The Union of Jack and Holga

The most exciting camera I got so far is the Holga 120 CFN Jack Limited Edition. It uses a medium format film that is a little more expensive than the regular 35mm, so I thought twice. I took it on my second take though, only because it is a limited edition Holga Jack as in Jack White of The White Stripes, how cool is  that?!

Can’t say? Here’s something to help you out.

Jack White. Photo by microsites.lomography.com

Jack White. Photo by microsites.lomography.com

The White Stripes is a band of two members, ex-husband and wife, Jack  and Meg who then became ex-bandmates too. It is notable that they are known for these colors: red, white and  black; and that peppermint logo on the film advance  thumbwheel. It is just so The White Stripes . Feeling ko ang cool ko. Lol. But nobody really recognizes it as The White Stripes camera, so I’m cool only to myself, which makes me even cooler.  Whut?! By the way, there’s also a Meg-inspired camera  and it’s a Diana+ click here.

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More of Holga Jack vanity on film.

Shot with Diana Mini loaded with Fujichrome Velvia 100

Shot with Diana Mini loaded with Fujichrome Velvia 100

Shot with Yashica Electro 35 GSN with Fuji Neopan 400

Shot with Yashica Electro 35 GSN with Fuji Neopan 400

Shot with Holga 120CFN Jack Edition with Fuji Superia 400

Shot with Holga 120CFN Jack Edition with Fuji Superia 400

And that’s about it. I have just finished a useless blog entry. Below are links that might make sense to you. Yep, just right before you ask me.

What’s in the Holga Jack Limited Edition box? http://microsites.lomography.com/whitestripes/jack

Where do I find more about The White Stripes? http://google.com or http://www.whitestripes.com/

How to do Sprocket Hole Photography? http://www.squarefrog.co.uk/techniques/using-35mm-film.html


Weightless Wanderer

Location 1: Little Tokyo

Location 2: UP Diliman

Location 3: Quiapo

Welcome to my first levitation photography attempt. There’s nothing much to say about it actually because it’s basically just a jump shot setting on your camera. What, or should I say, who will actually make the difference is the model. She jumps like a basketball player now but still keep her face stress-free while in the air. So thank you @meari_writes for your ever so supportive self with my photography ventures and to @thegirlwanders for helping out with directing and production, nakanang. It’s always a party shooting with you two.

I wish I have done more interesting shots especially that my model have mastered the technique. But for now, I’ll settle for this and try to make less blurs next time.


Freshening Up

This weekend, I will be moving out of our family home to my new apartment that I share with friends. I have never lived away from my family save for one when I was in 4th grade when I had to finish the school year in Pasig while the family left for our new home in Caloocan. Now that I’m almost back in Pasig where I always wanted a home, the daily sight of the people and the outskirts of my old humble abode will sorely be missed.

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Fotonotes: My latest photos of Caloocan City with Yashica Electro 35 GSN loaded with Fuji Neopan 400


The Ataris Experience

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I think I’ve whined enough about not hearing My Reply, Looking Back on Today, Saddest Song, Not Capable of Love and I’ll Remember You last January 19 on Twitter. Php800 gets you a shirt and a free concert, there’s not even a ticket. I was surprised to have only seen a few people watch, maybe not more than 200, this was in Eastwood by the way. They had another gig in Piazza in McKinley right after their set. I am worried that their expenses and sales did not at least break even and would not go back in the Philippines though Kris Roe spoke of gratefulness and honor for playing here. Although I’ve always been a fan and never thought ill about him, I didn’t expect such overly pleasing attitude since I saw his video attacking his drummer onstage three months ago. I wish they’ll be back soon as Kris hoped too.

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Paputok 2013

Last Media Noche was the first that I ever got to take fireworks photos of ours. Reason: I’ve always had asthma attacks. This year was not an exception but since I have anticipated it, I went out to watch and shoot while on a face mask.

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Quite a problem I had was that I did not have my tripod with me so I have to make do with what I have, that is…the camera and a steady hand. Without a tripod, I cannot make long exposures that is recommended to draw the trail of the fireworks. The goal is to capture the time it explodes in the air until it fades away which is about a few seconds. The slowest shutter speed I’ve used on this set was 1/8s so I have to be as still as I can to reduce camera shake.

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Another thing to sacrifice for not having a tripod is the aperture. I had to set my aperture to the biggest to allow more light into the lens which is f/3.5 in my case. That is to compensate for the fast shutter speed and also to make the smoke shots more hazy. Technically, we do not want smoke to be seen in this kind of photography, we only want to see the trail of light. But this is smoke in vivid colors and I want it on my photos.

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I’ve never seen someone do a bokehfied fireworks shot so I did. I focused the ceiling instead.

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I pumped up my ISO as well but in real-life pro fireworks photography, it should be kept to a minimum. I’m looking forward to the coming Pyro Musical in February and hopefully this year I’ll get a better view of the show.

I just realized that I spoke mostly of my fireworks display frustration for not having a tripod but most of the photos were just firecrackers shots.

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Just sharing more photos from New Year’s Eve.

 

This is the first time I used Adobe Photoshop on an entry here. It isn’t really difficult to put photos side by side like what I thought. Photoshop noob here, I want to know how to reduce grains, help me out!

 


Tear Here

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Original words deleted. Whew.

The last few months of last  year, I’ve mastered being alone and lonely on weekends and alone and lonelier on weekdays. Well, I kinda had “Life Challenges” messing with me that I thought being less available on Tumblr would help me cope. And oh, I stayed away from photography too, as well as sharp objects and high-rise windows. Looking back, I realized it made the feeling even worse–wrong move. Too bad I can’t undo the months I’ve wasted wasting away–touch move.

I am so thankful for the holiday season. No matter how sad, mad and bad I felt, it was  just indeed merry and happy! Ah gosh, the power of holiday food. And family of course. So I fought LC aka “Life Challenges” and told myself that I should never let LC keep me from going on with my life to the point of isolating myself from friends because that sucks and I only have a few.

LC, go to hell. Original words of this post were all about you, you prick.

P.S.: I missed sharing Me on Tumblr.


Peering Through Graffiti Walls

They had not a word or look of approval to me when I broke into their playground easily like I belong. I’m so thrilled that I was invisible. I came with two cameras in handy, finished a roll on each and escaped.

This is Holga CFN 120 with Fuji Provia 100F.

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This is Yashica Electro 35 GSN with Photoline 200.

At Intramuros Skate Park, Manila.


No Nazareno for a Lazy Ass

Waking up today by a message from a friend if I was going to the Traslacion rattled me out of bed when I saw it’s 2 in the afternoon already.

By the way, if you are here to research/find news about the Black Nazarene, please skip this and save yourself a minute. Yes, it’s the biggest religious feast in the Philippines. If you’re not a local of this country, you sure are moved by the tremendous faith you’ve witnessed. Miracle stories here and there. But you have to be warned, pickpocket stories are as much as the former. And it’s such a shame.

I never was a devotee of anything Catholic, in fact I never was a devotee of categorically anything even to photography. That requires discipline rooted from belief and that’s the hardest to learn if you don’t have the heart for it.

I don’t have the heart for anything right now.

That was unnecessary. Hashtag “Just Saying”. Anyway, I had to work today and being up at 2PM is just right in time for me to be exactly late. So being the changed girl of 2013 that I am now, I ran straight to work and had not a glimpse of the Nazareno I was preparing the night before: The knee-high socks where I’ll be slipping my wallet and phone on (I used to do that before swimming into mosh pits); Boots, cause I once had a patay na kuko when my toe was run over a kariton (I don’t mind how gross it looks but it hurts like hell); And most importantly, my films and cameras (because that’s the reason I’m going in for). I was so prepared even to being raped. By the crowd.

My alarm clock betrayed me and that’s my story of the Feast of the Black Nazarene 2013, quite a deja vu from exactly one year ago.

Since I missed it and there’s so many wonderful shots from the feast streaming on my dashboard (Read: Inggitera), I dug photos of different Nazareno feasts in Caloocan and Manila I took from long ago with a Yashica and Bell + Howell.

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Holiday Bokeh

In the past holiday season, I took advantage of the lights in the metro and did a little play with them. Bokeh has been so dear to many, even to non-photographers, so I did a minor twist to the regular round bokeh we see all over the internet.

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Just to make things clearer, bokeh refers to the unfocused part of a photo, not necessarily an unfocused light source in which case creates circles such as the photo above.

My goal was to shape these circles to Christmas trees for the reason that this post was meant for Christmas. I tried to but I was sick. I use this excuse since grade school.

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Please note that making bokeh shapes doesn’t change the actual color of the lights. The photo above was shot in a place somewhere I don’t remember but sure is not the shaped bokeh of the previous photo.

How I did it is explicable by the photo below:

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Or maybe not. You make a condom for your camera lens with a black cardboard and cut the shape you desire. You think it’s easy? I think it’s not.

It’s like I did my first Christmas tree cut-out too big. Well it differs with the kind of lens you use and how large your aperture can get, so just keep on tearing shaped  holes in different sizes and see which one works for you.

If you notice, some Christmas tree bokehs were cropped. I’m yet to find the right Christmas tree size on my lens condom. I’m not very sure though if that’s what will give me a perfect bokeh shape but will give it a second try–uh but with a different shape maybe.


Quest for the Best Ramen: Urameshiya

And I’m back in my quest for the best ramen on earth! It’s been quite a while since my last good bowl of ramen so pardon my excitement, I’ll just go straight to my review.

Quest of the Best Ramen #2 

  • Restaurant: Urameshiya
  • Location: Little Tokyo, Pasong Tamo, Makati City
  • Ramen of Choice: Miso Ramen

Presentation: First thing I noticed with my ramen is that THERE IS NO FISH CAKE! While I am aware that not all ramens are served with fish cake, this is the first I had without the cute little pink spiral eye candy. It seemed less of a ramen for not having that. It doesn’t look too inviting.

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I was also told that they run out of spinach so they are serving it with cabbage. I thought that maybe on my next visit I’ll have it with cabbage again because spinach is too vegetable for me. It’s too green for human food, well that’s just me. There’s not plenty of corn but I appreciate that it was placed in one side.

It’s also important for me that the bowl is thick. It was a big bowl so I don’t think it can be downed in 15 minutes or less and it’s nice that it was kept hot until I finish mine.  Verdict: 3 out of 5 pairs of chopsticks.

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Taste: I chose miso ramen among the four available ramens Urameshiya serves. For one, I can never go wrong with miso. Anything with miso can easily be my favorite. Two, the other three on the menu is not miso. I just love it, sorry. I think it’s that ingredient that gives the soup it’s rich and salty taste.

The broth makes me feel that it was brought to a good and long boil as the flavor is so even on every sip and it shows on the color.

I got scared of the leeks when I saw it, I thought there was too much of it on my ramen but I was surprised, it was sweet and fresh. Whilst the leeks were overwhelming, they fell short on corn. I have tried Sapporo ramen before and if I am not mistaken, the recipe is similar to that of miso ramen. That Sapporo ramen  had corn just about everywhere on my b0wl and that’s what added sweetness to the food instead of the leeks. My overall feelings towards this ramen is love. It was so good, it was the second best I’ve had in my life! This is 4 out of 5 pairs of chopsticks.

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Service: We didn’t have too much interaction with the service crew except when we discovered that there is a floating fly on my friend’s Kalamansi juice. Well, we honestly didn’t notice a fly any time in our stay much more see it crashing onto the drink but we are certain that it was not there when it was served.

Oh, I also appreciate that we were informed early on that it will be topped with cabbage instead of spinach. Some people prefer spinach over cabbage.

I must also say, they had the shortest waiting time for a ramen to be served so far. Verdict: This is 4.5 out of 5 pairs of chopsticks.

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Ambience: The interiors is the most Japanese resto I’ve been. They are missing tatami mats but have shelves of Manga, the Japanese comics., to compensate.

The seats are elevated but guests are still to take their shoes of and sit on their heels. But of course we preferred to cross our legs and Indian sit.

Different kinds of sake, the Japanese wine, are sold but I bet they had it lined up everywhere to add interest in their store.

There’s nothing fancy on the store. I like that it is not as intimidating as many posh Japanese restos in Manila. See the set of condiments right there on the table, reminds me so much of my lola’s carinderia.

The curtains looks authentic. They are rolled up when guests arrive.

The lights are dim, the photos could tell.

They had TV tuned in to local news.

Price: Price for any ramen on the menu is fixed to Php200 per bowl. Verdict: 4 out of 5 pairs of chopsticks.

More info about Little Tokyo:

Little Tokyo is the place they call where Japanese restaurants are gathered to form a haven for Japanese food lovers. It is situated along Pasong Tamo with Makati Cinema Square being the nearest landmark. Outside were bigger Japanese restaurants and you can go 500 meters within the vicinity and still find more Japanese, whether restos, grocery stores, KTV bars or people.

Little Tokyo restaurants usually opens late in the afternoon for early dinner. At 7PM, Japanese people and a few Pinoys are everywhere enjoying their meal.

I swear I’ll stop this “pairs of chopsticks” thing on my ramen reviews. It kind of pisses me off too (cause I know you also do). Sure I’ll use stars. Thank you for reading!

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