Saturday, November 30, 2013

Freeze action

In landscape photography, it is crucial to capture the moment, movement as well as the feeling during the scene. My most captured scenes are of course, sunrise and sunsets which I love to capture due to the beautiful colors it produces. The golden hours are my most favorite time of the day.

Figure 1: Motion subtly frozen.
In work, action is required in order to put the plan into motion. While words are equally important for communication, without the necessary actions, no work can be produced. That is why, action speak louder than words. It is the culture of pro-active action which defines one's performance.

Everyone sees action, in my photography, I always want to freeze it up and frame it in a photo, however, in order to add motion and action, one needs to use slow shutter in order to capture the rustling of the grass, trees and flow of the river or waves. 

In order to do that, it is important to support your camera using a sturdy tripod and for longer exposures, to use shutter release in order to minimize shake and maintain the sharpness of your images. This requires practice over and over again. 

Figure 2: Sprayed water of different velocities.
All in all, action freezing using the correct technique to tell the story is indeed challenging but I'll do my best. 

Finally a sunrise

I was so tired, working through out the whole week, that I wanted to relax and rest through out the weekends. So, waking up early is a feat not easily done especially when I am so tired. Still, before I sleep, I dial in 5.30AM into my alarm clock. I slept quite early in hopes that I can wake up for a beautiful sunrise.

The alarm indeed woke me up after a few loud rings. Heavy headed I went huddling to the bathroom to wash my face, it was still quite dark and I wasn't able to predict the weather. I went out anyway to Papayas Lodge beach in hopes of a great sunrise.

Figure 1: Stranded ferry at Papaya beach.
Figure 2: Fisherman prepping their boats.

Figure 3: Preparing their motors.

Figure 4: Finally it's dawn.
With the cresent moon up above in the skies, the tides are considerably high. The skies far on the horizons are quite cloudy, still enough for the yellow-reddish light rays of the dawn to strike up into the skies. I am quite pleased with this effect and the cool air is just the best.

The fisher men woke up early in the morn, in order to go out into the sea to catch fish for their daily income. I am fortunate to only work five days a week and have the rest of the two days to myself. I can rest to my pleasure and be recharged for the next week. 

Thank God that I am still able to perform my work and still be able to enjoy the beauty of His Creation.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Sunset fun

When three siblings wade in the beach, they played the whole evening, right until the sun starts to set. Even though father kept calling them back to go home, they are reluctant to do so, as they're having so much fun that they don't realize that it will be dark soon.

The youngest of the three siblings, rushed back obediently as father called them back home, the older, naughtier siblings continue playing until the sun finally sets on the almost cloudless horizon. It is a beautiful day indeed. A sunset filled with fun and laughter.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


The days are gloomy and cloudy but everytime I went to this part of the island I met snowy. Snowy, a self-made name, is a very curious and friendly dog. The first time I encountered snowy, it was already quite dark and the winds are strong. 

Snowy went so close to me that I was quite shocked that something white and warm licked at my legs. I nearly jumped up and knocked my tripod over. All I see is a cute furry white dog, curiously wagging its tail, wondering what I am doing.

I wanted a dog, for a very long time already but I have promised to myself, never get too attached to a pet. I am a very soft person in the inside. This is an inherent weakness which causes me to miss that pet so much that I can have a painful heart for quite sometime if I had a loss.

Ever since, I decide to stay away and never dared to get attached emotionally to a pet. Snowy ohh snowy, how I wished we're friends.

Saturday, November 23, 2013


When I first learn to jump, I was so excited that I jumped the whole day, I was so excited at the fact that  I can reach up further. Then there's that feeling when you're lifted from the ground for that short moment of time. Almost feel like you're flying.

I haven't been jumping much now, I guess I have lost the thrill. Still I find that by jumping you're training your legs muscle and it is actually beneficial to jump. It is quite tiring exercise as you are exerting your muscles to lift your whole body up into the air.

Above are a few images of friends enjoying their jump, while I enjoy looking at their expressions, jumping with joy not only stimulates your muscles but also pumps in those good positive energy inside your body, which I believe can reduce stress and is a form of pain reliever for those suffering pain in the inside.

So jump, be the best you can be and shine. Life is full of challenges that can bring you down and make you so sad that you refuse to be happy. Why not put that extra effort to jump, scream and release all that tension inside of you. Life is a beautiful walk, especially with God by your side.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Respect the elderly

Figure 1: Family is important.
It is well known in my culture that we must always respect the elderly especially our parents. Since small, we are taught to respect and serve, but this culture is slowly diminishing as our country gets more and more modernized.

When I was growing up, I was a very rebellious teen who always disagrees with what my parents have to say. Recklessly, I always followed my own decision and I learned it the hard way. So it is always the best to follow those who have lived longer than you do.

I talked to my department's secretary and she expressed her fear of being sent to the old folks home when she gets older. She even tells me her experience going to an old folks home. An old woman at the old folks home has all the pictures of her successful children and tell great tales about them. But the secretary says, "where are your children now, when you needed them the most".

I've always kept this to myself, If I ever grow old, I hope that I will be healthy and prefer not to be a burden to others. If I am sick mentally or physically, I prefer a quick path to my long rest so that I will not be sent away to some crazy loco facility.

Despite everything, respect the elders, and our parents. They have cared for us since we're small and now its our turn to do our best for them, they may turn into babies and sometimes forgetful that we have to repeat again and again, but remember the times when we're just babies.

Figure 2: Despite the strife, respect them.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The best

I have always believed in trying my very best, even until the end of the show. Is life a show? I believe that life is more than that. That is why I always do my very best in everything, even though I lose heart, I still force myself to the limit so that I show my very best till the end and walk the talk.

I know that words plays a very important role in communicating our intentions as well as letting others know and be informed. However, words are empty if it is only spoken without anything that moves. So with words, actions must be prevalent in order for it to be relevant.

Every now and then, I am discourage by words of others, letting me down and pushing me away. Still deep in my heart, I persist that they may not meant all those mean things and I believe that I can do something to make it better. I knew that I have to do my best despite it all.

Figure 1: Once in a while I met the Phoenix.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Impending storm

Figure 1: Storm clouds approaching.
The news is plagued with typhoon Haiyan which is causing destruction at Phillipines. A storm which covers such a large area causing havoc and pulling out lives from people. Winds as fast as most sport cars can go 250km/h, the winds feels like you're standing in front of a gas turbine outlet at full revs.

Figure 2: Storm clouds approaching fast.
This infamous typhoon also affects my homeland as well as the island that I am staying, sudden winds can come and go with heavy torrential rain following after. It is quite scary to be suddenly surrounded by large dark clouds which burst out in fury.

Figure 3: Swept away.
Looks like there will be limited opportunities for a great sunset these days.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Mere excuses

Figure 1: No excuses for sunsets.
I am full of excuses, I have been making excuses here and there to avoid doing things that I don't enjoy. I am so good at making excuses and able to convince others to accept my excuses that I tend to slack off from my studies and also responsibilities.

One day, I woke up one day, feeling so hurt by some excuses made by another, a promise made to me was broken by a simple excuse which cost me hurtful experience. I found that that simple excuse is used to cover a broken promise. An excuse can be a lame white lie.

Ever since then, I tend to do my best not to make non-factual excuse just to escape my responsibilities and have the easy way out. I know that one of those excuses will hurt those who I hold important to me, most of the time, when I wasn't even realizing it. 

I want to simply do my best, to avoid all those lame excuses. Even though the process will be tough, I know I will learn and persevere despite the turbulent challenges. I will never make mere excuses again, for I have experienced the painful way.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Oh my sunset

Ever since the typhoon Haiyan hit the Phillipines, it has been raining and the horizon is filled with clouds. I missed my sunset but the people at Phillipines are suffering due to this storm and this is so sad. It is evident that the end of ages is here and now.

Still, I missed that bright orange light which comes early in the morning at dawn and also during the sunset. The weather and time doesn't permits me to shoot and this creates stress for me. As opportunities loss due to working and only coming out when the lights are so spectacular.

This is just a little thing to be a fuss about, while at other places people are terrified due to the wrath of nature. Soon and very soon, the true king will come. No one knows, as He will come like a thief and all in a sudden, the bright lights will either scare me or I'll open my arms to welcome Him.

I have faith, but its fading away, due to the clouds, the storms but I am patiently waiting for your light in this darkness.

Figure 1: Storm is approaching.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Little blessings

Figure 1: Crystal droplets.
The little things that we pass by every single day are the ones we always missed out. At least I did, I always missed those spectacular sunsets which people care less about. I am so focused on living a life that I just bypassed all those tiny things which are just working their best to get noticed.

We tend to focus on big things with high expectations only to be sad because we couldn't achieve it. We fail to see the little blessings which is given daily by God. It is human nature to want things even though we have enough. Sometimes it is the little things that we have that can make us happy.

I don't know what's the fuss about getting expensive trinkets and following latest trend. If this fever catches you, you will never know when to stop. Especially when what we have is enough but we do not appreciate it. We are considered very fortunate and only if we take time to realize this will make us more happier.

So look closely and try to appreciate every little blessing in life. It is through little things we can learn to be happy and appreciate. Doing this doesn't mean you're complacent with the state you're in, but it means that for everything you work hard for, you take time to enjoy it. God bless.

Figure 2: The ladybird.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

The eldest

I am the eldest of the family, and it means a lot to be the eldest child. The eldest is the first to face the challenges of the world. A burden  has been placed on them which are the highest expectations especially from the parents and members of the family.

Figure 1: I am the champion.
It is important for the eldest in the family to realize his importance and role, which is to be an example to his younger siblings and display discipline especially in learning. However at a young age, the parents play a vital role in ensuring that the child understands by shaping and teaching closely.

Figure 2: Jon and Sullivan.
The eldest have the opportunity to be the first in the family to experience new things, be it food, pampering by the parents, early education, new toys and all the fine things that the family can provide. The eldest usually have the best and have grown to eventually pass it to the young ones.

Figure 3: Happy together.
So, Sullivan, this is your time, to do your best and make your parents proud. Life isn't perfect but by learning and be closer to God, this will strengthen you through this journey. Only through relationship with God does life bears a meaning. 

Figure 4: Looking forward.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Wedding capture

Wedding photography is something special as it captures the moments of the wedding day itself, it requires one with passion and anticipation to capture each important moment. Most of the time, wedding is a once in a lifetime event, thus the paid wedding photographer plays a very important role.

Figure 1: Groom on horseback (Wide).
I have the chance to shoot a few weddings this year, I am not a wedding photographer, but I am passionate about photography and love to capture the moments. So, after some experience, I have encountered limitations in my skills as well as equipment that I owned.

Figure 2: Bride on horseback (Wide)
Firstly, I am used to using wide-angle lenses and prime only. Not so used with long range zooms as I have yet to own any. Since I have one body, I am fixed to either using the wide angle or prime lens. I find this a limitation when changing lenses, I miss the moment. So two bodies?

Figure 3: Bride and groom on their thrones (prime).
Why full frame? I am currently using an old crop sensor camera which ISO setting which I dare to use is only 400 and this is very limiting when using in dark venues and especially when the weather is bad. Thus this justifies the use for full frame which is great at 1600-3200 and 6400 when shooting RAW.

Figure 4:Bag o gifts (Wide).
A strong TTL flash should be a must if you have to use low ISO. This is also another limitation I have as in the dark, I tend to leave shadows on the couples face which isn't good. My core photography is landscape and by no means I might be wrong. Just some of my thoughts.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Little kids

Figure 1: Just the perfect light.
Whenever I see my little cousins who are still in their kindergartens and early pre-schoolers, I get a little bit jealous as I still missed the times when I would just run around, jump here and there and playing with other little kids like there's no tomorrow.

Figure 2: Mee for breakfast.

Figure 3: Run, fun and speed.
Everything is fun in the world of kids, I never remembered a single thing that wasn't happy in my memories as I kept forgetting the times when I was disciplined or fall down and cried. All I ever remembered was the endless fun with friends that keeps repetitive and it never bores me.

Figure 4: Mind Mango.
Kids have not much sense of responsibility that the adults do and that really makes me missed being a little kid. Its not that I haven't done enough during my childhood days, its day looking at these little cousins of mine makes me want to join them running around.

Figure 5: Adults vs Kids.
My mom used to say, hush! sit down, but I never listened, nor do the other kids, and we kept running and laughing, causing a ruckus that goes out of control. The fun lasted until one aunty, brought up a cane and gave some discipline to her son.

Figure 6: Priceless laughter.
As an eldest son, I am quite pampered by my parents and anything that I want I get but as little kids, my parents never complained when we get to town as we were never too demanding like the other kids who would scream out loud whenever they see a toy or sweets.

Figure 7: Happy siblings.
Childhood days are the times, when forgiveness is so easy. Where one might fight another and be back as good friends at the next moment. I really cherish my childhood days, so I believe any kids should have the time of their life, as of now I am quite a stressed out adult.

Figure 8: Happiness is where the home is.
May these little kids, learn to know and love God, for without knowledge of the Creator, there will be an emptiness that will grow as these kids learn and experience more through life. Life isn't all fun and games, but it is when were kids.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Swept away

Figure 1: Swept away by the waves.
The winds are shifting away from where I would want to be. I am confused and sometimes I don't know where to look for the correct way. I believe and trust in God and only through his scriptures will I allow my vision to be led. 

I know that my time here is short, and it is not through the riches of the world that we should seek. Still I am living now, from this moment, even though just a brief one, I wanted it to be a meaningful and full one. I may not be known by everyone, but I hope that those who do loves me.

This has always been my dream, to wake up after a deep sleep, to know and understand that, it has been worth while, however, if it doesn't at least I have hold on to something so strong and believed in it with all my heart.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Simple life plan

Figure 1: Light, air and nature.
Looking at the days without the computer, it is already the second last day of the month. Time passes so fast, especially when the good times happened. I have the opportunity to return to my homeland and it refreshed my mind, outlook and vision.

Figure 2: The Tarap fruit.
The fresh air, bright sunlight and untainted earth which are no longer available at the island is still there at my father's village. It was so quiet that I can be at peace and not be bothered by the hustle and bustle of my life in the island. It takes away the stress and brings inspirations to me.

Figure 3: Chrysanthemum like flower.
I found out that there are a lot of limitations in life, especially if you look into the aspect of physical well being and also wealth. However, if you indulge yourself in a simple life. I guess that those limitations will not set you back but make you appreciate what you have.

Figure 4: Simple looking Japanese ossan.
In figure 4, you will see an old man, dressed ever so simple, wearing rubber slippers but sporting two Nikon flagship DSLRs the Nikon D300 and Nikon D3. He mentioned that his mission is to capture pictures of butterflies and so far he has captured about 1000 species. 

He even gave me a go with using the Nikon D3. Whoa, awesome camera, to be able to shoot at hi-iso without any worry of noise and the viewfinder is so large and I am intrigued to go for FX in the future. Soon and very soon.