Our second featured pro for September is Puerto Rico based wedding and portrait photographer Noel del Pilar!
Noel del Pilar is known for his modern destination wedding photography that is striking and creative in a field where continuing to push originality is not only difficult, but uncommon. We recently spoke with Noel about his past, present, and future in the business of capturing the moment on one of the most import days of his clients' lives.
Photoflex: What made you become a photographer Noel?
Noel: Since I can remember as a child I had camera like a Kodak Brownie, Polaroid Instant cameras etc.
It was in 1986 while working in the television industry, when a colleague told me that a friend needed an emergency videographer for a wedding. I had only done two weddings videos on a low budget market before that, but I decided to help.
When I did that first high-end wedding video, I realized the great opportunity we had in this business; however, more surprising for me was seeing the work of that photographer. I had no idea how artistic and creative you could be in photography.
I decided then that want to learn more about wedding photography, and while I was making videos for three years, I was still learning every day more about photography through seminars, magazines, books, and working as an assistant with other photographers- the Internet did not exist for me at that time.
PHFX: Your work is extremely popular, and rightfully so. What techniques do you use that you thinkseparateyou from others in your industry?
Noel: Soft lighting is a very important for me…I hate images with that ‘flashy’ look.I really like to work with natural light, but when it is not available, I need to re-create that natural light with flash and modifiers. This is why I prefer the Photoflex products; the Photoflex OctoDome nxt softbox does the job.
PHFX: What are you focusing on shooting currently?
Noel: My clients are basically 99% destination weddings here in Puerto Rico of clients that come from the states. I am focusing at this moment in local high-end Weddings and more destination weddings around the world. I love to travel!
PHFX: Any plans for a workshop or speaking event?
Noel: I conduct two or three seminars every year locally by myself or for the local photographers association.
I plan to do a two-day workshop next year for a small and limited group; this will be a day of shooting, analyzing images, processing images in LightRoom and Photoshop and more importantly, about running a successful business.
I also plan to start my second DVD for photographers about lighting on location with live models, live wedding coverage, etc.
I am submitting proposals for the Spanish Platform at WPPI to conduct seminars Latin/Hispanic photographers.
Noel's Favorite Lighting Equipment
Octodome: extra small
All photos copyright Noel del Pilar.