Paul Llanos and his Portrait of Literature

Paul Llanos (left) shares his experiences in photography. 

   Among many photographers that have existed today, only few show remarkable ability that makes them standout in their field. One of them is Paul Fernandez Llanos, a photographer who displays not only his incredible eyes in taking photos but also his sincere love for photography. 

   Paul was graduated in Notre Dame of Dadiangas College (now Notre Dame of Dadiangas University) with the degree of Bachelor of Science major in Computer Science. His interest in photography took shape after he graduated in college. It started as a hobby that eventually turned into love affair. He joined his friends in taking wedding photography shoot to experience the fun of it. As they say, the rest is history. 

   “At first, I am not aware that I have a talent in photography. I just join my friends, take photos and enjoy it,” Paul says. 

   When he uploaded these photos in his Multiply account, someone noticed it and contacted Paul. “When I posted it in my Multiply page, I did not expect that someone would appreciate my photos. I didn’t intend to brag it or to persuade someone. I just wanted to share it. Then an OFW contacted me and wanted me to be her photographer in their wedding,” Paul says. “She was my first client and I am glad that she appreciated my output.” 

   Paul is a self-taught guy. He learns photography thru scouting and reading photography lessons in the internet. He also learns from his good friends as well as attending some photography workshops. 

   As a wedding and portrait photographer, he is not fond of looking of other photographer’s work because it may hamper his creativity. But he also admits that he has idols in this field. “I try not to look at other photographer’s photos. Sometimes I cannot conceptualize because I’m spending too much time looking at it,” Paul says. “But I stick to two photographers that I look up to. They are Oly Ruiz of Metrophoto and Lito Sy,” he adds. The said photographers are his inspiration to take great photos and share it with passion. 

   Paul has his own concept. He creates a unique composition and tone that set him apart among his contemporaries. This style makes him the source of imitation to other neophyte photographers. “It’s ok with me that they imitate my style. It’s ok if they consider me as their inspiration. Sooner or later they will have their own style.” 

   Paul does not abhor the idea of using photo editing software like Photoshop in photography. “Using this tool, it can enhance the image,” he says. “It will add beauty and value to it. Depending on its usage, this tool can make or break the career of a photographer.” Paul also emphasizes that every photographers has its own style; whether they use Photoshop or not, it still depend on their eyes as photographer. 

   In terms of style, his body of works presents clean shots with vibrant colors that have its unique tone that blends in the concept he desired. 

   Social Media helps market his works to the broad audience. For example, he uses Facebook to market his photos in a subtle way that is not annoying to the viewers. “I just post it in my Facebook Profile. I let my potential client scans the photos and let her/him decide if he/she loves it.” 

   What’s good about Paul is that he is not motivated by money. Unlike some photographers who are conscious about having a client, Paul is not forcing his potential clients to book him for their event. “I let them browse my work in Facebook. If they like it, it’s good. If they don’t, it’s fine with me. I am not forcing them to like it. They have the freedom to choose where to spend their penny,” says Paul. “Most of my clients love my work not because of its price but for my output.” 

   That why Paul is not accepting many clients because it can risk his output. “I only receive at least 4 clients a month depending on the situation. If I don’t limit it, it can cause problem in terms of post processing the photos and the delivery of it.” 

   Paul is aware that too much commercialization in photography can endanger the art behind it. “If your photos are too much commercialize it can devalue your output. Just like in food, if you lessen the ingredients of your viand, it can taste bad,” he adds. 

   One of the good traits of Paul Llanos as a photographer is that he shows genuine passion in his craft. This passion is not merely passion per se but passion that is grounded in reality. 

   Aside from photography, he also likes scuba diving, bike, and air soft. He is also a literary guy who likes to incorporate his poetic side in photography. For example, his tagline – “Where portraits become literature” – portrays different stories using the medium of photography. In an excerpt of his short essay, he says: 

   “I see beauty in the midst of chaos. Art in the most unexpected places. Angles in unsuspecting finds. Color euphoria in classic lights. Different patterns, various hues, it all results to one exceptional work of ingenuity.” 

   Paul wants to explore more in photography. Though he is almost 10 years in this field, he wants to stay relevant and updated for a fresh perspective. “I want to shoot in a new location or in a foreign land. For me photography is love. My love for this craft resonates in my photos. It keeps me inspired.” 

   “Keep shooting, keep practicing,” as he advice. “Don’t let your passion overrun by the idea of money when you go into this field.” 

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