Medal Elepano: How Her Lens Made It Into The Photography Business

Medal Elepano

Mitzi Ilagan |

Not everyone gets a break in their selected fields because it’s a tough worldyou’ll always have competitors and your own limitations. But with Medal Elepano, it wasn’t that hard because fate brought her into the limelight.

Medal Elepano is a double degree holder of LIACOM (Behavioral Science and Marketing) of De La Salle. She first held a camera on her late 20s. She used to take pictures using her cellphone camera. Photography was never on top of her list. And now, she’s surely on her way to become a known photographer. How did that happen?

Once on her trip abroad, her brother let her use his camera after noticing that the photos that she took using her cellphone camera were good, that there was “something” in it. After her Australia trip, her brother insisted that the “something” may mean something good and asserted that she take formal studies on photography. And so she did. She then enrolled to Mowelfund Film Institute. At the same time, she started to work in a photography studio specializing in portraits. From then on, she started gaining clients for events like birthday parties and the like through word-of-mouth. Medal was lucky enough because there was no conflict of interest between her present work and her freelance job. Outside of her workplace, she usually does food photography, portraits, shoots for events and yes, she’s the family photographer, too.

If I would ask you about a photographer, you’d probably think that I am referring to a guy. We would often think that men, compared to women, could easily take shots during an event, especially with the numerous equipments and bulky cameras that one needs to bring along. But because her clients tend to recommend her whenever needed, she gained more trust as female photographer, basically, letting her works speak for itself. She doesn’t even have a website or even a Facebook page to promote her services and portfolio. However, luck was really at her side because once, someone called her to do a shoot for an event for a magazine. She didn’t apply for that, but because she didn’t know that she have worked for an event for the previous editor-in-chief of the magazine, she got it.

On tips, Medal has three words for you: practice, practice, practice. You could always acquire knowledge but the skill comes from trying to be able to do it, and even to perfect it. Aside from that, Medal says that you have to listen to your clients. Both of you could collaborate your ideas, instead of just doing what you want and ending up doing what your client wants for the 7th run. Don’t be afraid to try experiments, don’t be afraid to apply your ideas.

Medal Elepano
Photographer Medal takes photo of Inspirational Speaker Francis Kong

When it comes to competition, it doesn’t bother her. She says she just keeps on looking for work and try to do her own version of it. She follows her professor’s advice: “Look at the work of masters. Try to do it, try to achieve the work of masters and then make your own version. Make your own signature.” And she did.

To contact her, shoot an e-mail at or visit her Facebook profile.

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