I visited Zamboanga before and after a rebel siege in the city a year ago that left a portion of the central town bruised and battered, and kept many wary visitors away and in fear. Foreign travel advisories stay adamant. I expected to focus on remnants of a combat zone, but there were other things that captivated me more.
“If I waited for perfection… I would never write a word.” ~ Margaret Atwood
When it comes to street and documentary photography, I am a huge fan of Henri Cartier-Bresson, Steve McCurry, and the enigmatic Vivian Maier. Watching her documentary Finding Vivian Maier was overwhelming for artists like me, inspiring yet saddening to be discovered posthumously. We are so moved by the stunning photography that this quiet, reclusive nanny has sprung upon us unsuspectingly. And yet, where now is the privacy she so wished until her end?
Vivian Maier’s works are gaining recognition worldwide, yet the artist isn’t there anymore to accept or decline her fame. This very private person who grew old alone and died alone suddenly has her life exposed to the world, a past she so mysteriously guarded when she was still alive.
“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. As long as this exists, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.” – Anne Frank
“Nature is painting for us, day after day, pictures of infinite beauty if only we have the eyes to see them.” ― John Ruskin
Launched on April 10 of this year at the Tapas Bar of the Makati Shangri-La Manila hotel, the first travel coffee table book of its kind with a quirky and confident title of The Best of the Best of the Philippines was recently unveiled to the public.