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.
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
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.
There are many things in life that will catch your eye, but only a few will catch your heart. Pursue those. Fly free. Don’t let fear of what may happen hold you back from following your heart.
“Those who believe they can move mountains, do. Those who believe they can’t, cannot. Belief triggers the power to do.” ― David J. Schwartz, Magic Of Thinking Big
The historic City of Ayutthaya (1351-1767), was the second capital of a flourishing Siamese Kingdom (Thailand’s old name). For 417 years from the 14th to the 18th centuries, it grew to be one of the world’s largest and most cosmopolitan urban areas and a most important center of global diplomacy and commerce during its time. It was said to be beautiful, luxurious and fabulous… think wild Paris of ancient history.
“Kadagatan sa Panabo.” A family picks shells along the coastline of Cagangohan Fish Sanctuary in Panabo City, which is part of the Davao Gulf, and one of the priority areas for marine biodiversity conservation of the Sulu-Sulawesi Marine Eco-region (WWF, 2001).
“I believe in the city as a natural human environment, but we must humanize it. It’s art that will re-define public space in the 21st Century. We can make our cities diverse, inspirational places by putting art, dance and performance in all its forms into the matrix of street life.” ~ Antony Gormley
“You have to believe in happiness, or happiness never comes … Ah, that’s the reason a bird can sing — On his darkest day he believes in spring.” – Douglas Malloch
“When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in black and white, you photograph their souls!” ― Ted Grant
“We are all rowing a boat of fate The waves keep on comin’ and we can’t escape But if we ever get lost on our way The waves would guide you through another day.” ~ Life is Like a Boat – Rie Fu
“In still moments by the sea life seems large-drawn and simple. It is there we can see into ourselves.” ― Rolf Edberg
“I spent uncounted hours sitting at the bow looking at the water and the sky, studying each wave, different from the last, seeing how it caught the light, the air, the wind; watching patterns, the sweep of it all, and letting it take me. The sea.”- Gary Paulsen, Caught by the Sea
“The winds, the sea, and the moving tides are what they are. If there is wonder and beauty and majesty in them, science will discover these qualities… If there is poetry in my book about the sea, it is not because I deliberately put it there, but because no one could write truthfully about the sea and leave out the poetry.” ― Rachel Carson
“It is a curious situation that the sea, from which life first arose should now be threatened by the activities of one form of that life. But the sea, though changed in a sinister way, will continue to exist; the threat is rather to life itself.” ― Rachel Carson, The Sea Around Us
“There is only one important point you must keep in your mind and let it be your guide. No matter what people call you, you are just who you are. Keep to this truth. You must ask yourself how is it you want to live your life. We live and we die, this is the truth that we can only face alone. No one can help us, not even the Buddha. So consider carefully, what prevents you from living the way you want to live your life?” ― Dalai Lama XIV
“We can only appreciate the miracle of a sunrise if we have waited in the darkness”. – Anonymous
Silkwinds April 2014 Cover by Jojie Alcantara This is my cover photo of aerial Boracay waters in April 2014 issue of Silkwinds, the inflight magazine of SilkAir (Regional Wing of Singapore Airlines). I shot the fishermen and boat from a helicopter over Boracay. This is my second aerial photo on cover of an international airline magazine.
“I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.” ― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom: Autobiography of Nelson Mandela When I am down, and my grumpy self surfaces due to several reasons — period, boredom, depression, low self esteem or just being flat broke — I take time out to travel on a short or long trip, and let myself be engulfed by the sheer beauty of the world around me that we often fail to acknowledge or even notice. If I keep moving forward, my worries are left behind. Seascape of my ancestral place in Manay, Davao Oriental © Jojie Alcantara 2013 * * * *
“You are always rich when you can see and feel the beauty of this world” – Aine Belton