Self-Portrait: Series 1

I wanted to practice flash photography to see if adding flash lighting (??) to my photos will really enhance them, as most photographers claim. Of course, it also takes skill, so consider this the first step to my path towards achieving great professional portraits because as they say, practice makes perfect...and since I practice, I am perfect. Char lang.

I gotta say, it was really hard taking pictures of myself as this definitely is several levels above just taking regular selfies. LOL. I still have a lot to learn about proper lighting and setups and conceptualization, but then again, that's what this activity is for. I've learned from these blogs (BLOG1 and BLOG2) that doing self-portraits can actually help you understand the technique better as it aids in you in determining which poses work and what settings to use, etc. Although they did also warn what a hassle it can be. Oh the pains of self-education.

Anyway, here they are. The result of my first try. More to come. Unless I find myself a model willing to pose for free (good luck to me).

The theme for today is "DISORGANIZED" -- which can be taken for its literal meaning with the messy room in the background, or as an allegory for a disorganized/disturbed mind.

Camera used: Sony Nex-6 (using my smartphone as a remote via the smart remote app)
Lens: Kit lens E-PZ1650 (16-50mm, f3.5-5.6)
Flash: Godox TT350s with X1T-s flash trigger

For HD versions, please go to my FLICKR account.


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How Can I Get Your Love

Natatawa ako kay Anne Curtis. Recently she's been expressing her fondness for Korean dramas. She's one of the neophytes in the growing community of mga nilamon ng K-drama. At first I thought she only liked Gong Yoo (which of course, I didn't take lightly as she posed a threat to his and my potential marriage. LOL!) But then last night I saw these screenshots from Twitter of Anne liking and commenting on Lee Sung Kyung's Instagram posts:



May pa-"yeppeuda" na si ateng! Stage 4 na ang k-drama virusHahaha! Anyway, I can't blame her. Lee Sung Kyung is very girl-crush material. In fact, she just became one of mine. She embodies all my frustrations.  She started as a model so she has long legs than can bridge South Korea and Japan (ito pa lang, pack-up na). Apart from acting, she can also sing, dance, and play the piano--and I don't just mean playing para masabi lang na marunong, unlike someone I know (me. Lels). She's really good! 

This was from her IG.

This one is from her appearance on the TV Show, Taxi (skip to 1:16)

Diba??! Kaloka this girl. And she has this outgoing, boyish personality that always gets my vote. In more apt words, "SUHWEEGGG!" That's why I'm with Anne on this one. Comment pa more, Anne! :))

Like everyone else, I learned about LSK's existence through her most recent drama, Weightlifting Fairy. I am CRRRAZYYY about this drama I can't even express how much. I watched it just this month because may paandar ako na I don't like watching popular dramas while they're airing (except Goblin, because Gong Yoo) kasi nga I'm unconventional kuno, only to give in months later and be addicted to them just like the rest. Late bloomer ako, sorry.

Anyway, even though I'm more inclined to fangirl over female celebrities, in the "Weightlifting" drama I found myself more hooked on Jeong Joon Hyung (male lead played by Nam Joo Hyuk). HE IS THE SWEETEST GUY IN THE WHOLE, WIDE, K-DRAMA WORLD. Forget Kim Shin (Goblin), Joon Hyung is every bit the boyfriend every girl could hope for. He's sensitive, caring, sweet, very expressive of his affection for Bok Joo (LSK), loyal, supportive, loves his family, and has just the right amount of playfulness in him. He's dependable and Bok Joo can be herself around him without apprehensions, and they encourage each other to be better, too. Bok Joo, how to be you poAng haba ng hair mo, girl!


SIGH. This is one of the drawbacks of watching too many k-dramas. It gets you frustrated when you're done watching because a character like Joon Hyung is a unicorn. Fictional. Unreal. Mythical. Nonexistent. A fantasy. Or is he? May katulad ba talaga niya, Lord? Pwede pong magpa-reserve? LOL.

Even though I'm done watching the drama I'm still repeating some of the episodes, and even still search for clips on Instagram. I really love Joon Hyung, he makes my heart flutter. CHAROT! Tume-twenties? Hahaha! The drama has some great songs on its soundtrack, too! Kim Jong Wan, the lead singer of my favorite Korean-indie band Nell, has a track in the album and it was Bok Joo and Joon Hyung's theme in the drama. Apart from the melody, I also like lyrics. Naturally, it's been on loop in my Spotify for the past few days. KJW's voice really has that calming effect and his songs are very coffee shop playlist-worthy. Same with Han Hee Jung's "Dream." Another one of my favorites is "I'll Pick You Up" by Standing Egg, a k-indie band that I also follow. Check them out below:


YOU and I - Kim Jong Wan (Nell)

How can I get your love
How can I make you smile
This heart-pounding fluttering feeling
Is coloring my heart

What can I do but dream
Living in a dream all day
I wanna have courage and invite you
Will you come to me? In my dream?

I don’t know where this feeling came from
Only I know about this small trembling
I’m trapped in a sandcastle that I made myself, like a little boy
I’m still lost, looking for that dream
Shall we dream together now
You and I

How can I win your heart
How can I make You mine
Very slowly, I will tell you
Will you come to me? To a dream we can share

I don’t know where this feeling came from
Only I know about this small trembling
I’m trapped in a sandcastle that I made myself, like a little boy
I’m still lost, looking for that dream
Shall we dream together now
You and I

I'LL PICK YOU UP - Standing Egg
The love that withered inside of me
Has it come back to life
In my calm heart
You brought butterflies

Today more than yesterday
Tomorrow more than today
If I only have you, I think I’ll be happy

I’ll pick you up, wherever you are

Is it too late? I’ll run to you
I’ll pick you up, so you won’t regret
I’ll wait for you
I’ll pick you up right now

Your normally bright face
Why is it so dark today?
You are the sweet rain
That fell in my dry heart

Today more than yesterday
Tomorrow more than today
If I only have you, I will brightly smile

I’ll pick you up, wherever you are
Is it too late? I’ll run to you
I’ll pick you up, so you won’t regret
I’ll wait for you
I’ll pick you up right now

Because you colored a pretty rainbow inside of me
There is a bright smile on my face
The only one person, I’ll pick you up

Just one time, a little more
Will you place me inside of you?

Today more than yesterday
Tomorrow more than today
If I only have you, I think I’ll be happy

I’ll pick you up, wherever you are
Is it too late? I’ll run to you
I’ll pick you up, so you won’t regret
I’ll wait for you
I’ll pick you up right now

DREAM - Han Hee Jung

I’ve been hesitating for a while
In front of the time that is to come
I go back and forth from excitement and worry
Over and over again
Time keeps rushing me
We’re suddenly at the end of the road
I’m dreaming, I hope it will be eternal happiness
I’m dreaming, I hope there will be green days ahead
Even if cold wind blows over to us
I’m dreaming, I hope there will be more smiling days
Than days wet with tears
Although the seasons change
Can’t we just stay as we are?
I’m dreaming, I hope it will be eternal happiness
I’m dreaming, I hope there will be green days ahead
Even if cold wind blows over to us
I’m dreaming, I hope there will be more smiling days
Than days wet with tears


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The Admission feat. Artwork by Ellie (a re-post)

I have always wanted to incorporate visual interpretations of my writings just to give Lang Leav a fair fight (lol), but I really can't draw to save my life. Luckily Ellie, my talented and artistic former officemate at Starcom, offered to illustrate one of my poems while she continues to practice and enhance her drawing skills . Thus, the image above! Doesn't it remind you of Van Gogh's works? I can't be more grateful! Thank you, Ellie!

(click the title below to be redirected  to the original post of "The Admission")


I'm finding myself below
and I can see the light above
From a small opening
Twenty feet above me
I can scratch and claw
To try and reach liberty
But the walls are too slippery
And honestly,
The light has lost appeal to me

Would you believe
I've been here for years
And I've had hands try to pull me 
up from the floor
For a moment I'd believe
That they could help me stand
But a cripple can walk farther
than the weak-willed, abled man

I'd cry for help in darkness
where I know no one could hear
In case somebody does come
I would run away in fear
I pretend to be a lion
When inside I'm a helpless prey
Haunted by the absence
of something to chase

Sympathy repels me
Yet, it's what I need
Before someone sees my frailties
I would cut the strings
I'll entrance you with music
Wear pride as a disguise
A smokescreen of lies
Hide this fraud from your eyes


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Push And Pull

I swear, I'm kinda "SHOOKT" these past few days. I can't get something out of my head. It's like that line from Ellie Goulding's song: "My heart don't understand why I got you on my mind." CHARET! Ang arte ko, bakit ba ako ganito? Hahaha! Eww, sumi-sixteen years old. Magtigil.

Anyway, of course I took it out to Spotify last night and like any other muni-muni segments of my life that's supported by background music, my new playlist brought new phrases into my head and compelled me to write something--anything that provides an outlet for feels. This is one of the reasons why I hate leaving Twitter. I'm usually able to satisfy my feels just by posting lines that I like from the songs I love. But since I can't do that anymore, I needed another venue to channel my emotions. Lels. Therefore, this. I'm not sure why I came up with this push and pull theme. Maybe because my previous entries were about avoiding feelings and being scared of making a move that my mind has had enough and chose to end the endless guessing game now. Lol. 

I'll take whispers
If that's the only way you can tell me
We're too close for comfort
We're too far to hear each other's hearts

I will, if you will
Say it and I'll echo your words
The same thoughts are running
Why can't we face what's obvious here

This space in between
That only courage can cut through
Tell me what you're thinking
I'll confirm what's on your mind

I will, if you will
Our someday is now
Let's say the words we need to hear
Get our doubts out of the way

I won't move if you step closer
I've waited too long to back out
Come to me without reluctance
This push and pull ends now


P.S. I'm also including links to the songs I've been listening to lately para damay-damay naAt siyempre naisama si kumareng Selena Gomez. ;) 


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When you regret your decision but you're no longer qualified for a second chance.... 

I was minding my stride 
when the wind made me turn, 
and I saw you there, 
looking just as perfect as you had 
when I was the one holding your hand.

A smile slowly tugged on my lips, 
and for a second I was willing
to mend the string I've cut heartlessly. 
For a moment, I wanted to rely on a maybe. 
Maybe...you still wanted me?

But my hopes quickly ran empty
as your gaze went right through me. 
Colorless and without emotion, 
as if I was just part of the crowd; 
as if I was less than a "used to be"; 
as if I was someone who never was anyone to you.

I felt a smile slowly tug on my lips. 
For a second I was trying 
to ignore the sting on my chest. 
Because I had no right to fall apart 
when I chose to run
from the only thing that held me together.

Your inattention made it easy 
to walk past you without a greeting. 
Minding my stride 
while you disappear at the corner, 
like the strangers that we are.

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It Is Written In The Stars

I've been thinking of getting inked lately. I've always wanted to get a Scorpio tattoo -- among others -- ever since so many years ago, somewhere near my nape or at the back of my ear. So I searched the ever-reliable Google for tattoos of the Scorpio symbols, and narrowed down my options into two:


While searching for tat ideas, several Scorpio quotes in Google images caught my attention. Now I don't really believe in horoscopes. I wanted to, but none of what I've read ever came true...not those yearly predictions for my Chinese zodiac (rat), nor the daily horoscopes for Scorpios.

HOWEVER, I do like the personalities associated with Scorpios. Those, I can say, are fairly accurate. I'm not one who constrains herself within the limitations set by these "definitions," but I can't deny that most of what I've read about Scorpio women do not stray too far from the truth. 

That said, I love my zodiac. I've loved it since Day 1. I like the enigma, the sarcasm, the fierceness--heck, even the sensuality--that comes with the classification. I'm not even apologetic about how these traits are far from positive. In fact, the Scorpio's seemingly deviant character is what makes me proud to be one. Ergo, my wanting the symbol inked on my skin.

I was so amused with these "Scorpio quotes" that I saved some on my phone. It just amazes me how precise they are, as if I wrote the quotes myself. If anyone ever asks what kind of person I am, I suggest they just read the quotes posted below. LOL.

And here's an article that became an instant favorite: Scorpio Woman: Her Influence on Feminism & "Masculine" Femininity
"Scorpio women and Plutonic women fuse this masculine energy to create their own brand of femininity. They don't wish they were men. The LOVE being women. They simply spend their lives creating a new breed of woman and changing social mores and myths of what womanhood should be." 
You guys need to know that I'm a hardcore advocate for women empowerment. Or as the Spice Girls would call it, Girl Power. LOL. Even to this day when there are more than 2 genders, women are still perceived as the weaker sex. It irks me that women are still expected to be damsels in distress who can't change her tires or drive the Fast and effin' Furious out of the highway during rush hour. NO. That's the stereotype forced on women during the era of Adam and Eve, B.C. Maybe it's because I'm an only child and therefore show an even proportion of my mother's femininity (although she's not exactly "girly" herself) and my father's masculinity? But whatever the reason, I'm not a fan of women trying to act weak in front of men to get their attention. If I can carry my bag, I will. Go and try to prove your manliness somewhere else.

I think part of the reason for being so "mysterious" is because Scorpios hate being predictable. Predictability means others have some control over your next move/decisions, and giving others control does NOT fare well with us. I in particular, don't like humoring expectations. Or when I do, I make sure I don't follow it to a T, and I give something still a little different from what people expect. I don't really know why...I just really dislike being part of the norm. I guess the stars do have something to do with the way the worlds works after all. :)

But dark personalities aside, I think all these inclinations are because of the fear to settle for the ordinary. Settling denotes the lack of passion to explore, to seek for more. With everything that's going on around the world, there is a need for continuous learning -- to search for a reason to still believe in the goodness of humanity, in love, and in life. Maybe it's because I'm a Scorpio, or maybe a Scorpio's description just happens to fit who I am. Either way, I do believe there's more beyond the fences we have built for ourselves. I will keep on trying to find a way to get the best of both worlds, and defy what we now consider as truths.

Oh, diba? I bet you didn't expect that biglang kabig sabay hugot part. :))

"Scorpio Symbol" Icons made by Freepik from www.flaticon.com is licensed by CC 3.0 BY
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