Wednesday, February 27, 2008

About Me

I am Farl, born, raised and still living in Cebu. A chemist by trade, I travel frequently on business so photography became an easy fit. Like most people, I started with a point and shoot and until 2005, I preferred the ultracompact Canon Powershot S40 that is small enough to fit inside my pocket.

In May 2005, I joined flickr and got hooked in photography quickly and irrevocably. I learned the basics of photography on my own. Voraciously, I studied pictures in flickr (especially those which have EXIF data), browsed to-do threads in flick pools like Technique and asked tips from hobbyist friends in meetups in our Cebu-Sugbo flickr group.

I was not planning to make the jump to dSLR until my p&s unexpectedly quit on me a week before a trip to Africa in November 2005. So I relented and bought a Canon Rebel XT 350D which I still use up to now. I never looked back. Today, I have 3 lenses: the kit lens 18-55mm, a telephoto 75-300mm 1:4-5.6 II USM and a prime 50mm f/1.8.

Visual arts, particularly classical painting, influence me heavily in my photographic compositions. I don’t have any book in photography nor do I consciously follow someone else’s style. Sometimes, I felt that I get afflicted by the postcard photography syndrome so I try to push myself and veer out of the stock photo style. Easier said than done.

I am keenly interested in landscapes, photojournalistic portraiture, culture and traditions. I’m still trying to learn how to use my Speedlite flash properly and wish that someday I can study artificial studio lighting. Onwards, I also hope that I find the time to study photoshop as I believe that post-processing is an entirely different monster necessary to advance oneself photographically. (Meantime, I use free software like picasa2.)

Occasionally I get stumped and endure weeks wherein I don’t touch my camera. This definitely means I may never be a professional photographer. However, photography will never get old for me as there is always something to learn. My best photos are still yet to come.

Here are some pics of me in flickr

FLB and Mommy 091001 on WTC Tower1
me and my Mom at the WTC, September 10, 2001, a day before 911, taken by my sister Lall

celebrating at the southernmost tip of Africa (the mainland, at least)
me at Capepoint, South Africa, 2001, taken by a fellow tourist

me at Arc d’Triomphe, Paris, 2004, taken by my former boss

me and my wife, April 23, 2007, taken by my good friend Salvador

... and some unposted pics from the archives.

Canon EOS 350D Digital, 1/3200s, f/5.6, 300mm, ISO 100, +2/3 EV, (uncropped)
This shot that I took at Tibubeneng, Bali, Indonesia makes me wistful. Too bad that it is almost impossible to make a self portrait like this for me, my wife and my daughter.

Nefertiti Bali
Canon EOS 350D Digital, 1/60s, f/5.6, 55mm, ISO 400, +1/3 EV
The profile and upswept hair reminds me of Nefertiti. I had a hard time angling the shot to get a complete sideview profile but I know that I have to try. The lighting conditions were perfect especially that her sweat, as if choreographed, were gracefully cascading down her face.

Ulu Watu
Canon EOS 350D Digital, 6.0s, f/22, 18mm, ISO 100
I admit that I am a sunrise and sunset hound. Photographically, the light is perfect in exposing the colors and nuances of the landscape.

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francesbean said...

Nice to know more about you, Farl :)
Reading this regularly.

Jim said...

Ooops, I see you have an About Me section. Disregard that part of my other comment. Once again, awesome work!!!

LaWatha said...

Farl, I have long been a fan of yours, admiring your work on Flickr. I happened to link over to your blog today, after reading about that little bit of paradise int he middle of the sea, with no electricity and no running water. What an adventure that would be!

It was great to read about "you"- the master behind the photography.

Aditya Rao said...

Hey Farl!
I have been following you on Flickr for quite a while now.. Great stuff man..! Keep them coming.. I would like to link back to you on my blog.

Have already added you to my Blogroll.. I am updating my template, so some edits going on :)

tawilesss said...

buitful shots and ppttn aso ...
taling pundit...... magnificent

evil and demented little cooker girl said...

i'm definitely a fan!
:) congrats to all your good work and to your sweet wife and soon to be makulit daughter, i really love her name
:) i hope to meet you soon maybe when i go visit cebu! hanggang iloilo lang inaabot ko...

Farl said...

hey thanks for the warm welcome in the blogging world!

Anonymous said...

The more I see your picture, The more I'm impressed! Galing mo!

Farl said...

salamat sa compliments!

anaksemeru said...

hi...Farl.say hello 2 you.
i just wanna say: wowww....!
it's crazy!
it's amazing!
for specially about Indonesia Photo's Landscape n about the culture....
I love Indonesia!
thx Farl, u have make my dream will be come true!
plz visit my blog yeah...

Lindsay said...

Hi Farl, I too have been following your work over on Flckr ... You've got a very good eye ... to my eye.

Keep at it. It's so INTERESTIN'!

And please do check out my tangential effort when you get a sec over at ''

jab23 said...

Hi Farl! Kudos to your blog! It has some very interesting travel photos- nice depth, symmetry, color and balance!

I just admire self-taught shutterbugs like yourself. I've been addicted to photography as well for a couple of years now (but still got a long way to go).

More power to your blog! Keep the blog rollin' ayt?

terence.chu said...

Hello Farl, I noticed the beautiful two tiered wedding cake on Lall's flickr site and it's gorgeous! Unfortunately I had to follow the links until I could find somewhere to leave you a comment - could you please let me know where you bought the cake?? Many thanks, Terence

Farl said...

Terence- I had the longest time trying to look for a pastry chef in Bali who does fondant. Her name is Juli.
Address: Villa Ixora, Jl Petitenget, Gg Cendrawasih, Kerobokan, Bali; cel +62361739390

terence.chu said...

Wonderful, thank you!!

Neldy Jolo said...

please visit sulu. its nice. I like ur page!

leslie s tinapay said...

Hi Farl, this is Leslie Tinapay of the USAID-funded Fisheries Improved for Sustainable Harvest (FISH) Project based in Cebu City. As part of our information, education, communication (IEC) campaign, we are currently setting up 2 permanent exhibits in the municipalities of Bongao and Panglima Sugala, both in the province of Tawi-Tawi.

We’ve come across your photos posted in Flickr Hive Mind and we’re interested in using some of them for the said exhibits. We would appreciate for your response on how to go about it. You may reach me at

Hope to hear from you. Thanks.

Dale said...

Good day!

Hi Farl,

Thanks for featuring Mambacayao (dako) Island, Bantayan, Cebu. Nice shots! Anyway, am from Doong Island (island front of Mambacayao). Hope I could make my own flickr and a Canon camera because I like to take take photo especially the sunsets but I don't have a camera. I just always borrowed digital camera everytime I go home to Doong. Again thanks a lot.

Admin said...


I could not find your email ID. I need to contact you for some work on paid basis. please mail me your email ID
my ID reddy10@


Farl said...

My email address is

ferdz said...

hi I stumble upon your page from lenscapades wherein he's also link to Langyaw a site by one of my idol Estan Cabigas. I lost count browsing your numerous entries and stumbled upon this About page of yours, finally I'll be able to let you know that i'm a FAN.
I've been having this dilemma of upgrading my 400D because I feel like I'm not getting my best shot but your photos really inspired. I'm planning to get a prime lens as well and as soon as I read your 3 lenses + the new 100mm macro, I called a friend whose on vacation to buy me one, since lenses here in Qatar is too expensive.
I love how you share you story and I believe you deserve all the blessings that you are receiving. I have a baby girl as well and we call her Francesca too. Just like you I'm keeping diaries of her pics on my blog.
Thank you for the tips and the stories it is really inspiring. Your site is already bookmarked and I'll be adding you to my blogroll. I wish you more blessings.

Melissa said...

Hello! Thought I'd introduce myself, I am a "friend" of your wife on facebook and have been captivated by your blog and photography since she posted a link. Your photographs are lovely. Thank you for sharing your travels!

Anonymous said...

Hi Farl, great pictures, great stories, great inspiration. Stumbled on your Blog while moving with family from Singapore to Sukawati. Wish you and your family everlasting happiness. Michel

Farl said...

Thanks for all the support. I've been out of the blogging loop because of personal concerns but hope to be back in May.

Anonymous said...

Farl, how and why were you interested in Dalaguete?

Farl said...

I sometimes go to the South and pass by Dalaguete.

Van said...

Hi Farl,
Is there anyway that I can purchase the picture of Vietnamese Rice Noodle? How do I contact you ?
thanks !

Farl said...

Thanks for the compliments. For any inquiry, I can be contacted at

Anonymous said...

hello po. ang ganda ng mga pics nyo Ang dami nyo nang lugar na napuntahan. gb.

Robert said...

Hi Farl, my name is Robert and I live in Germany. Unfortunately I could not find your emailadress.

Its about your image of the WTC.
Maybe you like to take a look at

It would be great if you would be interested in posting your picture and your little story?

Under "About" you may read what it is all about and under you can write me a mail.

Best Robert

connie said...

hi farl. are you farley i knew from the profession? wud like to know more about pandanon and the possibility of taking overnight in the island. is it safe?

connie said...

hello farl. how to get to pandanan island and possibility of taking an overnight stay?

Farl said...


Connie- must be. I have a rare name hehehe. as for Pandanon, I'm not sure about overnight accommodations and I don't even have a number unfortunately. You just go there and then pay for the facilities. Not sure if the rates are in the internet. Try googling. Good luck!

Echo said...


Good day, Mr. Farl. I'm Echo Santos a writer for an online Philippine art website.I saw your beautiful images on your website and I was wondering if we could feature your images on Philippine mosques in our upcoming article about Islamic art in the Philippines.

Hope to hear from you soon.

Echo Santos

Robert said...

WOnderful images of you and your mom on top of the WTC.

Please take a look at MY-WTC.COM

It would be a pleassure hearing from you.

Best Robert

asianTraveler Magazine said...

Hi Farl,

We at asianTraveler Magazine have seen your wonderful shots of the butanding from Flickr. We would like to coordinate with you if you could share to us these butanding shots. We have been trying to find your email online but cannot find even your surname. :)

We'd love to hear from you. Please email us at and let us know.

Thanks and happy travels!

*asianTraveler Magazine*

asianTraveler Magazine said...

Hi Farl,

We at asianTraveler Magazine have seen your wonderful shots of the butanding from Flickr. We would like to coordinate with you if you could share to us these butanding shots. We have been trying to find your email online but cannot find even your surname. :)

We'd love to hear from you. Please email us at and let us know.

Thanks and happy travels!

*asianTraveler Magazine*