Photographer Hack… the Lenspen!

​If you are using a lenspen to clean your gear’s lenses, don’t throw it away after the carbon-tipped disc has been quite used up. It is still useful!
I use my old lenspen to clean my reading glasses, the screen of my mobile phone, and even my watch and other sort of things made of glass. It can easily wipe away grime and oily smudges. Of course, the brush itself is excellent at dusting off those tiny dirt stuck in your laptop’s keyboards! :):):)

Isaw-isaw (Grilled Chicken Intestines)

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This popular street food in the Philippine is what we call the “Isaw-isaw” or plainly, a grilled chicken intestine for the un-oriented. You see, nothing is wasted in our country. We eat everything in a chicken… its head, its organs, its blood, and even its feet. And believe it or not, we call the chicken feet barbecue as “Adidas”.

But wait…!

Like the chicken, we also eat everything in a cow,  a goat, a carabao (water buffalo), and a pig. We eat their heads, their guts and organs, their blood, and also their feet. We even eat the bone marrows of cows and carabaos.

So if our country is one of those places to visit in your bucket list, don’t be surprised if you see some parts of a livestock which you don’t normally eat being sold on the streets and in our local restaurants. It’s just one of the food we eat and is part of our local cuisine!

Bon apetit!

Wag Matakot… (Don’t be afraid)

A masked vendor holding a newspaper with a headline “WAG MATAKOT”, which means “Don’t be afraid”!

I’ll let my fellow Filipinos translate what this phrase really mean in our country where scores of people are killed every day… 

Nuong bata pa ako…!

I sometimes miss these days…

… Nuong sumasabit ako sa dyip habang may sumisigaw ng “… Valiches, Novaliches”!

… Nuong umaangkas ako sa traysikel na kakalog-kalog dahil sa lubak na daan!

… Nuong sumusundot ako ng pisbol sa kalyeng mausok at maalikabok at isasawsaw sa sukang punong-puno ng naiwang pisbol na lumulutang pa!

… Nuong nagbabasketball sa kanto na ang pustahan ay isang litrong Coke at handang maki-ramble dahil lang sa isang litrong Coke!

… Nuong nakikipagsiksikan sa bus at pinagpapawisan ang kilikili sa init dahil walang aircon pa ang mga buses nuon!

… Nuong tumatakbo at naghahabol ng dyip sa may Blumentrit para makasakay!

… Nuong naglalakad sa gatuhod na baha sa may Dimasalang!

… At higit sa lahat, nuong nakikipag-inuman na isang baso lang ang gamit at sardinas na maanghang ang pulutan, solb na!

Yup, those were the days! Masaya at laging exciting ang araw! Gawin ko nga uli minsan yan to feel how exciting it was… :):):)

The Walking Grocery Store

​Believe it or not… This guy is practically a walking “sari-sari store” (… sort of a mini-grocery store on the go)! And he is doing the selling right along a major road artery in the Metro called EDSA!

No worries… with our traffic situation at about 5kph or less during rush hours, these ambulant vendors are “technically safe” while they sell their commodities in the six-lane EDSA.

Only in the Philippines!

The Back Button Focus

​We were travelling along SCTEX, one of the expressways in Luzon of the Philippines, at a speed of about a hundred kilometers per hour when I took this picture of a bird flying to the opposite direction. In capturing this photo, I had set my gear to use Back Button Focus and set the AF operation to AI Servo (or continuous focus).

What is Back Button Focus? In “normal mode”, DSLRs focus when you half-press the shutter and take the picture when you completely press the shutter. The problem with this mode is that it only works for still or stationary subjects. When the subject moves out of focus, there you go… You get a blur! Even with a high shutter speed, you may still get a blur if the subject moves out of the area where your gear had initially focused. And you may have to refocus and half-press the shutter again which by the time you’re able to do this, the subject has gone out of your sight.

This is where the BBF will come in handy, together with continuous focus (AI Servo in Canon). Depending on the brand and model of your gear, it may already have a dedicated BBF button or you can set a button, like the Exposure Lock, as the BBF.

The BBF, together with AI Servo, will allow you to keep the center of focus on a moving object without half-pressing the shutter. Technically, you have two buttons in play, the BBF (using your thumb) to focus and the shutter (using your index finger), to take pictures. What does that mean? You can press and hold the BBF to retain focus on a moving object and just press the shutter to take pictures anytime without the shutter doing a “focus and refocus”.

Just some fair warning, this technique takes some practice before you can reap the rewards…! 🙂

Philippines: The Ortigas Flyover on a Cloudy Day

I am really lagging behind in checking out the amazing blogs of those that I am following. My busy schedule will soon be over and I will again have some sweet time reading the wonderful blogs of my friends in the virtual blogworld. Missing you all…!

And just to have the blogworld know that I’m still here… Here’s some few photos I took going to the office today. 🙂

The Ortigas flyover on a cloudy Tuesday morning… Free of traffic because everyone is stuck in several kilometers of traffic from West Avenue to Santolan EDSA. And the hellish traffic again appears near Shaw EDSA.

That’s life on EDSA!

Philippines: China or the USA?

Ika nga ni Ompong

From a Filipino who has seen the world…

I like China because they sell cheap alternative products. I like America because of Star Wars, Titanic, Resident Evil, and of course, The Walking Dead, my favorite TV series!

I like China because of the birthday noodles, and that delicious lariat-style cuisine. I like America because of their hotdogs and hamburgers. Let’s add Disneyland and Universal Studios theme parks that bring out the child in you.

But of course, I also don’t like certain things from China and from America but these things will not make me “hate” them. Simply put, I love China, America, India, Russia, Australia, Japan, Canada, and the rest of the world!

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