Air Asia and Nikon award the Best Travel Photographer

Do you love to travel and explore various places? Do you often catch yourself snapping up photos of the wonderful sights you see and stare in amazement at the majestic creations of nature? 🙂

What if you were given the chance to fly for free to another country with all expenses covered and paid for? What’s even better is you get to be under the tutelage of the most respected photographers in the industry of Travel Photography. How cool is that? That is exactly what happened during the contest launched by Air Asia and Nikon last month. 

Air Asia

AirAsia in cooperation with ThinkDharma Inc., the exclusive distributor of Nikon cameras, got together to launch the first AirAsia Travel Photographer for 2015. Four newbie photographers and office workers were coached and assisted by multi-awarded photographers from the Philippines and Malaysia as they all travelled across Asia for one week starting July 21, 2015.

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AirAsia Philippines Chairperson Maan Hontiveros introduced the four mentors and coaches of the contest, namely:

George Tapan – a self-taught photographer, Tapan served as director of photography of Philippine Airlines Mabuhay Magazine for eight years, won the ASEAN Tourism Association Award in 1999, won the gold prize for Pacific Asia Tourism Association twice, and first place in the Places Category for the National Geographic Photo Contest in 2011.

Christian Raymond Cruz – a graphic designer and one of the pioneers of landscape photography in the Philippines, also a self-taught photographer who spent the last seven years traveling the country and the world to capture the best nature scenery, and spends time sharing his knowledge and experience under the Redefining Vision Landscape Photography Workshops.

Philip Anthonie (Parc) Cruz – started as a hobbyist photographer in 2005, Cruz spent a lot of time tagging along with other photographers until he found his niche – portraits and cinematic shots. He is a privileged part of Nikon’s pool of endorsers and has since traveled around the Philippines and the world while imparting and encouraging other photo hobbyists to develop their creativity through visual images.

Adam Lee – an award-winning portrait and travel photographer who was trained in Los Angeles, he spent the last seven years assisting organizations to use photography as a means to tell stories and build communities. Lee is AirAsia’s resident photographer who contributes a large portion of his work to the airline’s in-flight magazine, marketing and communications, social media and brand management. Lee has won three silver awards and two honorable mentions in the Prix de la Photographie Paris 2014 competition and awarded the 27th ASEANTA Award of Excellence for Best Asean Tourism Photo in 2013.

The selected newbie photographers who will partner with these four photography masters are:

Marie Velvet Lagman-Macasaet – Marie is 36-year old an Executive Assistant to the SVP and Country Manager of VXI Global Solutions and mom to a 5-year old boy named Paco. She recently finished a half-marathon and bathing in an onsen (Japanese hot spring) while backpacking in Tokyo. She enjoys hiking, trekking and scuba diving. She is partnered with Coach Adam Lee.

Sarah T. Garcia – Sarah is a Front Office Agent at the Lancaster Hotel n Madaluyong City and loves to eat, love everything extraordinary and loves art. She is partnered with Coach George Tapan.

Paul Vincent Delfin – Paul is a Barista of Starbucks at the Greenbelt 3 branch. He’s into Indie music, loves football and loves long trips. He is an eager photography enthusiast as a form of art. He is partnered with Coach Parc Cruz.

Antonio Nepomuceno III – a marketing professional of Toyota in Taytay, Rizal, he is definitely a car enthusiast who is outgoing and loves the company of people, a necessity for his type of job. He is partnered with Coach Raymond Cruz.

Each team will be traveling around some exotic places in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand to help everyone capture their best entries in categories that include landscape, food, portrait, architecture and travel. Winners will be awarded with over 200,000 BIG Points, AirAsia’s global loyalty program, or its equivalent free flights to any of AirAsia’s 100 destinations.

After all their entries were submitted, Velvet Lagman, a 36-year old executive assistant was recently announced as the very first AirAsia Best Travel Photographer 2015.

Awarding of the winner :)
Awarding of the winner 🙂

Being the winner she bagged home a Nikon D5500 with 18mm-55mm lens kit and 100,000 AirAsia BIG points. Her mentor Adam Lee, a Malaysian Photojournalist, wasn’t able to join Velvet but left her a video message.

Keep  yourself updated with the next leg of AirAsia Travel Photography contest by using the hashtag #IamAirAsiaTravelPhotographer and by following AirAsia Philippines on Twitter(@AirAsiaPh) or Facebook(@AirAsiaPhilippines)

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