Dahilan

The Wedding of Cris Villonco and Paolo Valderrama

She insisted on riding her own car on the way to the church, foregoing the luxury ones from her dad.

It was a Toyota Innova she was proudly paying for herself.

That was the kind of person she is.  Low key.  Not flashy.  As if all manners of pomp and glamour were displayed on the stage where she let it all hang out.  Only to retreat to her quiet, unassuming, unpretentious cocoon when the curtains go down.

I met her somewhere in Promenade a week before her wedding.  Of course, the first words out of my mouth were “Oh my Cris! This has been a long time coming!  You booked me more than two years ago!.

She quietly mouthed the words, “THAT”S NOT HIM! THAT’S A DIFFERENT GUY!”.   Shaking her head,  controlling her laughter.

Floor.  Eat Jason.  Now.

I shot Paolo a glance, fully expecting a glare (or a beatdown).  Neither happened.   Instead, a sheepish smile.

“It’s fine”  Cris said.  “He knows.”

And that’s the kind of person he is.  Quiet. Dignified.  Understanding.

We talked about their wedding.  How she wanted it uncomplicated.   How she wanted to forego the spinning rings and the flying veils.  She wanted the raw, the real, the truth.   Exactly how we do it.

Cheers to the Baker, and the Baker’s Wife!

___

Postscript.
At the tail end of the meeting she threw me a curveball.   She requested for a Filipino song.
And thankfully, I was able to obtain permission to use Dahilan by The Benjamins.  Thank
you to the very kind, and the very talented Paolo and Miguel Guico.

Everything happens for a reason.  We might get sidetracked or take a longer route, but in the end, we are better, stronger and wiser persons for it.

Add Comment

Guji and Cheska

Add Comment

Sitti and Joey: Wedding Highlights

I’d like to share with you today the very beautiful, the very moving wedding film of Sitti and Joey.

I need fifteen minutes of your time. It’s longish yes, but savor every moment, every cut, every beat, every breath of the edit.

You will feel love. In your mind, in your heart, in your bones. You will feel the chill of the cold wet Baguio weather, and the warmth of the people sharing the big moment with the couple.

You will feel the calm beauty of the bride, not minding the elements crashing onto her wedding day. Embracing it even. You will revel with the couple as they clumsily hop and dance on the stage half drunk with alcohol, half with happiness. You become part of the big bear hug with Martin Nievera and catch a glimpse of how perfect and still in love Aiza and Liza are.

This will take you away. I promise.

Add Comment

The story behind the song

Home by Reese Lansangan

Reese Lansangan’s Home featured in a center spread of this month’s YES Magazine.

The wedding day of Vic and Pauleen was drawing near and I was still searching for that ONE song to use for their wedding film. I was drawing blanks.

The collaboration with Johnoy Danao for Nikki Gil’s wedding was so creatively fulfilling (and successful) that I just had to do it again. But I have yet to find a songwriter given the time constraint.

So one night just after Christmas, I was driving home from a shoot and heard this quaint song on the radio. The melody was catchy but it was the lyrics that hooked me. It was witty. It was hilarious. It was intelligent. That song was Grammar Nazi, and it was by an artist I was familiar with – Reese Lansangan (whom I cannot tag here because she has exceeded her friend request limit – I know the feeling).

I reached out right away and set up a meeting. Wedding season was still in full swing so we had to meet at night after a shoot. We braved Katipunan and met her and her cousin Thea in Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf.

She was very much the vivacious artist I pictured her to be.
Platinum hair. Enthusiastic. Appreciative. Creative.
That meeting was on January 16. Despite the constraint, she gladly said yes to the project. The wedding was at the end of the month.

Really the only input I had were the themes of the song and a certain structure I needed for it to work with moving images.

We all know there was a certain “you and me against the world” start to Vic and Pauleen’s story that I wanted to play up. And that they didn’t care. Reese’s lyrics dealt with those teams in a tender, moving way that avoided cliches.

And when I heard the demo, I knew then and there, that was it. That was THE song.

But nobody knows
How we go
When we’re alone
It’s like we’re home

https://reeselansangan.bandcamp.com/track/home
Words and Music by Reese Lansangan (c) 2016
Arranged by Reese Lansangan, Allen Dave Articulo, and Choi Padilla
Mixed and Mastered at Point Bee Multimedia

Photo by Oly Ruiz.

Processed with VSCOcam with c2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with c2 preset
Add Comment

Jmag: Will Work For Free

Processed with VSCOcam with b3 preset

Let’s agree on one thing.  Some of the best things in life are free,  your favorite app,  that donut in Krispy Kreme when you fall in line and your dog’s excited yapping when you come home at night.

Hell, even my services can be free!  For real.  It’s not April 1st, it’ already the 5th.

I’ll do it.  Just for you.

Just me. One camera. One man. One story.  Your story.  Send me a pitch.

I’d like to go back to my roots, shooting alone.  It’s a creative exercise for me, a not too foreign experiment.  As for the output, expect something different as well.  Prepare to be be surprised.  We’ll pick a couple.  Maybe a few.

Send me details. Locations, logistics.   Your vision of your wedding or whatever your event is.  I’m listening.  It doesn’t need to be local,  I can travel.

I’ll drive, I’ll fly.  I’ll ride a canoe.   Let’s arrange it.  A good meal would be appreciated but great coffee is a must.  

Your wedding (or not) doesn’t need to be one of a kind,  nor push boundaries.  The only thing  it needs to be is compelling.    To inspire people to love.   Or to make people understand.

#jmagwillworkforfree

Fill out the form below – I’m excited.

http://bit.do/jmagwillworkforfree

Please DO NOT send me an email or FB message for this.  Let’s keep it through the form.  Thanks.

Add Comment

A Wedding in Puerto Princesa

Marissa and Basti

I had to admit to myself even just a little bit, that the timing was off for this wedding we took in Puerto Princesa in Palawan. Everybody was gearing up for the long vacation and here we were lugging our equipment for a flight going south to work.

After touchdown, we drove off for another hour and a half to a resort away from the city – Sunrise Mansion.

And slowly, the reservations melted away. The place had something to do with that of course. It was charmingly beautiful.  No it wasn’t the poshest of resorts.   But you don’t go there and expect butler service nor 24/7 ac.  You go because you want to taste the comforting salty winds blow though your room.   You come to appreciate the endless sea of blue of both the sky and the sea.

But more than the place, it was the people.  We were greeted eagerly by the bride and groom.  Making sure we were comfortable and settled.    Taking care of our every need.  Too much really.  We felt we were family.  And that feeling was special.  To break bread over their table, with no delineation of who were guests and who were suppliers.  To share the same 3 in one coffee sachets and to lounge in the same pool.

And that allowed us to know more about everybody, and therefore make a more meaningful film.

I learned that “Sebastian” moved from Germany to Melbourne and likes the Aussie lifestyle better.  That they met and fell in love there.  I learned that Marissa’s family was from Ilocos and it was the first meeting of both families (imagine the nerves!).   I learned that what they have is not defined by ethnicity or color.  They just – love.  And everybody was happy for them.

I could not have spent my Holy Wednesday any better.

Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset Add Comment

Letter to L

This is a shout out to all the kids who try hard (most of the time) but get less than stellar grades in school.

We can’t post your report cards (plenty of 7s), or medals (we’re only gunning for the loyalty award) or the merit cards (umm, you don’t have any).

Can’t deny that there’s a hint of jealousy when other parents humblebrag about their children’s hardware. But know this, we love you to bits and won’t have anybody else in your stead.
Sure your penmanship is bad. And we still can’t do fractions well. But hey we get high marks in cleanliness and you’re never absent not tardy. I appreciate that.

Grades aren’t the end all and be all. I’m just happy you study your ass off and I know you try.
We all know you can smoke ’em in COD. I know I can ask you to get my socks and and my wallet and a drink of water on three separate trips with nary a complaint. Well. Just a bit. But you’ll do it anyway. You light up the house. That’s your gift. That’s good enough for me.

We’ll get ’em next time kiddo.

Love,
Dad

Add Comment
1 of 64123...Last »

Get in Touch

Email Jason