Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Once I asked my nephew how come I no longer see him wearing the authentic NBA jersey I got him in New York. Sheepishly, he replied, “Nasungkit, Tito.”

It wasn’t until I was walking along these streets of Intramuros last Saturday when I once again thought about that particular incident. Without a safer place to hang dry their newly-washed clothes, some folks hang them right outside their windows; making them easier for petty thieves to pinch with the aid of a long stick.

This row of houses, by the way, is on the same street — but about a couple of hundred meters away — from the colorful house pictured below, which happens to be my favorite building in Intramuros. This may be the last enclave where squatters are allowed to reside within Intramuros.

During the 17th-century, the parian neighborhood of Sta. Cruz commanded the highest in rental prices, compared to those in other districts of Manila. Businessmen, especially the foreigners, preferred the structures of Sta. Cruz, especially those warehouses along the Pasig River, which facilitated the swifter delivery of their merchandise through the cascos or boats that plied the city’s esteros.

Among the big time landlords of that era was Doroteo Jose who owned six residential homes located at Calle Obando. They were built of mamposteria and wood with galvanized iron roofing. His properties were valued at P9,000.00 at that time.

Another was Pedro Roxas, who lived in the tony neighborhood of San Miguel district. He owned buildings in Sta. Cruz — a residential house at 40 Calle Quiotan; a warehouse with bakery at 14 Curtidor; and another warehouse at 64 San Pedro. His properties were collectively assessed at a total price P18,300.00.

To date, Sta. Cruz and Binondo remain to be the priciest pieces of real estate in the entire City of Manila.

Santa Cruz Church
A Living Heritage
By Anna Maria L. Harper

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posted by Señor Enrique at 4:48 PM | 25 comments

Monday, February 26, 2007


* * *

Please note:
I very much appreciate my articles and photos appearing on fellow bloggers' sites, popular broadsheets, and local broadcast news segments, but I would appreciate even more a request for permission first.
Thank you!


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posted by Señor Enrique at 8:06 AM | 38 comments

Friday, February 23, 2007


His bronze statue stands proudly on the street named after him — stretching from Juan Luna Street to Plaza de Sta. Cruz.

It's a busy narrow street that is bounded by a historical church on either end — Binondo Church on the west and Sta. Cruz Church on the east; churches that were initially built to serve Binondo’s growing Chinese converts to Catholicism.

Many local Manilans to this day would even nonchalantly refer to the entire Binondo district or Chinatown as Ongpin.

But who was Roman Ongpin?

The only information I could find about this man is that he founded El 82, an artist supply store in Binondo, which was managed by his son, Alfonso.

The walls of this store were lined with some of the finest collections of Philippine paintings such as those by the nineteenth-century masters, Juan Luna y Novicio and Felix Resurrection Hidalgo. There were also paintings by Fabian de la Rosa and later on, by his nephew, Fernando Amorsolo.

So, essentially, besides being a successful businessman, Roman Ongpin was a patron of the arts. However, according to Tsinoy.com, there was another side to this man the heroic. He was supposedly an intrepid supporter of the Philippine Revolution of 1898; generously providing the Katipuneros with money, foods and other important necessities from his business establishments.

The Spaniards were completely oblivious to his involvement because Ongpin appeared as a staunch ally of the administration. He was so good at such pretense he was appointed teniente de mestizos of Binondo for two years. Even during the early American colonial rule, Roman Ongpin remained active in the revolution until he was caught and imprisoned from December 6, 1900 to March 23,1901.

A true lover of the arts and freedom, Roman Ongpin risked his life, the welfare of his family, and his personal fortune by having supported the Philippine Revolution.

Additional sources:

Aguinaldo's Breakfast by Ambeth Ocampo
Anvil Publishing 1993

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posted by Señor Enrique at 7:50 PM | 30 comments

Thursday, February 22, 2007


I love chicken — broiled, barbequed, grilled, fried, stewed, or adobo — unlike some friends, especially, some fellow Pinoys who live abroad and now detest even the slightest thought of eating chicken. A prime example is a cousin from Los Angeles who claims that she probably could fly off the ground with just one more bite of chicken.

Andok’s has juicy broiled chicken. Country Chicken is another, though more expensive by fifty pesos. Max’s fried chicken is delicious as always, but if given a choice between its fried chicken and Aristocrat’s barbequed chicken, I’d go for the latter. The broiled chicken at San Miguel Food Shop is the least expensive; only one hundred fifty-five pesos for a whole chicken, though smaller. They offer two flavors: honey and lemon with herbs.

In Binondo and Sta. Cruz areas, besides the fried chicken at Savory’s in Escolta, I also enjoy the breading-free fried chicken at Ramon Lee on Ronquillo Street right off Avenida Rizal. Supposedly, Ramon Lee Fried Chicken was established in Manila dating back to the 1930s. However, its sales declined when the LRT was built along Avenida Rizal. To retain some of its loyal customers and battle the increasing competition from Jolibee’s across the street, it introduced combo meals — such as a piece of its famous chicken served with rice and soda. The interior was also repainted with pink as its main color scheme; a videoke machine was installed on the second floor. Despite its present vintage ambience and rundown condition, the tasty food they offer continues to attract customers.

There are times I miss the breaded fried chicken served with rice and beans at this tiny Puerto Rican eatery on Eight Avenue at Manhattan’s West Side, but Chow King’s is just as good, though without the black beans. The other I miss is Ceasar salad with grilled chicken from a deli near where I used to work in New York, but T.G.I. Friday’s here in Manila offers an incredible plate of it.

By the way, chicken gizzards and hearts I love, especially as adobo, but I am yet to acquire a fondness for chicken feet dimsun. Go figure.

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posted by Señor Enrique at 10:32 AM | 42 comments

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


His name is Darius Flake, the first prize winner of the Quezon City Digital Photo Contest held last month. I took this picture of him yesterday during the awarding ceremony and the opening of the photo exhibit on the second floor of the Quezon City Hall.

Darius is a soft spoken photojournalist who hailed from Zambales and now resides in Cavite with his wife and young children. Unlike a typical top prize photo contest winner who would run off to Hidalgo to buy himself his dream lens, Darius intends to use his twenty thousand peso award money to pay off some overdue bills and personal loans. He believes that his having won the contest was God’s response to his prayers.

One of his children suffered an illness a couple of months ago, and the only way he could pay for the child’s medical expenses was to put his motorcycle as collateral for a personal loan. His wife was also involved in an accident in which one of her legs was amputated; the medical expenses from that incident also depleted their savings. To make matters worse, the money he regularly earns as a photojournalist barely pays for his family’s daily living expenses so, one can only imagine the financial challenges that Darius has to contend with. Unarguably, the top prize money he won will assuage his financial dilemma, as well as enable him to reclam his motorcycle, which is his primary mode of transport. Personally, I was happy that it was Darius who won the top prize.

After the opening ceremony and the opportnity to meet with some of Quezon City’s top administration officials such as Mayor Belmonte, Vice-Mayor Bautista and Congressman Crisologo, there was a breakfast buffet for all participants and guests.

Besides, Darius I also got to meet Raphael Dorilag, the second prize winner. I was thrilled to hear that he found out about this photo contest through his co-worker who, in turn, found out about it through my blog site. There was also Akira Liwanag, a high school student who was one of those who earned an honorable mention.

Darius with Quezon City Mayor Sonny Belmonte.

Raphael Dorilag, the second prize winner, just returned from a Banawe trip that very same morning and had to dash-off to work immediately after the ceremony.

This young man, Akira Liwanag, standing in front of his winning photograph of a couple up in a tree inside the Quezon Memorial Park, is another big surprise for me. An extremely quiet young man in person, but check out his photoblog site, Akira's Darkroom. This young man's photo coverage of former President Estrada in his Tanay resthouse is quite impressive. Furthermore, his namesake, Akira Kurosawa, happens to be a personal idol; Kurosawa was, after all, the legendary master cinemaphotographer.

Mayor Belmonte and Vice-mayor Bautista with other top city officials viewing the photo exhibit.

Incidentally, the other picture right below Darius’ is mine — Afternoon in the Park. It won an honorable mention and I got to meet the mayor. The prize money I received will pay for my next photography workshop.

More significantly, besides the prize money and having had the honor of meeting the mayor of Quezon City, this entire event provided me with the opportunity to meet more of our talented local photographers. I should also mention my having had the pleasure of meeting pro photographer, Romeo Mariano of the Quezon City Cultural and Tourism Affairs Office. Both he and Madam Cheri were such gracious hosts.

Maraming salamat po!

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posted by Señor Enrique at 9:24 AM | 41 comments

Sunday, February 18, 2007


According to the Chinese zodiac, people born in the Year of the Pig are tenacious and attend to their tasks with great strength. They love to study and gain much pleasure in developing their intellectual capacity.

Their fortitude and straighforwardness provide them with a determination that knows no retreat. They're not into any sort of popularity contests; therefore, not very good in making friends, but the few they have are friends for life. They are quick-temepered, though they shy away from any quarrrels. They are very kind to their loved ones and to those they treasure as friends.

They are also good in working out any differences and no matter how grave a problem is, they're able to work things out amicably amongst those involved.

And what better way to welcome the Year of the Pig than to be at Manila's Chinatown. Its streets were filled with the deafening sounds of kettle drums and firecrackers while various groups perform the colorful and mesmerizing lion and dragon dances. There were also loads of tikoy of various flavors, fruits, and a dizzying array of good luck charms.

I was there last Saturday and was pleasantly surprised to run into a couple of fellow bloggers -- Sidney, Anton and Ivan Henares. I joined them for some dimsung before heading back out in the streets to take some pictures of the merriment as featured below.

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posted by Señor Enrique at 7:56 PM | 28 comments

Saturday, February 17, 2007


My nephew's baby, Alexandra, spent a day with us yesterday, and I seized this opportunity to take some pictures of her.

As we all know, babies are wonderful, but can be a challenge to photograph. So I've come up with some pointers to share with you. Here they are:

Avoid using a flash unit. Use as much natural light as possible by moving near a window or under a shade outdoors. Pictures taken with a flash unit often flattens the details of the photograph; worse, its use may momentariy blind and annoy the baby.

It is virtually impossible to make any baby strike the ideal pose; hence, it's better to take candid shots of their wondrous expressions -- like the way their fingers wrap around yours, or their ephemeral angel-like features when they're asleep.

Also, whenever possible, always place the camera at the baby's level; avoid taking shots above them. And most importantly, zoom in on the baby and keep it as simple as possible. A cluttered background will only take away the attention from the main subject, which is the baby.

And for those using digital cameras, take as many shots as you can. This way, you'll have plenty to choose from later on.

Good luck and have fun taking those pictures!

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posted by Señor Enrique at 6:02 AM | 33 comments

Friday, February 16, 2007


Jazz is back in town!

Jazz & Arts Fiesta 2007 is a ten-day grand celebration of the Filipino Arts Month; planned as the biggest and coolest jazz festival to ever hit Metro Manila with its ten city-wide events. It will consist of eight days of city mall tours, as well as two giant concert performances.

Besides a roster of prominent Filipino artists, there will be performances by eleven visiting jazz musicians, including Flora Purim, Airto, Diane Schuur, and Eldar Djangirov. Eileen Sison and her band Guarana, will also take part in this festivities. Eileen's scheduled performances are as follows:

February 16th:
She will be singing bossa nova with Bob Basa and Bo Razon at Serendra, Fort Bonifacio (presented by PIjazzfest)

February 17th:
Bossa Nova by the Bay concert featuring Eileen Sison, Sofia, Raffi Quijano & Julia Duncan with Guarana & Escola de Samba de Manila at Sofitel Philippine Plaza Hotel

February 18th:
Eileen will be singing with DREAMGIRLS (ten female jazz vocalists) at Alabang Town Center (presented by PIjazzfest)

February 20th & 21st:
Eileen Sison with Guarana at Cafe Havana (Greenbelt 3 in Makati)

February 22nd:
Eileen Sison with Guarana & Escola de Samba de Manila, as well as with Airto at the PIjazzfest.

February 23rd:
Eileen Sison with Guarana & Escola de Samba de Manila at the PIjazzfest. Also included in this evening's performances are Flora Purim & Airto Moreira; Samba Trio; and Sitti.

February 24th:
Eileen Sison will be singing with DREAMGIRLS (ten female jazz vocalists) at Sofitel Philippine Plaza Hotel (Harbour Garden Tent -- as presented by PIjazzfest).

Tickets are available through the following branches of Starbucks:

Starbucks Make Room G/F Glorietta 3, Tel No. : 757-1998,
Starbucks Glorietta 4
4th level, Cinema Lobby,Tel No. : 817-8765
Starbucks Greenbelt 3 G/F Greenbelt 3, Tel No. : 757-4035
Starbucks ATC Alabang, Muntinlupa, Tel No. : 850-8944,
Starbucks Market Market
102 G/F Phase 1A, Tel No.: 886-7948
Starbucks Greenbelt 1 G/F Greenbelt Mall, Tel No.: 892-0415,
Starbucks Rockwell Rockwell Center, Tel No.: 898-3632,
Starbucks SM Megamall
G/F Building A, Tel No.: 687-1968
Starbucks Harbor Square CCP Complex, Tel No.: 551-0115

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posted by Señor Enrique at 6:10 PM | 8 comments

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


This was the scene at Quezon Boulevard the other day around four o’clock in the afternoon.

The vehicles on the left lane were heading south to Quiapo Church, while those on the opposite were heading north to Espana, Dimasalang, or Lacson Avenue (formerly Governor Forbes).

On top of the underpass is Claro M. Recto Avenue (formerly Azcarraga), which was surprisingly without that much traffic. Towards its left is Divisoria, while to the right is Morayta and Legarda which leads to Sta. Mesa, Manila.

The train above the avenue is the Metro Light Rail to Cubao. Apparently, the train and the vehicles on the service road near the left lane were the only ones moving; the rest were on a standstill.

If this is how Manila's major thoroughfares can get at any given afternoon, I dread the thought of how it would become another twenty years hence.

Scenes like this at times force me to wonder how Manila was during the peacetime era (before the Second World War). Well, I need not shift my imagination to overdrive for I discovered in Carlos Celdran’s blogsite a seven-minute Google video link showcasing how beautiful the city was during that time. Check it out for yourself and enjoy it.

Click here for the Old Manila video.

* * *

Please note:
I very much appreciate my articles and photos appearing on fellow bloggers' sites, popular broadsheets, and local broadcast news segments, but I would appreciate even more a request for permission first.
Thank you!


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posted by Señor Enrique at 10:04 PM | 38 comments

Monday, February 12, 2007


With nothing better to do yesterday morning, I decided to drive out to San Augustin at Intramuros. I’ve been to this church a couple of times during Carlos Celdran’s walking tour, but haven’t really seen the interior of this church during a mass with all its chandeliers lit. It was incredible. This has got to be Manila’s most ornate and garish church. No wonder many weddings are held here; it’s quite colorful and photogenic.

Touted as the oldest church in the Philippines, its very first structure was made of nipa and bamboo built in 1571 by the Augustinians who arrived in the Philippines with the Legazpi expedition in 1565. It was originally named the Church and Convent of Saint Paul. It was destroyed when Limahong invaded Manila in 1574, but was rebuilt in 1581 to become the venue of the First Diocesan Synod.

Unfortunately, one of the candles at the funeral of Governor-General Gonzalo Ronquillo de Penalosa set the drapes of the funeral bier on fire, which burnt the entire church down. The fire raged uncontrollably and soon the entire Intramuros was in flames. The structure that replaced it was also razed to the ground by another fire in 1586. It was only after then that Juan Macias was commissioned in 1604 to design a stone church. It proved formidable; sustaining only minor damages from earthquakes; that is, until in 1880 when a tremor severely cracked one of the belltowers, which was later torn down.

When the British invaded and occupied Manila in 1762, San Augustin was looted; the altar ornaments were stripped of their gold and precious gems, while the graves of the conquistadores were desecrated. The Augustinians were driven out of the convent; several were arrested and shipped off to England only to return two years later after the occupation.

During the Spanish-American conflict in 1898, then Governor-General Jaudenes prepared the terms of the surrender of Manila to the victorious American forces in the chapel of the Nuestra Senora de las Augustias. And during the last days of the Battle of Manila in 1945, the Japanese soldiers used the church as a massive holding cell for hostages, but the Americans shelled the church anyway. San Augustin went through a series of repairs and renovations since then. Architect Angel Nakpil conceived and built a museum within the premises in 1965; construction of which lasted until 1969.

San Augustin Church is across the street from Casa Manila Museum making it an interesting place to visit on a lazy Sunday afternoon.

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posted by Señor Enrique at 8:40 AM | 31 comments

Thursday, February 08, 2007


I should join these two guys and go back to bicycling on a regular basis as I used to, though it isn't that safe a sport to do in the streets of Manila, which are oftentimes too narrow to be safely shared by both motorists and bicyclists. There are also those motorcycle and scooter operators who disregard even the most basic regulations; weaving through traffic at perilous speeds; hence, posing added risks to unwitting bicyclists.

New York has its share of hazards that threaten bicyclists also; foremost are those Manhattan cab drivers who get a thrill out of speeding by with his side mirror barely missing you by only an inch. Whereas, out in Long Island (where we often went for week-long biking/camping trips), the dangers came not from undisciplined motorists but from huge dogs who would get enraged by passing bicyclists. We had on a couple of occasions encountered such incorrigible canines that chased us for more than a mile.

In the many years of riding a bike, I had experienced two accidents, though minor but nonetheless startling. One occurred while riding back to Manhattan from a day trip to Jones Beach. I was still a skinny kid then weighing no more than 130 pounds riding an incredibly light 10-speed bike. I got caught in the afterwind of this huge trailer truck that zoomed by us. I was literally lifted off the ground along with my bike and got hurled to the sidewalk. I suffered some bruises and now bear a couple of scars from it.

The second time was when I was scared frozen by the sight of a huge python in the middle of the road out in Montauk Point, Long Island. At the speed I was going when turning the bend and then suddenly saw it, I skidded a few feet when I fell off my bike, and ironically landed near this humongous snake, which paid me no mind as it continued to crawl its way to the other side of the road.

Besides the long distance bike trips to Long Island, there was also the annual bike marathon around Central Park sponsored by Pepsi that I looked forward to during the summer. We were given all these goodies for signing up, but we'd only do a couple of laps; spending the rest of the day playing frisbee and tennis instead.

There was also a time when bicycling was being encouraged as the main mode of transportation in Manhattan to ease vehicular traffic and pollution. It was an all out effort which included the designation of bike lanes on almost all main roads and avenues in the city. But the enthusiasm would wane during the winter months. Originally, its proponents envisioned Manhattan to become like Beijing whose commuters greatly favored bicycles. Unfortunately, this project to promote the use of bicycle in Manhattan did not generate enough momentum. It eventually fizzled.

Ironically, at present, due to the continued surge in automobile ownership in China, the sight of mass bicyclists is being replaced by horrendous vehicular traffic. Thus, Beijing became more like Manhattan instead of the other way around. Oh, well; the pains of progress, I guess.



posted by Señor Enrique at 4:22 PM | 38 comments

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


On my recent post, Fuji Magic at PhotoWorld 2007, I highlighted how fortunate I was for have taken advantage of Fuji’s Photo Clinic offer in which I was given invaluable advice by Ariel Tresvalles and Bobot Meru on how to further develop my skills in photography. Many fellow shutter bugs I had spoken to about this rare opportunity expressed regret for either not knowing about it, or simply ignoring it altogether

However, fret not, for there is another ongoing opportunity being conducted by Mark Floro through the auspices of i-Mag Magazine’s online forum.

Mark, besides a master photographer in the advertising field, also teaches at PCCI in Makati City. He is among the few Filipino professional photographers who had taken formal photography classes in the states — College Art of Design in California).

He also excels in food photography, and along with his wife, Linda, a food stylist, they have been working together as a team for quite some time now. They were recently featured in i-Mag’s issue Number 2 in which Mark commented, “It doesn’t matter if you’re a wizard of light or a guru of Photoshop. If the food arrangement does not look perfect or have that ‘tulo laway’ appetite appeal when the shutter is pressed, no amount of light magic, or digital editing will save the shot.”

Anyway, remember this picture of kutchinta which accompanied my previous entry, Dolor's Kakanin?

Well, I posted it on i_Mag's
Sugar Free Forum and asked for Mark's critique.

He responded that it was overall a good shot:
nice highlights on food; the compostion was good; the color was pleasant; and it has a good appetite appeal to it.

Furthermore, Mark thinks
the food arrangement could have ben made to appear more simplified in a natural way. He also feels somewhat uneasy with the rear items with the way they lean. As for the grated coconut on the plate, Mark claims it as debatable; that, his wife, Linda, a food stylist, doesnt like it, but he does, in a way.

There was also that white empty
space on the right side. He suggested that I should either rearrange the items or add some prop(s) so as to fill it. Mark also thinks the first piece should have been changed, for it appears to have a thumb print on it. Finally, he would much prefer to apply selective focusing on the first and second pieces instead of the second and third, which I have done. He then suggested that I reshoot another plate of kutchinta and then show to it to him again.

How could I refuse that offer? That is very much like having an ongoing private lessons with a master!

Told Mark that I never really realized how intricate food photography can be with its many subtle nuances to be carefully observed and considered; that arranging a food shot is as critical and demanding as creating a still life composition. Indeed, those suggestions that Mark had made could
definitely make the subject (kutchinta) even more appetizing and the entire picture more appealing. And yes, I do intend to reshoot another plateful of kutchinta.

So that was my very first lesson in food photography. Thank you, Mark. You are a true sage.

By the way, food arrangement is not the only subject that you may want to present for Mark's critique; it can be a landscape or portrait. What's more important is that there is Mark Floro who will give it his time and honest opinion. So please, take advantage of it.


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posted by Señor Enrique at 3:12 PM | 21 comments

Monday, February 05, 2007


Besides the presence of professional models and various show business personalities that Fuji had arranged — to add glitz and glamour to this year’s PhotoWorld festivities — there was also magic. Unfortunately, many photography enthusiasts were so dazzled by the glitz and glamour to have taken the time to experience the magic, but I did.

A week before the start of this event, Ariel Tresvalles, Fuji/YKL’s vice president of marketing, invited all amateur photographers to email him five copies that best convey the particular field in photography that he wishes to pursue — travel, photojournalism, weddings and events, portraiture, or advertising. He would then match the amateur’s intended career path with that of a prominent professional photographer for a one-on-one session or critique.

I had photojournalism and human interest in mind so I emailed Ariel five pictures along that vein. He emailed back to advise me to have those pictures printed in 8x10, as well as to be at Fuji’s booth in Glorietta at a particular time and date.

Ariel matched me with Bobot Meru. Those in the local photography circuit long enough would have certainly heard of him or know him. He has been a photojournalist and commercial photographer since the seventies, and has achieved great success in every aspect of photography that he ventured into. Suffice it to say, Bobot Meru is a master photographer.

I had almost two hours of private lessons with Bobot. On top of it, Ariel would sit down and join us every now and then, so in effect, I had two experts sharing their many years of invaluable line-of-fire experiences for my benefit — free of charge; courtesy of Fuji.

In the end, they gave me this bottom line advice that I must work on: from Bobot, to truly master my camera; and from Ariel, to clarify my intention with the camera. I came out of that session feeling so blessed for having had the opportunity to learn from these two gentlemen. It was, indeed, a magical moment.

Thank you, Ariel! Thank you, Bobot! And thank you, Fuji!


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posted by Señor Enrique at 12:06 PM | 28 comments

Sunday, February 04, 2007


Glorietta was agrind this Saturday as usual, but I'm sure that besides the regular customers who frequent its upscale boutiques, many were there to take advantage of the discounted prices on various cameras and accessories as well. I, for one, was looking for a couple of items; one was a pouch to hold a water bottle for my camera bag belt system, but its entire inventory was sold out over at the Lowepro booth.

But a greater disappointment was when it was announced Xander Angeles wouldn't make it for his scheduled talk on fashion photography for the second evening of Nikon's casual lecture series. As it turned out, Xander had a family emergency matter to attend to that demanded his utmost attention. However, Malu de Guzman promised that she will reschedule his appearance on another date; perhaps, during a special mall lecture tour that they are developing for the summertime.

Incidentally, Malu is the vice president of marketing at Columbia Digital Sales Company, the exclusive Nikon distributor for the Philippine market. Like some regular visitors of this site, Malu also graduated from UST (University of Sto. Tomas).

First met her at the Practical Digital Photography Workshop last year. As we got to know one another, she confided that she was afraid that our classmates might misconstrue her presence as mainly to promote Nikon products. I quipped that we, too, were apprehensive in the beginning, but only because she might think we merely wanted her to give us discounts on anything Nikon. She laughed. Since then we’ve all become friends.

We were expecting her to join us in the Basic Photography Workshop held last month, but the demands of the preparations involved for her company’s participation in PhotoWorld 2007 took most of her time.

During this event, I try to introduce all my photography buddies to Malu; that is, whether they use a Nikon camera or not. However, this afternoon, when Malu handed me some tickets for the PhotoWorld 2007 Saturday night dinner party — An Evening of Art and Music — out of courtesy, I gave them only to those who are Nikon users. I personally didn’t go because I have other things to do that evening. Besides, I’d rather attend this Sunday’s Nikon casual lectures instead.

By the way, I am so sorry that Tito (aka Tutubi/Paetechie) and I kept missing each other today at Glorietta. Hopefully, before the last day of this event, we will have the chance to meet. I would like him to meet Malu as well.

posted by Señor Enrique at 12:48 AM | 12 comments

Saturday, February 03, 2007


There's a wonderful event going on in Metro Manila -- Photoworld 2007 -- from Thursday, February 1st to Monday, February 5th, sponsored by the Federation of Philippine Photographers Foundation (FPPF). There are scheduled talks to be given by reknowned local photographers, as well as by those from abroad. They are being held at the Asian Institute of Management in Makati City.

Over at Glorietta's activity center is a trade fair of sorts participated by various manufacturers and distributors of photography products. With discounted prices and zero interest on credit card purchases, this may be the ideal time to buy those much longed for photography equipment and accessories.

There are also many special activities sponsored by the major companies such as Columbia Digital Sales, exclusive distributor of Nikon products in the Philippines. It is hosting a series of casual lectures to be presented by some of our top photographers in the world of fashion, wedding and celebrity portraiture. For Friday evening, it was Lito Sy who shared his winning styles and innovative techniques in wedding photography (top photo). Members of the audience were later on given the chance to ask some questions.

This Saturday evening, it will be fashion photography as presented by Xander Angeles. And for Sunday, it will be a double treat: Patrick Uy will discuss wedding photography and portraiture, while Dominic James on celebrity portraiture.

For those seriously considering to pursue a career in wedding or fashion photography, attending this series of casual lectures is highly recommended. It is, unarguably, a rare opportunity.

Below are some photos from Friday's festivities (more photos will be posted throughout the weekend). Many thanks to Malu de Guzman and Anderson Tan of Columbia Digital Sales Company for the invitation and for those Nikon goodies!

Anderson Tan, the dashing president and general manager of Columbia Digital Sales Co.

A model provided by Fuji/YKL for an on the spot glamour photo shoot

Fellow photography enthusiasts Nino, Allan and Noel

Newfound photography buddies with some Basic Photography Workshop classmates

Here's the remaining schedule of Nikon's “THE BIG3 SHOOT and TELL” casual lectures:

February 3 (Saturday)
5:00-6:00pm Fashion Photography by XANDER ANGELES

February 4 (Sunday)
4:00-5:00pm Wedding&Portrait Photography by PATRICK UY
5:00-6:00pm Celebrity Portrait Photography by DOMINIC JAMES

FREE Registration! Just drop by the NIKON booth at the PhotoWorld 2007. However, it’ll be on a first-come-first-serve basis due to limited booth space.

For inquiries please call Columbia Digital Sales Co. at telephone # 413-95-04 to 05/ 365-0892 and look for Joylin or Dabby.

Loads of prizes and surprises await the participants and delegates of Photoworld!

posted by Señor Enrique at 12:49 AM | 14 comments

Friday, February 02, 2007


I’ve been reading a book on colors. I’m not planning to embark on any painting or redecorating projects; the intension is to hone my skills in the use of colors when composing and photographing certain subjects. Colors, after all, are what we first notice. Certain color combinations can dazzle, soothe, or charm, while others can raise our blood pressure.

For example, hot colors such as red orange and yellow tend to stimulate the brain and raise pulse and respiration rates. The reason is that these colors have the longest wavelengths which require energy to view them. In contrast, cool colors such as blues and greens tend to calm and soothe — even slowing the metabolism. That is because they have the shortest wavelengths and easily enter the eyes.

Last week, I ran into Issa, a classmate at my basic photography workshop, at Fuji/YKL photo print shop. Issa is a Fine Arts graduate and well-versed in the psychology of colors. While waiting for our prints, she gave me an overview of the importance of using red as an accent to any pictorial composition — scarf, hat, flower, or bag.

The book I'm reading underscores her claims. According to Tina Sutton and Bride Wheelan, authors of The Complete Color Harmony, red grabs your attention; making it a popular color in consumer products (Coke) and safety products (fire extinguishers and exit signs).

Furthermore, the reason why the color red is widely used by the fast food industry is because it activates our salivary glands; making us hungry and also straining our eyes so we’re encouraged to eat a lot and leave quickly. Meanwhile, the gaming industry knows that people place larger and riskier bets made under red lights, so they’re often strategically used to illuminate a casino's high-stakes area.

Red also evokes intense emotions. Foremost of which is passion; thus, the prominent color for Valentines, as well as a monicker for districts that cater to the sexually-starved — red light. Red clothing also suggests an extroverted and flirtatious attitude.

Once in New York, I was surprised to discover that my friend and his wife had given their bedroom a complete makeover; getting rid of anything red and repainting the walls and ceiling with a flat dark green color. My friend claimed that the reds (sheets and decorative accessories) caused difficulty with his falling asleep; whereas, dark green exudes warmth and serenity. It wasn't until we were in the bedroom for a few minutes when I began to appreciate the soothing effects of the dark green color. Ah, the psychology of colors!

Incidentally, Manila Bulletin runs a regular photo contest which is open to all photography enthusiasts. The theme of its February-March contest is Red and Green. Contact Ronald Jayne for additional information.


The Complete Color Harmony
By Tina Sutton & Bride M. Whelan
Page One Publishing

Manila Bulletin Picture Perfect Photo Contest
Contact: Ronald Jayme
Telephone: 527-8121 ext. 384
Email: ronald_jayme@yahoo.com

posted by Señor Enrique at 10:13 AM | 11 comments

Life in Manila as observed by a former New Yorker who with a laptop and camera has reinvented himself as a storyteller. Winner of the PHILIPPINE BLOG AWARDS: Best Photo Blog in 2007 and three Best Single Post awards in 2008.


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