Ilocos Tour 2015 - Vigan City

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo It was not the best time for touring northeast Luzon. Three typhoons are falling in line to enter the country. We decided to book our tickets during the New Year's promo coz particularly in this date for the long weekend. But, the show must go on and all we can do is enjoy one's company, and appreciate the fact that we have the time to spend for one another. Together with my college buddies, Carla, Jervin and Coline, we flew to Laoag on the 16th of July. Upon arriving Laoag, we headed straight to Vigan City on a 3-hour bus ride. We arrived at the city and the rain welcomed us. We checked in at RF Aniceto Mansion right at the end of Calle Crisologo, the famous cobble-stoned street at the heart of the city. We spent the night at the cozy room and just felt thankful that we arrived safe, and felt excited for the days to come. He're a photo story of Day 1 of our Ilocos Tour.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo RF Aniceto Mansion
Such beautiful interior! Bricked arches, wooden furniture, and a window view of the garden outside. A perfect ambiance to have breakfasts everyday!

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo RF Aniceto Mansion
Our breakfast together after a long time.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
Time for the city tour! We hired a tricycle (Kuya JR) to take us around the city. It cost us 800 for a day tour, and could fit 4 persons. It's smaller than our tricycle here in Zamboanga. I went for the backseat so I can see the surroundings. Lots of lovely old houses!

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Bantay Church St Agustine Parish
First stop, the St. Agustine Parish Church, also known as Bantay Church.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Bantay Church St Agustine Parish
At the right side of the church, there's a garden chapel with the beautiful ruins as a background. As per tradition, we lit candles and offered our prayers.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Bantay Church St Agustine Parish Bell Tower Belfry
Just nearby, we went the iconic belfry of Vigan, the Bantay Bell Tower, which sits on top of a hill. Before entering the complex, we gave a donation, and a guide assisted us in taking our photos. It's his idea for us to do this cheesy pose.hahaha Heart heart!

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Bantay Church St Agustine Parish Bell Tower Belfry
Some wiki facts: The old historic belfry of the church known as the Bantay Tower, which served as a watchtower for pirates back in the Spanish colonial era, gave the town its name - bantay (meaning to guard).

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Bantay Church St Agustine Parish Bell Tower Belfry
We went inside the tower and here's what it looked like. There are wooden staircase and the big windows offered us a view of the church and the nearby community.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Bantay Church St Agustine Parish Bell Tower Belfry
Groufie of a lifetime :)

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Syquia Mansion Elpidio Quirino
Next stop is the Syquia Mansion at Quirino Street. We paid 50 pesos each for the entrance.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Syquia Mansion Elpidio Quirino
Goofing around the house. Beautiful design of the exterior, a carriage which was used by President Elipidio Quirino, and a garden at the center of the complex.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Syquia Mansion Elpidio Quirino empanada irenes
Just outside the house, we spotted Irene's Empanada. Vigan holds an Empanada festival so we have to try their famous dish. I ordered the empanda with Vigan longganisa and egg, dipped in vinegar. I must admit, it didn't impress us much. Zamboanga has better versions but i guess we haven't tried the best they could offer.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Baluarte zoo Chavit Singson
Then, our guide brought us to the famous Baluarte of Governor Chavit Singson. It's a zoo famous for Singson's Tigers.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Baluarte zoo Chavit Singson tiger
A must-do when you visit Baluarte is to take a picture with a Tiger. I had the privilege to hold the milk bottle to keep him steady. He's so cute!

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Baluarte zoo Chavit Singson dinosaur jurassic park
Rawr! First time to see huge dino sculptures. Amazing!

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Baluarte zoo Chavit Singson
Photo op :)

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Baluarte zoo Chavit Singson
There were miniature horses, tropical birds, geese and deers, too.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Hidden Garden restaurant
At last, time for lunch! Kuya JR brought us to Hidden Garden, a beautiful garden resto.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Hidden Garden restaurant
Food was great! Place was nice!

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism St Pauls Metropolitan Cathedral
It's almost 3 o'clock and we're very excited to see the main attraction of Vigan. So we skipped the Pottery factory and headed to Calle Crisologo. En route, we spotted St. Paul's Metropolitan Cathedral.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
And there we were, at Calle Crisologo. We hired a calesa, a horse carriage, which was the primary mode of transportation back in the days. This particular street is paved with cobble stone, which can only be used by calesas. No tricycles and cars allowed here. FYI, this loveley creature is named Sabrina.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
It was a surreal experience! We we're like kids, very estatic and giddy for our first calesa ride. We were overwhelmed by the beautiful view. Old hispanic buildings, red bricks peeping from the cracks, vintage lamps, capiz windows, handmade signages; just like in the movies.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
Just me and Vigan <3 travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
After the one-hour tour, we decided to extend an hour. We haven't had the full experience of Calle Crisologo yet, so we decided to walk around and waited for night time to come. We bought some souvenirs, too.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
Manong said we should see Calle Crisologo at night when the buildings fade away, and only the facade and cobble stone are lit by the yellow light of the lamps. We waited, but time was running out, we have to get our bags back and head to the bus station.

travel Vigan Ilocos Tour Sur Philippines tour tourism Calle Crisologo
It wasn't the best time to tour but we made it our best tour! Thanks to my crazy fun buddies who can make me have the best time in my life. Always learn to appreciate! On my next post, we're going back to Laoag for the city tour.
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29 June 2015

CineChavacano Film and Animation Festival

June 23, 2015 - The city celebrates today the 4th Dia de Fundacion de Chavacano, in commemoration of the laying of the first cornerstone of Fuerza de San Jose on June 23, 1635, which, in 1719, was renamed Real Fuerza de Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Zaragosa (Fort Pilar). The City Government prepared a lineup of activities for the special day including the first CineChavacano Film and Animation Festival. The film festival is the second film festival headed by the city this year after the successful Zamboanga Film Festival held during the Dia de la Ciudad de Zamboanga.

CineChavacano is unique because it features films using the Chavacano language. There are two categories: Live Action and Animation. In the animation category, the scope of content extended not only to short films but also to infographics or infommercials with Chavacano language. Among the seventeen applicants, seven entries animation and three live action films made it to the finals. Here are the finalists of CineChavacano:



"Mal Sueño" (Nightmare) by Ryan Covarrubias


"El Muerte del un Mariposa" (The Dead Butterfly) by Jorzheema Hamid



"Tagu-taguan" (Hide and Seek) by Aljhun Rey Canillo


"Tienda de Juguete" (Toy Store) by Dale Aldrin Maniego


"Comida Zamboanga" by Danie Alted Nebrija (Watch here)


"Movimiento" (Movement) by Aljhun Rey Canillo


"Terminado y Hecho" by Anthony Neil Drapiza


"Juego de Rol" (Role-playing Game) by Abraham Ysmael Alvarez


"El Niño Pescador" by Jerome Peniones


"Cuando Contigo" (When with you) by Jorzheema Hamid

In the end, "El Muerte del un Mariposa" by Jorzheema Hamid grabbed the Grand Prize for the live action category while Dale Maniego's "El Tienda de Juguete" won the Grand Prize for the animation category. Congratulations to all the finalists and winners and we hope to see you next year in our film festivals! Continue to create Chavacano films and tell the stories of Zamboanga through this craft! Viva Cine Chavacano!



For more updates on Zamboanga City Government events, like Zoom In Zamboanga City on facebook.
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08 June 2015

Zamboanga City Govt Calendar of Activities for June 2015

Here are the upcoming activities of the City Government under the coordination of the special events team. On June 12, the city will commemorate the nation's 153rd Independence Day with a flag-raising ceremony, commemorative program and community activities at the city hall grounds. A week after, on June 19, we will commemorate our national hero, Dr. Jose P. Rizal's 117th Birth anniversary at Plaza Rizal.



On June 23, the city will celebrate the 4th Dia de Fundacion de Chavacano, which traces its roots to the laying of the cornerstone of “Fuerza de San Jose” on June 23, 1635, which, in 1719, was renamed as “Real Fuerza de Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Zaragoza (Fort Pilar). The city organized the 1st Chavacano Film Festival, CINEChavacano, which aims to promote and preserve the language and its stories through live action and animated films. 10 finalists per category will be selected which will be screened at the Cinematheque Zamboanga on July 24 to 28. For guidelines and entry forms, please visit the facebook page of Zoom In Zamboanga. Direct link to the forms is also provided below. Other activities of Dia de Fundacion de Chavacano include the Battle of the Bands and a Public Debate Exhibition.


Download guidelines and entry forms here.
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13 May 2015

#DanzaVerano

Save the date! On May 23, 2015, Zamboanga will have the grandest party at sundown at Paseo del Mar. Danza Verano, a festival of Art, Fashion and Music is the first of its kind in the region. It is a celebration of the glorious days of sun and fun in Zamboanga City. One of the components of Danza is a open Art fair where people can bring home handcrafted art and accessories, and take pictures at the photobooth. Winners of the four categories in the Zamboanga Hiphop Dance Competition will have an encore performance and house prizes will be given away.

Local DJ's and percussionist will lead the crowd with the latest soundtracks of the season. Limited passes are distributed at the Paseo del Mar outlets: Mano-mano na Paseo, Pinokyo, Bistro and Distrito. Danza Tank tops are also up for orders by KingJay Prints for only P250. Here's the breakout ad for Danza Verano. See you there!


Danza Verano 2015 from Zoom In Zamboanga City on Vimeo.

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29 April 2015

Am and Shy SDE

I've known this lovely for almost a year and I think that they're such a beautiful pair. I've worked with Phillip during my part time gigs with Vista de Lente, where he serves as a Photographer. Phillip's eye for photography is undeniable and i believe in terms of taste and class, he really is one of the best in Zamboanga. In their big day, he asked me to do their same-day edit video (SDE) and because it was on a Friday, i asked permission to excuse me from work the entire afternoon.

I also did some of brush lettering for their signages for the garden wedding setup and it turned out really nice. So far their wedding was one of the best garden weddings i've seen in the city. The ceremony was filled with love and i'm so glad for the couple. To Am and Shy, congratulations and may your marriage be centered to God. Best wishes!



Am and Shy
04.24.15
Alexandra Garden, Zamboanga City
Event styling: CMK Creations, Raymond Rabanal
Coordination: Amor
Video and Photo: Vista de Lente Photography
Lights and sounds: Sure Audio
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14 March 2015

#GM2015: Gaphika Day 2

It's February already and it also marks the 2nd day of Ten Years of Graphika Manila. If you haven't read Day 1 of #GM2015, click here. As usual, i was super early and so pumped up to sit and listen for the lineup of speakers. Here's one of many shots of Tennyl and I while waiting in line for 3 hours!



The conference kicked off with Pinoy graphic artist and DesignByHumans superstar, AJ Dimarucot. AJ is known for winning tons of t-shirt design contest in the popular website and also worked for popular brands like Nike, Adidas and Zoo York. He also ventured in business with his wife and created a clothing line for kids, googoo&gaga. He started his career way back when you have to "drop shadow" manually.



AJ also mentioned how people all over the world understand, appreciates and even loves his works. Design is a universal language indeed!

The next speaker was the one that we've all been waiting for. All the way from California, Walt Disney Animation sent one of their animators, Benson Shum, to show us some behind the scenes of their Oscar-winning feature films like Big Hero 6 and Frozen.

During the pre-production of Big Hero 6, they had an activity on animating an egg shaped object in 3d. Each shape represent a character and the challenge is to animate the assigned character as if its walking. When the eggs were place side by side they all have different body language which is fundamental to the character's performance. Here are some cool things Benson showed us:



The last three films he worked on:


People in Disney Animation studios:



When they finish half of the film, they all have a big break and just play!

Disney's upcoming animated feature films: Zootopia and Moana:


Big Hero 6 is based on this comic book series of the same title:


What makes their animated films successful?


Even though they use 3d animation, the creative phase starts in pencil and paper. Here's the character sheet of Gogo Tomago.

Disney uses Maya for animation. Here's a look of Hiro and how they animate his face.

All about Baymax!

Benson showed us the process of some of the scenes he animated like the part when Anna was a kid. In the scene, she was jumping around when she sees the snowflakes falling around her. To get the moves right, he filmed his nephew while playing and referenced the movements and little nuances from the clip.

Here's the entire staff and crew of Disney Animation Studios. Someday, i'll be there too! :) #TiwalaLang


Benson really inspired us to really pursue our craft but it will take a lot of experience and learnings to reach those big dream. Honestly, i'm far behind in terms of this big dream of mine but i'm still hoping someday I'll work in one of those huge studios creating films. After his talk, we had a lunch break. We ate at BonChon and rushed back as quickly as we could.


The afternoon session started with New York based duo Anton and Irene. They talked about Digital Design like their works for US Today and Wacom. They expressed how important structure is in not only in their work but in every aspect of life. As web designers its all about the structure to convey they message to the viewer more efficiently. They talked about pitching and how difficult it is.



There was one time when they pitched for two companies of the same line of interest and how others try to put them down. I had a lot of laughs about their Wacom project. Although they're not professional videographers, the client really wanted their sample video so they were asked to do the video for the website. Here they are using a trolley as an improvised dolly with the CEO of Wacom.hahahaha




Up next is local shirt designer Nick Automatic who started with almost nothing and now has a big shirt apparel business. He's undoubtedly the funnest of all the speakers!



A photo posted by Tennyl Dehm Canlas (@tennyldehm) on

He still uses Macromedia Flash 8 for his designs but his works are pretty dope!



The next speaker came all the way from España, Multimedia Designer, Enric Godes of VASAVA. He looks like Andy Cooper ;) Enric talked about their Typography works like the font of Team Barcelona in FIFA. The font resonated the culture and identity of the place and it became very famous there.




He also expressed that through copying, we learn. Since we were infants, all we do is copy our parent's words and thus we learn how to talk. In design and art, this is very true, too. On the journey of copying, learning and practicing, there will come a time that your own identity will be developed.



And last but not the least, is the wacky and funny Joshua Davis. He was the first ever international speaker of Graphika way back in 2006. He uses programming and algorithms to create his designs. It's really amazing how technology can create beautiful works but its nothing without the creativity of the one using it. Although most of his outputs are digitally generated, he also ventured in transforming them to tangible forms like murals and skateboards.



He was very funny and even poked fun at the other speakers. Anyways, after years of his success in digital design, he's always hungry for more. He was also fearful of being stuck in what he's comfortable doing and that's what most of us who already work for long are doing now. Personally, i can relate to him. I don't want to be content in one knowledge area and keep on repeating it. There's a point in time when we have to learn new things and expand our horizons. So don't let success get away with your creativity.




That's it! Graphika Manila was a blast! Their words will surely resonate to all the audience and for me, ill always keep their wisdom in my heart. These great people are my inspiration so that someday ill also fulfill my dreams. Here are the photo ops with the speakers during the meet and greet after the conference.

Clockwise from top left: Machineast duo Reza and Fiza; AJ Dimarucot; Anton and Irene and my idol Leeroy New.

Clockwise from topleft: Seb Lester; Enrico Godes of Vasava; Benson Shum of Disney Animation; and Nick Automatic.

Pomme Chan and Joshua Davis.

Congratulations to all the speakers and organizers for a successful 10 Years of Graphika Manila. Hoping for a bigger and better Graphika next year. Looking forward for GM2016! Thank you for reading!
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