SPECIAL FEATURE: Local Photographers are Pooling their Best Work on Sale for a Cause

MANILA, PHILIPPINES — On Labor Day, an army of Filipino photographers have come together to launch an initiative that aims to support each other in this time of need. Shelter Fund collects an impressive roster of working photographers–from portrait, celebrity, commercial, conceptual, landscape, and street–who are all affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and the government-mandated quarantine, and are also in the face of uncertainty with life in the new normal.

Through Shelter Fund, the photographers’ work will be exclusively displayed through the group’s official social media pages and will be printed and sold with the help of Silver, the digital printing arm of Katipunan-based photography studio, Shutterspace Studios.


In a statement, the initiative shares, “Many of us have lent our images to various fund-raising activities to help combat this pandemic. Some even continues to work on the front lines, documenting it as it happens. But with the further extension of the quarantine, and the uncertainty it brings, we now have to look inward, towards our own.”

Jason Quibilan, photographer and owner of Shutterspace Studios tells Rank Magazine about the importance of solidarity and looking out for one another in this unfamiliar time, “Dapat lang naman tumulong sa panahong ito. Dahil meron akong kapasidad na makatulong. Through my work as a photographer and my studio, naging malawak ang sirkulo ko ng mga kontemporaryo ko, mga naging kaibigan ko na din. Naging natural lang na gamitin ko yung resources I had to get something meaningful going for people around me.” (In this time of need, it is important to help, especially that I have the capacity to help. Through my work as a photographer and with my studio, my network and circle of contemporaries have significantly widened–and they eventually became my friends. It was only natural for me to use my resources. I had to get something meaningful going for people around me.)

Charisma Lico

Since the inception of the initiative, over 100 working photographers have already come together to put their work for sale. This roster include Tom Epperson, Xander Angeles, Mark Nicdao, Paolo Pineda, Raymund Isaac, Neil Daza, down to BJ Pascual, Shaira Luna, and constant Rank Magazine collaborators, Rxandy Capinpin and Dix Perez.

“The only real requirement of Shelter Fund is for you to be a working photographer, or at least, someone who makes a living out of making photographs. Secondly, you participate, by selling your images. We’ve all done our fair share of helping others in this pandemic, I’m sure. And while we would not stop doing that, we also need to look at our fellow photographers who are facing the same struggles in this industry,” Quibilan added.

“One thing we want to make clear though, this isn’t a show nor an exhibit. We’re not curating anything and the items that are up for sale can come from any body of work. It can be new, old, previously exhibited, unreleased, etc. That’s what makes it exciting for the public. A lot of the work you’re going to see, are from photographers who rarely, or maybe even never, had a print sale or an exhibit of their work,” the co-founder of the initiative highlighted. “I think it’s safe to say that some of the finest photographers we have are selling work here to support their fellow photographers.”

Miguel Nacianceno

All prints will be processed through archival quality ink and heavyweight archival paper, made available in different sizes, A5, A4, A3, and A2, with borders meant for the artists’ signatures, for framing and matting. The prices for the prints starting at P1,500 for its A5 size.

Upon posting of available prints for purchase on Shelter Fund social media pages, interested parties can send a direct message on Instagram or Facebook for inquiries. Payments can all be made online via BPI, BDO, Paypal, Paymaya, at GCash. Printing and signing of the sold prints will all be done once the ECQ is lifted, while delivery will commence two weeks after.

Tom Epperson

What’s more noteworthy, though, the participating photographers all stand in solidarity to contribute 10-20% of the gross of the sales to a collective fund, which will then be divided equally among all participants.

“While what drives the initiative are the photographers’ works, all this couldn’t have been possible without the help and support of the our studio staff, assistants and apprentices namely, Lancer Salva, Ienne Janes, Pucci Valenzuela, Abby Madriaga, Jeeb Baldonado and Arvin Somera. They are the core team that worked hard to mobilize Shelter Fund. In fact, the name ‘Shelter Fund’ came from Nana Buxani, who actually loves dogs. Interestingly, it fits,” Quibilan recalls.

To view available prints and for inquiries follow Shelter Fund on their official channels:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/shelterfund/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/shelterfundph