By Nikka Garriga
QUEZON CITY, METRO MANILA– Photographer Mark Floro is well-acclaimed for bringing in that mouth-watering flair that lured us in to restaurants and local food products.
With a good eye for what elements comprise a stunning photo, it was unlikely to believe Mark started out doing photography only to kill spare time.
“The first camera I used, a Pentax, was even borrowed from a cousin back when I was in high school. I had all this spare time in college so I decided to do a little photography here and there,” Mark, who was studying to become a lawyer then, recalls in an interview.
It was when he did a portrait for a friend that Mark discovered and tried taking photos of happenings and sports events around the campus.
“I posted black and white contact proofs at the local post office and put in a note that says ‘For those who want to order, please put it in my mail box.’ I wasn’t entirely sure it was going to work until a bulk of orders did come through the mail,” he says.
After college, Mark went to work for Polaroid Corporation and pursued Commercial Arts in Photography at the Art Center College of Design in California.
He worked as a photographer’s assistant which, he says, taught him the business aspect of photography. This also helped him earn enough funds to buy his own equipment-particularly for lighting-which he considers his forte.
Mark decided to come back to the Philippines in 1983 to pursue a career in advertising photography where his first project, and first Ad Congress Award, was a campaign shot for American fashion designer Anne Klein.
His portfolio eventually grew from still life to food photography, architecture and location, backed by a list of prominent clients like San Miguel Corporation, Nestle, Robinson’s and Manila Peninsula among others.
For Mark, nothing still beats the old-school style of photography to hone one’s talent even in the face of digitized photo processing.
“I miss the old thinking when everything you see in the photograph is your visual. What school taught me was if a shoot takes forever, then it will take forever. But I did everything in the camera,” he shares.
Asked if there is anything in his 40-years of work experience that aspiring photographers should consider, the Canon Brand Ambassador says: “Photography for me is all about lighting, using only light to ‘retune’ or refine a photograph. This is something I hope today’s breed of photographers would realize. It is all about lighting.”
Mark Floro’s portfolio and contact details can be found at www.markfloro.com. Additional photo taken from the website.
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