HOW TO LIGHT DRINKS

There are a hundred ways to throw light on glass, including window light.  I know lighting something so reflective as glass can sound a little intimidating. I admit, drinks are more difficult to light than the simple food, but with a little practice…

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6 tried & tested cropping techniques- lifestyle portrait photography tips

6 simple cropping techniques to improve your lifestyle portrait photography. Whether you’re trying to capture an outfit, photograph yourself against a stunning backdrop or want to find a fun way to photograph a group of your friends on holiday. Here…

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Martial Law Victims

Just finished processing almost 40,000 images from a gruelling two months of non-stop traveling and shooting around the Philippines.  My job was to document martial law victims receiving the second tranche of compensation for human rights violations committed against them and their families.  This slideshow is just a microscopic view of that exhaustive documentation.  As a Filipino, I just hope that those who did not go through what these martial law victims suffered during martial law not take their pains, and heroism, lightly.  Although the martial law victims had moved on, the compensation reminded them again of the torture and the killings like it just happened yesterday. But in spite of that, they are filled with gratitude to the lawyers and nameless individuals who helped them get some kind of justice and reparation.  They simply pray now that nothing like martial law ever visits the country again.

 

I want to be a Model, Where do I Start ?

Ever so often while I am photographing portraits, I receive requests on how to become a model.  Some of the usual questions I get asked are: How do I get started? Where do I find a Modeling Agency?   How do I get my first photo shoot? Before…

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Photographic Composition

Advice found in photography books, magazines and blogs concerning picture composition is often treated as if by following a few rules you can miraculously somehow bring about the perfect picture. It is better to think of any of these rules simply as…

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One Light Photoshoot – Shadows and Light

Dramatic Lighting Using One Studio Strobe Having some fun with one studio strobe to create some dramatic lighting. This series of images were created using only one studio strobe, a 22″ white beauty dish and a 30 degree grid.  As you can see from…

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Electrolux Wok-A-Holic Kitchen Star Winner

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The 2012 Electrolux Wok-A-Holic Kitchen Star grand prize winner at the moment of announcement.  She got a complete set of Electrolux kitchen appliances worth tens of thousands of pesos.  And I got this picture.  I think her expression is priceless.  These are the moments I am constantly watching out for.  It makes all the problems of shooting events such as these worth all the troubles.  Like “unphotogenic” stage lighting that turns people into green, red, or blue ugly monsters; the jostling for position with other photographers; or the group shot where only one or two people are looking at your camera.  As an event photographer, you just have to live with these and constantly think on your feet to minimize them.  Sure there are many ways to eliminate these problems but they take time, which an event photographer doesn’t have as fleeting moments happen every second whether you’re ready to capture it or not.  But when you do capture it, it’s priceless.

More photos below of that moment.


Makati Skyline

Panoramic view of the Makati Skyline

Makati Skyline

Been wanting to shoot an image of the Makati skyline for a very long time but haven’t found a vantage point to shoot from that I really like. Until now.

Shot this on my way to a client meeting one afternoon with my Canon PowerShot G11, which I always bring when not “officially shooting” .  I was in the MRT station when this beautiful view presented itself.  To paraphrase a line from one of my favorite movies, “Photography is like a box of chocolate. You never know what you’re gonna get.”    So bring your camera always.  And walk.  Couldn’t have taken this if I was driving or riding a bus.

If you have similar found landscape views or objects you made a picture of while you’re on your way to somewhere, feel free to post your story here and put a link to the photo.  We’d very much like to see it.

Btw, liked this Makati skyline so much that I made it my facebook page cover.  Hope you like the page, too.  For more pictures like this one, please go here: photo stock site.

1 MILLION LAPTOPS FOR PHILIPPINE PUBLIC SCHOOLS

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Shot an event last week for Procter & Gamble (P&G), a regular client for event shoots thru CaPRi, their PR agency, and I just had to post some pictures and the accompanying press release below from the event.  I don’t usually do this but felt I needed to, as I was truly impressed and inspired by the program that commits to give 1 million laptops to public schools nationwide over a period of 25 years, in time for the company’s 100th year anniversary in the Philippines. I think every Filipino should support this program.  Please read the press release below (unedited) and learn how you can make this huge undertaking a reality for the country’s students all over the country.  And don’t forget to leave a comment or share it in Facebook and Twitter to help spread the word.  Let’s make this happen, Philippines!

 

(Here’s the press release)

Isang laptop. Mas malawak na kaalaman. Mas magandang bukas.

P&G and partners give students laptops, connectivity with its e.Studyante program

 

December 2, 2011, Tondo, Manila – Students at the Manuel L. Quezon Elementary School discovered a new world of knowledge at the launch of the e.Studyante program an e-learning advocacy program of P&G Philippines done in partnership with Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart) and Synergeia Foundation. The e.Studyante program will provide beneficiary school children with laptops and internet connectivity. With these, students are enabled to enjoyably self-discover a wider world of knowledge that helps them be more competitive in the future. They learn while sharing and connecting with each other, their communities and with the world. School children in the Philippines face many challenges; sometimes, even the simple walk to school in the morning can be an arduous journey.  And when they arrive, they are faced with meager resources – overcrowded classrooms, the lack of books and school supplies – which all make for an uninspiring learning environment. Through technology and connectivity, the e.Studyante program hopes to make the journey more worthwhile for students with tools that make learning fun, empowering, and even gives them access to the latest ideas and information that can be found online, keeping them in step with an increasingly technology-driven and connected world. “The XO laptop was really designed to help empower the world’s poorest children through education. They’re not only very durable and energy-efficient they come with learning software for kids. Through these laptops, students become more engaged and involved in school. The process becomes less of the teacher talking and more of the students discovering things for themselves and learning from each other,” explained Chad Sotelo, Country Marketing Manager for the e.Studyante program. “And through the internet, they have the connectivity that will place the world’s knowledge at their very fingertips. People and places that seemed so far away are now within reach through the web. All of these are tools which will help expand their horizons and pave the way for a brighter future,” Sotelo said. The students of Manuel L. Quezon discovered this firsthand as video messages from supporters of the program were showed to them as they received their laptops – including an email from the President of the Philippines himself! The kids also got the thrill of learning all about email by sending a reply to the President through the help of P&G volunteers, who guided them through the exercise of sending their very first email message. And Manuel L. Quezon Elementary School is just the beginning for P&G and the e.Studyante program. In its 76th year, P&G is taking its commitment to education to the next level as it aims to give out 1,000,000 laptops in time for their centennial anniversary. “But it’s not something we can do alone,” Sotelo said.  “To help us reach our goal of 1,000,000 students, we would like to invite moms all over the country to support the e.Studyante program by buying P&G promo packs.” People can support the e.Studyante program by buying specially marked P&G promo packs available nationwide. They not only save up to 40% on your favorite P&G products but they also help provide a child with a world of educational materials and fun activities that will inspire them to learn and achieve even more. Participating brands include Safeguard, Tide, Pampers, Downy, Ariel, Pantene, Head & Shoulders, Joy, Rejoice, Whisper, Olay, Gillette, Vicks and Ambi-Pur. “We are really in this for the long-haul. In the next few months, our target is to give out a total of 400 laptops to five schools nationwide but we hope that with your support, we will be able to give even more laptops in the coming years.  Our goal is to make the journey to school for 1,000,000 students more worthwhile by giving them laptops not just to learn but to share and connect with each other, with their communities and with the world – helping them all become an e.Studyante,” said Sotelo. P&G enjoins all Filipinos to support the e.Studyante program and help gift each student with wider knowledge and a brighter future!  To find out more about the e.Studyante program, visit the e.Studyante facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/e.StudyantePH. (Some photos from the event)

The Five Things That Could Help You Become A Better Digital Photographer

Here are five guidelines to help you move from beginner to advanced digital photographer, whether you’re using your mobile phone, point-and-shoot, or DSLR.

Compose Carefully
Pay attention to what you see in the viewfinder. Look right, left, top, and bottom of frame. What do you see? Is your subject filling the frame? If not, fill the frame with your subject. One way to do this is to move closer. Or zoom in. Now, is there anything more in the frame that distracts from your subject? A tree or a light post, perhaps? Move your subject to another position to get rid of the distraction. If that’s not possible, go around your subject until you find a viewpoint that shows you only your subject.  These are the things that a good photographer will do.

Take Great Close-up Pictures
Most cameras today come with a “macro mode.” Think of it as a magnifying glass that allows you to get extreme close-ups of your subject, like a flower. At this mode, petals and leaves suddenly become exciting subjects as its colors, shapes, and textures are presented in a way you may not have imagined before. Definitely adds excitement to your picture making. Play with this particular feature. There are definitely a multitude of ways to use it to bring your photos to a different level.

Buy a Tripod
Professional photographers own one or more tripods.  They know their cameras are not exempted from blurry photos.  And yours is not exempted either, however advanced or expensive it may be. Accept it. It’s just the way it is. That’s why it’s important to develop a technique in holding your camera steady while taking a picture, just like any pro photographer.  If you’re having difficulty holding it still, get a tripod. There are many brands and types to choose from. Expensive and cheap. Light and heavy. Short and long. Good photographers rely on it. You should, too.  Get one that’s relatively light and easy to set up and which you can bring along anywhere. Believe me, it will save you hours of frustration and help ensure you take pin-sharp photos. Every time.

Get Active
Have you seen photographers lying down to take a shot? Or hanging precariously on the side of a cliff or building? How about hanging on a rope? Yes, photographers usually do that just to get the shot they want. And no, you don’t have to be that photographer if you simply want to take a photo of your child playing. The “get active” simply means to get out of your usual box when it comes to taking pictures. It could mean get low, get high, run alongside your subject, explore other angles and point of views, that sort of thing. It’s what photographers do. Once you get into the habit of moving around, you can expect a pay off in the form of creative and out-of-the-ordinary beautiful shots of your loved ones.

Take a Class
Want to take your photography to the next level? Take a photography class. There’s one everywhere nowadays. Online, at your local recreation center, or school. There are photography classes and workshops for beginners, advanced, and even professionals. There’s really nothing quite like continuous learning. It’s the only way to develop your craft. Combine this knowledge with constant practice and you’ll be on your way to becoming a better photographer.

But after all’s been said and done, keep in mind that it takes time to hone any craft. You definitely won’t turn into an expert photographer in your first week. Simply keep trying new techniques each time you’re using your camera and, very soon, your family and friends will be admiring your newfound photographic skills and will always be calling on their favorite photographer.