benuah)
Jewels: Jewel By Tee
Hair: Tony’s Hair Salon
MUA: Beauty By Udu
Location: Sky Front Ocean Beach Club
See Also: The Cover- Chigul The Comedienne