Tag Archives: photography

Photo of the Day: Marooned in a Naked Island (Britania Group of Islands, San Agustin, Surigao del Sur)

People like things naked. We don’t why. There’s the naked truth and the Naked Chef. The Philippines, of course, has the Naked Island. Now, let’s be clear about something — the title has nothing to do with the lady who took the photo, (Rhodie M.D.; check her instagram account, @loneadventureseeker), who says she’s a lone traveler 90% of the time (but for how long? *wink*). It’s just that we enjoy entertaining the idea of getting stuck in a white-sand island. We’d like all the tourist amenities to go with that, of course, except that the white island paradise in our mind is bereft of luxury trappings, nay, even the bare minimum of amenities for tourists. That’s why its called the Naked Island in the province of Surigao del Sur. It’s just you, the sea, the sun, and the sand (and, uhm, a bunch of coconut trees?) Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Marooned in a Naked Island (Britania Group of Islands, San Agustin, Surigao del Sur)

Photo of the Day: The Flower of Tarak Ridge (Mariveles, Bataan)

This lovely photo struck us with the force of a thousand long hair strands. It reminds us of the animated movie Tangled, the updated story of Rapunzel as told by Disney Animation. It’s about a princess who was abducted by a witch but, in the end, met his prince and lived happily ever after. The power of regeneration, the fountain of youth as it were, came from a flower that fell from the sky onto a hidden portion of the mountain. Powerful flower, really. Now, look at this awesome photo again. What do you see? Yes, you see the majestic Tarak Ridge in Mariveles, Bataan, with its fog-capped tops (incidentally, we love how the soft light highlights this lady’s strong shoulders, merging beautifully with the mountain ridges). But we’re not referring to the ridge. Look again. The lady with her mysterious face turned from the camera? Yes, that’s a lovely lady, Yesmeen Frani — a wanderer, wonderer, and student of life (check her Instagram account, @ysmnfrani). But we’re not referring to her, either. Look closer. Notice that flower on Yesmeen’s hair. Yes, that’s it. Imagine the physical exertion of climbing Tarak Ridge early in morning, reaching the summit all sweaty, yet fresh as a dew-caressed flower. A lot of people can climb a mountain. Not everyone can climb it with style and grace. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: The Flower of Tarak Ridge (Mariveles, Bataan)

Photo of the Day: Counting Stars at Mt. Tabayoc (Kabayan, Benguet)

A week ago, the world (uhm, the Universe rather) witnessed a rare alignment of 5 planets — Jupiter, Mars, Saturn, Venus and Mercury. We thought the aligned planets will be visible to the naked eye. We were wrong. We didn’t see any planet, although we discovered that looking up too long, in the hope of seeing those planets, would give you a painful stiff neck. It would have been cool to see those planets (with or without Pluto). Not that it’s terribly disappointing. Watching the night sky is a joy in itself, one reason why we make it a point to drive out of the city every chance we get. It’s really hard to see the stars in the city — even if the sky is clear, there’s too much distraction around, and we bet our travelling foot that you hardly remember to look up at night in order to check out the stars. It’s a different story outside the city. The stars, and all forgotten elements of nature, demand to be noticed. That’s more pronounced as you go farther away, like, say, Mt. Tabayoc in the municipality of Kabayan, Benguet. Look at this awesome shot by rhyjoe (a mechanical engineer / hiker / traveller; check his Instagram account, @rhyjoe). Just you, the post, and the stars. Lovely! Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Counting Stars at Mt. Tabayoc (Kabayan, Benguet)

Photo of the Day: Picture-Perfect Palawan (El Nido)

The Philippines has tons of beautiful places to go and gorgeous sights to see, all naturally colorful, that it blurs the distinction between edited and unedited photo. Look at this photo, for instance, courtesy of Ei/lys/uh Kyle Corpuz (an explorer and food lover, check her Instagram account, @ek_corpuz). It’s a nice groufie somewhere in El Nido, Palawan. We can all agree that this shot has gone through the normal photo processing; we believe almost all digital cameras/phones nowadays automatically processes the shots. The problem with a lot of Philippine shots, however, is not that the shots are normally processed — the real problem is that the photos don’t capture the real crispness of the colors in real life. You’ll realize this if you go to Palawan or Sagada, or practically in every picture-perfect corner of the Philippines. And the real beauty is watching the Philippines at a different angle, like this photo. It gives a fresh perspective to a wonderful country that we Filipinos see on a daily basis and, as a result, almost always take for granted. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Picture-Perfect Palawan (El Nido)

Photo of the Day: Pinatubo Volcano Picnic

It’s amazing how nature can be so cruel, yet, at the same time, undeniably beautiful. By all accounts, using the words “picnic” and “volcano” in the same breath sounds insane. But that’s what you get at Mt. Pinatubo. Not a long time ago, a little more than two decades to be exact, Mt. Pinatubo erupted. If you think nature was cruel when Super Typhoon Yolanda hit, you were obviously not born yet when Pinatubo unleashed its wrath, a force hidden deep within the earth for centuries. In the same way that Yolanda introduced the new generation to terms like “storm surge,” Mt. Pinatubo introduced us to terms like “pyroclastic material” and “lahar.” The ash cloud was so intense, it lowered the world temperature and kicked out the U.S. military bases. Today, Mt. Pinatubo is quiet, a beautiful sight to behold. Trek to its crater, sit by the crater lake, and just marvel at that work of art. You won’t believe that this was once Ground Zero of utter devastation. And, oh, about the picnic, here’s how they did it, Ebrahim Dasalla and his friends (check his Instagram account, @eiamhere).  Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Pinatubo Volcano Picnic

Photo of the Day: View from Fortune Island (Nasugbu, Batangas)

How life affects us sometimes depends on which side we look at. Take, for instance, the Fortune Island. We already featured this sleepy island off the coast of Nasugbu, Batangas, with its architectural stamp that resembles Greece. We can choose to admire the abandoned stone structures or we can talk about why it was abandoned. On the other hand, we can choose to look around and marvel at how nature can be so beautiful. Just like how Neon Ibanez saw it (follow his Instagram acount, @neonbytesxx; a traveler, backpacker, wanderer, explorer). No words needed, really. Just look. And admire how beautiful the Philippines is. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: View from Fortune Island (Nasugbu, Batangas)

Photo of the Day: Sunrise at Calaguas Island (Camarines Norte)

Sunrise is just the other side of the coin’s sunset, both bringing a happy balance to life. As we noted in a previous article: “Maybe this is how we should look at life. The last moments of the sun, before the day ends, is bursting with color and beauty. Soon the sunlight will be no more. Darkness sets in. But we see no sadness in that. It’s beauty meant to be celebrated, lived to the fullest, fleshing out to what we say about sucking out all the marrow of life. It’s a source of hope that the sun will rise again, and day breaks with renewed vigor, and life begins. Every beginning is a step towards greater things.” Sunsets, we have lots of those. We had an entire article just for sunsets (The Beautiful Sunset of Calatagan). The Photo of the Day category has quite a number of sunset photos (Boracay, Puerto Galera, Zamboanga, Mactan and Balesin). Sunrise, on the other hand, is terribly under-represented here. One of the few sunrise purposely sought by people, at least the one we know, is the breathtaking sunrise of Mt. Pulag. We’ll add another one, this photo of the sunrise in Calaguas Island (Camarines Norte), captured by Karl Olivier, a UP alumnus, speech pathologist, blogger, movie reviewer, book and music lover, PWD advocate, marathoner, and explorer (follow his Instagram account, @karl_olivier). It’s difficult not to go mad, and dabble in the weird meaning-of-life stuff, after looking at this gorgeous photo. It’s like somebody out there, a Higher Being perhaps, has decided to celebrate life by exploding an intensely inspirational hue up in the sky, reflected and heightened on the serene surface of the sea. The good thing about it is, it’s done every day, and it’s free. The sad thing about it is, many of us are too busy to even notice. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Sunrise at Calaguas Island (Camarines Norte)

Photo of the Day: Flying Turtles of Moalboal

Turtles can fly, said the guys who took this photo. And we believe them. Swimming, after all, is simply flying — in water. It’s all about perspective, really, in the same way that aircraft landing is simply a controlled manner of falling back to earth. It’s awesome to see these majestic creatures, these sea turtles, gracefully flying uderwater in a manner totally opposite to how clumsy they are on land. The guys who took this awesome shot, Turtle Bay Dive Resort (check their Instagram account, @turtlebaydiveresort), should know. They have a dive resort in Moalboal (perhaps we’ll see you one of these days in Moalboal, lads?). We know the turtles of Apo Island Marine Reserve, but, in all honesty, we didn’t know there are turtles in Moalboal, a town south of Cebu City; only goes to show that we need to push our boundaries and check the underwater scene. Diving is fun, we’ve heard that before and we’re trying to convince ourselves about that, but Steven Spielberg and his Jaws really ruined it for us. We’ll muster enough courage one of these days. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Flying Turtles of Moalboal

Photo of the Day: Firedancing in Misibis Bay

Play with fire, the time-tested aphorism goes, and you’ll get burned. Holds true in life and relationships. Holds equally true with actual fire, but sometimes, just sometimes, some people train hard enough to master the fire dragon and play with it. And, boy, when they get the hang of it, they make it look so easy. This is why we have so much respect for fire dancers, this one captured in Misibis Bay (Bacacay, Albay) by Nix Gonzales (check and follow her Instagram account, @nix.gonzales). It’s a stunning sight to behold even if you’ve already seen it a million times. Tweak a little component of the experience, like the music or the beach on where it is performed, and you get an entirely different awesome show. Add good photography into the mix, just like what @nix.gonzales) accomplished in this shot, and you’ll have a memory that will last you through thick and thin. Firedancing also happens to be a source of living, like how we all earn from our work or professions, so next time you see a fire dancer do his/her stuff, give a generous tip. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Firedancing in Misibis Bay

Photo of the Day: Travel as a Couple (Mt. Ugo, Itogon, Benguet)

Here’s something we don’t see often enough — a banker-adventurer, like henson. Imagine the exciting possibilities! No ship going to your island-destination? Let’s have a syndicated loan and buy a ship. Kidding aside, one’s profession doesn’t really matter when it comes to travel and adventure. We all have our day jobs. Travel keeps us sane. And the beautiful part about it all? Meaningful travel need not be expensive. Looking at this shot from henson (follow his instagram account, @henson_gc), the place looks ordinary (unless, of course, you factor in the fact that it’s in Mt. Ugo, Itogon, Benguet) but I swear the captured moment elevates my blood sugar. I’ll grow diabetes if I keep looking at this couple. Incidentally, before deciding if he/she is “The One“, go travel together. Climb a mountain or go on a very long drive. Ride buses and stay in offroad hotels. Travel long enough and you’ll discover what your partner is really made of. While the Romans would say in vino veritas, we believe that in travel, may forever. Click the photo to enlarge: Continue reading Photo of the Day: Travel as a Couple (Mt. Ugo, Itogon, Benguet)