Thursday, February 23, 2012

Ampalaya (Bitter Melon)

I believe this is ampalaya (or as we call it in English: bitter melon). It's apparently miraculous if you're diabetic or something. I just like the texture of it. It's so fascinating.

Anyway, I promised I would explain why I've been digging around my archives for quite some time now. It's because I had to pre-write over 25 days worth of entries because I've been in the Philippines since the beginning of the month (and all my photos are in LA). If all things have gone according to plan, I will have arrived tonight but will be too exhausted to post anything. So this should be the end of my archives for now :).

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Beach Rock

I am so conflicted by this photograph. Personally, I don't think it works. The composition is horrible yet I'm drawn to it when I view it with all the other shots I took that day. I suspect that the sky and the ocean being the same blue-gray color is a novelty. The seaweed on the beach doesn't really lead up to the rock. Gah. I give up.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Hand and Foot

This shot was during a photo session I did with a friend's baby a couple years ago. I thought her plumpy hands and feet were adorable. It was the first time I had photographed children. I learned so much such as the importance of pre-planning a shoot and how to manipulate available light when under pressure (emphasis on that latter point). I'd love to do another one of these sessions again. The photos afterward are just so cute!

Monday, February 20, 2012


Besides seeing my favorite scenario (i.e., the red/green contrast), I just had to shoot this ladybug because it was so darn cute! It was a pretty cloudy day, so I got diffused lighting to work with (yay!). I only wish I had made the leaves greener.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Green Tomatoes

Ah... more tomatoes. Unfortunately, they're not ripe yet :(. Well, I guess green tomatoes can be beautiful too. I really wish they were red though.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Down the Aisle - Revisited

I just was going through my archives and found this from a wedding I'd gone to a few years ago. I thought this would be a good exercise in balance (easy enough, I know). I also am getting pretty tired going through my old work. I swear I'll begin posting new stuff within a week -- when my Internet is reliable (I'll explain later). Please bear with me in the meantime ;).

Friday, February 17, 2012


My green parakeet landed on one of my dining tables (yes, I own more than one) and I quickly snapped him when I saw the opportunity to do a reflection shot. My glass dining table is apparently bullet-proof but I have yet to determine that. It really does cast great reflections, though. Just pardon the computer science books in the background.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Beneath Santa Monica Pier

I'm still playing around with composition, so I took another photo from my archives. I really loved this shot of the Santa Monica pier from below (everyone always takes pictures of Pacific Park above the pier). As usual, I'm drawn to the leading lines. I should have probably darkened/burned the bright spot on the bottom left. I took care of the blown out spots on the right by cropping and rotating it out. I just think the angle is pretty cool.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Clouds over the I-15

So, to get this shot, I set up my tripod on the southbound I-15 from Las Vegas to Los Angeles. Just kidding :P.  I actually took this shot while the car was still moving and you can even make out where my windshield was dirty/clean. I took a bunch of these shots because the clouds were beginning to roll in and provided plenty of photo-ops. I liked this train bridge/overpass because it seemed unique compared to all my other shots of just the desert and road. Enjoy.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Down the Aisle

In honor of today being Valentine's day, I thought I'd share something romantic. I shot this at my cousin's wedding in the Philippines a couple years ago. I was not an official photographer, seeing as how he already had two or three professional wedding photographers there. It was a beautiful ceremony with rose petals everywhere, especially at the end of the ceremony when they descended from the dome onto the couple as they kissed for the first time as husband and wife. :)

Monday, February 13, 2012

Another Money Plant

Here's another money plant that my parents have in their yard. I'm beginning to think that their definition of a fortune plant/money plant is quite inclusive. That, or they're really superstitious. Anyway, I was just attracted to the plant's rose-like/pentagonal pattern.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Malibu Surfer

Here's another LA-y shot (actually, it's in Malibu) from a couple years ago. I was wandering around by myself when I ran into this surfer. We exchanged a few pleasantries before he headed toward the beach (to go surfing) and I went my way (to photograph the cave for an assignment). He accidentally walked into the frame when I snapped this shot and now I have a happy memory of him. :)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Griffith Observatory

Someone complained that I've been showing too many photos from around the world and not enough of LA, so here's my response to that. I usually go to the Griffith Observatory during the evenings so that I can capture the night lights of downtown LA and Hollywood, but as seen above, I actually photographed this during the day (at noon, in fact).

Friday, February 10, 2012

Pigeon at the Louvre

We were taking silly photographs of each other at the Louvre when I spotted this nearby pigeon. I love low shots like these, but I hate how I'm essentially taking the photo blind because I can't see what I'm photographing. I figure if I take enough of them, I'm bound to get one right. Fortunately for me, I did this in one take :).

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Arc de Triomphe Sculpture Detail

I shot this close up of a sculpture on the Arc de Triomphe while in Paris, France a year and a half ago. I tried looking up information as to what is and it appears to be part of this larger sculpture. Anyway, the Arc de Triomphe is so massive and has so much detail that you can spend a day just photographing it. Absolutely stunning!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


While in Epernay, France, we drove around aimlessly taking pictures in vineyards. It was pretty crazy knowing that famous champagnes were made from this region (Moet, anyone?). The grapes themselves looked delicious but we usually high-tailed out of there after grabbing a few shots (hello? trespassing?).

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

On the Canal

I think we were taxiing back to our hotel on a vaporetto when I took this shot in Venice, Italy. I'm surprised I was able to get this in focus considering how bad my camera is in low light. But, fortunately, as the sun was setting, the lights started turning on and it created this beautiful moment for me.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Campanile di San Marco

This is St. Mark's famous bell tower in Venice, Italy. B and K waited in line to go up top, while H and I stayed below people watching. Composition-wise, I love the framing I did here. Unfortunately, H's head is in the bottom right corner. :P.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Canals and Gondolas

I took this while in Venice, Italy (and NOT at the Venetian in Las Vegas, for those of you that follow me regularly). I was standing on a canal bridge high up when I shot this, listening to the gondoliers singing. It was a rather cloudy day that day, and the sunshine just broke though the moment I snapped this, so I was pretty happy.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Lake on a Cloudy Day

I have to admit that I have no idea what the name of this lake is. I'm guessing it's the Zell am See in Austria because I know we were sort of near it at one point. I wish I had been there at sunrise/sunset for the glamorous golden hour. I'm pretty stoked that the water was clear enough to see the rocks below.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Pit Stop

This was actually my meal at a pit stop from Vienna to Salzburg, Austria. The above picture is a lemonade (not a beer). The bottom picture was perhaps a cheesecake? Gah -- this is what I get for going through my archives and trying to remember things that happened when I had had too little sleep back then. I suppose that's what photographs are for. All I do remember was that it was SO MUCH FUN. :)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Reflections of Prague

This is one of my all-time favorite photos. I took it while in Prague a year-and-a-half ago, as H was sunglasses-shopping. He had forgotten his pair at my place in LA and quickly realized he needed a replacement pair (for photos, of course!). So, as he was checking out a shady-looking souvenir stand (heh, pun intended), I caught his reflection (and that of the building behind us) in one of the many sunglasses facing us.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Cracked Ice

While in Quebec City a couple years ago, a friend cleverly suggested we ride a ferry intended to taxi passengers across the St. Lawrence river, so that I could capture the city's skyline. I was then able to photograph the city and the river, as the boat plowed through ice chunks. It was pretty awesome. Too bad it was gloomy then. This almost turned out as a black and white photo had it not been for the green roof of the Château Frontenac.