Google Dennis Rito | Blog: November 2008

27 November 2008

Mus-mus' @600 Project

© Dennis Rito

At first blush, I wanted to capture a scene that is unmistakably very Filipino thus I decided to pick the ubiquitous sari-sari store, two blocks from where I live, as my subject. @600 internet time falls at 9:24 PM (Tuesday, Philippine Standard Time) and in this new system, 1 .beat is equals to 86.4 sec allowing me to shoot several frames before the time (.beat) lapses. 

The Sari-sari (meaning 'various kind') have been part of Filipino culture and neighborhoods isn't complete without one, both in urban and rural areas in the Philippines. These stores allow members of the community access to basic commodities (in almost anytime of the day) and save customer transportation costs, especially in rural areas. It offers a place where people can meet and discuss the latest buzz of the day. Sari-sari stores also reflects Filipinos' cenophobia (fear of space) where store owners fill up every inch of space available.

Almost a month ago, Mus-mus asked a group of 100 photographers from around the world (see earlier post here) to a synchronous way of seeing precisely @600 internet time (9:24PM, PST). The photographs had just been posted (see photos here) and am glad to know that my 'sari-sari' store photo was included in the final selections. Thanks Mus-mus for including me in this project!

A lot of great imagery! Head on to the mus-mus archive to view them.

06 November 2008

Just shoot it

Words of wisdom seldom lose their relevance..

"...give yourself the "assignment" or the "grant" that you would dream someone would give you....find a personal project and do it without regard for later "sales"...you must do this in your "spare time"....make your "spare time" longer and longer and longer.....the best kind of "commercial success" or "artistic success" will come to you only if you work in this way.....it will come in ways that you cannot imagine....you cannot plan for this....you must go with your gut...only in this way will anyone, editor or publisher or gallerist, ever see who you really are...what you really DO...this will be absolutely 100 percent not easy....this will be absolutely 100 percent worth it." David Alan Harvey

04 November 2008

Searching for Jose

I was able to drop by and photograph at Manila North Cemetery last November 1. I thought of visiting Jose, a 
guy whom I met two years ago [see photo here] and served as my guide, but to no avail.  I asked around for his location but since I failed to get his surname, I had a hard time looking for him. 

I can still remember the original location of their makeshift home squeezed between tombs. But it's  now gone and has been replaced with spanking new and multi-colored, six storey 'apartment' tombs. I had visited them at leat three times on separate occasions and even though they were poor, they were very generous and made it a point to buy some cold drinks whenever I visited  their place. I also observed that their daughters has refined manners contrary to some of the street-wise kids raised in a typical shanty town. I cannot deny that I was touched by his simplicity and kindness.  

Jose was from Gutalac, Zamboalnga del Norte  whose family are just one among the many who chose to live in the MNC. He told me that they once lived in one of the shanties-apartments beside the MNC but their budget cannot afford the rent as his family. That forces them to settle and live in a makeshift 'home' on the cemetery grounds.

This brought me to think of other kind souls we meet along the way. 

I hope I still can find Jose. Someday.

All-Souls Day Exodus

Manila North Cemetery