Baguio City | The hunter and the wannabe photographer

The hunter
The Hunter, Burnham Park, Baguio City, ca. 1990
I was browsing through my Flickr albums and saw this photo. I was still a neophyte in photography then. In 1990, during weekends, and long before the term "photo walk" was invented, I was already scouring Baguio City's parks and streets for photography subjects.

Many times, too, tourists in Burnham Park,Wright Park and Botanical Garden would mistake me to be a park photographer. Of course, I politely declined. But come to think of it, I could have been a park photographer to this day if I pursued the trade! [Smile!] But back then, just like now, all I wanted was to take photos--just for the heck of it.

With a borrowed Canon AE1 SLR film camera, an 80mm prime lens, and 50mm lens, and with some Cokin filters, I thought it was uber cool to just sling it on my neck and walk around! And this was at the time when "camera-ed" people are very, very few. How much more if it were "my" camera!?  That is why, I secretly simper whenever I see those DSLR-toting photographers in malls--it is simply that pride, man! The pride!

Back to the first photo--it was a concrete sculpture of an Igorot hunter and was one of those sculptures in the four corners of Melvin Jones football field in Baguio City. It was one of those sculptures in the city that I truly liked because of its proportion, not mentioning the fact that its medium would make it harder for the artist. I just forgot who made those sculptures. If someone knows the artist, please let me know so I can give them the credit for this beautiful work of art.

The orange tint is due to the orange Cokin filter that I used--making it a faux sunset photo. Facing west, and gauging the position of the sun, I think it was around a little past 2PM when I took this photo. Exposure was 'P'--yes Canon AE1 was one of the first SLR cameras that had P mode, I guess. [Smile again!]

After the July 16, 1990 earthquake, my heart sank when I saw it bent right above the knee.  I haven't checked through if the other three sculptures survived the earthquake. I should check it when I return to Baguio this year--or does anyone still see them? Please let me know.

I also photographed flowers, road signs and of course people. An example is a photo below--when street photography was not the in-thing. This time, I become the hunter--using not a spear but with the 80mm 2.8 Soligor lens.

I used YKL Fujicolor film for all of my film photos back then.

Mines View
Men at the Mines View Park, Baguio City, ca. 1990

I am glad I was able to preserve the copies of my earliest photos, which makes me relish those days when photography was a very expensive hobby, and most importantly, appreciate the dawning of my creative spirit.

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Aside from my day job, I love photography and storytelling. Going places--be it a cliche destination or the far side of the road--stoke and free my soul. I dig deeper into the people’s psyche, culture and ethnicity, and heritage. I love to observe how they thrive and build social institutions, preserve their culture and traditions.


juanderfulpinoy said...

I was captured by your photography style. I am now a fan ...

Admin/Author said...

Thank you juanderfulpinoy! That is flattering! Hehe.

zhian said...

I love the shots. :)

About the Hunter, the feet part below are the only remains in the park. I really don't know what it is until I read your blog. Great info. And your photograph in Mines View Park, truly, a very nostalgic shot. Life in Baguio!