Canon Photomarathon 2014

Canon Photomarathon:
That once-a-year event that allows photographers to run amok without being annoyed by security personnel. It's somewhat similar to playing Metal Gear Solid without seeing a single exclamation mark.


Cosplay Tournament of Champions 2014 - North Edsa

Dropped by Torch at SM North EDSA after a visit to Quiapo for second-hand gear. No DSLR or light stand this time; just a point-and-shoot camera (Powershot S110), a speedlight, and a diffuser.


Yukata-Kimono open photo shoot and gathering (2014-08-17)

A minor break from the recent string of standard cosplay shoots.The experience was surprisingly refreshing since I was forced to deviate from my usual shooting techniques.


Analog effects

Bought a small vial of bubble solution about 2 years ago, but I keep on forgetting to take it out of the bag during photoshoots.

Of course, there's the option of throwing in similar-looking effects using Photoshop or GIMP, but going that far with digital manipulation seems to defeat the purpose of taking photographs in the real world.


Another round at Quiapo

Practiced photography at Quiapo (again) while waiting for the technicians to fix my camera flash (again).


AACP (2014-06-07)

"How long have you been shooting?"
"Almost 3 years."
"Well, I've been shooting for 4 years, so I guess that makes me your sempai."

Had an urge to bring up the notice me sempai meme, but the scene was already awkward enough with her outfit and my low shooting angle.

Incidentally, that makes at least 2 cosplayers in the group/AishiteruAnimegroup who also happen to be photographers. The first was Tristan (events); the second was Leslie (portraits).


Remember, remember, the 5th of November

Yesterday, I finally got a copy of P̶ ̶f̶o̶r̶ ̶P̶u̶n̶y̶e̶t̶a̶ V for Vendetta (Php1,050 at Fully Booked vs. Php1,700-1,800 at conventions).

An hour and a half for a flash

Killed some time at Quiapo while the camera technicians fixed my external flash unit. 1.5 hours is a bit of a wait, but it's a hell of a lot more convenient than the alternative (i.e. have the official local distributor send the unit to Japan to be serviced by the manufacturer).


Peter Parker

You can't possibly drag an SLR (let alone a telephoto lens) with you if you're gonna swing around like that.


Premeditated shooting

Something caught my attention after participating in several informal fashion shoots and attending a few cosplay conventions.

Despite the proliferation of digital cameras, photographers are still lagging behind illustrators in terms of imagination. The vast majority of photographers seem to be stuck in a rut wherein the point of view is always between eye level and chest level, with the subject holding static poses about 3-10 meters away. Surprisingly, the issue of uniformity persists even in toy photography (albeit with scaled down proportions and a different range of angles).


One Laiya Beach Resort, Batangas

Shallow water, beautiful sunsets, and outdoor cooking.
There's nothing particularly fancy about this place, but it's relatively close to Manila and more than decent enough for hanging out with friends.

If you're the type who enjoys peace and quiet though, you might want to check out other nearby resorts because this one has a karaoke machine for each cottage. It can get pretty nasty when the other guests are tone-deaf.


It's not very effective...

However, your "Earth Hour" still does not address the issue of entropy.


AACP (2014-03-16)

Craving for more practice after the 7th Philippine Cosplay Convention, I soon signed up for 2 photoshoots for the following weekend. I later found out that this wasn't a good idea for sleep-deprived shooters, especially since the models greatly outnumbered the photographers.



Tunnels and cannons everywhere.
Freud would have had a field day at Corregidor.

A scientific alternative to religious delusion

Most of the elements that compose our bodies have experienced more fusion than the hydrogen and helium atoms of our current sun.

We're all reanimated bits of a stellar corpse; self-aware fragments of the previous star's carcass.

We were not the first to be here.

Perhaps all of humanity will also perish someday only to become part of something even greater.


Defying Sanity (a parody of Defying Gravity from Wicked)

Something has changed with my fees
My service just ain't the same
We're through with playing by the rules, ev'ryone's fair game
Too late, you've signed the contract
Even though the price was steep
There's not backing out
We'll fleece you all like sheep

Bend over, guys
Defying sanity
Jack up the the price
Defying sanity
And you'll never see it go down

And if you're wondering what inspired this parody, here's a clue:

Our service is "unlimited"



Pic of the day (2014-03-01)

Handsome Street
Ugly people are not allowed!!

I suppose street photography isn't always about trying to suggest sublime bullshit with pictures.



Let It Go (Filipino lyrics, version 2.3)

Several major revisions were made after version 1.0.

The original English video for reference..


Latag na niyebe sa bundok
'Di maaninag na bakas
Isang reyna ng kahariang
Nawawalan ng landas

Ihip ng hangin ay walang katapusan
Pagkabalisa'y 'di mapigilan

Sarili'y ipagkaila
Mabuhay nang ganap at walang sala
Gawing manhid ang 'yong puso
Ngunit ako'y bigo

Bumitaw, bumitaw
Sa sarili'y maging tapat
Bumitaw, bumitaw
Talikuran na ang lahat
'Di ko na bibigyang pansin
Ang mga pintas
'Di kailangang magtiis sa lamig

Mula dito, problema'y 'di na 'ko maabot
Kay gaan ng kaloobang walang damang takot
Oras na para malaman
Ang sarili kong hangganan
Batas, antas, bale-walang

Bumitaw, bumitaw
Ibuka na ang mga pakpak
Bumitaw, bumitaw
Luha'y 'di na papatak
Heto na ang katayuan ko
Buhos lang, bagyo

Kapangyarihan ko'y kusang umaapaw
Lamig na bumabalot sa lahat, gumiginaw
Paninindigang binuo sa isipan:
Paalam sa lahat, maging nakaraan

Bumitaw, bumitaw
Sisikat na ang araw
Bumitaw, bumitaw
Buong mundo'y masisilaw
'Di na kailangang magpanggap
Sa kaninuman
Ito ang bago kong hinaharap


Let It Go (Filipino lyrics, version 1.0)

Note: The heavily revised lyrics (version 2.3) can be found here.

A few days ago, Disney released the video of Let It Go sung in 25 languages.

A couple of people complained online about the lack of a Filipino version. Here's my initial, liberal, and half-assed attempt at translating the song's lyrics for those desperate enough to try singing it:

Latag ang niyebe sa bundok
Walang makita na bakas
Reyna ng kahariang
Nawawalan ng landas

Ihip ng hangin ay walang katapusan
Pagkabalisa'y 'di mapigilan

Huwag magwala, huwag ipakita
Isuot mo ang 'yong maskara
Ilihim ang kakayahang

Lumaya, lumaya
Ilabas na ang lahat
Lumaya, lumaya
Ako'y wala nang katapat
'Di ko na bibigyan pansin
Ang mga pintas
Sila'ng 'di magtatagal sa lamig

Mula dito problema'y 'di na 'ko maabot
Kay gaan ng kaloobang walang damang takot
Hihigitan ang hangganan
Wasakin ang mga harang
Batas, antas, balewalang

Lumaya, lumaya
Ibuka na'ng mga pakpak
Lumaya, lumaya
Luha'y 'di na papatak
Heto na'ng katayuan ko
Ihip lang, bagyo

Kapangyarihan ko'y kusang umaagos
Lamig na bumabalot sa lahat, tumatagos
Paniniwalang namuo sa isipan
Paalam sa lahat, maging nakaraan

Lumaya, lumaya
Salubungin ang ginaw
Lumaya, lumaya
Sisikat na'ng araw
'Di na kailangang magpanggap
Sa kaninuman
Ito ang bago kong hinaharap

To be honest, I feel guilty for mudering the language with a truckload of apostrophes. The third section/stanza/whatever was also a pain in the ass because the Philippines is a freakin' tropical country. Naturally, the language that developed is limited when it comes to describing ice and related phenomena.

"lumaya" and "malaya" throw off the song's rhythm in the chorus. A number of 3-syllable combinations could be thrown in as a substitute ("sige lang", "bitiw na", etc.), but I can't think of something that could be similar to the original "let it go" in terms of rhythm, weight, and meaning.

The second most recognizable line ("The cold never bothered me anyway") was dropped because I find the direct translation ("Di perwisyo/abala ang lamig sa akin") difficult to rhyme and reuse, and the last word isn't strong enough.

Anyway, this is version 1.0 for now. If there are better ways of phrasing the song, please let me know about it.


Eye of Sauron

Concealed within his fortress, the lord of Mordor sees all. His gaze pierces cloud, shadow, earth, and flesh. You know of what I speak, Gandalf: a great Eye, lidless, wreathed in flame.

"Luck is when preparation meets opportunity."

I guess that's one of the perks of leaving my gear lying around instead of properly stowing them away.

Otaku Expo 2014

If I had chosen photography as a profession rather than a hobby, I would have probably been fired after this event.