2017 The Year I Became A Professional Photographer

So this was the year that I officially became a professional. My move from hobbyist to professional photography means I have to improve drastically in my photoshoots. Shots that are worth paying for. It’s no easy move. I actually started right after I got married and my first photo gig was a Christmas family portrait shoot in partner with a good friend and set stylist.

#christmas2016 #thestudioign #familyshoot #iligan

A post shared by Your story, your moment (@thestudioign) on

I also created my photography Facebook page The Studio with the help of a good friend TheYangOne even way before my wedding but it was just last year of December that I got it rolling as you can see the date stamps in our Instagram post.

Well, my shooting, editing and color grading seemed to have transformed in just a couple of months. I had to evolve fast because I am truly a late bloomer in this area. Thanks to my wife who is a stern critic, I had to really improve and she was the reason why I got serious about photography. So she won’t have to complain about bad photos in our travels while her photos of me is always good.

This was my first ever prenup session as a photographer and not as a videographer (yep I am also a videographer but that’s for another post).

#husbandandwife #esession #thestudioign

A post shared by Your story, your moment (@thestudioign) on

Then on May 2017, I got my first gig in a long time as a 3rd shooter (backup photographer – my true first was way back 2014) for a wedding.

I had two wedding gigs as a backup shooter in one week all of a sudden and it was my first time to use a manual lens from Ashley Abayan from Ashley Abayan Photography. A Samyang 35mm 1.4 and a Samyang 85mm 1.4.

It was love at first try with manual lens using live view with my old cropped sensor Canon 60D. Oh and we became close and good friends with Ashley. Thanks also to my former team mate from Stellar Films Tan Suezo from Tan Suezo Films for hooking me up with Ashley and selling me his Sigma 50mm 1.4 prime lens.

Then the Uncomplicate 4 Workshop by Toto Villaruel and Marlon Capuyan happened which I actually heard first from my wife. So I registered and it wasn’t cheap but it was worth every penny. It changed the way I think about the business of photography as much as my eye for composition, details and color grading drastically improved just by observing photos from my shutterbugmates.

Here’s a few samples of my shots from the workshop…

Here are the rest of my photo set from Uncomplicate 4:

Prenup Concept

Wedding Concept

After we went back from Mactan, Cebu, I was literally like a man given a new pair of eyesight at the ripe age of 37. Most photographers started young, I started rather later but not too late. Anyone can learn at any age as long as they can see well and willing to learn.

You can see the obvious evolution of my shots in my Instagram.

For the sake of content, I shall continue with my story…

Then I got my first ever wedding client last July thanks to Theyangone. This time I was no longer the backup, I was now the main photographer.

Here’s a couple of my shots from that wedding.

Here are the rest of my photo set for John and Bea click here

Here are a few samples of shots along the way since then…

Tibz and Abbie was my 2nd wedding client. Here’s their photo set: click here

From my gigs as 2nd shooter for Ashley:

The groom waiting. Shooting for Ashley Abayan Photography. #groom #weddings #blackandwhite

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

to fun shoots and travels…

Along the way I also got other gigs like birthdays, fun run, anniversaries, baby portraits, etc… which I posted in my The Studio page and The Studio Instagram

Then finally I got myself a full frame camera. Though the camera is actually 12 years old (the first ever digital full frame dslr) but it can still take beautiful photos better than any current crop sensor cameras as of late. Yes, the Canon 5D or dubbed as the 5D Classic has basic features and can’t take videos unlike current crop sensor cameras that can take 4k videos and 120p full hd, somehow 5D sensor as this youtuber said has a magical film look feel output.

Here’s my Canon 5D shots:


Here are two photo sets of my 5D classica shots:

Kodak Happy Chicky


Pinch Iligan

My hands are actually itching to test my 5D on a prenup and wedding gig.

So there you go. Thank you and will keep you posted about my journey from photo blogging to wedding photography.

God bless ya all!


Leave a comment

Filed under Cebu, Photography, photoshoot, Visayas, weddings

Married In A Cafe!

Hello WordPress Readers and Followers,

I know I’ve been on hiatus for almost 10 months again. Just wanted to update you if ever some of you were wondering…

After more than 5 years into a relationship with my girlfriend Leia, we finally tied the knot last December 03, 2016. It was a small intimate wedding with underΒ 30 guests including us and our wedding suppliers. For a Filipino wedding, that is close to sacrilege. Our planning actually started last summer. We also decided to get married not in our hometown but in a nearby city (Cagayan De Oro) instead.

What we had in mind was just an intimate but a really good looking wedding as much as possible with great food despite the limited budget. My wife Leia already had a detailed vision in her head how the wedding would look like. My wife is really creative and gifted in piecing together things, colours, flowers, decors, etc. She really has the eye for it despite her rather self depreciating assessment of her talents but when she presents her ideas, she is confidently ironclad.

Our first choice for venue was actually a beautiful small place with an amazing array of cakes that both looked amazing and tasted heaven. The place just happened to be too small for 20 people. Yes, 20 heads can fit but it feels to tight for freedom of movement.

Then a month or so later we heard there was a new place in the city and when we checked it out, we fell in love with the place. It was a small cafe and restaurant but that can comfortably accommodate 50 people. Aside from the aesthetically elegant interior with a hint of Parisian atmosphere, they also have great food and pastries!

Leia finally started rolling like a machine after we booked the venue. She was her own wedding planner, concept stylist and makeup artist. She even searched from the internet down to every nook and cranny.

The wedding preparation just like any other wedding preparation was riddled with stress which is normal. Yes, there were challenges and we even got scammed by a certain wedding stylist that was suppose to help execute my wife’s ideas but that is reserved for another blog post.

So to make this post as short as possible, despite the bumps and bruises we’ve finally got married last December 03, 2016. I guess we were the first couple at least here in Northern Mindanao (perhaps the whole Philippines?) to have a wedding in a cafe.

We were blessed to have amazing wedding suppliers especially our photographer Jasper Cuizon who single-handedly immortalized our simple intimate wedding.

Here’s a screencapture of our wedding that got featured in Bride & Breakfast (at least I got to upload only one image)….

Rustic Intimate Cafe Wedding - Philippines Wedding Blog




Filed under Cagayan De Oro, weddings

Wish You Were Here – in Iligan City

#wishyouwerehereiligan #wshyouwrhr #tokina1116 #tokinaph #ayosaoiiligan

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

I love her!! #reiakhu #sunset #wishyouwerehereiligan #canon50mm #ayosaoiiligan

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

Address: Circumferential Rd 3, Iligan City, Lanao del Norte

Open today Β· 3PM–12AM
p.s. They have a new branch within the city at the former cinema theatre Plaza Cinema (just above FK Mart) –Β Address: Aguinaldo Ext, Iligan City
I will be posting Instagram photos on their city branch sometime.

Leave a comment

Filed under food, Iligan City

Simple Joys in CDO

#greenteagelato #gelato #simplejoyscdo #canon50mm #ayosaoicdo #5thyear

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

#chocolateavocadocake #avocado #simplejoyscdo #canon50mm #ayosaoicdo #5thyear

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

#ubefrappe #ube #simplejoyscdo #canon50mm #ayosaoicdo #5thyear

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

#simplejoyscdo #tokina1116 #cropped #ayosaoicdo #5thyear

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

#selfportrait #behindthelens #simplejoyscdo #canon50mm #ayosaoicdo #5thyear

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

Additional Info:

Leave a comment

Filed under Cagayan De Oro, food

The Blood Moon

Looks more like orange to me. Taken on my 4 plus year old little handy Nikon S9100 digital camera with 18x zoom lens equivalent to 25-450mm in a 35mm format. The camera was mounted on a gorillapod.


Leave a comment

Filed under Photography, photoshoot

Luinab Trekking

#explorer #trekking #luinab #iligancity #s9100_nikon #digicamyobz #ayosaoiiligan

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

Break at Purok 6. #trek #waitingshed #luinab #canon60d #tokina1116 #ayosaoiiligan

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

The #curve … #trek #descending #luinab #canon60d #tokina1116 #tokinaph #ayosaoiiligan

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

Closer to the noise #trekking #nature #luinab #canon60d #tokina1116 #ayosaoiiligan

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

The familiar #tree… #goinghome #luinab #canon60d #tokina1116 #tokinaph #ayosaoiiligan

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on

Leave a comment

Filed under Iligan City, Mindanao, trekking

Ultrawinds Mountain Resort

🐧❀🐧 #love #penguinlove

A post shared by Jose (Yobz) Tolentino (@josetolentinophotography) on


Filed under Bukidnon, Cagayan De Oro, Travel, Uncategorized, Valentines