Empowering Women Entrepreneurs Worldwide
Wilfreda de Castro and Rowena Sanchez, The Philippines
by Veejay Villafranca
Veejay started out as a staff photographer for the national news magazine The Philippines Graphic before venturing into freelancing. He also worked with several international news wire agencies before concentrating on his own documentary projects in Asia.
He is the the recipient of the 2008 Ian Parry Scholarship grant with his project on the lives of former gang members in Manila which also garnered him a residency at the Visa Pour l’Image photojournalism festival hosted by Crossing Point residency programme in the same year. He was also the first Filipino to be selected in the 2013 Joop Swart Masterclass programme.
Currently based in Manila, he does editorial assignments alongside working on his long-term projects tackling issues on the changing Filipino culture and religious practices, displacement due to drastic climate change related weather patterns and his current exploration of the Filipino diaspora.
He has been published globally with titles including International Herald Tribune, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Bloomberg Businessweek, World Policy Report and he has worked for several aid organisations such as Oxfam International, U.N. World Food Programme, UNICEF and Greenpeace International amongst others.
A few words from the photographer
“Coming from a developing country, we don’t often get to work closely with an editor or organisation that is photo-led, they are usually just looking after their communications agenda. Working with FotoDocument is one of the most effective ways for aid organisations to communicate their messages. Usually the photographer’s authorship gets diluted because most editors impose their view without considering the photographer’s vision. It hardly ever works because their communication agenda doesn’t match the working style of the photographer. Working with a highly experienced editing team is what has made this commission great.”