GEAR TALK: Nikon D700 Review!

Thanks to Anderson Tan of Columbia Digital for lending me a brand new Nikon D700. I had the opportunity to explore the possibilities with this pro DSLR! So where do I begin? All I can say it's the perfect DSLR this year: full-frame sensor (FX), superior image quality at ISO 3200, very reponsive, built like a tank, onboard flash, comfy ergonomics, etcetera. If I would nit-pick then I will look for 1080P HD video capbilities-but this is a specialist tool devoted for stills. Maybe the next upgrade will incorporate video (D800?). Watchout for Mr. Tan though as he enhances his photographic eye with this DSLR in tandem with famous local photogs as his personal mentors! Anyway, as a bonus, this D700 will help any crappy f/5.6 lens produce bright photos. I outfitted this DSLR with an old Sigma 20mm f/1.8 AF-D lens and, boy I could shoot downtown at night hand-held! Now try a Nikkor 50mm f/1.2 and focus via Live View at night...

Neal Oshima Workshop @ The Silverlens

I thank Neal Oshima (the gentleman in shades) for conducting his first-ever photo seminar in Makati city at the Silverlens Gallery. The elusive, secretive and mysterious master of photography, Japanese-American taught our small group alternative ways on how to process photo prints the old way. Most of the group are clamoring for basic black and white darkroom processing but yours truly prefers "advance" (read: toxic, expensive, reto) processing like Palladium, Platinum and Daguerro developing techniques. Thank you too for Leo Santos for sponsoring moi. Till the next workshop, Niel...

Top Secret Philippine Attack Ship

I don't mean to spoil the news but here I am melting in the sun in the middle of Manila Bay photographing the Philippine Navy's latest mulit-purpose attack ship during an exercise. It's a very fast and nimble beast that's very appropriate for our islands. I enjoyed the crash stops happening very near our boat heh, heh, heh! Yes you will hear of it in the evening news soon so I don't have to divulge anymore data here. I'd like to thank a photo/video studio in Ortigas for hiring me as their main photog in this mission. IMHO we need a thousand more ships of this caliber (and submarines, and aircraft carriers, plus destroyers, etc.) to guard our porous maritime borders against smugglers, terrorists, drug lords, et al. The sooner, the better! Thanks to Jojo Dionisio for my on-site photo.

Alfred "Toch" A. Arellano Passes Away

The Dean of Philippine Graduation Photography, Mr. Toch Arellano passed away early Sunday morning at 2:10 AM due to his 11th stroke. He was 55 years old. He is survived by his wife Laarni Villamater-Arellano and daughter Sophia. The avenue for the vigil is at the Marianne Funeral Homes along Marcos Highway. Burial will be held in the Heritage Park on May 21. Personally, Toch was my ex-boss, friend and mentor though we had disagreements, I still thank our Father God for him. His photography has touched so many lives-and it’s very evident: whenever I would accompany him to posh places where people who happen to read his name (like managers, waiters, etcetera) they would always introduce themselves and remind Toch that his studio did their expensive grad pics. Such spectacles never cease to amaze me and I’m not sure if he enjoyed them all the time! We will miss you Toch.

Fashion Corsets by Luminaire

Here are some lovely corsets as promised. Some of my fav selections:

Muchas gracias to the following: Jonmar of BVW Studio as my assistant, our beatiful models in Valerie and Paulo, Nina for conceptual hair/makeup, Jay Monaf and Jerry Ocampo of Luminaire Corsets Ltd. for their tasteful designs and styling. Special thanks to Andy Tan of Columbia Digital for loaning moi their excellent Nikon D90 DSLR. It shows the images produced by this cam are great for fashion-even at high ISO settings! The neo-Victorian venue was at the Celestin Hotel in Makati City.

Subic Clicks '09! Summer Photo Judging

The Subic bay Tourism Bureau (GSBTB) invited moi with George Cabig (of Mabuhay magazine) and Dennis Araneta (ex-Kodak Philippines officer) as judges for their Subic Clicks Photography Contest ’09. We all appreciate GSBTB Vice-Chairman in Dr. Teresa Yap, M.D. (in photo above) for the hospitality and great generosity. Thank you ma’am! Judging was held at the picturesque, posh Subic Bay Yatch Club. Congratulations to all winners of the five categories! May 8, 2009 in Subic will reveal all winners and honorable mentions.

Powerful Win For The Pacman and Nikon

Congratulations to Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao for earning another boxing title by knocking out the Ricky "Hitman" Hatton! Currently the Pacman is the image model for Nikon's Coolpix point and shoot camera line here in the Philippines. It's rumored that Pacman bought two Nikon D3x DSLRs. Wow! I wouldn't mind freelancing as Pacquiao's sports photog using his top Nikon gears. Nikon and Pacman rules so let the celebrations begin-again!