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Glamour and Nude Photography Workshop (Philippine Leg) with Dan Hostettler on March 10-11, 2012

24 February 2012

Glamour and Nude Photography Workshop (Philippine Leg) with Dan Hostettler on March 10-11, 2012

UPDATE: Workshop price is now P15,000 instead of USD750. Contact Mike for details via the mobile number on the image below.

Dan Hostettler, Swiss “visualist,” Europe’s top notch Beauty and Glamour photographer, entrepreneur, and founder of (NSFW link) StudioPrague will be holding a 2-day, all-in, “Glamour & Nude Photography Workshop” in Manila on March 10-11, 2012. Limited to only 4 EDIT: 5 participants max at US$750 per person EDIT: PHP15,000, the workshop will showcase, foremost, Dan’s flawless technique and years of experience in teaching and practicing glamour and nude photography, 2 models (who have graced Playboy Philippines, no less, I heard), 1 hair and make-up artist, studio equipment, venue, and food and snacks.

Hover on the image below for an NSFW version of the poster (may take a few seconds to load):

I had my slot reserved, despite my knee-jerk remorse with the course fee. Did so after visiting the StudioPrague website, looking at their (NSFW link) regular workshop courses and course outline, reading about Dan’s credentials, seeing how carefully calculated and professional the nude shots looked, and after reading most of the (NSFW link) testimonials of past StudioPrague workshop participants the world over.

Think about it. In order for us to enroll into a semi-private masterclass of this caliber, we’d need to haul our collective arses to Europe or the US, spend for visa, airfare, lodging, living, and course fees (aaaaaaaaaaand tour packages and shopping expenditures, of course LOL). In Prague at the Czech Republic, a similar workshop at Dan Hostettler’s StudioPrague costs €1,950 per participant. The discount on workshop fees alone makes attending the Manila Workshop a keeper (with already around US$1,900 savings, mind you). How much would attending an “open shoot” cost in Manila? 1,500 to 2,000 inclusive of lighting, model fees, and just some time to shoot the model shared with at least 10 other photographers (most of whom would get every opportunity to get as much time shooting than the rest). There can only be very little to no structured learning in such avenues (I’ve attended a couple, so I’d know). Now, compare that setup with a semi-private, four participants-max class with Dan Hostettler.

I just recently attended a Product Lighting workshop with Jo Avila and Cesar Caina last Sunday. For a maximum of 15 participants, workshop fee is P6,000 (was lucky enough that there were only three of us who registered for the workshop, at the same cost. Had a fun time learning that day). With PCCI (Philippine Center for Creative Imaging), Nudes and Glamour are taught in two 2-day courses that costs roughly P7,000 per course. Point is, photography classes will cost you and attending good quality, read tried and tested, classes will cost you more. The fewer the participants, the higher the cost.

Reading this from StudioPrague sealed my decision to sign up for the “Glamour & Nude Photography Workshop:”

An EduShoot is a learning workshop.
EduShoots are where the REAL learning begins!
EduShoots (known as “workshop”) was created for the simple reason:

We have noticed over the past years, everyone offers so called “workshops”. At these “workshops” there is little or no instruction going on, just people shooting models. We wanted to get away from that and establish the fact that at our workshops, there’s actual education happening!

I’d pitch this 2-day course to hobbyists, advanced, and pro-photographers alike, if only to pick on Dan’s mind, his European (photography) industry insider pro-tips, and know what it is that makes him take consistently good glamour (and of course nude) photographs. Heck, I’d even egg on fine arts students to go, if they have the means and the earnest interest to pursue glamour photography as a career after graduation. It’d also be quite snooty to claim “I’ve attended a StudioPrague Workshop” (better if it shows on your output, too, hehe, which is why we’re taking the class)!

On a lookout for short courses to help enhance my skills at photography, I turned to a good friend Michael Sy Yu of iSnap Creatives for ideas and guidance. And guide me did! Thanks, Mike, for pitching the workshop idea to Dan and thanks, Dan, for giving us the rare chance to learn from of your genius.

To reserve for a slot and for sure participants, please contact Mike at 0917.8906053. Feel free to share this like to anyone who you think would be interested.

DISCLOSURE: This is not an advertorial. The author and site owner did not receive any form of compensation and neither free nor discounted training course fees for publishing this article. Header image and workshop poster taken from Dan’s and StudioPrague’s website

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In Photos: Two Eclipses and a January

16 January 2010

In Photos: Two Eclipses and a January

This much I know when attempting to photograph an eclipse, be it lunar or solar: my first few attempts will always end up a failure. See that post-header image? Got that this at around past 5 in the afternoon on 01.15.2010 when I hoped for a decent shot of the solar eclipse. Shooting earlier would have ended in failure because those blasted clouds decided to block the sun. Way to go, clouds!

Failed eclipse shot, gained sunset shot.

(Click on image for a larger view)

I rushed to another office window to get a clear view of the sun minus the metal obstructions and got depressed because no matter what setting I use on the Lumix ZS3, I still couldn’t get a decent shot. What followed was an idea I got when I was still in school: get a micro floppy disc, tear it open, and get the magnetic film inside and use that to filter the brightness that’s too much for the camera’s sensor. I got excited when, finally, I got this (pardon the digital noise):

(Click on image for a larger view)

I did my best but it ain’t good enough and so I tried to get another shot but was already too late. The sun has already set. :(

I used the full zoom (12x optical) and tweaked the following with the dial on “normal picture” mode (limited manual):

ISO Sensitivity: Auto
AF: 1-point
Pre-AF: Continuous AF
Metering Mode: Spot
Intelligent Exposure: On
Stabilizer: Mode 2
Min. Shutter Speed: 1/8

Coincidentally, I just discovered that I used almost the same settings in getting this Lunar Eclipse shot on January 1, 2010 (save for the Min. Shutter Speed factor which I set to 1/60 for this photo):

(Click on image for a larger view)

Compact point-and-shoot cameras win at life. See those lines? Fuckit, I never thought that those can be captured, either. You may see the images of my first two failed attempts for the lunar eclipse in this flickr page.

Gloat factor: these images were not enhanced/post-processed, save for the in-camera cropping and/or resizing.

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A Must-Have Travel Photographer’s Handbook

20 September 2009

At 9 p.m. today, I made a rush to make a last hour purchase of UNO’s September 2009 issue and some construction paper for Bong and Maro‘s causes. I got inside the Powerplant Mall and into National Bookstore with some time to spare before the mall closes for the day. Immediately to the right of NBS’ entrance, I noticed a table stacked with photography books all marked down to 80% of the cover price (20% off).

Since they are photography books, they are all still sort of expensive. Most of them are geared towards the general use of DSLRs, while some are for specific brands and models. I suddenly realized that even if I get to find something I like, my purchasing power for the night is capped at P720 and some loose change (for jeepney fare) since I left my wallet at home on purpose (I was wearing shorts with no back pocket is why). I was about to go to the counter with my UNO and construction paper in hand when I chanced upon this handy, little book:



The Photographer’s Field Guide (192 pages) by Michael Freeman, who travels a lot and does photography for a living, is not as costly as the other books, at P423.25 (originally at P529). It has tips on right about everything and presented in a concise way, lined with photos to illustrate the author’s idea better, as necessary. When I said “everything,” I really meant EVERYTHING. Below’s a shot of the table of contents (do click on the image to enlarge for a more readable text).

I’ll make it a point to read this through and over again and bring it whenever I go on trips. The cover may say “the essential book for traveling and your digital SLR camera” and that I may not have an SLR, but tips on lighting and composition are universal. In fact, I already got an idea of how to make people “disappear” from a famous tourist destination in my future final photographs. A steal for the price, too (I bet this will cost more from other local bookstores even without the discount).

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Gorillaz CMYK Vinyl Figures in Concert! LOL

29 June 2009

Instead of just shooting the new toys the “usual, boring way,” (i.e. with them in the box, out of the box, and propped on a shelf or on the table) I picked my brain for a comp to make this photo set more dramatic and edgy. I wanted to make do a concert scene but all I have is my caving light and I won’t be arsed to create a makeshift concert stage from scratch. And then, after a glass of ice cold Coke, a brilliant idea it hit me!

Since the caving lights (a 21 LED contraption running on 3 AAA batteries) can already serve as a spot light, all I had to do was find backdrops. I searched my photo archives for concert shots (some of the stuff I used I got from the net, tee hee), had the images brightened/saturated then blurred to achieve a depth of field vibe, ran the images on a slide show using MS PowerPoint, had the Gorillaz statuettes stand in front of my LCD monitor, experimented with the LED by lighting up the toys from different angles, and VOILA, I can haz a concert scene in the comfort of my own home!

Try this technique out yourself! Experiment with an outdoorsy background or the beach, the bedroom, a dungeon, anything to serve your purpose if you need to take photos of small objects like toys but you want your shots to look extraordinary. The possibilities are endless!

The shitty thing, however, is I had no choice but to do post processing since the quality of the photos (read, digital noise all over) took a toll from the low and selectively focused lighting.

Here they are, the Gorillaz during a “concert” here at home. Snooty, huh?! LOL Click on the images for a larger view and hover your mouse on them for the caption.

More photos after the jump. (more…)

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iBlog5: PhotoBlogging Discussion Complement

13 May 2009

Cramming in what I, together with Faith,  have solicited/compiled as hopefully relevant points for the “Photo Blogging 101″ session during iBlog5 proved to be more of a chore than I expected. I sounded like a nervous wreck (pfffft! Pampasira sa image shet! LOL).  For one, we were so pressed for time up there that we only later on realized that we skipped some important points that we wished to give out. Not having slept the night before can do that to you. Revising the presentation slides to the way it finally looked, looking for (fully attributed) photo samples to support the pointers we shared the night before in an attempt at perfection, and putting on a helm of authority over an audience of talented, passionate, and probably more adept populace added to the pressure. Yay! An excuse, I think I haz it! (more…)

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SMB Barkada Valentine Party: Brazilian Models

15 February 2009

I don’t thing all eight of them are Brazilians but, yeah, they call them that. This is the first of the three sets of photos I’ve taken during SMB’s Barkada Valentine Party held on February 12-13, 2009 near the SMC Compound somewhere in Ortigas. The girls were called up on stage to show the audience their favorite San Miguel manufactured beer. It was quite convenient that each of them had a different favorite from the variants. Whodathunk, yes? (more…)

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