Full Name: Don C. Garchitorena
flickr Screen Name: shutterglass
Occupation: Product Data Specialist of a rapid response supplier of technology solutions for business, government and educational institutions as well as consumers in the US, with over 100,000 different products from companies such as Compaq, Microsoft, Apple, IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Toshiba, Cisco, etc.
camera body = Nikon D50
lenses = Nikkor 50mm f/1.8; Nikkor 28-80 f/3.3-5.6; Quantary 70-300 f/4-5.6 Macro
Favorite Photographic Subject: In order: People (Candid/Posed), Places, Objects
Favorite Photographer: Manny Librodo
Dream Gear: Knowing the ever-changing models in a few months time, its hard to dream for the ultimate gear. I rather defined dream gear as realistic gear, as I dream for it, then one day i get to hold and maximize its potential.
Photographic Ambition: Solo exhibit is one. Being recognize having a different style in capturing and freezing subjects in time is another.
Person and Family
DON: Yes. One and only!
DON: No. No.
FPC: Is she your officemate?
DON: She was my officemate.
FPC: What's her opinion about your photographic passion?
DON: 50-50. I mean she is supportive when she gets me to do something she wants done. Then I get support for photoshoots. Otherwise, the other 50.
FPC: Does she know you shoot models?
DON: Yes. Even nudes shoots. She is matured enough not to get jealous. Arguments are a waste of time.
FPC: How many siblings are you?
DON: We're three. I am the firstborn.
FPC: So, do you support the younger ones financially?
DON: Not really. But when they need something, I help too--financially, and in some other means. However, when it comes to artworks, it's me they need to help.
FPC: Are they also photographically inclined?
DON: No. I am the only one different.
DON: That's a long story. It started when I was browsing in the Tipid PC forum (an all-around forum, but primarily for buying and selling). There I saw photos by Filipinos and foreigners. Thus, I was inspired and became curious. I tried copying their shots with my Samsung point-and-shoot camera but, of course, failed. I asked myself: "What do they do to take such photos? Why can't I duplicate their shots?" I had many questions. Of course, I didn't know about DSLRs back then.
DON: When I joined PhiPho, I read from the threads, from the pros about aperture and shutterspeed priority. And that the automode should be used only in "panic cases." I asked a lot and was thankful to Hydroxycut [another FPC member] for welcoming my questions. I also came in contact with Rus88 [also an FPC member] in PhiPho and it was he who mentioned about FPC's Live Extreme coverage at the PICC Forum.
DON: What do you mean? That's a hard one.
FPC: For example, when is a portrait photo good for you?
DON: I guess when I take a long look at a photo and wonder how it was done. When it captures the attention of someone who lingers on that photo. Conversely, when a photo is viewed only cursorily, I think it does not have the qualities of a good photo.
FPC: Do you like your photos being critiqued?
DON: Yes, even when the comments are "below-the-belt." I think it is for the good of a photographer to take even those seriously so he is able to adjust his style. However, when it is me who gives "below-the-belt" comments and the photog reacts negatively, I leave and not come back.
FPC: What are your photographic plans in the near future?
DON: To make something financially beneficial out of my photo skills and perhaps a sideline taking photo jobs. It would be good barometer of how well I have honed my skills and surely, a means for me to acquire more gears.
FPC: How do you plan to make that happen?
DON: Hmm... I think it is wise to listen to those who are already in the business and get acquainted with the aspects of it, from package pricing to actually conducting the shoot. Doing that while honing my skills. I know of someone who has a day job and still manages to do paid photo shoots on weekends. That gives me the encouragement to pursue a profitable endeavor even while having a day job. There is living proof so the possibility is realistic.
FPC: Can you expound on your photographic ambition? What kind of photos do you want to exhibit?
DON: Right now I don't know my forte yet but I'm being inclined to taking wedding shots.
However, I am not really sure about that. I can safely say that it will be more of portraits than landscape because it is harder for me to shoot landscape without convenient transportation. For now, it is more convenient for me to shoot portrait.
FPC: Do you remember any photographic quotes?
DON: Not exactly, but I remember Librodo's idea about "being just a hobbyist and never becoming a professional." It conveys the idea of continuous learning. Even pros can't claim to know everything. I've seen some amateurs inspire some pros to some photographic style.
FPC: Have you had any paid jobs already?
DON: Yes, one. Hopefully, this big one in mid of this year. If I pull through it successfully, it would make me more confident and bankable. It could be a catapult to something bigger, who knows.
FPC: Who invited you to FPC?
DON: Rus88 referred me to FPC. Then I think I sent a request to the Admins to approve me as member. But I was not yet posting much in the beginning. I didn't know how to introduce myself. Then there was this modeling thread by ronrag where I tried engaging Karen and LG in a conversation, starting a friendly light banter. They responded positively and that made me feel welcome.
It didn't take me long to prefer FPC over the other club. I also saw the pleasant atmosphere--there is belongingness even for first timers. Thus, I also started inviting others to FPC.
FPC: I remember you during the Fireworks shoot last October. What was your impression of FPC then? What do you like about FPC since then?
DON: I was impressed at how FPC organized the shooting event. It was my first time to go to the Mall of Asia so I don't even know where the Music Hall is but I managed to be there at the meeting place to meet you and the others before the fireworks display began.
Unlike other clubs who plan photo events but never conducts it, FPC organizes and sees to its completion. I decided I fit in better with FPC. Here is where my skills are being sharpened and noticed.
Additionally, it easier to invite models to an FPC shoot because of the "many possibilities!" [Grins.]
I also recall what Boso said about posting in the threads. You don't get a pointed finger warning that you are off-topic. In other club threads, when you post something intruiging or controversial, others flare up easily. In FPC, everyone is cool and even when conflict arises, it is readily dissipated.
FPC is like a paradise island for photographers. Good reason to invite others.
FPC: Do you think that FPC is headed for "something big?"
DON: Yes. How it organizes and conducts its events, the harmony among Admins and members--these are indicatives that FPC is going somewhere.
FPC: What improvements do you think FPC should make?
DON: More sharing of resources, like workshops. Another example would be the sharing of announcements of photo contests. So that when an FPC members win, we are all proud!
FPC: Finally, what is your message to the FPC admins and members?
DON: Can't say anything about the admins. They are working hard, I can see. To the members: Share, share share! Your knowledge, skills, and resources (for example, easy access to information about studios, their pricing and models' non-confidential info! :D)