Archive for the ‘Photography’ Category


Art of Friendship

May 10, 2017

For those who LOVE and who value FRIENDSHIP, a must see—a must read!

Steve McCurry Curated

One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.

– Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Luoyang, China

Myanmar (Burma)

There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship. 

– Thomas Aquinas

Loikaw, Myanmar (Burma)

There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends.
I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.
– Jane Austen


A true friend freely, advises justly, assists readily, adventures boldly,
takes all patiently, defends courageously, and
continues a friend unchangeably.

– William Penn


Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their work.
If one falls down, his friend can help him up.
– Ecclesiastes 4

Pagan, Myanmar (Burma)

Katmandu, Nepal


Chiang Mai, Thailand

Kampala, Uganda

The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand,
not the kindly smile…

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On Portraiture

March 2, 2017

From one of my favorite photographers…

Steve McCurry Curated

Portraits reveal a desire for human connection;
a desire so strong that people who know they will never see me again
open themselves to the camera,  all in the hope that at the other end
someone will be watching,

someone who will laugh or suffer with them.

Kashmir Kashmir

Yemen Yemen

Afghanistan Afghanistan

What could be more simple and more complex,
more obvious and more profound than a portrait.

– Charles Baudelaire

Kashmir Kashmir

Yemen Yemen

Baluchistan, Pakistan Baluchistan, Pakistan

A good portrait is one that says something about the person.
We usually see parts of ourselves in others, so the

good portrait should also say something about the human condition.

Afghanistan Afghanistan

Kabul, Afghanistan Kabul, Afghanistan

The most difficult thing for me is a portrait.
You have to try to put your camera between the
skin of a person and his shirt.

– Henri Cartier-Bresson

Philippines Philippines

Pokhara, Nepal Pokhara, Nepal

Lambari, Brazil Lambari, Brazil

Madhya Pradesh, India Madhya Pradesh, India

Dubrovnik, Croatia Dubrovnik, Croatia

Photography and the genre…

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The World’s Ride

September 8, 2016

“My two favorite things in life are libraries and bicycle. They move people forward without wasting anything…” -Peter Golkin

Steve McCurry Curated

The bicycle is the noblest invention of mankind.
– William Saroyan

West Bengal, India West Bengal, India

Kabul, Afghanistan Kabul, Afghanistan

The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man.
Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish.
Only the bicycle remains pure in heart.
– Iris Murdoch

Indonesia Indonesia

China China

Bicycle Haiku
Wheels  carried me from
Youth to middle to old age
Never complaining.
– Kay Earle

Angkor Wat, Cambodia Angkor, Cambodia

Rajasthan, India Rajasthan, India

The first real grip I ever got on things
Was when I learned the art of pedaling
– Seamus Heaney

Bangladesh Bangladesh

Morocco Morocco

My two favorite things in life are libraries and bicycles.
They both move people forward without wasting anything.
The perfect day: riding a bike to the library.
– Peter Golkin

Mali, Africa Mali, Africa

Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of riding a bike.
– President John F. Kennedy

Kabul, Afghanistan Kabul, Afghanistan

Cuba Cuba

Whenever I see an adult on a bicycle, I have hope…

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Relic / Camera Museum

July 18, 2016
Old Camera

A Studio Camera c. 1900, one of the old vintage cameras displayed at the Camera Museum below located in a Philippine Heritage Town called Taal in Batangas Province

Camera Galeria

In response to

<a href="">Relic</a>

For an interview with the collector, Manny Inumerable, please click:


Heritage Tour to Kawit

April 23, 2016

Exactly a week ago [April 16, Saturday], I got up early at 4 am to get ready to join a cultural tour in Kawit, Cavite. With my niece, Eirene Bautista and her family – Dick, Bernie and Tonette — we headed to Emilio Aguinaldo Shrine, the assembly point. We arrived early enough to take our breakfast at a restaurant called “Hidden Tapsihan.” The first trike man we hailed to take us to the place did not know where it is located. Presumably, only tricycle men from that part of Kawit would know because it is literally hidden. Off the main road it is located at Tomas Mascardo Street. I actually do not know remember how we got there.


Dick and Oye Bautista Family

OYEAnyway, the tour started at Aguinaldo Park where the two jeepneys provided by the sponsoring group were parked. One of our guides, Ms. Lean “Lei” Aldea introduced the place where copies of the “Acta de la Proclamacion de Independencia del Pueblo Filipino” [Act of Proclamation of the Independence of the Filipino People] in Spanish, English and Filipino versions are etched on high dark-colored, or black? marble walls. But how I wish they could easily be read! Needs polishing I guess! Gen. Aguinaldo’s statue on a horseback is installed at the middle of the large park. [See his house and statue behind]

Mon photos

There were nearly 30 participants – mostly local and two Australian tourists

From there, we were led to Kawit Church whose patroness is Mary Magdalene. It is also thus called as the Mary Magdalene Church. General Aguinaldo and his men frequented and prayed there before going to the battle against the Spaniards. First built in wood material in 1638, its first cornerstone was installed in 1737. Aguinaldo’s nomme-de-guerre “Magdalo” was derived from it, thus, Magdalo from Magdalene.

Mon photos3

The April 16 Tour Batch in front of the Church retablo. Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo was baptized here in 1869.


It was my first time to enter the Mary Magdalene Church. At home, I browsed on my photos published in “Paghihimagsik nang 1896-1897” [Medina, 1998]. I only saw shots of the church exterior [p.334]. Because the book was published nearly two decades ago, I have forgotten that I had actually been there to take photos for the book. Joining the tour was therefore quite worth it as this time I managed to see its interior. [I shall have a separate photo blog on the Kawit Church later]

Just outside the church and near what used to be the Kawit tribunal is the statue of Candido “Sukat-Na” Tirona [1862-1896], one of Aguinaldo’s men. Like Aguinaldo, and most of our brave revolutionary heroes, he was also a Mason. Noticeably, in the photo that I shot for the same book above mentioned, a coco tree used to stand behind him [p265].


Sa Jeepney

Sa jeepney on the way to our destination with tour guide Lei

Mon photos5

Reverse Shot with tour guide Lehn

Next stop was an interesting segment of the tour – the “Pandayan” or the blacksmith’s shop. On the verge of “extinction,” it is one of the only three remaining shops in Kawit. Located in Panday Street, it is owned by Mrs. Germinia Santulan. [Watch the video below]

During the revolution, bolos and knives were the main weapons of our heroes. Rifles and guns were for them quite rare. Andres Bonifacio, the Katipunan leader has always been portrayed carrying a bolo, unlike Aguinaldo who is always shown either wielding or carrying a saber. It was the symbol of his triumph against the Spaniards as he got it from the Spanish General Ernesto de Aguirre who fled when the Spaniards were defeated during the Battle of Imus.

Bolo making was demonstrated by Tatay Walden “Waldy” Cabigona with the help of his assistant Noel Catuba. Unfortunately, according to Panday Waldy, the youth are not interested in it anymore. It has now become one of our rare and dying industries.

Baldomero M_Back

House of Gen. Baldomero Aguinaldo

Baldomero Aguinaldo Museum in Binakayan was next in the tour itinerary. I was happy to meet again Ms. Rose Misolas, its curator. She used to be the accommodating curator of Mabini Shrine-PUP at the time I was collecting materials for my documentaries on Mabini sometime in 2014.

Baldomero “Mabangis” Aguinaldo  was ex-Prime Minister Cesar Virata’s lolo. A cousin of Emilio Aguinaldo, he was the President of the Magdalo faction of Katipunan. In 1899, he became the Vice-President of the First Philippine Republic. The architectural style of his house typically belongs to the American period. An aparador or cabinet even carries designs inspired by the American flag. It is definitely not as grand as General Aguinaldo’s but the furnitures and “appliances” like the ref they had, the piano for entertainment, the separate toilet and bathroom — are reflective of their social status at the time. “Angat sa buhay” sabi nga. [See below what my camera captured]

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Baldomero M_Antique

Close up of the Antique collection at Baldomero Aguinaldo Museum

On the way back to the last in the list of places to explore — the Emilio Aguinaldo Shrine, we passed by in front of the Battle of Binakayan‘s depiction in sculpture by Amado Castrillo, brother of more renowned Filipino sculptor Eduardo. It is located opposite the Covelandia Resort.

EA Tower

Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo’ House in terms of size, area, type of architecture, and the quality and choice of furniture are reflective of the stature and high social status and taste of the General and the First President of the First Philippine Republic. Since many printed materials and photographs are available about the house of Aguinaldo, I would rather concentrate here on what could be seen inside the “tore” [tower]. And especially so because it is not always accessible to the public when busloads of visitors come. Hence, we were in fact, lucky and privileged to have been allowed to go up there. We went in batches of up to six people only.

So, here’s a glimpse on what visitors will see in the rooms up there…There were seven levels in all, and several steep plight of stairs to climb.

An interesting part was the triangular shaped room – an attic – where wounded revolutionaries were hidden to be treated. [See below]

EA Tower taguan2

Tower View

On the other hand, here is what to see from one of the tower levels… Top angle view of the Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo’s tomb located behind the Shrine.

I gave up after reaching the 6th level. I did not dare climb up the ladder to reach the uppermost part, the sniper’s post, they say, on the 7th level of the tower. Ay naku! Thank you na lang! Nakakalula!

Mon photos7

The Australian tourist and his friend

Though I had been to all the toured places [except the Pandayan] being the field photographer of my brother, Dr. Isagani Medina for his books “Cavite Before the Revolution” and “Paghihimagsik nang 1896-1897”, the tour when we signed up to join it was really then something to look forward to for two reasons: firstly, I did not know the itinerary of places to visit simply because I did not bother reading the details on the poster when shared to me by my niece. Secondly, I have a plan to work on an AVP on Aguinaldo’s House — a long time desire that keeps on haunting me for reason[s] I do not know why, so better do it to appease my heart. In short, I wanted to refresh my mind on some of the house details in preparation for my shot list.

Overall, we had great fun, and the objective of the organizers to inform and for people to be appreciative of the past I think were met. We are truly appreciative and grateful for having met friendly, excited, and knowledgeable tour guides. Introducing: The Magnificent Four!!!

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Most unexpectedly, we were invited for lunch in the joint birthday celebrations of Gina Ayran and Lei Aldea, one of the tour guides. Gina is the ever-awesome Aguinaldo Shrine overseer na hindi na Others to me and my brother, Gani.

Libre na tour, libre pa merienda and lunch, what a day! The culminating day of the project according to them. The fun ended with a group photo of the privileged lot like us [hehehe] with the members of the sponsoring groups Cavite El Viejo Heritage Tourism Association [CVHTA] and the NHCP Aguinaldo Shrine.

EA_Fam pic

With high hopes that through efforts like this, interest in cultural heritage, and nationalism rekindle in the hearts of many Filipinos!!!

Again, thanks to the sponsors:  CVHTA, NHCP, Fundacion Santiago and the Municipality of Kawit. [Photo credits: Mirana and Mon Llave]


Weekly Photo Challenge: Abstract

April 23, 2016

At first glance you might think that this is an image from an x-ray film; it’s not. It’s a close up design of a table cloth shot in extreme close up. They were in fact floral designs…

In response to



Weekly Photo Challenge: Future_San Francisco?

April 10, 2016

I do not know the name of this plant. It looks like a variety of what we call “San Francisco” though. But, I am quite unfamiliar with it. When a friend first gave it to me, I was so happy to see its small unique leaves. It was rare for me to see tinges of red on plant’s leaves. It had only five to brag about when handed over to me; now, their numbers more than doubled, and they have grown as well. Moreover, the tinges of red now dominates each leaf as can be seen below.

Advoc_FutureWhen it brought forth a part [the green protrusion] which I never expected, I looked at it with wonderment, the reason why I took a shot of it. For days, I have been waiting for it to bloom [if it is really a flower]; or would more leaves [another set] come out? I crazily asked myself. The sense of excitement in my heart on its future — on how exactly it would look like days ahead from now is one of the simple pleasures that I derive from Mother Nature, found just within the confines of a small garden in a city jungle.

I will share with you later how exactly it will turn out. Let’s wait and see! I will also let you know its actual name when I get to meet the person who gave the plant to me.

In response to: Future