Mga Santong Kanto

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Here are some of the images from a series i’m working on for my thesis. As this is my blogspace, I’ll speak here informally about the origins of the project, but if you want to read a more academic statement about the work (AND WHO WOULDN’T), my fine art portfolio is viewable at this link.

For this body of work, I knew I wanted to work with men. I photograph women a lot, and as a woman it’s pretty easy to figure out how to be subversive about femininity, but I wanted to bring that same spirit into my images of these guys. I wanted to maintain my aesthetic (which is really quite girly let’s be real i photograph weddings for a living) yet i didn’t want to just take girly portraits of men. I wanted them to look good, but i also wanted them to look real. I’m not interested in flattery or beauty shots.

I realized as i was working that it’s a difficult line to tread. I found myself having to reassure my subjects after i’d pitch the idea that i wasn’t trying to subvert THEIR masculinity, i wasn’t trying to make them look like women. It was just so odd to realize that presenting people in this way was more typically feminine. I think that’s perhaps why i really tried to maintain some sense of sanctity, of elevation in these. I am not trying to diminish these men. I am honoring them. My artist statement talks a great deal about sanctification and i think thats pretty accurate for how i’m approaching this work.

So. Anyway. That’s my train of thought. I’m still shooting these. I’ve included some outtakes here on my blog, of images will not make it into the final series for one reason or other. I’m working on putting up more of my projects on my fine art portfolio, so expect more posts on there soon.

For my boys, whom i love =)











Macau

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HOLY CRAP I’M STILL ALIVE I PROMISE. Gradschool is a deep dark vortex of artist’s statements and self-loathing and is in essence one gigantic (but worthwile!) timesuck, but thankfully i am able to occasionally step out of it and allow myself to photograph evil cats.

Went to Macau on the quarterly school trip a couple weeks ago and it was lovely! EGG TARTS!

More soon!











Bangkok

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Visited Bangkok in October of last year with my good friend, Ann. It looked and felt suspiciously like Manila, from the elevated train (all the streets look like Taft) down to the delicious, reasonably priced food and the supernice people. And the traffic! And the doughnuts. Man. There are no doughnuts in Hong Kong, i’ll give that one out as a public service announcement.

But Bangkok, dude! They even had The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf! Hello. Three cheers for Bangkok because it was pretty great!

























Tokyo

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I was in Tokyo for a couple days with my mother! It was my first time, and I made sure to go all over: Harajuku, Tsukiji, Ginza, Shibuya, Shinjuku, Daiba, Ueno, Ebisu, Akihabara, and snippets of other places. I really enjoyed myself! I tend to raid 7-Eleven when i’m in a big city because it’s a great way to try local snacks, and Tokyo now holds the distinction of Most Amazing Random Crap Ever. For now. With the exception of some pretty funky feet-tasting tomato juice, everything i had was delicious.

I will never forget your food, Tokyo. Or your legion of teenybopper-worshipping, middle-aged fanboys dancing to the stylings of a leather-clad girl group in the afternoon shadow of an actual living breathing Gundam (true story)(sadly no photographs)(but yes, I’d say that was my definitive JAPAN moment).

Enjoy these photographs! I’ll be returning to Hong Kong in about a week, and another schoolyear shall commence.


































































Breakfasts of April

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Here’s a small, silly project i was doing for myself. Having lived on my own for the first time in the early part of 2013, i began to realize just how crappy my personal eating habits were. I’m a snacker, i like cheese and i like junk food, but i didn’t realize how much of it i actually consumed until i started getting weird and sallow and sick. My mother, a doctor, said i was malnourished. So, i decided, an attempt would be made to eat better. For 30 days, i kept track of the one meal that seemed to suffer the most through my independent living: breakfast. The project kept me accountable and kept me TRYING at the very least, but as you can see… junk food is awesome and rules my life.

Here are 30 of my breakfasts.










In Between

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This project was done for my Photo Documentary class, taken in the Spring of 2013. I documented the walk from where i live in Hong Kong to where i go to school, a bus ride that i take every single day. I would always see things from the bus and think, “Damn i wish i was down there.” So, when asked to come up with a project to do for the quarter, it was the perfect excuse!


Please view the project here.

I have a lot more detail shots that i did not include in the final, and i’ll post those as excerpts at another time. For now, i hope you enjoy these!

Wishes for Strangers

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For everyone that missed our art show and book lauch, Day of Valor – here are the artworks! The framed works are for sale, for pricing information, please contact me at smfdans at gmail dot com. =) For purchase of Pauline’s book, you can email day.of.bravery at gmail dot com. The work makes much more sense when you can read the poems, so i encourage you all to purchase a copy for P350!

You will find that despite my poised
Prayer, I have not moved.
Paralyzed by pity’s paroxysm
I will have changed nothing

“Blister”

At the heart of every action is a decision, and of every decision, a desire. Until each desire matures fully into action, it is lifeless, inanimate. Such desires, while beautiful, are as inert as origami, perched upon our consciousness, doing nothing, loving no one. It takes courage to pluck the right desire from our being, discern its trajectory and transform it into acts of kindness, of love, of righteousness. Until then, our desires are dormant, and so are we.


for strangers, 13 x 17, edition of 2
unsold


for a father, 13 x 17, edition of 2
framed edition sold


for a child, 13 x 17, edition of 2
unsold


for a woman, 13 x 17, edition of 2
unsold

Entropy Beast

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Hong Kong is a great city to get lost in, by virtue of the fact that its sheer randomness gives its streets so much gosh durned personality. It is overrun with weirdness and i like it, and this post will make that evident, but it’s a disciplined entropy. The trains are seamless and efficient. I’ve never lived in a place where people actually line up for the bus and the cars horns are only built into vehicles in case of emergency (and not as a violent means of self-expression). Even the animals are well-behaved, i saw a dog walk straight to the dog poop sandbox all by hisself.

Not that i ever get lost. Please.

Anyway. It’s a nice balance. I’m excited to be here.





















































Things That Fly

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I’m in the midst of a lot of new work, especially since my move to a whole other country, so my backlog for this blog is growing ever fluffier and fluffier. Forgive my lateness to the party which is the Lantern Parade 2012. I do my best to attend every year, and this year was one of my favorites, if i do say so myself. FA (which, due to my loyalties, is really the only college i pay attention to SORRY EVERYBODY ELSE) came up with some really great stuff!

Hope everyone is doing well! I’ll post photographs from my current lovely city, Hong Kong, very soon.



































Singapore

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Welcome to the new blog, everybody! This is where i’ll be relegating my personal, non-wedding/love/romance/loveydoveyschmoopy work. It is to encourage me to continue to create it! To kick things off, i’m posting some of my photographs from a recent trip to Singapore. I actually went over there to shoot a couple (wouldn’t you know!), and that shoot should be up on the other blog very soon as well.

Also in recent news since i last posted, I was accepted to the MFA Photography program at the Savannah College of Art & Design last quarter, and the reason i haven’t posted anything lately is basically that i’ve been so busy with school! Hurray! I took classes online for the first time and that was REALLY fun; and I will be moving to Hong Kong in January to pursue this on campus =)

Anyway, enjoy these!



























New York, New Jersey, Illinois

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This post brought to you by the realization that reflections of buildings are more interesting than buildings themselves.

The pictures were taken at various locations around Manhattan in New York, Long Beach Island, Atlantic City and Princeton in New Jersey, Chicago and the various little ‘burbs of Illinois, within a three-week stretch towards the end of May. =)

Dear America, I love your huge cities, its museums, your beautiful salespeople, your local wildlife (BUNNIES!?) and most of all your local cuisine. Yes, everything is indeed made better by smothering it in cheese. Thank you for having us, see you again soon!









































































































^ That is my sister, and it’s her birthday this week! Three cheers for birthdaaaaay!

BBC Photowalk

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I got asked by the BBC recently to document the widening wealth gap in Asia for an online photogallery illustrating the subject. They only used nine of the hundreds of images i took walking around the city, but was really happy with the rest of my work from my shooting days, so i am sharing them with you now!

I hope you guys find these as uplifting as i did while i was shooting them. These people don’t have much but they’re extremely happy! They were all very kind and accommodating and a lot of them (especially the kids) actually asked for their photographs to be taken. Their homes, as ever, are fascinating to behold.

The street photography workshop i took with Luis Liwanag something like a week before this assignment also helped LOADS. I highly recommend giving it a try, for people who want to learn about photography or people who think they’ve done it all. Hours of fun, and much to learn! I still have one session to go!


























On an entirely separate slightly ironic note, i am going to be visiting the US for the next three weeks. See you all when i get back, i’ll most certainly have interesting photographs from my trip!

Tinquerie

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After two years of putting it off til my ears bled (I graduated in 2010), I’ve finally managed to put my undergraduate thesis online. This existed as a coffee table book for years before i ever got up the gumption to make the necessary adjustments to turn it into a website.

This was one of my biggest, most harrowing, most exciting undertakings ever. I had to write it, cast it (I still owe both Tinka and Nico kidneys, etc), design it, shoot it, and direct a group of 21 fine beautiful young people all by myself among other things, but the yielded crop is some of my favorite work. I’m never happier than when i’m showing people this project =)

Please be sure to check out the wonderful cast of characters i got to work with in the “Credits” link on the header or the footer of the Tinquerie page, they were all instrumental in the completion of this project.

Infinityyyyy!

Photodump

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A couple of photos of what my life has looked like lately.

What you can’t see: 40 degree weather, watching the Avengers 3 times in 6 days, scrambling madly to apply for teaching positions. Huzzah!

















General Santos + Montemar

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I’ve been on some trips lately. All the way down south to Lake Sebu in General Santos to see the T’Boli weavers and a teensy bit up north to Montemar Beach Club in Bagac, Bataan. Here’s the backlog of my photographs from them.

The panorama is clickable. Happy summer boys and girls!






















Essa + Tony

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Anything else i say to preface this will trivialize how adorable this couple is. If you want to know the exact quantity of adorable i am referring to, all you’ve got to do is peruse this post. Nonetheless, protip: Bring your friends on photoshoots! They are great company and make awesome props. Thanks to Jin, Miguel, Charmie, Melo and Bok for the company that day and to Essa and Tony for being such great sports!

Location: Jardin de Miramar, Antipolo




















Desta Haile

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I recently had the honor and pleasure of working with the beautiful and talented singer/songwriter Desta Haile on her publicity photos. She’s a lovely person and a vibrant performer, and if you haven’t yet checked out her website, YOU MUST. Her music is rich and soulful, and she was nothing but a delight to work with =) I’m really happy to be sharing her name with you all.

Here’s the song of hers i was listening to while editing these photos, and then the photos! Special thanks to Nico and Pauline for their help with this shoot.





Lantern Parade 2011

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Spent the day at the alma mater last week for the annual Lantern Parade! It’s the most wonderful and sweaty and headachey and noisy and amazing time of the year.

Though i did enjoy what floats and projects were on display in their own right, i must say i’m a little disappointed in how the current Fine Arts floats stack up against previous years. They’re so tiny! With not as much paper mache OR mindwrenching paintjobs as i’ve seen in my day. So much naked rubber foam! =\ Times sure have changed.

(Not that my day was that long ago, i DID only graduate in 2010. Just saying.)





































Jake + Bardo

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Two of the most beautiful people i’ve had the privelege of working with, made doubly so because i got to shoot them together =) Thanks, boys! This is also the first shoot i went on with my new equipment, whatcha think? I’m incredibly happy with how everything turned out! For the curious, we took these photos in the Chinese Garden at Luneta.

We need more public parks in the Philippines! So we have places to shoot! Am i right?!

Thanks to Isa Caruncho for styling and off-camera fangirling.




















Araceli Dans scarves

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My grandmother, Araceli Limcaco Dans, designed some scarves and asked me to photograph and design the package inserts for her. I asked my good friend Kat Carpio to model them for us, and Bianca Lesaca to assist and style. There are two styles of scarf: a headscarf and a regular one, but we aren’t done shooting the regular ones so this is just a preview.

But Carpio is gorgeous, i could not resist to post!


Easter Sunday

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Photographs from my family’s Easter egg hunt. When i was younger, there were ten to fifteen of us running around hunting for eggs, but these days we’re all grown so there are ten to fifteen of us hiding them and five little kids running around doing the hunting.

300 eggs, 5 kids. Happy Easter everybody!
































Sawako + Kazehaya // Kimi ni Todoke cosplay

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Two very good friends of mine (who i think you’ll all recognize) agreed to do a little shoot with me and I, with them, out at La Mesa Eco Park and in adjacent areas. The park is beautifully lit and a great place to stroll and picnic and shoot.

We also shot some cinemagraphs, which i’ll show you guys at another time. For now, have some old-school cosplay!















Hong Kong

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Spent a couple of days in Hong Kong with some friends; to sightsee, walk around and visit the Hong Kong campus of SCAD. Wandering the city was really something else, always something to see.

Good times!





































Europe

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My family spent two weeks early last year hopping around Europe, right in time for that Icelandic volcano actually. We hopped from Amsterdam to Ghent to Brugges to Brussels to Paris to London. I saw Wicked! And the Eiffel! Life is good.