When I made it as a finalist last month in the Lonely Planet’s competition, I was featured in the profile section of our company’s online publication. Below are some of the questions they emailed me (and my answers). I’ll be attaching here also snippets of the published article they made about me.
Being featured through this medium is a humbling experience.
How did your interest in photography start? – My father had monthly magazine subscriptions with National Geographic, Reader’s Digest and other reading materials with lots of pictures when I was young. I remember staring at all the photos in his magazines the whole day while sitting gleefully in our big window in Rizal. The view of changing shades of sunset and the sight of the azure Laguna de Bay, the vast green fields and mountains with horses and cows, the sway of huge mango, acacia and caimito trees, and the different colorful birds and butterflies roaming around in our backyard are few of the inspiring images I witnessed from our big window together with the vibrant magazines of my father. I captured these scenes through watercolor painting especially the sunset.
Growing up in Rizal and living near Mr. Vicente Manansala's Museum and other National Artists in Angono, Rizal, most of my childhood friends and classmates are into painting also. Fast forward 2003 when my gf introduced me to oil painting on canvass, my usual subjects are still sunset and seascapes. One weekend when I went home in Rizal last year, there were trucks on the vast field at the back our house and they were transforming the field into village. I felt that it was race against time for me because soon, there will be two to three storey houses that will rise in that field area, and my view of the sunset will be blocked. I decided to buy SLR to freeze the view of the beautiful sunset from our house.
How does photography help in your work here in our company? Does it help you, say, in expressing creativity or releasing stress? - When I joined our company’s PHOTOGRAPHY CLUB last year, I instantly gained photography tutors and mentors from different departments from Public Affairs, Sales, IT, etc who are members of the club also. And when I learned to use the MANUAL mode of my camera on my first meeting with the club, I never looked back using the other shooting modes. Shooting on a MANUAL mode is like painting, you can adjust the colors of your photographs based on the settings of your camera plus the composition drama and effects that you want your images to happen.
Through our photography club, I joined friendship climbs with our MOUNTAINEERING CLUB (we trekked Mount Manalmon in Bulacan, Mount Pinatubo in Tarlac and two nights beach adventures in Nagsasa Zambales). While I met new friends, and shared with them interesting and funny stories over campfire, I was able to capture wonderful photos also that I would submit to Lonely Planet’s competition and mosaic.
Tell us more about your experience as being one of the top photographers in Lonely Planet. – Looking at the Lonely Planet’s website that is visited by millions, the co-finalists’ amazing photos and over 130,000 interesting photo entries worldwide in Lonely Planet’s mosaic, I find it surprising that one of my photos was selected as finalist. I received greetings from (people I don’t know) Spain, Greece to U.S. congratulating me as a finalist and telling me how they love my photos (also the Lonely Planet team who judged my photos that are all based in Australia). Proof that they are looking at the photos I submitted, and in a way, representing our country and showing them the beauty of our islands and the smiles of our people.
The view of the sunset in our province months ago. Yesterday I was in Rizal, I photographed the sunset again but was finding a hard time capturing it, there are new big houses (sort of mini buildings) being built in the field part blocking my view. Will be posting my new sunset shots here soon.