Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation

PAGCOR announces 24 grand winners in its 4th National Photo Contest

Tuesday | June 28, 2016 | 4:00 PM

PAGCOR announces 24 grand winners in its 4th National Photo Contest
The grand winners in PAGCOR’s 4th National Photography Competition with some members of the panel of judges during the awarding ceremony. Among the jurors present were respected documentary and advertising photographer Wig Tysmans (extreme left, back row), PAGCOR President and COO Eugene Manalastas (3rd from left, back row), PAGCOR’s Asst. VP Maricar Bautista (6th from right, back row), award winning photographer and digital artist Rommel Bundalian (4th from right, back row) and Manila Bulletin’s chief photographer Albert Garcia (2nd from right, back row).

SOME of the country’s top professional and amateur lensmen took the spotlight once again as the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) names the 24 grand winners in its 4th National Photography Competition held on June 27, 2016.

Apart from having professional and freelance photographers in this year’s roster of winners, majority came from various fields. Some of them are college graduates, government employees, a mall operations supervisor, a grade school teacher, a senior high school teacher, an OFW, a company driver, a photo correspondent and a plant manager in a multinational company.

Jose Ramos from Marikina City, one of the Conventional Category winners said it has been his dream to win in the PAGCOR photo competition not only for the huge cash prize but because it is one of the “most prestigious photo competitions in the country.” He said his winning entry, “Sayaw sa Apoy” – a traditional fire dance festival in Alfonso, Cavite – is a cultural heritage that Filipinos should be proud of. “Through this photo contest, we can help generate awareness among the youth that we have a rich culture to preserve. For me, this photo contest whose theme highlights Filipino culture helps us show our sense of patriotism,” he said.

Also, Miguelito Casim a messenger and staff driver in a multinational company was surprised that his entry “Saranggola” made it to this year’s list of Mobile Category winners. A newbie in the field of photography, Casim said he just tried his luck in PAGCOR’s photo contest after he was able to capture a clear image of the Mayon Volcano during his visit to his mother’s hometown in Albay. “Nasa office ako ng malaman ko na pasok ako sa grand finals. Tuwang-tuwa ako nung makita ko yung message ng PAGCOR. Nagtatatalon ako. Siyempre gusto ko yung cash prize talaga. Hindi naman kasi basta-basta magbigay ang PAGCOR,” he shared.

Out of the almost 4,000 photo entries received by PAGCOR, 2,576 qualified in the Conventional Category while 1,359 photos made it under the Mobile Category. These entries came from as far as Zamboanga City, Misamis Oriental, Butuan City and Lanao del Norte.

PAGCOR used the theme “Throwback” to highlight photos that are reminiscent of the Filipinos’ traditional way of life, time-honored cultural practices, food, traits, celebrations and even historical sites.

PAGCOR’s Assistant VP for Corporate Communications Maricar Bautista, whose team has been spearheading the photography competition for four years now lauded the winners for standing out from so many remarkable entries. “From the regional screenings down to the final judging, our jurors had done a really difficult task of selecting the best entries because there were a lot of outstanding photos. We observed that year after year, the entries that we receive are becoming more competitive,” Bautista said.

PAGCOR announces 24 grand winners in its 4th National Photo Contest
"Sayaw sa Apoy" by Jose Ramos

PAGCOR announces 24 grand winners in its 4th National Photo Contest
Mr. Wig Tysmans (standing, right), one of the jurors during the final judging of photo entries graced the 4th PAGCOR Photography Competition's awarding ceremony last June 27, 2016.

Romy Vitug, an award-winning photographer and cinematographer who served as a juror in the photo contest’s final leg said he had an arduous time selecting the winning entries. “Maraming magagandang litrato kaya talagang napakahirap mag-judge. Yung mga kuha gamit ang cell phone, parang kinunan gamit ang professional camera kasi very sharp ang dating. Marami na talagang nag-improve na photographers. Kahit amateur lang, parang professional na sa husay kumuha ng litrato,” Vitug said.

Respected documentary and advertising photographer Wig Tysmans, meantime, noted the depth and impressive quality of the photo entries this year as the participants tried their best to capture images that depict the old Philippines. “The images were conceptualized very well kasi naging palaisipan talaga sa mga sumali kung papaano makakapag-pakita ng makalumang kaugalian at tradisyon sa kanilang mga litrato,” Tysmans observed.

Five photo entries from Luzon, three from Metro Manila and two each from Visayas and Mindanao comprised the grand winners for the Conventional Category or photos that were taken using conventional cameras such as DSLRs. Meanwhile, the 12 winning photos in the Mobile Category consisted of four entries from Visayas, three from Metro Manila, three from Mindanao and two from Luzon.

The Conventional category winners include Jose Ramos II (Sayaw sa Apoy), Richard Balonglong (Melodies of the Upland Folklore), Phoebelyn Gullunan (Pinoy Bayanihan), Rich Martini Absin (A Leap of Faith), Wilfred John Royce Cequiña (Gold), Ma. Milagros Laurente (Charcoal Making), Voltaire Montil (1,2,3 Go!) Gina Meneses (Dala), Dexter Bacani (Trompo), Jenevie Estrella (Jolen), Michael Dave Bognadon (Lawa-lawa) and Mariaeln Aguilar (Mga Nahuling Tutubi).

For the Mobile Category, the 12 grand winners were Philip Am Guay (Throwback Flipping), Irez Quirodes (By the River), Nikki S. Victoriano (Pagbuburda), Miguel Soriano (Salbabida), Ricky Jabien (Safe Sail), Miguelito Casim (Saranggola), Roi Anwar Abarintos (Jolen-Jolen), Joel Gerone Larupay (Vintage), Dennis Gamarcha (Talipapa), Michael John Cortez (Songhits Magazine), Efrain Jorque (Kadang-Kadang) and Adrienne Clara Bueta (Sungka-Tutak na Alaala ng Pagkabata).

Each of the 12 grand winners for the Conventional Category received P75,000 plus trophy, while the eight non-winning grand finalists got a consolation prize of P20,000 each plus Certificate of Merit.

Meanwhile, the 12 grand winners for the Mobile Category took home P30,000 each plus trophy while the remaining eight grand finalists received a consolation prize of P5,000 plus Certificate of Merit.

PAGCOR also gave special awards to Rose Ann Laza for winning the “Most Popular Photo” (Mobile Category) and Wilfred John Royce Cequiña for winning the “Most Popular Photo” (Conventional Category).

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