The World in a Blink


I love to shoot on-location. Although I don’t particularly relish the idea of  lugging my gear from point A to point B, I believe that the balance of sunlight with light from a flash is something that is very hard to recreate (if at all) in an indoor studio-type setting. I have learned that there are 3 ways by which you can shoot the same location differently:

  1. Physically move yourself and your camera to get new angles. And this doesn’t just mean looking for a different location to shoot in within the same area because I’ve realized that taking a single step to the left or right or going high or low can dramatically change your composition.
  2. Shoot at different times of the day. The quality and direction of light changes over the day, and even during different times of the year. I prefer to shoot early in the morning or late in the afternoon, but this in no way means that late morning light is bad. It just has a different quality to it. If it works for the shot you’re envisioning, then why not?
  3. Underexpose ambient. The first time I did this, I was amazed by the deep contrast between the subject and the background. The image is something that our eyes don’t normally perceive. The camera reveals an otherworldly often-ethereal version of the world when viewed at mere fractions of a second.


If you’re a photographer from Cebu, you’ve most likely shot at D’ Family Park at least once. In fact, one can probably identify pictures posted online that were shot in that location. You’ll probably say that you’ve been there and the place has nothing new to offer you, but I urge you to revisit it at 1/250th of a second.


*The images used in this post are RAW files exported directly from Lightroom as JPEG’s. These pictures were not processed aside from the usual processing that the software applies during export. This was intentionally done to show how the location looks when it is underexposed upon making the picture.


2 thoughts on “The World in a Blink

  1. I’m no photographer, but I know how beautiful these pictures are (I feel in love most with the second photo). Kudos, sir Joel!


    1. Thank you, Xavier. You humble me with your praise. I do believe that one doesn’t need to be a photographer to appreciate beauty in a picture. I have always thought of you as a physicist wrapped around a creative.


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