Month: June 2012

Slow down so you won’t miss it

“Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast – you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.” ~Eddie Cantor Self portrait with tripod and timer, at around 5 in the morning Waiting for sunrise in Dahican Beach, Mati, Davao Oriental © Jojie Alcantara 2012 // Advertisements

Simplify

“What’s really important is to simplify. The work of most photographers would be improved immensely if they could do one thing: get rid of the extraneous. If you strive for simplicity, you are more likely to reach the viewer. ” ― William Albert Allard Simplify.  A most handy and practical tip for the photographers. Simplify.  A most handy and practical tip to use in life. Waking up at 4am to catch the sunrise in a remote coastal barrio within my city is rewarding and most often, my feel good therapy. © Jojie Alcantara 2012

Life is an amazing journey

“The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses.  No one to lean on, rely on, or blame. The gift is yours – it is an amazing journey – and you alone are responsible for the quality of it. This is the day your life really begins.” ~ Bob Moawad Me in Siem Reap, Cambodia, April 2012 Taken by Ian Garcia

Walk in peace

“The mind can go in a thousand directions, but on this beautiful path, I walk in peace. With each step, the wind blows.  With each step, a flower blooms.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh This was another of my “shooting from the hip” episodes.  I was going back to my transportation when I looked back and saw this monk walking towards the sunlit temples of Angkor Wat, from where I just had my sunrise shoot.  As the sun rose and cast a golden glow on its path, this monk became all the more visible and translucent, making his dignified stance a joy to behold in a backdrop of archaeological significance. What made me took a shot instinctively, though, were the silhouette of his ears.  It fused with the patterns of the temples.

Take me back in time

“We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they’re called memories. Some take us forward, they’re called dreams.” ~ Jeremy Irons, British actor I love looking at old photos, especially in our family albums. It transports me back to my happy childhood. Last year, a severe flood in our vicinity literally washed away most of my nostalgic possessions and memories of yellowed prints and moldy negatives.  I was left with a few scattered digitally scanned remnants of my sepia childhood. Rather than feel depressed about this loss, I try to recreate my new images into vintage photographs instead.  Using this style takes me happily back in time.  At least, for a while. Model: Teresa Kae Photo treatment: Vintage tones using Photoshop © Jojie Alcantara, 2012 More of these in my RETROGRAPHS gallery

Faded photograph

“What i like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.” ― Karl Lagerfeld I was fortunate to meet the lovely Teresa Kae, a model based in Las Vegas.  She was in my city for a short vacation with a good friend.  Very willing to pose for me in a light, fun shoot, I did my favorite post processing trick –that of turning digital files into vintage photographs.  If retouching photo agencies do restoration, I simply “age” an image into something that evokes good, old memories from faded photographs. Teresa Kae is very young, but she has this classic beauty that is timeless, like an “old soul” breathing nostalgia, transporting you to the the golden era of film prints. Hope it gives the same effect on you. Teresa K and other models are in my retro album.

Life is an adventure!

“Life is an opportunity, benefit from it. Life is beauty, admire it. Life is a dream, realize it. Life is a challenge, meet it. Life is a duty, complete it. Life is a game, play it. Life is a promise, fulfill it. Life is sorrow, overcome it. Life is a song, sing it. Life is a struggle, accept it. Life is a tragedy, confront it. Life is an adventure, dare it. Life is luck, make it. Life is too precious, do not destroy it. Life is life, fight for it.” ― Mother Teresa How I do it: Go to the beach at 4 in the morning. Prepare your tripod and camera. Settle comfortably on the shore, just a little out of waves’ reach. Fix timer. Wait for signs of golden rays coming out. Wait for clouds to slowly roast into golden hues. Press button. NOW RUN. Position yourself in front of camera. Bask in the glow of your sunrise. Repeat process until happily satisfied and out of breath. Don’t forget to wash the sands off …

Jojie Alcantara and Manny Pacquiao in 2010

My Shutterblog Photo Workshop

I am in General Santos City, home of our beloved world champ boxer, Manny “PacMan” Pacquiao.  🙂 This has nothing to do with him, however, since I am here for a photo workshop exclusively for the Socsargen Bloggers tomorrow, June 12.  This is just my way of showing support to PacMan in his recent boxing match. Congressman Manny “PacMan” Pacquiao and me Lemlunay Resort, Sarangani back in August 14, 2010 Photo by Cocoy Sexcion Happy Independence Day, Pilipinas!

The smize have it

“But even though she was attractive, there was something else about her that caught his eye. She was intelligent, he could sense that right away, and confident, too, as if she were able to move through life on her own terms. To him, these were the things that really mattered. Without them, beauty was nothing.” ~Nicholas Sparks, Message in a Bottle Whenever I shoot a model, I make sure she makes eye contact with me (or through the lens), as oppose to glam advertising shots that ask them to look like preoccupied puppets with a faraway squint in their eyes. Tyra Banks call it “smize“, smiling with your eyes. In my day, we used to say, “project!” or “emote!” (I was then a fashion model AND a runway director, like a playing coach in basketball terms. Oh right, an old fashioned Tyra minus the booty.) 🙂 My model is Zsaharah, of moslem descent, with a strong, attractive personality and a professional outlook in her work (she is a nurse, by the way). She became one …

Live in the present

“You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land, there is no other life but this.” ~ Henry David Thoreau I captured Hagonoy Island on a perfectly beautiful day.  The next day, however, cast a different light due to low tropical depression.  Storm clouds were approaching as we left paradise.  Standing there resolute, while gray skies spread gloom over the heavens, the island stood majestically amidst raging waters, knowing that storms may pass, but it will remain…surviving.  It was even more beautiful when we left it. Read my published article here or view more photos in my gallery.

My Travel Photography Workshop

(downloadable poster) DESTINATION MATI: A TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP SERIES BY RHONSON NG AND JOJIE ALCANTARA (JUNE 16-17, 2012) Dahican at Daybreak (Mati, Davao Oriental) Photo by Rhonson Ng (my mentor) Dahican, the popular and most beautiful beach in my birthplace Mati, is an extended strip of stunning white beach lined with coconut trees, facing sparkling turquoise waters that ebb and flow wildly into the Pacific, inviting adventurous skimboarders to surf in glee. But there is more to Mati than sand and sea, and glorious island hopping. In line with the coming PUJADA BAY FESTIVAL of Mati this June, we are announcing our travel photography workshop on June 16-17, which includes the sunrise shoot along Dahican. Get to know more about Mati, my birthplace Limited slots only. Email matitourismoffice@yahoo.com or rhonson.ng@gmail.com. * * * *

Keeping paradise

“Paradise was always over there, a day’s sail away. But it’s a funny thing, escapism. You can go far and wide and you can keep moving on and on through places and years, but you never escape your own life. I, finally, knew where my life belonged. Home.” ~ J. Maarten Troost, Getting Stoned with Savages: A Trip Through the Islands of Fiji and Vanuatu I love island shots, especially when the weather is perfectly right, sky is cool blue, waters are clearer, bluer, and that islet in front of you just screams to be walked upon.  But I have had island shots where skies darken of impending storms and the mood is even greater.  Wherever you go, what seems to be paradise is what you perceive in your mind and heart at that moment. If  you are curious about this beautiful piece of gem in the sea, read my article here, published today. You can also view more in the gallery.  

Morning fishers

Dahican at Daybreak (Mati, Davao Oriental) Jojie Alcantara, May 2012 Dahican, the popular and most beautiful beach in my birthplace Mati, is an extended strip of stunning white beach lined with coconut trees, facing sparkling turquoise waters that ebb and flow wildly into the Pacific, inviting adventurous skimboarders to surf in glee. But there is more to Mati than sand and sea, and glorious island hopping. When I am in Mati, I always arrange for my early (4am) sunrise shoot, to capture early risers, and fishermen returning from their catch, while locals run to assist with the boat.  Here, they are able to get free meals from the fisherman. Visited my gallery about my birthplace * * * *

Dew on a rose © Jojie Alcantara

A flower’s gift

     “I am the lover’s gift; I am the wedding wreath; I am the memory of a moment of happiness; I am the last gift of the living to the dead; I am a part of  joy and a part of sorrow.” ― Khalil Gibran Found this on a couple of websites and I compiled it: What Do Flower Colors Mean? Steeped in tradition, the meanings of flowers have been a part of human culture for thousands of years. The practice of attaching meanings to the colors of flowers is also a long-honored tradition in almost every culture. Some types of flowers may also have meanings that accentuate or expand on the meaning of the color. For example, a red rose can mean love and passion, while a black rose can signify obsession. The following is a listing of common colors that are associated with a variety of flowers. RED is most commonly associated with love, desire, and passion. A red flower can be a symbol of desire, lust, devotion, and beauty. The color red …

I Want My MTV

Reload 022: You want them on a train with you

RELOAD,  REFRESH, RESTART  022 –  It’s what we do in our computers.  So with life, we take a break.  If all else fails, reformat. Sit back, relax and enjoy my favorite video reposts. 🙂 What a wonderful world when you start off each day like this. Brings a smile into your face each time. Copied off the introduction on youtube: Published on May 3, 2012 by CPHPHIL In April 2012 Copenhagen Phil (Sjællands Symfoniorkester) surprised the passengers in the Copenhagen Metro by playing Griegs Peer Gynt. The flash mob was created in collaboration with Radio Klassisk. All music was performed and recorded in the metro. Visit our website: http://copenhagenphil.dk/ and facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SjaellandsSymfoniorkester.CopenhagenPhil Produced by http://makropol.dk/ The sound:  The Copenhagen Metro is very quiet and the recording you hear is where the train is standing still. That’s why the recording you hear is so clean and crisp – and the sound is actually surprisingly good in the Copenhagen metro. We did this deliberately because we feel that a good sound experience is vital when trying to …