Thursday, November 29, 2012

Wish you were here

Do you hate this weather because you can't go out?  I may just have the photo for you.  Now crank up that music.  Sit back and relax.  Maybe play Rodrigo Y Gabriela's cover of Metallica's Orion.  If that's too loud, perhaps, Beethoven's 8th Symphony.  Country fan could play anything by Brad Paisley.  Hip Hop?  Don't know.  I never listen to it.  The closest I know would be Stevie Wonder's Higher Ground, which may work.  As for me, I'm listening to The Beatles Twist and Shout (The Ferris Bueller version).

Techie Note:  Stitched from four images shot with the Fujifilm Finepix x100.

Note to self:  Include this picture to my Boring Postcards series. LOL.

Hope your day goes well.  Stay dry.

© 2012 Rob Castro

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

In My Life

When I look at this picture, what comes to my mind is that Beatles song, which goes "there are places I remember..." The irony of that song is John Lennon penned most of the lyrics when he was in his early 20s. He would have reflected his own conviction from somebody like this person on the photo. My thoughts is the old man has a lot of stories to tell. I would love to hear them even though I don't really know him. And he doesn't know that I shot his picture.

I posted this photo online and it has been featured on a few photography websites. This poor man doesn't know that he has become somewhat famous.

A crazy thought: What if John Lennon faked his death and he was actually this guy?

Hope your day is going well.

© 2012 Rob Castro

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Flowers Fiesta

Hope your Thanksgiving was great.

A friend sent this bouquet of flowers to us. Rose made it the centerpiece in our Thanksgiving table. In these days of instagram and iphone camera, the normative is to take a picture of one's centerpiece. So naturally being the photographer at home, I was requested to take a picture of this. I don't do well with this style of photography but after looking at the result I think I did a pretty darn neat job.

Truth be known, I probably wanted this shot to botch as I felt I was just going through the motion. That's code word for boring subject. Well, at least that's what was going on in my mind as I was evaluating the appropriate composition. The ambient lighting was bad, and I just couldn't get a grasp at what a good composition would be. So instead of using my 5D, I opted for the Fujifilm Finepix x100 Point and Shoot. But the camera delivered a wonderful bokeh of blurry effect and sharpness on the right areas. Never underestimate a Point and Shoot.

In the end, contrary to my instinct -- it came out okay.

Enjoy your day.

© 2012 Rob Castro

Monday, November 26, 2012

Men in Tie

Tips to wives and girlfriends: Please do not buy us any more ties for Christmas. We men prefer to be left alone so we can watch sports so a day set aside for this would be nice. We also want to upgrade our tools. A camera would also be great -- just make sure you ask us about the model before buying it.

Hope your day is going well.

© 2012 Rob Castro

Thursday, November 22, 2012

A blessed thanksgiving to all.

In famine or feast, You are there.
In sickness or in health, You are there.
In prosperity and in destitution, You are there.
You are the God who never slumbers nor sleeps.
You are there and you are not silent.
Thank you, O my Father.

A blessed thanksgiving to all.  May you continue to experience the joy of God's manifold blessings.

© 2012 Rob Castro

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Real men drink their coffee black

Sometimes one can be having a bad day.  And there is nothing in the world that can fix it.  Except maybe a cup of finely home brewed hot coffee.  Such is the panacea that this fine gent employs.  I'll have one too -- make mine double.

Hope your weekend was great.  Cheers.

© 2012 Rob Castro

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Little Red Hut

© Rob Castro 2010 - 2012

Most people know that the Dutch Masters excelled in painting landscapes.  But what most people do not know is that their landscape paintings always contain human element.  Survey their paintings and you'll find that there is at least an element of human activity -- whether that may be farming, a house, fishermen.  There may not be people in the painting but it would be obvious that man was or is there.

The idea goes back to their Christian roots that all of the creation was giving to man to have dominion over it.  The concept that man was absent from landscape paintings was totally foreign to them.

Arguably, most modern landscape depictions are rooted in pantheism.  I surmise that they would have been shocked to have seen the photographs in National Geographic.

Photo Tip of the Day:  This little red hut sitting in the middle of a fish pond is an oldie but I decided to rework it.  Taken a few years ago during my trip to the Philippines.  The triangular geometry is one of the forms that is very effective in composition.  Something about triangles that our eyes are drawn to.  Look for geometrical forms when you compose your picture.  It will make a lot of difference in your composition.

Hope your day is going well.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Moving On

Shot this a couple of years ago and never really cared for it until now.  Sometimes it just takes time for an idea to brew.

Sometimes the emotion is already expressed by the subject -- but oftentimes in search for the human soul, I would realize later on that what I'm searching for is already there.  It is under one's nose - so to speak.  Then it hits home, everything connects.  I realized that my own personal emotion is reflected in an image I've shot some time ago.

This man could have been thinking, "I've lost almost everything -- my house, my lot, my business.  But I still have my dignity."

Hope your day is going well.  Have a good weekend.

© 2012 Rob Castro

Friday, November 09, 2012

I'll Make It Through... It's how I feel every Friday

Juzno:  So how have you been, old man?  It's Friday.

Mr Sven Norvank:  Yes, yes.  Friday.  My favorite Friday of the week.

J:  You probably meant this is your favorite day of the week.

MSN:  No, no.  Every day is Friday.  So this is my favorite Friday of the week.

J:  I see.  So where are you headed?

MSN:  To the bank.  See this sack?  It's filled with all the pennies I collected at the fountain.  I'm going to be rich.

J:  Are you gonna make it?

MSN:  It's Friday.  I'll make it through.

Photo Tip of the Day:  A subject that is in the middle of the frame is usually boring.  To add dynamics to your picture, apply the rules of third.  Imagine dividing the frame into nine equal sections. Now, align your subject where two lines intersect either to the left or to the right of the frame. Most philistines who will inspect your photo will remark that you don't know how to frame a picture.  This will be your opportunity to evangelize to them about the merits of this rule.  Educate them that great painters like Gustave Courbet and Eugène Delacroix applied the same rule.  Never mind if you haven't seen any of their works.  The uncultured person will be so impressed that they will always come to you for your vast knowledge in the art.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Hannah, Big Red Loretta and Sister Jane

The three sisters went shopping for Halloween costumes.  Hannah was going to be the Revlon Girl.  Big Red Loretta was going to be Josie without the Pussycats.  And Sister Jane was going to be ... well, plain Jane.  As soon as they get to check out their buys, they were told that their 80% discount coupon had expired last year, and the total for the entire items was outrageous that it cannot be printed here.  The three sisters walked away after deciding that they would each have a miniature Louis Vuitton handbag to safeguard their sims cards for their refurbished iPhone 4s.  Next month maybe they can upgrade to iphone 5.

Photo tip of the day:  Shooting from the hip -- such as how I captured this - can be fun but takes some practice.  For this shot, I preset the camera to f16 at aperture priority so the camera would select the best shutter speed for an acceptable exposure.  Then I up the ISO to 1600.  At this setting, anything I shoot with good lighting will practically be sharp so I manually pre-focus the lens to infinity.  The camera was just at the waist line level so I was able to get a low angle shot.

Hope your day is going well.

 © 2012 Rob Castro