Pinay photographer brings world home with her

Internationally acclaimed photographer Yen Baet has seen the world and has taken breathtaking shots of it. Now she wants to take Filipinos on a trip around the world with her.

The full-blooded Filipina artist who is now based in London is coming home for her first exhibit in the Philippines, which will feature travel photos for which she earned global fame.

The exhibit dubbed “The Prize-Winning Photographs of Yen Baet” will open on June 22 at the Holy Angel University in Angeles City, Pampanga.

It will take Pinoys as far as Croatia, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Peru and Thailand. But it will also include a breathtaking sunrise scene shot from Taal Lake.

Baet, who was born in Ozamis City in Misamis Occidental, is a self-taught photographer whose work has bagged awards in international competitions.

These include the top prizes in National Geographic’s “Exceptional Experiences” and “My Thailand, My Story” photo competitions in 2011, among many others.

Baet’s work has also been featured in several photography magazines, travel books, calendars, catalogues and websites all over the world.

The Filipina artist has also participated in various exhibits in Europe, and has recently held her own exhibit in New York City.

Taal Volcano as seen from Talisay, Batangas. Fishers and farmers live on and around Volcano Island despite the risk of eruptions. (Yen Baet)
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“Not a day passes when I am not planning on my next travel destination,” Baet said in a past interview. She added, however, that what she really loves is revisiting the Philippines.

Baet, whose family constantly moved around due to her father’s work, spent most of her years in school in San Pablo, Laguna, before moving to San Fernando, Pampanga.

She finished her AB English degree at the Holy Angel University, whose student publication Nexus she edited.

Giving back to her alma mater, Baet is selling 30 framed and signed photographs in her exhibit. Proceeds will go to a scholarship program for the school.

Although now based abroad, Baet said she owes much of her success to being a Filipina.

“Being a Filipina, to me, means I am confident to compete with and be pitted against my male counterparts and have a fair shot at success,” she said.

She added that the Pinay’s “fearless and unrelenting nature” also helps, especially as she is a female photographer who shoots alone and mostly at night.

“A Filipina will make sure she gets what she came for before leaving. A Filipina photographer knows that her tripod can also be used as a weapon,” Baet said.

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