Congratulations to Erich Caparas for the 2016 PPAC Grand Platinum Award, 2016 PPAC TOP 10 International Photographers and Gold Award in Portrait Category. Erich is also PPAC US Ambassador. Let’s know more about Erich’s story:
Erich: Although most of my photography cited on my experience above is in commercial and advertising, my passion is in portrait photography. I’ve always had a studio at home and have often used my company’s studio to do my personal portrait work. From 2000 to 2011 I quit photography to be a real estate broker. I just got burned out from the industry and felt that the true craft of photography was forever lost when digital cameras became affordable. In 2011 I picked it up again. This time just doing the type of photography I want to do: Portrait and Fashion.
Teaching wasn’t in my agenda. I was just coaxed into it. I started posting my work on Facebook and soon photo enthusiasts started asking me questions, following me, and asking more of the same questions. I realized that most of the people getting into photography, post film era, were lacking in basic fundamentals. Speed, aperture, and ISO were just numbers that made their images lighter or darker. Those doing post processing were using plug-ins and not understanding the basic concept and fundamentals of the software. When I checked books about post processing and online tutorials I was shocked to see the lack of quality teaching materials. Authors concentrated on workflow, workflow, workflow, keyboard shortcut commands, and plug ins. That is not teaching! It’s like learning the piano thru notes and music sheets. You take away the music sheets and pianist can’t play. Whereas a jazz pianist can play with his eyes closed and adlib to his heart’s desire because he understands the instrument and how it works. That is how I teach photography and post processing.
For us to understand Erich more, PPAC Editor also did an interview with Erich.
Editor: How many years in the photography industry?
Erich: 2016 marks my 39th year in photography.
Editor: Why you join the photography life in early start?
Erich: As early as I could remember I loved to draw. During the early 1970's I admired the people who created colorful psychedelic posters of music icons. But the problem was I couldn't draw well. When my father gave me his Olympus camera I was thrilled. Photography gave me a chance to express my creativity in a whole new media that didn't require drawing.
Editor: Any happiness or sadness would like to share with us in the past years in the photography life?
Erich: I cannot think of any sadness in my career as a photographer right now. I always associate photography as a fun thing in my life so everything I do photographic, I try to make positive, exciting, and fun. From choosing equipment, taking pictures, doing darkroom work, to post processing in photoshop, and later on teaching, and sharing.
4. How to have more ideas and creative inspirations and let you create the beautiful image?
This is a very good question. One that I am always asked by many. I can write a book about this and this is a very good topic for a seminar. I have narrowed down the answer to 4 words. The acronym for the 4 words is IMAC which stands for Invest, Mentor, Attitude, and Claim. But those words are not what they seem. I have to explain in person in detail.
5. Any words would like to share/say after got the prize?
I am a small percentage of the winning equation. A big percentage of my winning image(s) are the people and the team behind the images. Without them there will be no image. These are the people I want to acknowledge and thank.