Monday, May 17, 2010

The Philippines, a new photo tour destination?

After 17 long hours I arrived in Manila, to a spectacular sunrise. The flight seemed long, especially with a refueling stop in Guam, but I had time to read parts of the Nikon D3s manual, which by the way, is like slogging through Tolstoy's War and Peace.

I'm here in the Philippines to evaluate the potential of offering a photo tour here. I've worked in the Philippines extensively for my NGO clients, and throughout my travels I have discovered that it's a place full of friendly people, great food, beautiful scenery and some very unexpected photo opportunities. Jim and I have been looking to expand our photo tour offerings into some of the less visited areas of the world and the Philippines seems like the perfect spot.

During the long flight here, I gathered some great information and recommendations about traveling in the Philippines from my seatmate Jay, and his friend Andre. Jay and Andre are Filipino businessmen, they were returning from a motorcycle tour through Chile and Peru. Both were a great source of information about overland travel in the Philippines due to the fact that being part of a Manila based motorcycle club, they have traversed much of the Philippine road network, including both paved and dirt roads.  We poured over maps and books and Andre and Jay filled me in on road conditions, travel distances and travel times.

I'm now sitting in my hotel lobby, unable to check in because it's only 8:00 am. I should try to get some sleep, but I'm to pumped up about getting out there to shoot some images. At noon, there's a Fertility Festival in Obando calling my new Nikons.

Take care, and stay with me...I'll try and provide a bit of info on my travels, along with a photo or two everyfew days.




William said...

I'm just wondering, are you still using your Think Tank setup with the Nikons? And are you using the Blackrapid on them as well?

Karl Grobl said...

Hi William,
I still use the Think Tank Belt system transporting my cameras. While I am shooting I use a dual Spider Holster set up. Since I discovered the dual Spider, I stopped using the Rstrap. The rStrap is great, but the dual Spider system takes away all straps and all weight off my neck and shoulders. I will be blogging about the dual Spider set up in the next week or so.

Adrian said...

Congrats on the new Nikon system. I love mine (albeit "just" a D300) myself.
Do let us know if you'll do a photo tour over in the Philippines. I am sooooo there. Lots of colors and very friendly, happy, & smiley people. I'm not sure if you know him, but Jay Directo is a prominent filipino photojournalist who works for Agence-France Presse and also another Nikon user. Let me know if you need his contact info.



Karl Grobl said...

Adrian thanks for the message, excellent to hear that you'll be on board. I don't know Jay so please send his contact info if you can. thanks, Karl

iam3739 said...

Wow! You are in the Philippines!
I am a Filipino!

Looking forward to the photos sir!

Dan said...

Welcome to the Philippines Karl! Have a safe trip around the country. Hope you'll have time to visit Boracay to relax. :)

Gregorio said...

Welcome to the Philippines!

Jesus Matubis Jr. said...

Hi Karl

I'm happy to know you're considering doing photo tours here in the Philippines. We do have lots of beautiful places to shoot plus the people are indeed friendly, nice and "smile a lot." I'm a Nikon shooter myself, an enthusiast not a pro, who's into photojournalism and landscapes. One question---as a photojournalist, don't you ever manipulate your photos, not even to touch up contrast and sharpness, or adjust the colors?
Welcome again to the Philippines.


Karl Grobl said...

iam3739, Dan and Gregorio, thanks so much for the warm welcome, I really appreciate it! That's what's so fantastic about the guys are so friendly!

Karl Grobl said...

Jesus, thanks for the question. I rarely manipulate a photo. Cropping or a bit of "levels" correction, and perhaps some dodging and burning, but I try to get it right in the camera.