Lola Akinmade Åkerström

Lola Akinmade Åkerström

Visual Storytelling

Award-winning Author, Photographer, Advocate
Stockholm, Sweden

Topics Include:

  • The power of asking “Why not?”
  • Finding Your Extraordinary Voice
  • How to become a better storyteller

More on her website

Last updated on November 7th, 2023

Lola Akinmade Åkerström is an award-winning visual storyteller, international bestselling author, and entrepreneur. She has photographed and dispatched from 80+ countries and her work has been featured in National Geographic, New York Times, The Guardian, BBC, CNN, Travel Channel, Travel + Leisure, Lonely Planet, Forbes,, and many more. She has collaborated with high-profile brands such as Mercedes-Benz, Dove, Four Seasons, Electrolux, and Intrepid Travel, to name a few.

She has been recognized with multiple prestigious awards and nominations for her work. She was named one of the 2023’s Most Influential Women in Travel by Travel Pulse. She was honoured with a MIPAD 100 (Most Influential People of African Descent) Award within media and culture in 2018. Her photography is in the National Geographic Image Collection.

As a storyteller, Lola was named a Hasselblad Heroine in 2022 and was the 2018 Bill Muster Travel Photographer of the Year. Her book, Due North, received the Lowell Thomas Gold Award for Best Travel Book, and she is also the author of international bestselling LAGOM: The Swedish Secret of Living Well which is available in 18 foreign editions. In 2021 she published In Every Mirror She’s Black, which was named the 2021 “Best Thought-Provoking Story” by the Independent UK. In October 2023 she will publish her latest novel, “Everything Is Not Enough”.

As a mentor, she runs her own photo experiences around the world and online academy, Geotraveler Media Academy, which is dedicated to visual storytelling and helping the next generation of travel storytellers put their heart back into the craft.

More on her topics:

  • The power of asking “Why not?”  Society loves to put us all in neat cultural boxes that often don’t overlap seamlessly. When they do overlap, it sometimes feels like two continental plates colliding and seething. The idea I want to spread through my talk is for our creative lives to be metaphorical representations of the rhetorical question • “Why not?”. This inspirational keynote will provide key takeaways when we consciously and subconsciously ask “why not?” through our words and actions.
  • Finding Your Extraordinary Voice: This inspirational keynote presentation, filled with personal anecdotes, visuals and imagery spanning my career as a travel photographer, is broken down into three steps • Discovery, Amplification, and Maturity • and I summarize how these three areas of reflection can help you along that journey to finding your own extraordinary voice.
  • How to become a better storyteller: From serendipitous encounters with people we can’t forget to stolen moments of solitude with our thoughts. We all have stories to share.
    How can we craft and share those stories with others that can create empathy and connection with others? How can we cradle with care the responsibility of telling other people’s stories? How do you hook, engage, intrigue, and keep your readers all the way to your closing message?

Member, JourneyWoman Women’s Travel Directory
Speaker, JourneyWoman Women’s Travel Wisdom Retreat, 2022

Recent Speaking Engagements

  • National Geographic Traveller Masterclasses
  • Skift Forum, UAE
  • PhocusWright Travel Summit, USA
  • TEDx Stockholm, Sweden
  • Women in Travel Summit, Latvia
  • Adventure Travel Summit, Sweden
  • ITB Berlin, Germany
  • Royal Geographical Society, UK
  • Women in Travel CIC


Books, Podcasts, Articles, and More

Lagom: The Swedish Secret of Living Well
In Every Mirror She's Black: A Novel
Everything Is Not Enough