t minus 2 weeks

At dahil nalalapit na ang aking paglisan (dalawang linggo na lang anubah), susubukan kong alalahanin ang pinaka-interesting na nangyari sa kin sa around four and a half years ko todits sa land of the rising sun and eternal office hours.

1. Mag-slide paibaba ng bundok dahil nilipad ng hangin ang isa kong glove. Saklap.

2. Muntik na mawala sa bundok sa Zao dahil super foggy at di makita ang harapan.

3. Ma-sprain ang dalawang paa. Nang sabay.

4. Ma-crack ang pinkie toe habang naglalakad with the bike (at marami ang version netong kwento na to).

5. Ma-attach sa isang upuan. I miss you Cher the chair. Sana buhay ka pa pero feeling ko hindi na.

6. Mag-hibernate nang isang buong linggo (golden week) without going out. Hibernate nga eh, shempre no going out. May pagka-redundant din pala ko no?

7. Mag-bakasyon (!) nang 2 months sa isang hospital.

8. Naadik mag-online-shopping. I will defo miss you Amazon and Rakuten.

9. Photography. ‘Nuff said.

10. Magcollect ng napakaraming scarf (scarves?). Ano kaya gagawin ko sa mga yun no?

11. Matutong magluto (level up from boiling water and *cooking* pancit canton). Pwede na ko ngayon mag-nilagang-B (bubuyog? bisekleta? bentilador?). Kaya ko na ata mag-grill ng steak at maggawa ng sinigang. Pero siyempre pinakamagaling akong magpipindot ng keys sa microwave at mag-type-type sa keyboard para umorder na lang.

12. Sara Bareilles concert. Yeh! Best concert ever! At asa video pa kami ni Benny hahaha. It was an awesome show. Kahiyuuuuh.

13. KT Tunstall concert. Yeh! Napagod paa ko sa kakatayo pero prime position kami ni Benny as in sa harapan. PS parang kamukha niya si Jolens. Hmnnn.

14. Maroon 5 and Aerosmith concerts. Yeh! Ang lalayo nila (Nippon Budokan and Tokyo Dome ang mga venues, respectively) so ang hirap makita ng pilantik ni Adam Levine and bibig ni Steven Tyler. Nevertheless, enjoy to the max ever.

15. Sakura Tulip Festival chuchubelles. Very special mention ang Meemax ahaha. Memorable talaga yun. Pero I don’t want to make lublob myself in the putikan and damage my camera haha. Traumatizing siya.

16. Sprint to shuuden galore. Kelangan abutan ang last train sa gabi. Buti na lang hindi ito parati.

17. Sprint in the morning para habulin ang tren na naman. OA na yang train na yan ah. Parating hinahabol. Five seconds lang naman ako nalelate di pa ko hintayin. Imbey.

18. Snow. Masaya pero nakakairita. Bakit ba kasi ang lamig-lamig niya?

19. AUTUMN — ang walang kamatayang autumn. I love autumn.

20. Kafunsho. Siya na, siya na talaga. Hanggang ngayon di pa din ata ako naka-recover sa damage na ginawa niya sa sinus ko.

21. Kyoto + Osaka + Kobe. Saya neto. Ang saya talaga.

22. … (Teka saka na yung iba, wala na ko maalala ngayon pero baka mamaya meron pa).

D80 HDR Bracketing Cheat-Sheet

「Showa Kinen」 Lake

I’m just putting this in here in case I forget and I usually do so … I guess, knowing me, this will be very helpful in the long run.

Now, I don’t do much HDR (I tend to do Nature and Conceptual shots and just recently, Street) but it never hurts to branch away from your comfort zone once in a while eh? And since I tote around my trusty old Nikon D80, I’m listing down some of steps/things to remember on how to configure that camera whenever I get crazy enough to try HDR photography. No, I’m not going to discuss HDR and how it’s done and how it’s supposed to look because frankly speaking I don’t know much about it, just that if done right, it could be really pretty to look at and if done wrong, it will move the viewer to tears (because it will hurt the eyes lol).

Anyway, apparently, the D80 has this feature called Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB) that makes it easy to shoot photos with the same aperture in three exposures (normal, under, over-exposed) automatically (hence, the A in AEB).

So, without further ado, let’s dive right into the list.

① Image quality → RAW. I usually shoot in RAW so I won’t have to set this most of the time.

② ISO. Go with the lowest (probably 100 in the D80).

③ Focus Mode. Manual.

④ Camera Shooting Mode. If you’re masochistic and just a sucker for doing the nitty-gritty, then by all means use Manual Mode. But usually Aperture-Priority works (in almost anything too, except long-exposure shots).

⑤ Bracketing. From Julien Viet’s blog:
“Press the BKT button and rotate the main dial to choose 3 shoots and the sub-command dial to choose the bracketing increment with the value 2.0EV. At this moment you configured the D80 to change the exposure of the photo each time you shoot. Therefore the first picture you take is a normal one, but the second one will be underexposed by 2EV and the third one will be overexposed by 2EV. The fourth one will be exposed normally.”
Oookay, I’ll try this later on the camera when I get home.

⑥ Shooting Mode → Continuous.

And voila — shoot, shoot, shoot. And then go open your favorite photo-processing software to merge the exposures into an HDR image. (Photomatix, PS CS5, Topaz Labs, some plugin I forgot the name of, yada-yada et cetera).

Other references:
http://blog.julienviet.com/2009/01/06/nikon-d80-hdr-bracketing-tutorial/
http://www.vanilladays.com/hdr-guide/

Fête de la Lumière

Stay still and let the colors fill the night
Hold your breath, don’t let it go, not yet
Let it out when the lights cascade too bright
Consider me as someone not bound to forget.

Stay still and let everything just go “bang!”
Hold your breath, don’t let it go, not yet
Let it out when the chorus had just done rang
Consider this as a promise you know I’d kept.

Stay still and let the feeling wash over
Hold your breath, don’t let it go, not yet
Let it out when everything’s all spent
Consider this the day we say, “well met.”

2011.10.06

Maybe Either, Maybe Neither, We Just Don’t Know

Rainier Maria Rilke once said, perhaps all the dragons of our lives
are princesses who are only waiting to see us once we’re beautiful and brave.

Maybe you are one of them; perhaps I might be like that, too.
And it might also be that we both are both at the same time
but really, we just don’t know.

Perhaps we’ve been ugly and maybe craven for far too long.
It might also be that we’re neither princesses nor dragons
and we might just be hags for all we know.

Maybe you are and perhaps I might be either, too,
still it’s a waste of time trying to figure out something
that in the end we really don’t , you know, know.

2011.10.03

To Eva Descending the Stair

Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear;
The wheels revolve, the universe keeps running.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)

The asteroids turn traitor in the air,
And planets plot with old elliptic cunning;
Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear.

Red the unraveled rose sings in your hair:
Blood springs eternal if the heart be burning.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)

Cryptic stars wind up the atmosphere,
In solar schemes the titled suns go turning;
Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear.

Loud the immortal nightingales declare:
Love flames forever if the flesh be yearning.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)

Circling zodiac compels the year.
Intolerant beauty never will be learning.
Clocks cry: stillness is a lie, my dear.
(Proud you halt upon the spiral stair.)

[ Sylvia Plath ]

[ Image Source ]

Hola!

Le Journal seems like it’s dead. But it’s not. It’s just that Tumblr has been getting the lion share of my attention lately, what with pseudo-maintaining FYSS and reblogging all the shit I’ve been seeing in my dash and you know, sometimes you just got to turn your attention elsewhere.

So anyway, what have I been up to these days?

# Seattle Storm going into the playoffs. I haven’t been posting in sf.org for ages because I’m been mostly hanging out in Twitter (and Tumblr). Anyway, I thought this year was going to be a disaster, what with LJ and her labral tear in the hip. But Sue Effing Bird came up big and dragged her team to finish 2nd place in the West. Seriously, how is she even real?

# A Storm of Swords. I’ve been slogging through the books not because I found them boring (The Red Wedding certainly is not boring. Also, damn it, GRRM), but because I had to take a break from time to time so I won’t get too invested in a character (because they’ll eventually die at some point in the series anyway).

# Went back to the Motherland during Summer Break. Love love love that we have a summer break (夏休み) in the company and love love love the fact that it’s a week earlier than the Obon (お盆休み) which means we get lower plane fares because it’s not the peak season yet. Anyway, so I shot some photos for my friend’s wedding. Holed up in the hotel for the entire time I spent in Cebu and watched almost the entire season of Australia’s Master Chef 2 and totally forgot about gallivanting around the city. So much for my vacation. I managed to gorge myself on lechon though. So I guess that made up for the lack of photos.

# Rick Riordan’s Kane Chronicles and The Lost Hero. They’re books on mythology. For kids, granted. But I like mythology and I like reading about them, especially if it’s YA. I love YA. Well, granted it is not Harry Potter and Riordan is now Rowling, but I enjoyed the books just the same. They’re perfect as distraction from the A Song of Ice and Fire Series.

# Warehouse 13. Eureka. Suits. And a host of TV shows out there that exist mainly just to relieve me of my boredom.

# Packing my stuff and trying to plan everything out so I can get out of this place as peacefully as possible. Gets on my nerves sometimes though.