Dreams behind the lens
“I wanted a new start, an adventure,” he said.
Twenty-six years later, the adventure hasn’t ended. It’s like the Energizer Bunny, it just keeps on going and going and going. Most get easily bored of Guam but not this artist. “There is no shortage of subject matter here,” he said. “I find the culture interesting.”
Meet Victor Consaga. He is one of Guam’s most respected photographers. He is living his dream of being a freelance photographer.
Victor relocated here from Connecticut because his friends came to teach here. However, when they returned to the mainland, our adventurer stayed on island and made Guam his home.
Consaga studied communications and media arts at Western Connecticut State University. Upon arrival at our adventure island, he worked with the popular Crisostomo brothers, assisting Herman Crisostomo at Pacific Pictures. Later he joined Latte Magazine and worked alongside Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer, Manny Crisostomo.
After completing his work with the Crisostomo brothers, his friend Norman Taruc suggested that he apply to the Pacific Daily News as a freelance photographer. So he did, despite not having very much photography equipment. His newfound friends donated equipment to him. A lens here, flash there and Victor was victorious when he got the job.
That to me is not surprising at all as our culture is one of a caring kind. We truly love to help others. The screen door is always open to all. Usually, anyway.
In 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic shut down a lot of dreams, but Victor’s didn’t. He described his pandemic-day routine like this: Take a walk on the beach, camera in hand (of course), take (breathtaking) sunset photos and meet new people. “It was a surprising outcome,” he said.
He embraced the change and kept his glass half full.
Honestly though, his cup runneth over.
In a balanced relationship, we do the dynamic dance of giving and taking, creating harmony. Victor, you could say, is harmonious with Guam. He takes from our island’s beauty and culture and he gives back to our island by teaching photography at the University of Guam, and preserves our culture and ways by capturing our essence through photography.
Victor is the author of Guampedia’s entry on the history of photography on Guam.
Yes, Victor is an adjunct professor at UOG teaching business...kidding! He teaches photography, of course, but being a business owner since 1992, he certainly should teach business. His business services include editorial, commercial, portrait and wedding photography. He has a fine line of clients including Louis Vuitton Guam, Bank of Guam and the government of Guam.
“As a freelance photographer, you have to be flexible and be able to adapt.”
Henri Cartier-Bresson is among Victor’s favorite photographers. “He took subject matter from everyday life and transcended it,” he said. “He raised photography to an art form.”
Surrealism and impressionism are Victor’s favorite style of photography.
In May, his photography was displayed in a group show at the Lees-Reyes Art Gallery in the Tumon Sands Plaza. He hopes to do more workshops and, eventually, a solo show.
About traveling, Victor commented that the more he visits other places, the more he decides that “I’d rather stay on Guam.”
Donna Hope Blas is a restoration and 3-D artist. She is a certified therapeutic art life coach and entrepreneur. She was born and raised on Guam. Send feedback to email@example.com