Christmas in the Philippines

Christmas in the Philippines

I am sitting here in Manila at 3:30 am with the inevitable Jet lag, hmm, is that one word or two? This is not an assignment per se. But rather a time to spend with my family. My family is half Filipino. My wife was born and raised here till she was 18. We met in the US and have been making frequent pilgrimages back here ever since. Now, with a daughter whom we want to understand her heritage, it is even more important.

When I read the biographies of some of the great photojournalists and travel photographers, I read about broken marriages and ruined families. I don’t think I will ever be able to make the kind of sacrifices some photographers are willing to make when it comes to family. I am fortunate that my wife likes to travel and loves my work. So she often accompanies me on the shorter trips. But there are limits.

Honestly, I hope to get out and shoot this trip. It’s important. But, it’s not the top priority, my family is. So on this trip, where my family goes, my 5D and I go as well. So let’s see what becomes of this time.

I came close to buying the Canon G9 for this trip. I’ve been reading mixed reviews. Some folks love it and are pleased with the RAW mode. Others are frustrated with the noise at anything higher than 400 ISO. I have wanted a “semi-pro point-and-shoot” (can you really say that?) for times like this. One I can trust to let me have some creativity and that allows me to leave the monster 5D with grip and host of lens back in the room. Any suggestions?

My wife, Alou at Corregador (today 12/17/07)

My wife’s littler sister, Mabelle.

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  1. Kenneth Koh

    Great blog Matt! I’ve got a Ricoh GX100/Sea&Sea 1G. It zooms to 24mm (35mm equiv) on the wide end, but it has the same noise issues as the G9.


  2. Matt Brandon

    Kenneth, Does the GX100 have RAW mode? I think this is what I am looking for as well.

  3. Kenneth Koh

    Hi Matt,

    Yes it does, and I’m shooting RAW on the GX100 as well. Initially I was a bit disappointed with the image quality. Dynamic range and high image noise are a couple of my niggles, but I think that’s going to be true of any small image sensor camera. You might want to wait for the Sigma DP1, which has a APS sized sensor, but is yet to be released.



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