Stalking the most beautiful places in the Philippines


Welcome, welcome 'o weary traveler... from where do you cometh? Are you seeking new lands to conquer, perhaps planning a visit to the Philippines? Or are you simply feeling home-sick and hungry for photographs of home? Whatever, feel free to look or share. An adventure awaits.

I try to post new images weekly from my travels across this beautiful land. If you like what you see, please leave a comment or two. Or write me a note, I'd love to hear from where you cometh. Enjoy. Bobby (bobbyw59@yahoo.com) Join this group to receive new postcards weekly or become a fan of my Facebook page.


Monday, October 25, 2010

#90 One Misty Morning



Why do we climb mountains? Because it's there! (George Mallory, the first British mountaineer to attempt Mount Everest, albeit unsuccessfully.)

But for landscape photographers, mountains are a special lure because they offer unique vantage points to see the lay of the land. It's how we get a sense of the places we visit, by looking out "as far as our eyes can see."  Near the top of Mt. Talama, in the city of Tabuk in Kalinga, we looked out to the town of Bulanao and its rice fields below. We knew rice is important to the people here, but its only when we're high-up, and surrounded by a seeming endless valley of rice paddies one misty morning, did we understand what that really meant. It's their life. Enjoy.

(Pixel-peepers: To capture a grand landscape, a wide angle lens is my preferred poison. But when the view leading to the top is thick with foliage, may you be lucky enough to find a narrow gap among the trees for a telephoto lens. What you lose in sheer breadth is made up by the longer len's tendency to compress the scene in front of you, as in this case, making the rice paddies look closer to each other than they really are. That works too.)

Where in the world is Tabuk, Kalinga?
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Older postcards at www.PostcardsFromManila.com
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For those who've inquired about buying prints of my postcards, you may purchase them directly from master printmaker Arnel Murillo (murilloarnel@yahoo.com), one of the country's foremost fine-art printmakers.  Arnel uses archival inks and museum-grade paper to ensure his prints will not fade. You will not be disappointed. (All my images are provided gratis to help showcase the beauty of our country. But if you feel generous, help me uplift the lives of the Children of Payatas.  No donation is too big or too small. Get in touch with Fr. Aldrin Suan at aldrinsuan@yahoo.com of the Vincentian Missionaries in the Philippines. As always, thanks and enjoy.)

Monday, October 18, 2010

#89 Road to Lubo



What on earth are these men doing?

A. They're treasure hunters looking for the fabled Yamashita gold treasure along a dried river bed.
B. They are digging a grave for the goat they just ran over a few meters back.
C. They just feel like digging a hole, so mind your own business!
D. None of the above.

If you guessed D, you have Sherlock's instincts! That's the road that connects the towns of Tabuk and Tanudan in the province of Kalinga! Yup, it's that bad.

Our GPS told us civilization ended hours earlier and that no official road exists ahead of us. No kidding. How can the town of Tanudan, or any large community for that matter, be this isolated from civilization? Isolated communities need access to the city for the same reasons you and I do: hospitals for the sick, university for the children, and a market for our farmers (in this case, the revered Kalinga Coffee bean!) Google it and you'll get the impression that the Tabuk-Tanudan road is a reality. Does this look like a road to you? Enjoy.

(Pixel-peepers: I normally don't sharpen my photographs but this one needed a small amount of USM to bring out the details. Most digital files need some digital sharpening anyway so don't be shy. Better still, use a tripod whenever you can. Unless you're shooting at 1/500th of a second, you'll be surprised just how much sharper your photographs will become.)

Where in the world is Tanudan in Kalinga?
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Older postcards at www.PostcardsFromManila.com
Say helloBobbyw59@yahoo.com



But wait, there's more...





For those who've inquired about buying prints of my postcards, you may purchase them directly from master printmaker Arnel Murillo (murilloarnel@yahoo.com), one of the country's foremost fine-art printmakers.  Arnel uses archival inks and museum-grade paper to ensure his prints will not fade. You will not be disappointed. (All my images are provided gratis to help showcase the beauty of our country. But if you feel generous, help me uplift the lives of the Children of Payatas.  No donation is too big or too small. Get in touch with Fr. Aldrin Suan at aldrinsuan@yahoo.com of the Vincentian Missionaries in the Philippines. As always, thanks and enjoy.)


Monday, October 11, 2010

#88 Call the cops!

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Indecent public exposure? Quick, call the cops.... but wait... they are the cops!

We were in Sagada in the Mountain Province on a Sunday, the day of a town fiesta. There's a only a single road that cuts through this small town.  And early this morning, children young and old, dressed in brightly-colored outfits, formed a long line along this road, waiting for the parade to begin. Somewhere near the front of the pack are their City's Finest, decked in native attire. The women are wrapped in native woven fabric.  And the men... in G-strings and nothing more. It's not everyday you see cops so skimpily dressed, but hey this is the Mountain Province. Enjoy.

(Pixel-peepers: When confronted with high contrast ranges, like a row of skimpily dressed cops back-lit by the morning sun, I always expose for the shadows. This preserves shadow detail which can later be restored in my digital darkroom. Thanks to the magic of digital technology, the shadows can be less dark and the highlights can be less bright, resulting in a more pleasing photograph. Is this image manipulation? ssshhhh Ansel Adams might hear you!)

Where in the world is Sagada in the Mountain Province?
Sign-up to receive new postcards weekly FREE
Older postcards at www.PostcardsFromManila.com
Say helloBobbyw59@yahoo.com

But wait, there's more...


For those who've inquired about buying prints of my postcards, you may purchase them directly from master printmaker Arnel Murillo (murilloarnel@yahoo.com), one of the country's foremost fine-art printmakers.  Arnel uses archival inks and museum-grade paper to ensure his prints will not fade. You will not be disappointed. (All my images are provided gratis to help showcase the beauty of our country. But if you feel generous, help me uplift the lives of the Children of Payatas.  No donation is too big or too small. Get in touch with Fr. Aldrin Suan at aldrinsuan@yahoo.com of the Vincentian Missionaries in the Philippines. As always, thanks and enjoy.)

Monday, October 4, 2010

#87 Is it a Sunrise or a Sunset?


Someone once asked if, from a picture alone, I could tell a sunrise from a sunset. Not easy.

We were on a mountain ledge somewhere in Sagada in the Mountain Province, and it was a sunrise. We were high enough above the clouds so the sky was clear but the land enveloped in a dreamy mist. Forcing oneself to look just at the emerging sun and the sky, a sunrise and sunset would look identical. The color of the sky and the randomness of the clouds hold little clue to differentiate the two. But there is a way: look at the land. Mist and fog are mostly seen only at sunrise, and if the photograph contains a boat or two, only smaller boats venture out at that time of the day. Are the animals and people in the composition?  We all know where they should be at sunrise! Still, both sunrise and sunset are my favorite times of the day... maybe I should have said... Does it matter? Enjoy.

(Pixel-peepers: When the sun breaks the horizon it creates contrasts today's digital sensors can't handle. Even with 5 stops of graduated filters, correctly exposing the sun means the rest of the photograph will become too dark. When forced to photograph the naked sun, I meter around the edges of the sun, about 1/4 of the way towards the other end of my composition. This sort-of averages the brightness of the scene and ensures the photograph will show more than just a round bright disc.  Most people don't care to look at the sun anyway.






Where in the world is Sagada in the Mountain Province?


Sign-up to receive new postcards weekly FREE

Past postcards at www.PostcardsFromManila.com

Say helloBobbyw59@yahoo.com

But wait, there's more...

For those who've inquired about buying prints of my postcards, you may purchase them directly from master printmaker Arnel Murillo (murilloarnel@yahoo.com), one of the country's foremost fine-art printmakers.  Arnel uses archival inks and museum-grade paper to ensure his prints will not fade. You will not be disappointed. (All my images are provided gratis to help showcase the beauty of our country. But if you feel generous, help me uplift the lives of the Children of Payatas.  No donation is too big or too small. Get in touch with Fr. Aldrin Suan at aldrinsuan@yahoo.com of the Vincentian Missionaries in the Philippines. As always, thanks and enjoy.)


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