Down the Rabbit Hole

Shooting the Coach: After one hour of shooting I decided to take a break. I can’t seem to find the right light. If there’s a bad hair day, you can call this the bad light day. I kept on trying for another hour until I got what I want. From three lights to one. (Model: Lorie Enriquez, Makeup: Catherine Diala)

I am at a helpless level in photography right now. Gears cannot help me anymore. Majority of the challenge right now is creativity. The pace of Improvement at this stage is very slow. Tons of effort with few positive results. Still don’t know how long and far this level will be and what will be next down the rabbit hole.

When I started shooting fashion inspired photos back in the 2010, I had my eyes fixed on a target. I know what I want and where I’m headed. The destination was clear. I also know that there will be many challenges ahead. I had everything planned and although I made some adjustments along the way, it was manageable.

Continue reading “Down the Rabbit Hole” »

Manila Studio

I would like to announce that GRP Studio is now open. It is located in Malate, Manila, just a couple of blocks away from DLSU. I will be spending more time in Manila this time thus, my availability for training in Cebu will be less. Currently, I only take one-on-one sessions in Manila to be held in GRP Studio.

Thanks and more power to all.

Rejections

Sliding off the norm, I overexposed this shot to get a washed out effect. Yacht Club, Roxas Boulevard. f8, 1/160, 70-200, 5D.

Sliding off the norm, I overexposed this shot to get a washed out effect. Yacht Club, Roxas Boulevard. f8, 1/160, 70-200, 5D.

When you’re a photographer or any type of artist, you’ll go through many challenges and one of them is rejection. The issue is worsen by social media. However, perspective matters and if you reposition your thinking, you’ll see it in a different way.

I was scrolling through my facebook feed and read a post from Mai Pages, it says “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, but there will always be someone who hates peaches.” – Dita Von Teese. After reading the line, I felt the waves went through my past experiences and released a ton of stress. Continue reading “Rejections” »

Slow Starter

I normally consumes around four terabytes of storage per year. Until now, there’s still no permanent solution on how we can safely keep our digital image. DVD is an option but it takes a lot of time to burn a disc and the possibility of getting damaged. As I was transferring my old files to the slower drive, I get to have a run down of all the images that I took for the previous  year.

It brings you back to that moment and you start to remember the feeling and the mood in the set. What’s surprising is you get to see some shots that didn’t caught your attention at that time. That’s the reason I never delete unselected files. I enjoy looking at the frame by frame development of the shot.

This photo is one of the unselected images couple of years back shooting Calendar for Plantation Bay. Sometimes the photo needs a review in another time before you can see it sparkling with beauty.

This photo is one of the unselected images couple of years back shooting Calendar for Plantation Bay. Sometimes the photo needs a review in another time before you can see it sparkling with beauty.

Continue reading “Slow Starter” »

Plan and Improvise

There’s a lot of things that can happen during a shoot and no matter how you prepare for everything, something will always come up and challenge your ability to improvise to finish the shoot. Although there’s that very common human error, equipment failure is a definitely the bummer.

Shooting with two strobe lights bounced through both side of the wall and ceiling. No light modifier needed except for the standard reflector. The entire room becomes a big light source making the light soft and even.

Shooting with two strobe lights bounced through both side of the wall and ceiling. No light modifier needed except for the standard reflector. The entire room becomes a big light source making the light soft and even.

Last week I was doing a corporate shoot and the first challenge was doing it without my assistant. I had to prepare all the equipment and made a checklist to make sure I got everything. When deciding which equipment to bring, you have to have alternatives just in case something goes south in the middle of the shoot.

There’s a reason why you bring two camera bodies and an extra lens during a shoot, just in case one equipment decides not to perform. Same goes to your  lighting setup, backup is necessary and some few extra cables, battery, trigger and never forget the all around solution, duct tape. Continue reading “Plan and Improvise” »

Lighting Technique

One thing you should be aware about lighting is that the more you work with it, the more you can’t shoot without it. Not all photographers are into artificial lighting, there is natural light that we all enjoy and it takes another skill set to master what you cannot control. A different paradigm when it comes to creativity.

There are moments when everything just falls into place. The lights, the camera settings, the model and makeup was just right on target of what I had in mind. These are times when Photoshop becomes irrelevant. The objective is to do it right when shooting so you don't spend too much in post processing. (Model: DJ NIsh, HMUA: George Villamor)

There are moments when everything just falls into place. The lights, the camera settings, the model and makeup was just right on target of what I had in mind. These are times when Photoshop becomes irrelevant. The objective is to do it right when shooting so you don’t spend too much in post processing. (Model: DJ NIsh, HMUA: George Villamor)

I was cleaning up my backup files lately and I had a chance to review my shots from five years ago and it was a mix of emotion. I felt proud to have seen some good shot even when I was just starting up. I also felt embarrassed with a lot of my shots, I can’t believe that I even shared the photos in social media.

Everybody has to start somewhere and definitely you cannot start an expert. I am wherever I am because of what I’ve been through. In every shoot, you always encounter difficulties and from that experience you gain your experience no matter if you solved it or not. The next time you encounter it, you know if it’s solvable or at least know what needs to be done. Continue reading “Lighting Technique” »

Bigger sensor, better quality?

I congratulated a friend of mine on his purchase of a full frame camera. He said that he’s been saving and waiting for it for a long time and finally his new camera came and he’s excited to try it out. Why would photographers upgrade to a bigger sensor and expect better results compared to cropped sensor.

It is a known fact that a larger sensor would give you more dynamic range. This means that you’d be able to capture more gray levels or tones in your image. Since a digital sensor’s weakness is dynamic range in comparison to film, a better sensor will at least minimize the gap but film is still king.

Recently, Hasselblad, known for its medium format size, released a mirrorless version making the bulky camera more compact and ready to go outside of the studio. Medium format camera has an entirely bigger sensor size than full frame cameras. It’s not your everyday camera, prize is just too steep that you can buy a decent car out of the camera body alone.

Smelted. Winning shot of Victor Kintanar during the Global Fujifilm Photowalk, June 2016 - Cebu Leg. Fujifilm X-T10, 35mm, 1/160sec, f/2.8, ISO800.

Smelted. Winning shot of Victor Kintanar during the Global Fujifilm Photowalk, June 2016 – Cebu Leg. Fujifilm X-T10, 35mm, 1/160sec, f/2.8, ISO800.

Continue reading “Bigger sensor, better quality?” »

Building up your portfolio

When I was starting up in shooting fashion inspired photos, I always had this burning desire to get photos similar to those I look up to in the industry. Photos printed in magazine and billboard is what inspires me to learn and understand how it’s done so I can get the same results.

It took us many poses before we reached this shot. Your experience kicks in during times when everything is not falling into place. Practice helps a lot. (model: Yasmin Johnstone)

It took us many poses before we reached this shot. Your experience kicks in during times when everything is not falling into place. Practice helps a lot. (model: Yasmin Johnstone)

I’ve attended a few workshop back then and of course I was excited to take photos of the model complete with all the styling, makeup and lighting prepared by the instructor. However, I would like to point out that I was more interested seeing the instructor do the shoot himself or at least talk about the thought process that occurs when he is shooting. Continue reading “Building up your portfolio” »

Your Price

 

This girl bought one photo for 50 pesos. She even tried to speak Japanese and said that she's a fan of Naruto. Tendo gamely taught here some few words to say. (Photos by: Don Marc)

This girl bought one photo for 50 pesos. She even tried to speak Japanese and said that she’s a fan of Naruto. Tendo gamely taught here some few words to say. (Photos by: Don Marc)

How would you react if you’re walking in the streets and you see somebody selling his pictures in the walkway? This might be something familiar when walking in some western countries but quite unusual when in the Philippines. Continue reading “Your Price” »