50mm Project: Day 07 – Capturing the moment

All this time that I’ve been practicing and trying my best to improve my photography, I have always been attracted to capturing candid scenes. I love capturing people in their unguarded moments. This is not always easy because, once you carry a camera, people are immediately aware that you are going to take their photos and react accordingly. But I think that the trick is that to actually take their photos and just wait until such time that they will become so used to your presence and actually start to ‘ignore’ you. Then you can start taking candid shots. A fast camera with accompanying fast lens would really be a big help, but you have to be fast as well in capturing the moment. Be aware of the scenes that are developing and be ready to capture it once “the moment” happens.

Another thing that fascinates me is street photography. I have been reading some materials from the internet about it, and the more I read, the more I become interested. It is mostly about capturing the moment, but in a more intimidating environment (at least for me). You have to do it in the streets and with strangers as your subject. It would be capturing real everyday life moments. I would definitely want to try it but I honestly don’t know exactly where to begin nor would I know if I have the guts to do it. But I guess I’ve already did some form of ‘street photography’, only it’s not on the streets and I do it with people I know.

This guy wanted his photo taken while I was trying to get some candid shots.

A window reflection

This picture is not taken with a 50mm lens. But I like its candid nature so I added it here.

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50mm Project: Day 06 – Everyday Objects (Abstracts)

We tend to just ignore the ordinary even though our life is all about the ordinary and the mundane. It is the everyday routine that challenges us to just continue to move on knowing for certain that the routine will repeat again the next day. If one can’t appreciate the ordinary, how can one recognize the extraordinary? We must learn to appreciate the everyday! The ordinariness of the everyday is where our life really is. It is in the ordinary that we learn to overcome. Overcome what? To overcome our own selfish desire for excitement! To overcome our own self-centered passion for the extraordinary which are often at the expense of others and the fragile environment that we live in. In the process, we lose sight of the ‘ordinary’ beauty of what we already possess.

The extraordinary can only arise from the ordinary. And yet, the ordinary is more powerful simply because the extraordinary eventually ‘degenerates’ back to the ordinary. And life goes on…We can lead extraordinary lives only as we learn to appreciate the ordinary.

Above: a picture of decorative ceramic figurine

Above: A picture of a ‘Malunggay’ tree bud

Above: A picture of decorative glass vases

Above: A picture of artificial decorative flowers

50mm Project: Day 05 – Family Portraits

The reason why we buy a camera is to take pictures…mostly pictures of our family. I am no exception. I love taking pictures of my family, especially of my two children. I had a film camera before and I took lots of pictures of my two kids growing up. Now, with a digital camera, I don’t have to worry about film and developing. I already plan in scanning those old pictures and convert to digital files so that I will be able to combine them in one photo book.

My wife loves to pose as well. She has this ‘talent’ that she almost always look good in photographs. I think it is called being ‘photogenic.’ And she does look good in real person as well.  I guess my family has been so used to me taking their pictures that they just act naturally in front of the camera. For some others, it may not be the case. Especially with strangers, children and adults alike, taking their pictures will usually result in ‘unnatural’ look. Until such time that they will learn to relax in front of the camera, only then will their portraits look good and ‘natural.’

Ras Al Khaimah Weekend

Our family went to Ras Al Khaimah last weekend together with the Oasis Herald Chorale group. We started our travel at around 10:30pm. It was Thursday night of March 30, and  with an expected 3-hour drive, we arrived at our destination at around 1am. Praise God for the traveling mercies. We arrived safe and we did not get lost. The car held up and did not have any malfunction. The traffic was smooth and there were no road accidents that we encountered along the way. God is great good! God is a great God!

The Oasis Herald had their spiritual retreat at Ras Al Khaimah. It was a lovely experience, I must say. Our hosts, the Salazar Family were absolutely hospitable and gracious. With the group, you always expect some craziness and yet, our hosts took it all in stride. In fact, I was beginning to believe that they actually enjoyed the experience themselves. The lady of the house, Neda Salazar said, that they were like guests in their own home. The cooking was done by the assigned persons of the group. And cooking was fun and the food was, believe it or not, great tasting. We even had to ‘harvest’ the ‘malunggay’ from our hosts’ garden. We had great time mainly due the the fact that our hosts were such wonderful people. A word of appreciation is truly in order here. Thanks a lot to the Salazar Family!

The catch words from our retreat were Mission and Vision. And the catch phrase was ‘self-awareness.’ The messages that we received would definitely influence the ministry of the Oasis Herald. The individuals who attended the retreat and drank deeply from the messages and experiences, came out truly blessed. We came out with a renewed sense of direction in our personal as well as in our group life. Our spiritual life had been nourished and we came out knowing that there is a purpose in our life as a group as much as within our own personal lives.  The individual felt that he is an indispensable and unique part of the tapestry of the group. No one is without a role to play. Everyone is a vital part in the fulfillment of the group’s mission and purpose. No one is left out. The next move would be to come up with a definite and solid Mission and Vision statement for Oasis Herald Chorale.

Ras Al Khaimah is one of the emirates in the United Arab Emirates. It is located at the northern part of the Emirates near the border of Oman. It has a population of around 270,000. The place we stayed was at the heart of the old Ras Al Khaimah. The weather was still quite good at this time of the year. The evenings was still cool with a cool breeze and the afternoon was not that hot. Humidity is still quite low so we still enjoyed our outdoor retreat activity out there in the Ras Al Khaimah desert. Overall, the retreat experience was truly an enjoyable one. Tired and sleep-deprived but, truly worth it.