This is what local photographer, Valerie Fernandez, wants to tell the world about Vanuatu through her photographs, particularly underwater photography of couples.
Her specialty attracted world magazines such as Rangefinder Magazine, Huffington Post, Dirty Boots and Messy Hair which is the biggest Instagram Account featuring wedding photos and the New Zealand wedding magazine, Together Journal.
Through her wedding photos, Mrs. Fernandez was recently declared as a Rising Stars Nominee in United States. Earlier in 2019, she was selected as one of the best 50 photographers in the Junebug 2019 Best of the Best Destination, and again in 2021 among the 50 best photographers of Junebug Best of Best Weddings.
“My collections are more than just photos, through them I want to promote Vanuatu throughout the world,” she shared. “They are not just photos, people who want to get married will want to come to Vanuatu. My photos got a lot prestige and also they have been published by a lot of newspapers and magazines.”
Fernandez said in 2019, she received a call from a couple in United Kingdom who were interested to be photographed inside Blue Cave on Tanna because they saw one of her photos of a couple that was taken there.
“They came to Vanuatu and we went to Tanna to take their photos,” she said. Mrs. Fernandez said Blue Cave photo is so far viewed by over 18,000 people around the globe.
She wants to put Vanuatu on the map for people picking destinations for their wedding and honeymooners.
Fernandez started taking photos in 2014 and she became a professional photographer in 2017, before venturing into underwater photography for couples in 2020.
“Every time there is a wedding, couples want to be photographed in the beach. From the beach I decided to go under the water,” she said.
Fernandez said before the COVID-19 pandemic, a couple overseas who choose get married in Vanuatu can bring over 20 visitors.
Fernandez added if borders reopen, she plans to do more underwater wedding photography in rural communities so they can financially benefit from the package, through transport and accommodation.
SOURCE: VANUATU DAILY POST