This 32-year old native of Guagua, Pampanga could have been a rock star and a guitar player.The magnet of camera though has opened his eyes to a great, wonderful world.
Roger P. Alfonso has won in major photography competetions. In 2013, he was first place in the Architectural Sub Category of the Mansoor Bin Mohammed Photography Award. In the same year, he was declared Grand Prize winner in the Nikon MEA Gitex Photo Challenge.
He considers himself a generalist. “I shoot across though my favorite mediums – documentary, macro, landscape, cityscape portraiture. It is my dream to try glamour and fashion photography.”
His passion for arts was heightened four years back. “It all started as a hobby until I get my first ever award. I would consider it as beginner’s luck when in 2010, I took home the first place spot in the Abu Dhabi Through Your Eyes photography awards.
“I think everyone is a photographer. We love to capture moments that can be kept forever.”
On a personal note, he loves to hop from one place to another. “I want to make a record of my travels in various places as well as people and their culture.” He has been to Thailand, Malaysia and India, among many other breathtaking states he has visited.
Photography for him is a “good medium to meet different people and discover unknown places. It is an escape from the stress of work and an adventure of always seeing composition everywhere I go.”
Roger is married to Gwyneth Alfonso.
Counting through the years that he spent with photography, Roger has come to a full realization that there is so much to learn. “A lot of photographers think that if they buy an expensive camera, they’ll be able to take better photographs. A better camera won’t do a thing for you if you don’t have anything in your head or in your heart.”
When joining competitions, these he has to say: “Be daring, be unique, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the slaves of the ordinary. Shoot from the heart. Give your best shot; it’s up to the judges to decide. Do not memorize the composition and the rules of photography, remember them by heart.”
Roger recalls that his first camera was a Nikon D60 with kit lens. “Then, I decided to sell it and upgrade into Nikon D90. Now, I’m using Nikon D300s and D800 with my “Three-nity” Sigma 10-20mm, Sigma 24-70 and Sigma 70-200mm. I have an Extra Lens: Sigma 150-500mm, Nikkor 50mm, Sigma 105mm and Nikkor 16mm Diagonal Fisheye.”
Inspirational characters abound. “The great natural light that I see everyday gets me excited to take pictures on top of the beautiful people or stunning locations that I see in my daily life or on my travels. Also, amazing photography done by others inspires me plus the cash prizes of the photo contest.”
Despite his success, he still believes that we should not rely on luck. “I think that success is 50 percent inspiration and 50 percent perspiration. We should be in equilibrium,” said Roger who is a civil engineer by profession.
“I usually do post processing of my photos whenever I’m very delighted with peaceful and clear minds and there are no short cuts. I’m enjoying the long journey and reach the destination.”
What sets this achiever apart from other photographers? “I take pictures in a right place and at the right time. I usually don’t do scripted photographs.”
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THE BLOGGER. Ulysses Espartero is a journalist, historian and book author who traces his roots from two Philippine jewels – Laguna and Antique. While in Dubai, he enjoyed his expat life documenting the struggles and victories of migrant workers in the Gulf Cooperation Council states. In 2014, he released Precious Gems in a Desert of Gold, the first and only coffee table book about Filipino achievers in the United Arab Emirates. Connect with him on facebook.