Alyosha J. Robillos, gave my thoughts form as she knows me best.
After a day steeped in this unrelenting grind and rush, I make my way home. Night has already fallen and time kind of slows as I take in the day that is about to end. I cool down by thinking of how my day went...and by walking. In these instances, I look up and without fail, I see the moon— bright, beckoning, and still. Even with its changing faces, the moon has always brought the quiet and stillness that caps my every day. So when the sun is out, the streets burst with energy— brutal and beautiful in many ways. But when the moon dominates the sky, it sits still. Somehow, capturing this stillness makes me sure that I, too, deserve the same calm after the day’s chaos. Tomorrow, it begins again. And the day after that... and that day after that…
DENR’s National Greening project, 2018, Coffee Table book
Scenes from the annual Traslacion
By: Angelo Comsti
Outfitted in a stained beige chef’s jacket and black shorts, Guerrera Restaurant chef/owner Carmel Almadrones was right in the middle of lunch service when she remembered something important. She was completing the orders of a party of 12 who had driven in from another town to sample the restaurant’s Asian fare. Half of the dishes had already been sent out when she realized that she needed more sesame leaves for her mieng kam. In a flash, her assistant RC ran out the back door and grabbed some. Not long after that, Carmel brought the last plate to the table, receiving praise and validation from the customers in return.
During my trip in Tao farm, I’ve met some new friends and new experiences in this sustainable island in El Nido. From the shampoo we used to the fire they cooked with. Everything grows and recycle in Tao Farm. An assignment from Cebu Pacific’s Smile Magazine,
Tayuman area in Manila is the hub for many illegal settlers who have no access to basic needs such as education and even toiletry. Some—both children and adults—resort to drug use and petty crimes just to get by. Some of the elderly homeless have been abandoned by their families. Some of the homeless are young mothers who were victims of sexual abuse or domestic violence. They are often found traveling around Tondo with makeshift pushcarts made of wood and metal scraps fished out of trash bins and the nearest dump. But every Thursday, there is a place in Tayuman that opens its doors to the impoverished; it is where children, young mothers, and the elderly can drop by for a little relief—the Arnold Janssen Kalinga sa Kapuwa Center (AJKKC). It has been a year since the center, whose establishment was spearheaded by Fr. Flavie L. Villanueva, mission secretary and coordinator for justice and peace issues of the Philippine Central Province of the Society of the Divine Word (SVD), started helping those in need.
Story for the Philippine Daily inquirer, 2017
By: Alyosha J. Robillos
“Pottery taught me to let go. You cannot make clay follow 100 percent of what you want because it behaves differently. Even when you bake it, you don’t know what’s going to happen, if it’s going to warp or not. Even the colors change,” says potter Aleth Ocampo.
The moment we step inside a small corner of her workspace is the same moment we realize that Ocampo—a potter, painter, and chef—is a master maker, someone who creates no matter the space, no matter the medium, no matter the circumstance.
Stills of Goyo movie directed by Jerrold Tarog, TBA Studios, Artikolo Uno Productions
Shot for Rogue Magazine, 2017
Life in Transit
by Alyosha Robillos
Movement, whether it be by wheels, by sea-craft, by plane, or by foot is very much part and parcel of our human makeup--embedded in the very essence of our existence. To move is to live. Moments of movement determine who we are and who we can be. When life leads us to places familiar and unknown, we not only discover spaces and new routes, we find ourselves as well. People are built and designed to move and travel; people build and design to move and travel. We do this everyday, rain or shine, unconsciously or with firm decision. Some find solace in this daily motion, but only a few truly appreciate the energy that flows from one stranger to another while in transit. Majority feel the desire to skip this part of their life because there are times when the city’s hustle and bustle--its grit and grime--can be quite a handful to take in. And then there are also those who consider commute as travel, a way of exploring places both old and new. This photo series embodies the ebb and flow of life in transit, through which audiences are offered an opportunity to see their ever-kinetic city in a new light.
A calendar project for MeduimX
As the holidays go by, parties, gifts, and food revolves around the holiday in Manila. This is the business of Christmas in the Philippine’s capital.
By: Kara Ortiga
In 2012, all of 124 indigenous people, fisherfolk, and farmers from Casiguran marched 370 km to Manila. The trip spanned over 17 days to protest the intrusion of an eco-zone claiming their ancestral land. Five years later, we revisit this pacific town and the waters threatened by clashing views on development.
Compilation of food shots across print and online media.
MDC, Ayala’s annual report, 2016, 2017, 2018
Text by: Wincy Aquino Ong
The picture in your head when the term “prosthetic artist” gets mentioned would probably be that of a grizzled shop instructor, his gray beard attesting to the hours he’d put into his craft. You’d look at black-and-white photographs of the greats: Stan Winston, Rick Baker, Jim Henson, and Ray Harryhausen—industrious man-children who played around in their creature shops, turning things you can buy from a hardware store into monsters, aliens, zombies, ghosts, and all things that make our skin crawl, our imaginations warm and humming.
Now if you visit the creature shop of the Philippines’ most celebrated prosthetics artist, you’ll be smirking in disbelief as a pocket garden of orchids greet you on the way.
Cecille Baun is a sweet old lady full of pep, a dead-ringer for the journalist Jullie Yap Daza. There’s nary a hint of her 78 years that shows. The field of movie prosthetics rarely is a woman’s domain, but in a nation where the women are always intrepid (more so than the men), her chosen profession is hardly a surprise; you’d be expecting a frazzle-haired punk, then find out that the person behind all these menacing props is a doting mother of five.
In a raspy voice, Baun says, “I was a housewife once and all I did was tend to our house. But just after a few years, my husband died so I had to make a living since I had five children to feed.”
Metropolitan Manila is comprised of 16 cities and has an overall population of more than 13 million. That number continues to balloon to this day. Its center, the city of Manila, is also marked by a bloated population, making it the world’s densest city in 2016 and 2018.
Picture this: Manila City is inhabited by 42, 857 individuals per square kilometer – and the city itself can only boast of a total land area that measures 42.88 km² . Workers from all over the Philippine Islands choose to occupy Manila most of the year to make ends meet in the capital. Day after day, the only goal is to toil away and find more work. For many, the struggle begins with waking up in whatever cramped quarters a minimum wage could afford. Then comes the harrowing commute punctuated by rickety trains, buses, and jeepneys with passengers packed like sardines. Traffic is horrendous, on foot, up in the air, and inside any vehicle on land. Pair this with the sun’s sweltering heat or torrential rains – either way, both are unforgiving and unrelenting – and people have no choice but to face gridlock at any time of the day. Of course, Filipino workers eventually make their way home, but often, these spaces don’t offer much room to breathe. Here, they are forced to contend with a lowered standard of living, something they lock horns with every day. It’s a mix of dense population and the byproducts that follow: unending waves of non-biodegradable waste that flow through various bodies of water and defile the shores of other cities.
This long-term series of photographs from 2016 to 2019 offers an intimate look into Manila’s suffocating density, as seen through the perspective of a daily commuter. But as we take in the fumes, the unpredictable weather, and Manila’s sheer crowdedness, we also take a step back to draw breath… only to find that Manila is as stifling as ever, even from a distance.
2016-2017, on going long term project.
Highlights from Holcim Cement’s Annual Report 2015 ,2016, 2017
By: Angelo Comsti
It’s an ungodly hour, but 50-year-old Leoncio Malidom is already up. He does his best not to make any noise—at the risk of waking up the rest of his family—as he makes his way to the backyard to tend to the meat in his makeshift smokehouse.
In darkness, he grabs just enough pieces of pine wood his frail and weary arms can carry and throws them into the dying fire. It’s a routine he has gotten used to. It has disrupted his sleeping habit, but he wouldn’t trade the chore for anything else as it has been his family’s main source of livelihood for the past seven years.
Compilation of Summit’s Interior design media, RealLiving 2015-2018
commissioned work for Radical Culinary
Advertising materials for Shell gasoline Philippines, 2014
Annual report and advertising materials for Maynilad water service inc. 2014, 2015, 2016.
Annual Reports, and corporate photography for Vivant Power corporation
Corporate portraits of CEO’s, Globe 2019