Sunday, December 31, 2017

End Of A Roll

The year 2017 has been quite a wild ride. Among my roller coaster years, this has been one of the most surreal for me, regardless of reasons for good and bad. I take the time to be grateful of the good things that have happened to me this year. Despite all the bad times, I still have lots to be grateful for.

This is Minnie. Some see a camera. I see provenance.

I take this time to mention the adventure, the blessings and the amazing people I had the privilege of meeting going through life this year, especially in relation to my shutterbug habits.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

I'm Still Here. Lost, But Not Gone.

As you may have noticed, there's a bit of a hiatus in my monthly posts. I suppose you can say safely assume I've been inactive in my blog. So far, apart from the stuff related to my day job, I've been busy:
  • Not too long ago, acquired a Lomography 135BC. I would love to write a review about it.
  • Been meeting people. So far I have a few people pending. I'd certainly want to introduce the strangers I meet to everyone.
  • I've also been a bit more active in Tumblr, unlike before some time ago. I haven't met anyone in real life from there yet, but I actually like the community of the people there. 
  • There's also the gym. Actually sooo hard for someone like me to lose weight.
I've also been meaning to update this blog as the look has been outdated for sometime already. Today is just a quick touch. I'll come up with something more modern next time.

In the meantime, while I'm not updating stuff here yet, here's our dog Momoy to keep you company.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

The Strangers I Meet - Everyday People

After that hike last August, life has gone back to some semblance of a routine. I can't say that it's totally the same, but, it's not necessarily a bad thing. There's the usual me habitually wandering into places, but now it's gotten a different.

Apart from the usual food photography, the portraits of the Starbucks baristas I made friends with, our utterly adorable dog, and the random knickknacks in between, I may have acquired some fixation to take pictures of people I find interesting, if not fascinating...

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Strangers I Meet - The Kindness Of Strangers

This happened not merely just because of me. While it's true, I went to the top and back with my own power and not riding a horse...

This journey I took knowing it will be an ordeal, chasing the shadow of what's now a distant memory - a fantasy that was once reality. I have now arrived where I wanted to be - the first destination among many. I did not find the shadow I chase, but I found something somewhat more rewarding. The plans and promises made, ones I intended to keep from my end regardless of how everything else went awry, this is the first of many journeys for the rest of my life will try. Now from where I stand looking at something I've never seen with my own eyes, I find myself in the company and kindness of amazing strangers I never met before. Under the clouds forming with the air getting damp and droplets falling, I reached the peak, and the purpose of this journey. The skies shower me with some respite from the cruel sun. I look beyond and I saw this - the view that goes beyond, further and out of sight from the comfort zone. This was worth risking for. Safety and fear never helped me through the worst; This adventure was worth risking for. This was the first of many - there will be more. . . . . Story Link in bio. . . #lostwanderingdrifter #colorphotography #photography #nature #trailadventours #taal #hike #naturehike #whenintaal #taalvolcano #naturetrail #outdoors #sharelifeoutdoors #olympus #olympusepl5 #rokinon #rokinonfisheye #fisheye #defished #lake #craterlake #taalcraterlake
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... I admit with no shame and with lots of gratitude that this wouldn't have been possible without the kindness of strangers around me. Don't get me wrong, everyone on the hike has been amazing. There are a few I've really appreciated though and they made it memorable. I'm mentioning some of them here - partly because I feel I owe them some measure of gratitude.

The Strangers I Meet - The First Steps

It is said, that the ones who can hurt us the most are the ones closest to us. There's no pain like seeing someone you know intimately turn into someone else and look at you like you're a stranger. Time and again I found myself in the receiving end of that for the past decade or so - I kept losing people I held close.

But before this becomes a sappy morose story, let me end it at that. To make a change in this status quo I now endeavor to once again go beyond my comfort zone- the world is full of interesting people. A lot of them I see, but I never had the chance to talk to them. And so there's this crazy idea - why not capture them on film and a bit of their story?

So, basically I now find the world to be a vast room full of strangers. Why not go chat them up?

Today I learned something from this anonymous stranger. Let's call him Alex. I'll remember him as the WD-40 guy. He'll be the first of many I intend to feature on a new theme I endeavor to show here and take a portrait of them on film. I'm hoping to work on my social skills along the process and not come across as some creep. I would like to believe that it's a self esteem thing but the creeped out looks I get in real life is abundant and very real. With aesthetics and prejudice working against me, it's easier said than done. Today I managed to break the ice with this stranger and take his picture along with a bit of story from this afternoon. I believe there are many around me like him and I hope to find and feature them. They'll be tagged as #thestrangersimeet in my collection. Catch them soon. . . . . #lostwanderingdrifter #rnifilms #solo #stroll #lafinca
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Except for a few trivial things - rejection affects me a bit more than it should, I'm the least appealing person in terms of looks that I know of, and I'm also socially awkward with inept social skills... Ay, there's the rub.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

On Film I Saw High ISO

These days, in the age of modern digital cameras, when you consider ISO800 as high ISO, people would laugh at you. The advancements in digital photography has been light years away from film. But despite all the advancements, noise is still an issue to most cameras, and you're gonna see it in your camera unless you're using really expensive fancy ones (Looking at you, flagship cameras!)

Burgos Circle
Crossing Burgos Circle.

But there's this sort of charm in high ISO films. Instead of a ghastly noise like what's on those cheap cameras where you see specks of different colors and a lot of smudging, what you get instead is fine grain. This is by no means a fine ouput, but it's appealing to some, and even I admit, it's preferable to digital noise - at least for me.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

To The Top And Back!

The previous entry, was just getting half way there. That wasn't the destination. That was the halfway point in our long walk. Things get even more interesting after that.

This wasn't the destination. This was the respite; This is the relief - the extraction from that tiresome endeavor. Beyond these planks is our ride that brings us back to the familiar. Leaving behind the tedious adventure -  and our footprints. But we bring back with us the dirt in our shoes from this, along with the pictures, the memories and the sense of accomplishment. Taal has been kind to us in this.
This is the second of the two parts. In case you missed the first one, it's in here. As what our guides would say to fellow hikers we come across along the way, "Keep it up! You're halfway there."

Thursday, August 10, 2017

The Other Side Of The Comfort Zone

August 5, 2017.  I went to climb a volcano to jump off the crater. Then I remembered that I have acrophobia and was too tired to even jump when I got there so I just enjoyed the view and took pictures instead. The end. Okay, not really. There's so much more to it. I am now here. Looking out to the scenery - searching for the places where I used to stand while looking at the place I'm standing in right now. So, this is the view from the other side...

This journey I took knowing it will be an ordeal, chasing the shadow of what's now a distant memory - a fantasy that was once reality. Nonetheless, the die is cast, I find myself on the edge of what I've only looked at from afar before, and there is no other way but forward. For plans and promises made, ones I intend to keep from my end regardless of how everything else went awry. Because I promised them. Because I planned them. Now from the outside looking in, I find myself in the company and kindness of amazing strangers I never met before. Under the scorch of the cruel sun and intermittent respite of the clouds, each heavy step I take, off to tread where I've never dared before. Halfway getting there I look back to see this. So this is the view from the other side of the comfort zone. This is worth risking for. Safety and fear never helped me through the worst; This adventure is worth risking for. This is the first of many - I'll be back for more.

This read might get as long as the journey...

Monday, July 31, 2017

A Week With The Beauty From Belarus

Exotic title aside, this is about the week shooting with the Belomo Vilia. This may not sound like much, but the compact dimension and the very useful focusing scale makes it a joy to use. I loaded it with a Fujifilm C200 and it was a joy to use during the day.

Out To Lunch