Phoneography PICKS - Weekend

Phoneography PICKS

Cebu lensmen reveal go-to phone cameras for mobile photography

By Patricia May P. Catan
Photos: Contributed


PHOTOGRAPHY is getting more and more popular by the minute as mobile phone photography enthusiasts are increasing in numbers. While photography has evolved with time, the tools used for such has greatly evolved with it.

Back in the day, cameras were a lot bigger and heavier to carry around, but today, one can simply put his camera inside one’s pocket in the form of smartphones.

The smartphone has brought out everyone’s inner photographer for it’s easier and more convenient to use. Like professional cameras, there’s also a wide range of smartphones that offer different and unique functions with their built-in cameras. The smartphone of choice differs among phoneographers as it really depends on the user, but if you’re curious about what lensmen in Cebu choose as tools for mobile photography, we asked five phoneography enthusiasts about their camera of choice.

Edik Dolotina, 50
Freelance Graphic Designer

Edik Dolotina

“I am currently using an iPhone 5s for my phoneography shots, a used phone gifted to me from one of my friends. I use what is at hand. That said, I believe your type of phone does not define your shots. Although some phones give you better resolutions, your eye for basic art — composition, framing, etc. still prevail. Whether you are using an old iPhone or a P20, maximizing your phone’s capabilities will bring you rewarding shots.”

Albert Pedrosa, 44
Fashion and Advertising Photographer
Educator SoFA Designs

Educator Philippine Center for Creative Imaging


“I’m using OPPO F7 now. Just because I lost my beloved OPPO F1s plus. I like the way OPPO has the option to shoot RAW. Then I can take advantage of the available dynamic range of a RAW file and edit it through Snapseed or Lightroom in my phone. I’m a guy who hates to bring his camera, so my phone is my go-to camera to capture interesting moments and sceneries. Lately I’ve been trying out the Asus Zenfone 5. The option to shoot wider focal length is a delight especially when shooting landscape.”



Andrew Diamante, 25
CEO of HYPExAVE and Flippax

Andrew Diamante

“My go-to phone as a camera would have to be the Apple iPhone X – 256GB. It’s quick and snappy when taking photos. Portrait mode allows you to blur the background, which has a DSLR-esque effect, and the App Store allows you to install apps such as Adobe Lightroom to take your photos to the next level.”

Crisanto Etorma, 28
Founder, Phoneography Cebu
Proprietor, Campo Santo Design Studio

Crisanto Etorma

“I’m more comfortable using an iPhone. I’m a fan of Steve Jobs and I like the way minimalism is applied across Apple’s products. Now, I’m using iPhone 6s and the quality is really awesome. Not too saturated and the display on screen is what I exactly see when I transfer it to a computer. I do have accessories like the beastrgrip and some external lenses for different shooting situations. Also, when it comes to image stabilization in phone camera, I’m pretty sure iPhone is at the top of the game.”

Victor “Vic” Kintanar, 47
Freelance Visual Journalist
UCAN (Union of Catholic Asia News) Correspondent

Victor “Vic” Kintanar

“For phoneography or smartphone photography, I will choose the best there is in the market. I don’t know which brand and model because I never keep track of them for I can never have one. What I have is a second-hand iPhone 5 that has been abandoned (specifically on software updates) by Apple Inc., since Steve Jobs left. Its parts have been replaced many times over with unoriginal ones, but it still works. At present, it easily gets literally hot due to battery problems.

From the best models, I will prefer the one with the near real-life presets. As a visual journalist, truth is required to be in the images we take. It is to be observed not to use presets that yield images that go beyond reality.

When I use my smartphone in my photojournalistic or documentary works, I use images that are unedited. If edited, I often utilize basic global adjustments that is, brightness, contrast, shadows or highlights. On my Facebook and Instagram posts, I do the same plus play some with the filters available, as these are my personal views and opinions.”

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