Promoting tourism through photography

Pictures speak better than words.
With information being relayed more effectively through pictures than words, photography has become an important tool in promoting tourism, a sector that contributes a lot to a locality’s economy.
Thus, the Photographic Society of Iloilo (PSI), which has 20 members who are photo artists, has embarked on a travelling spree in order to take pictures of Western Visayas’ wonders and hidden spots and share them to everybody.
Carlos Garcia said that this started when PSI founder Bert Onglamsing suggested that they travel and take pictures as a form of relaxation.
After surfing the internet, Onglamsing found places based on foreigners’ testimonies.
“We started last year and it is ongoing this year. We went as far as Tibiao, Antique in the south and as far as Estancia, Iloilo in the north. In between, we pass by places, too,” Francis dela Cruz said.
Dela Cruz recalled that when they passed by Tigbauan, they found out that there is a dairy farm owned by a cooperative which produces ice cream and milk, among others.
In Guimbal, although the “bantayan” or moro towers are a common sight when one passes by the southern part of Iloilo, dela Cruz said, “We want to let people know they are existing, indi nga gina agyan-agyan lang.”
He added that prior to the elections last year, then mayor Walden Lim invited them to document the Tibiao Eco Adventure Park.
“Congressman Paolo Javier modelled for us in the zipline, kayaking and rapelling,” dela Cruz said.
“It was a chance for us to relax,” said Dr. Malbar Ferrer.
“Like when we went to Estancia, we were with our families. On my own, I don’t think I could go to the place. But since I have a group, I was able to go there,” he said.
“We also want to promote Panay Island. This is also in line with the theme of our anniversary, ‘social initiative through photography’. We also get involve with persons with disabilities. We are using photography to promote the good things in Panay,” Malbar said.
The photos from the trip are now on exhibit at Newpost along Gen. Luna Street and it is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Saturday.
“If you visit my place, they will see photographs about Panay. We have here on display Bantayan Tower of Guimbal, Tibiao waterfalls in Antique, San Joaquin Garin Farm, Anini-y and Pan-ay Church, among others,” said Onglamsing who also owns Newpost.
“Every now and then, we will feature tourist spots in Iloilo,” he said.
“Aside from photographs here, you will also enjoy our vegetarian snacks and vegetarian breakfast. So anytime, come and visit here. If you are not well oriented on vegetarian food, I can teach you,” he said.
The exhibit opened last August 29 and it was attended by PSI members and friends. They were treated to mouth-watering vegetarian food.

Onglamsing said having the exhibit is very important. “In fact, one Antiqueno who visited Newpost said that he was surprised to know that there are falls in his province,” he concluded.*

Jess, Bert, Dr. Ferrer, Francis and Carlos 
with city tourism officer Ben Jimena (3rd from left)

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