I got carried away with excitement with my first wedding photoshoot assignment. My friend, ask me to be a backup photographer during her brother’s wedding (Jay & Portia) last Sunday. Alot of things went wrong at the start. I was late by 15 minutes in the church and by about 90 minutes in the reception so it was a bad first job for me. Also, I’m having problems with my flash unit. Initially, most of the shots are dark and underexposed, or with an unflattering flash burst. I was able to handle it during the church ceremony but I had a hard time with the exposure during dinner time. I need to practice some more and buy the diffuser for the flash.
I was happy with the shots I got and I tried out a couple of effects I learned from Flickr’s Technique group. Here are a couple of effects that I used in the wedding photos:
1). Explosive Photo Effect
2). Comic Art Effect
3). Ipod Ad Effect
4). Lomo Effect
5). Color / B&W Effect
I’m really having fun with photography and digital art these days. I’m thinking of taking photographs on a weekend basis ala Fol Rana. Let me know if you have some questions on the different photoshop effects above.
I was deeply touched by this essay “Not everything is a power struggle” by the ExpectoRANTS blog. It makes us reflect that life is not a rat race that the more money you have the more successful you would be. It reminded me of my favorite broadway Rent song “Seasons of Love” where it poses the question:
How do you measure a year in the life? In 525,600 minutes or In Love?
For most part, I’m still measuring it in calendar terms. I need to change.
If you haven’t eaten in Amici yet, then I suggest that you hear mass in Don Bosco Makati and right after mass, walk towards Amici which is located under the pasay road/ arnaiz st. It is authentic Italian cuisine brought to us by one of the entreprenurial Italian Salesian Priest, Fr. Gianlugi Colombo, SDB. Now, having said that it is authentic, it means that its not the Italian food that we grew up in Manila — Spaghetti that is sweet with red meat sauce. Here are my assessment of the Amici food so that you can calibrate your expectations when eating here:
1. Canteenambiance. The entire resto has a canteen feel to it, and it is self service. This would mean you have to order pizza, pasta, and gelato from their respective counters and they will give you a number. There’s a long line sometimes and the food delivery is slow so I would suggest to avoid the main dining hours.
2. Italian food for a price. The food is expensive and I think just rightfully so since it’s kinda authentic and I’m hoping that some of the profits goes to a good cause by the salesian priest. Pizza costs around P240 while the pasta goes from a range of P120-P170. The gelato goes for P35 per scoop.
3. I love the home-cooked Italian taste! Now this is debatable because Filipino does not like the Italian taste which is bland, and sometimes sour in taste. You can certainly distinguish the taste from the commercial italian restos and the jollibee spaghetti taste. The pizza by the way is wood fire pizza so it tastes great except that sometimes there are some burned portions. Try Pizza #10 Four Seasons, #23 Al 4 Formaggi, and #24 Tutta Carne. On the pasta, try out #15 Spaghetti Vongole e Gamberetti (seafood pasta) and the Lobster Linguine. The gelato is addicting — try out the vanilla with nuts.
By the way, there are cooking lessons available for P1,500 for 6 hours and the session varies. I actually would have an idea to propose a teambuilding cooking sessions with the priest and see how it goes. The number to call are: 893-8915 for the cooking lessons.
Finally I was able to eat in Dayrit’s which for the longest time I’m just seeing it along Buendia. Now, they moved in Magallenes already where they have spacious parking and a canteen like ambiance. I don’t have alot to say about Dayrit’s because so far, only the Roastbeef is great. All the rest, burger and non-beef food like sizzling fish is a big disappointment. So, if you are a meat lover and you happen to be in the Magallanes area, this is something to try out for a change.
G/F GF & P Building
139 H.V. Dela Costa Street
Salcedo Village, Makati City
Tel# 812-0016, Cell# 0921 740710
Awesome Power Lunch!!
I’ve always wanted to eat and try out Chef Ed’s famous cosmopolitan cuisine specially the famous paella. Yesterday, I had an opportunity to eat during lunch time with the phils leadership team in Salcedo. We arrived at 11.15am (they open at 11.30) and this was just a perfect time for us to order the paella which should be ordered one hour and 15 minutes in advance! Yes, we have to wait but it was worth it 🙂 Lunch was heavenly specially with all the happy discussions we are having with the team. You should also try out their laing lumpia, crispy cochinillo, and the decadent cake! we tried the grilled salmon tocino on vegetable sinigang but it was just OK.
Just a couple of advice for people eating here, you should alot at least 2 hours for lunch, call one hour in advance, and prepare a power budget of >P500 🙂
I remembered to post this article when Mike Best, my visitor from Cincinnatti, gave me a thank you gift which I received via mail last week. He appreciated the tour very much and I enjoyed joining the carlos celdran tours as well. Finally, I was able to meet the funky down-to-earth carlos and I joined not only one but two tours in one saturday afternoon. The first one was a scheduled Funky Imelda tour of the CCP complex buildings (CCP Main Theater, Folk Arts, and PICC). I learned the great importance of the Leandro Locsin architecture and understand better Imelda Marcos and how the CCP came to be. Then, we had a private tour of Intramuros which started with the tour of San Agustin Museum, Casa Manila and finally Fort Santiago. This tour talks alot about the spanish colonial era and the liberation of the Philippines by the Americans. There has been alot of articles already written about the tour and everything they said about Carlos is true. What I like most about the tour would be:
Carlos funky getup and how he starts all his tour with the Philippine National Anthem.
There are alot of funny anecdotes, controversial insights and unwritten gossips about the history of the Philippines.
Carlos is a great promoter of the Philippines and we should have all tourists to our country to have the celdran tours as a must in their itinerary.
By the way, we requested Carlos to bring a psychic friend, Jessica along to cap the day with ghost stories and psychic readings. It was truly a fun saturday with Carlos.
***UPDATE 9/22/11: The Balesin island cannot be visited anymore and membership will by invitation only. The island is now owned by Alphaland Corporation. ***
There are still alot of places in the Philippines that I would loved to visit and conquer. One of my dreams is to visit all these beautiful places and hopefully capture its beauty in my photos. Someday, I’ll publish a coffee table book on these awesome places in the Philippines. Here are my top 10 lists of places to visit in the next 6-12 months:
1. Relaxing vacation in the Fantasy island of Balesin, Quezon 2. Sand Shower experience in Pinatubo Wellness Spa 3. French Fine Dining at Navarro Humprey’s Parallel 45 in Mandaluyong 4. Rare encounters with the whale sharks of Donsol, Sorsogon 5. Honeymoon in Pansukian in Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte 6. Experience Lady Laguna’s Tina Decal Culinary Tour of Quezon 7. White water rafting in Tuguegarao 8. Explore Sagada and the famous Banaue Rice Terraces 9. Savor the Ananyana experience in Bohol 10. Summer Vacation in Lagen Island, El Nido Palawan
Send me a note if you want to join or similarly interested in any of these places.
I continue to be amazed by the level of creativity of people in flickr. I was blown away with this post-it notes mosaic of elvis. I’m now thinking of how can I reapply this in the office to ignite creativity into the organization as well. Maybe I’ll create a photomosaic of our general manager in the boardroom with post-it.
I’m glad that there is a how-to-tutorial. You just need a basic knowledge of photoshop of course to makee this happen. Here is the link to the how-to-post-it-mosaic.
I’m beginning to get addicted with alot of the digital programs that creates Photo mosaics and recently Rasterized pictures. On Photomosaics, I have tried Mosaic Magic from Fishsoft (the website is down now), Andrea Mosaic (which has a rough interface and not userfriendly) and Centarsia which I use for the photomosaic above with 100 pictures (click on it to see full blown). Also, for the rasterized image, I used rasterbator which creates a PDF file that contains the rasterized image.
If you want to try out these cool programs check out their website:
It’s been a while since I’ve blog about stuff in our awesome manila because we have alot of offsite meetings in the office (which I don’t usually blog about them). Last Sunday, I took the opportunity to check this famous day spa @ the heart of the malate area. I was flabbergasted by the beauty of the filipino inspired spa inside a spanish old house in Malate. This is really fantastic and just in the heart of the adriatico circle.
I’ve been a spa addict ever since and in fact we still have a spa membership in Westin Philippine Plaza Spa and Suriya Spa across Gold’s Gym in Glorietta. While in Suriya, I’ve read in one of the spa magazines all the best spa in Manila and the previous two spa was mentioned (Westin Spa and Suriya @ Intercon). Mandarin Spa is also mentioned that is in my next list to visit but what surprises me is the mention of Sanctuario in Malate. Yes, another sanctuario but not the resto in Tagaytay but a day spa. What makes me interested in this spa, is the famous Roberto Nacario who is a true manghihilot who uses a coconut oil made by him during good friday and a menthol oil that is really icy soothing. Enough with the background, but for all those spa addicts out there here is my review on Sanctuario:
1. Try out the Banahaw Mystique! I guarantee you that it is a totally different spa experience that is truly Filipino I should say. You start of by have a shower, steam, sauna and enjoy the different open air pools in aquaria. Then you take a dip in a wooden bath tub with hot water of Pito Pito. After this you get an authentic Hilot Remedial Therapy by Tatang Robert. He is also performing the Bentosa (also called suction cups) which involves “sucking of certain acupoints in negative pressure environment” to clean your system, activate blood flow, stimulate nerve systems. Then you finish off with Dagdagay which is an authentic Filipino Tribal foot massage using bamboo sticks. Total damage is P1,550 which is not bad considering the number of treatments for 2 hours.
2. Roberto Nacario is a must! He is on a by appointment basis only so you should call or set an appointment via the website. Yes, the website appointment system actually works. He is a down to earth guy who is part time manghihilot and in the morning drives a jeepney. Also, expect that his hands would be rough already and he is already mid 50’s but the pressure is the best. He would give you alot of insights on alternative healing. He is also available on home service basis @ P500 per visit. His cell number is 0919-2551151 for home service appointments.
Sanctuario is a full blown spa, salon and restaurant also. To give you an idea about the massage prices, aromatheraphy goes for P1,020, and reflexology/shiatsu by P780. Check out their entire line up of services.