MQC Photo Costa Rica
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Who is Monica

Mónica Quesada Cordero,

born in Costa Rica, was just six courses shy of graduating with a degree in chemistry when she abandoned test tubes for trays of developing solution and plunged headlong into photography. And she hasn’t looked back since!

She has become a passionate photographer, committed photojournalist, and a dedicated teacher. Monica loves to photograph, but she also loves to teach photography to others. She has figured out clever ways to turn abstract concepts into tangible practices, and she finds joy in her students’ facial expressions when she helps them understand and learn.

She graduated from the Colegio Universitario de Alajuela with a degree in photography in 2004 and since she has built a reputation beyond the borders of her home country as a reliable, passionate and talented photographer.

After six months with the daily business newspaper La República, Mónica spent three years as a staff photographer at The Tico Times, an English-Language weekly based in San José, Costa Rica.

Working at The Tico Times, Monica developed her eye for compelling images and her passion for telling stories through her lens.
In 2007, Costa Rica’s Journalists’ Association awarded her the nation’s top prize for press photography, the Premio Mario Roa, for a photo taken during the eviction and destruction of a shantytown.

She was also one of 20 finalists in the Wine Photo 2008 International Photo Contests, held in Vinícola Batan, Italy, and was invited to participate in the First “Reggio Foto Fest”, held in Reggio Calabria, Italy in November 2008, a photography festival that had a special exhibition of women photojournalists’ work from around the world.

Since December of 2007, Mónica has worked as a freelance photographer, dividing her time between working in commercial photography, leading nature photography tours, shooting for Costa Rican and U.S. publications (including National Geographic Adventure, The Miami Herald, Reuters, Associated Press and many others) and indulging her true passion – documentary photography.

Fluent in Spanish, English, and French, Mónica has traveled throughout the Americas and Europe, and is constantly looking for new experiences.

Her latest adventure is developing in San Francisco California. In 2010 the Inter American Press Association awarded her a scholarship to attend a university in the U.S. for one year, and she decided to do so at San Francisco State University, where she is concentrating her studies in advanced photojournalism, multimedia and news writing.