Neil and Camille: A Grand Wedding in Zamboanga

There is a very narrow subset of people in the universe who meet at quite an early age, fall in love, stay together and get married.
 
The lucky few. The handful fortunate.
 
Why seek out another when all the questions have been answered?
Why tread new territory when you are most secure and safest with your true north?
 
The contrary opinion would be the “limiting” nature of the relationship. But no, you learned to fly with that person. And the journey is made more beautiful because you flew together.

San Antonio de Padua

Karla and Edward

Karla requested that she and Edward read their vows separately in the morning just before going to church. The element of surprise for each other was refreshing.
 
And it was telling how she underscored the kind of love that they had in both her written vows and our candid conversation.
 
Edward was not grand in his gestures nor public in his affection. But he is there, solid, steady and unwavering. And she verbalizes this in the most eloquent way. She could feel it in her bones.
 
Plus! Any gal who does Triple H’s crotch drop during the recessional – Wins. Everytime.

#jmagwillworkforfree

Every Sole Counts

Last June, a handful of volunteers flew to Leyte and hiked up to Isabel. We wanted to document the plight of the schoolkids who had to walk their way up to their schools on a daily basis. Most of them had no proper footwear. Some were barefoot.

The message we wanted to communicate is simple. Bring the kids a step closer to their dream of getting a proper education. With the simple act of sponsoring a pair of shoes for the kids.

What drew me to the project was how achievable the goals were and how immediate the impact would be to their lives. It wasn’t a handout. Rather, It was empowering to the children.

It’s a drop in the bucket and the easiest thing to have corporate sponsors on board to get to the goals. But from the very start, we wanted to appeal to the individual.

That you can help out, even in your singularity.
That you can make a difference.

We have to start somewhere.
And the best place to start is ourselves.

Please follow Facebook.com/EverySoleCounts to learn how to help.
And yes – please share this video no end.

___
Thanks to Trina, Wawa and Miguel for making us part of this endeavor. To new and meaningful friendships!

My endless gratitude to the people who contributed their talents.
Elson and Michael and Jake for hiking up with me to the mountains.
We were huffing and puffing on the way up but we couldn’t let the kids embarrass us.

Thanks to Tin for coordinating the project and Dennis for grading the final film.

And the ever dependable Ken Benitez for the logo.
___

This video is part of the ?#?jmagwillworkforfree? initiative

Jessica and Jessie: THAT Beautiful Wedding in El Nido

Way back in 2010,   we flew to Paris to film Steph and Chris’ wedding.  In a lot of ways, it was a milestone for me.

First I finally had the chance to explore the famed city.  Second, when we released the highlight film, it solidified the direction I wanted to go to as a wedding filmmaker.  That 10 minuter made manifest my approach as a cinematographer, editor, mood-setter and storyteller.  As an aside, I distinctly remember that this was the very first time I legally licensed music for use in my films.  I always go back to it.  People always go back to it.

Six years after,  it was Steph’s sister’s turn – Jessica.

How does one one follow up Batman Begins?   You do Dark Knight.

Family bonds run strong in the Kienle’s and that remains the framework of the film.  We explore the relationships between bride, groom, mother, sister, friend – all against the backdrop of El Nido, Palawan, also known as “perfection”.  There are layers and layers of words, pauses, sighs and music to take in.   This one deserves a second and third viewing.

Enough of the deconstruction.  Enjoy the film.

#jmagwillworkforfree Results pt. 1

Processed with VSCOcam with g2 preset

 

When I first announced #jmagwillforfree a couple of months ago, a couple of my reasons were not altruistic at all. Foremost, I needed to brush up and sharpen my skills shooting alone, in preparation for some out of the country shoots I was going to have. I’ve been babied with my team locally and I wanted to re-experience the challenges when I was starting out. “To go back to my roots” like I explained.

I suppose it was also a measure of my reach in social media. After all, nothing was sponsored in the posts but it caught like wildfire just the same. Big media picked it up and the response was nothing short of phenomenal. We had 7000 plus entires and it took a lot of time to go through each one.

Now here’s the magical thing about what happened. And I think it happened because I never really confined the “thing” to weddings alone. I became a magnet for a lot of stories which needed to be told, topics and subjects that could use the medium of video to find an audience.

More than couples wanting their weddings to be filmed, advocacies poured in which I may never have had the chance to know about if I didn’t post about “free”.

And somewhere along the way, more than the buzz generated, I became genuinely excited with the thought of creating something for the betterment of my fellow man (woman).

And with that, I’ll give you a rundown of the projects I will be doing for jmagwillworkforfree

1. In a small town in Leyte, students walk kilometers at a time, barefoot(!), back and forth just to go to school. Next week we will fly out and document their story to share to you in the hopes of raising enough funds to buy each and every student a pair of shoes.

2. I already met Nikko and April last week. They’re set to get married in December this year. April arrested me with prose in Filipino – which I have a soft spot for. Her words –

“Ang point ko lang naman po ay marahil marami sa atin ang naghahanap ng pag-ibig sa maling pananaw. Madalas naghahanap ng mala teleseryeng ala Mula sa Puso ang peg. Ang media nga naman. Ang natagpuan ko po kasing pag-ibig ay boring, nakakatamad subaybayan, di makatawag pansin, hindi romantic…pero totoo at sigurado.”

3. Now this third one – this is special – because she’s single with no immediate Prince Charming in sight. But the funny thing is, we might not even need a Prince for this story. Who says a person can’t be happy by herself? It’s intriguing. Dulce writes –

“It can be a story of fear of never ever getting married at all. It can be a story of hope, of trust in a Plan.I know that being married is NOT the one and only way to spend a meaningful
I know that.There are friends, family, community, yourself.
But still.
It would really be nice if someone knew how you wanted your coffee.”

I got three left so please stay tuned.

Thank you so much to everybody who shared the word and poured their heart out in their entries. All your stories are enriching and I am immensely grateful.

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.

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.

Facebook

After a very long time, we managed to fly back to Zamboanga City to film the beautifully grand wedding of Neil and Camille. I had one afternoon to go around the city center (Paseo del Mar and Pershing Plaza) and found out how Zamboanga was so full of energy, beauty and happiness. Much like Neil and Camille's wedding. And oh, old footage of them dancing at Camille's 18th birthday years ago pops up somewhere in the middle of the film. It's a great touchpoint to show how their relationship grew and blossomed throughout the years.

Facebook

Last June 14 we held a lecture workshop on videography in Blue Leaf through the kindness and generosity of Asus. After, we asked the attendees to submit a short video with the theme - In Search of the Incredible. We received INCREDIBLE entries! We chose one to win a It's ROG GL552VX. We will announce it later at 6pm through Facebook live. I'll be broadcasting from the ROG flagship store in Cyberzone, Megamall.

View Photo on Facebook

Facebook

Karla requested that she and Edward read their vows separately in the morning just before going to church. The element of surprise for each other was refreshing. And it was telling how she underscored the kind of love that they had in both her written vows and our candid conversation. Edward was not grand in his gestures nor public in his affection. But he is there, solid, steady and unwavering. And she verbalizes this in the most eloquent way. She could feel it in her bones. Plus! Any gal who does Triple H's crotch drop during the recessional - Wins. Everytime. ____ Erratum/edit The crotch drop was actually by X Pac, not Triple H, as pointed out by a millenial who actually watched WWE post Ultimate Warrior. I stand corrected. Just the same, Suck it!

Facebook

Last June, a handful of volunteers flew to Leyte and hiked up to Isabel. We wanted to document the plight of the schoolkids who had to walk their way up to their schools on a daily basis. Most of them had no proper footwear. Some were barefoot. The message we wanted to communicate is simple. Bring the kids a step closer to their dream of getting a proper education. With the simple act of sponsoring a pair of shoes for the kids. What drew me to the project was how achievable the goals were and how immediate the impact would be to their lives. It wasn't a handout. Rather, It was empowering to the children. It's a drop in the bucket and the easiest thing to have corporate sponsors on board to get to the goals. But from the very start, we wanted to appeal to the individual. That you can help out, even in your singularity. That you can make a difference. We have to start somewhere. And the best place to start is ourselves. Please follow Facebook.com/EverySoleCounts to learn how to help. And yes - please share this video no end. ___ Thanks to Trina, Wawa and Miguel for making us part of this endeavor. To new and meaningful friendships! My endless gratitude to the people who contributed their talents. Elson and Michael and Jake for hiking up with me to the mountains. We were huffing and puffing on the way up but we couldn't let the kids embarrass us. Thanks to Tin for coordinating the project and Dennis for grading the final film. And the ever dependable Ken Benitez for the logo. ___ This video is part of the #jmagwillworkforfree initiative

Facebook

Way back in 2010, we flew to Paris to film Steph and Chris’ wedding. In a lot of ways, it was a milestone for me. First I finally had the chance to explore the famed city. Second, when we released the highlight film, it solidified the direction I wanted to go to as a wedding filmmaker. That 10 minuter made manifest my approach as a cinematographer, editor, mood-setter and storyteller. As an aside, I distinctly remember that this was the very first time I legally licensed music for use in my films. I always go back to it. People always go back to it. Six years after, it was Steph’s sister’s turn – Jessica. How does one one follow up Batman Begins? You do Dark Knight. Family bonds run strong in the Kienle’s and that remains the framework of the film. We explore the relationships between bride, groom, mother, sister, friend – all against the backdrop of El Nido, Palawan, also known as “perfection”. There are layers and layers of words, pauses, sighs and music to take in. This one deserves a second and third viewing. Enough of the deconstruction. Enjoy the film.

Facebook

So the taxi ride from Brussels Midi to the Apple Store was mostly uneventful. Sting's When We Dance was in the background, adding to the gloom of the day. All of a sudden, the first bars of regulate came through and I just said out loud - REGULATE! G-FUNK! And our cabbie just flashed me a wide grin from ear to ear. Cabbie: old school yeah? That's my jam! Me: Turn it up brother! And all of us in the cab were just bouncing our heads in unison. Music truly is the language of the world.

Facebook

We filmed a wedding in Davao, at the beautiful Eden Nature Park and it was all sorts of awesome!!! Check out the SDE of Dee and Jiggy! Tag somebody who's from Davao or would want to visit soon!