I lost my companions. While they were off learning how to surf at Ilocos Sur’s Blue Lagoon, I was all by my lonesome self at the other end of the beach; the camera my companion, the waves my friends. The surf was quite strong that day, pounding the shoreline with massive fury. I braved the waves, going farther from the shore as I dare could.
I paused as a particularly huge one slammed my legs. As it receded, a chasm opened before the seabed, just a few steps away from where I was. A sheer drop, which could’ve swallowed me whole should I have gone further.
It was perfect.
I carefully walked towards the massive crack, set my camera on the tripod, put on my filters, dialed my settings and clicked the shutter. This is my moment.
|TAMING THE WAVES AT VIGAN CITY’S MINDORO BEACH|
Photography has made me see traveling differently. While I’m really not the most adventurous of people—I tend to like relaxed walks, culture, trying out various cuisines and admiring landscapes in exchange for climbing peaks or bungee jumping—I tend to try and capture travel, especially its landscapes, in a different sort of way.
In the mornings, you’d find me up before the sun breaks the horizon, knees up in waves, oblivious to everything but the sea and my camera, the rest of my companions still sleeping off the previous night’s beach party.
Late in the afternoons, I’d be on another spot by the sea, balancing precariously on jagged rocks, camera and tripod still in hand, capturing the glorious colors of the fading light before twilight sets in.
|FIERY SUNSET OVER PATAR’S ROCK FORMATIONS IN BOLINAO|
Landscapes are my passion. And I try and capture it as differently as possible on longer camera exposures. With my set of filters and tripods, I make magic as I calm rough seas into soft cottony wonders, capture the flow and swirl of water as it rushes against rocks, photograph the movements of clouds as it streak through the horizon, and present something to the viewers beyond what our eyes can see.
|COLD SUNRISE AT AURORA’S AMPERE BEACH|
All these I capture with a traditional DSLR camera and a set of filters. It is a pain in the back when traveling, but bearing its weight is a sacrifice I make to get such images.
But things are changing now as cameras become lighter and smaller. Heck, even cameraphones are getting better. It was with wonder that I beheld Huawei P9; a typical smartphone on first look, but one that packs a punch when it comes to photography.
|BALL-SIZED BOULDERS AND COTTONY WAVES AT BATANES’S VALUGAN BEACH|
With lenses made by none other than Leica, it features a dual-lens main camera that captures both color and monochrome images and combines them for dramatic results. But what really attracted me to it is its ability to shoot raw files in manual mode, its shutterspeed going all the way to 30 seconds exposure.
Leica lens, raw files, 30-second camera exposures. Those hidden landscapes can certainly be captured by this cameraphone sans the weight of a traditional DSLR camera. Capturing light with a camera that fits on the palm of my hands—a chance to travel light, finally.