PHOTOWALK IRIGA CITY

I was thinking how excellent it would be to have a Mexican hat on during photowalks in these scorching summer days. There is just no better buffer against the sun. Though none is available at the nearest cowboy shop right now. Globalization has yet to deliver one of those oversize sombreros here in the Philippines.

The Holy Week saw me taking on the hot weather in Iriga City. Together with my Cereal Killer who is always ready on his feet each time I break into Let’s take a walk! — I set out for some street shots around the place.

As always, the best time to play with the sunlight is at the first blush of the morning or later in the afternoon. Either case, light changes instantaneously one needs to think of subjects pronto or try again the next day.

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

A tricycle in full throttle and the closing of day for a store attendant. Business in Iriga City usually ends with the sundown.

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Iriga City photowalk Day 2, featuring an unreceptive look from a needle worker. Don’t be misled. Irigueños are friendly as a granny. The old lady actually sees her world in vivid colors. Below, another missus has been framed.

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

On Good Friday, we were treated with the same old, same old Passion Play. As a young boy growing up in Malolos, I remember, this is the time for a family get-together. All eyes stuck on the boob-tube for the whole duration of the well-worn Ten Commandments starring Charleton Heston. The only intermission is when a Passion Play passes by.

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

I don’t usually look at street performers or street acts as subjects for street photography (for the simple reason that they are easy subjects and are most commonly photographed). Only, if I could squeeze something from them other than what is being presented.

In the scene below, I tried to juxtapose the Cross with the railroad cross on the pavement. (I believe this would be a winner if only I captured the cross from a more clear-cut angle.) The intent is to exhibit a  twist of sort other than the play itself. Which makes the street presentation out of the subject. That is the challenge of street photography.

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

And in the evening, I set a Praetorian’s hair on fire.

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

TRAINSPOTTING. I came across an article recently which I believe would go well with my image below. It’s an Inquirer piece titled THE SAD SAGA OF THE PNR. About the woeful fate of the railway system in the Philippines.

Streets In Color: Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

The trains here in Iriga City has long been out of whack. Billions of taxpayer’s money can’t provide a decent railway system. What was the once iconic and pride of Bicolandia — the Bicol Express — has now been reduced to a hot and spicy Bicolano dish. Today, the tracks serve as a perfect ground for ukay-ukay market.

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Just outside the city proper is an idyllic setting where I drove for some air and quietude. Serenity is a medication, see. I would rather be in the fields listening to Chuck Mangione’s instrumental part on the classic Love Is Stronger Far Than We. If summer is a song, that would be it.

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Iriga City by Elmer Nev Valenzuela

Still on the Mexican hat, I can only imagine their faces if I have one on.

8 thoughts on “PHOTOWALK IRIGA CITY

  1. Great images (as always).

    I had to smile when I read that you didn’t consider street musicians as street photography – they’re about the only people I can photograph here in Melbourne without getting an angry glare. What is it about Australians in that they don’t like candid shots taken by strangers. Asians always smile for me, or just go about their daily business (if I take their photo).

    1. Surely I’m not treading on anyone’s toes there Vicki. But if I had the power to sway people into the more challenging air of SP I would. YOu dont actually need to go through the risk of being an annoyance to another person just to have a good sp. I would like to show (especially to you cause I can see how crazy you are for street shots) my few “winners” at the Black&WhiteStreet.com which didnt require messing around with one’s space. Pls excuse my bragging rights, here it is http://blackandwhitestreet.com/user/3862

  2. A great series of photos. These below with the high class images that you have already shown. They are poignant, humorous, insightful. The colors really make the place come alive. Thank you.

  3. What wonderful photos, Elmer! You really do have an eye. Your pictures reminded me of a trip we took to Nicaragua a few years back. It looks so different that our part of the world.

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