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Monday, April 26, 2010

Photoshoot: Matt Cab [04/05/10]

I had the opportunity to photograph musician Matt Cab in his San Francisco studio. While most of his equipment is overseas with him in Japan, he still had a few things back here to be used as photographic backdrop.

I met Matt awhile ago when we were both at University of San Francisco--I'd say at least 2.5 years ago. I knew he was a singer [he'd occasionally play piano in the student lounge and sing] but I've lost touched with him since. Lo and behold he's now pursuing his music career... in Japan!

We shot this a day before he returned back to Japan and we definitely had a good time catching up and seeing what we've got ahead in our lives.


The image above is personally my favorite as for me.


We took a few shots outside in his patio and I decided to treat it more as a white seamless backdrop.

Well of course, I couldn't get away with it all but I tried my best. =)

Currently, MotionScope Studies are working on the Behind the Scenes video and I'll surely post that up. I've been so busy with MotionScope Studies myself that you can tell from my absence on my own blog!

Stay tuned for more images from my recent shoots and BTS posts!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Senior Portrait Session Special! [Say that 3 Times Fast!]

click image to view ad larger

So it is kind of late, but I just wanted to announce my Senior Portrait Special at only $49 for a session. My typical sessions are $179 but I was a senior once [really not long ago... haha] and so I just want to make this opportunity affordable for everyone.

If anyone [in San Francisco] are interested, feel free to drop me an email directly so see what we can work out as far as a shooting day. And if you have a bunch of people willing to take pictures, I can definitely knock down the price a bit and schedule a whole day.

My first DAY session is at San Rafael this Friday--9 total Seniors starting from 10:30am and ends at 6:40pm. Long day indeed.

Hope to meet you Seniors soon!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Preview: Matt Cab (Photoshoot, 04/05/10)

Here's a preview pic of musician Matt Cab's photoshoot roughly 1.5 weeks ago. I know I know I'm late but I've been backlogged with other shoots and developing a new company! [Stay tuned for that too!] =)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Event: Kollaboration SF Artist Portraits (04/10/10)

As mentioned in my previous post, I had the opportunity to photograph the various artists in Kollaboration SF's first event in Palace of Fine Arts. I'm definitely glad to have come out but even more glad to be able to meet the majority of the artists that performed.

Above is Sway Pinela of noted Drop N' Harmony, 6th Day, and of course American Idol fame pictured with his band.

I had to ask them all to do a funny face for me...

Above is Slashton who definitely has a great sound especially killing it with the female vocals.

The only swing/dance duo competitors but got the crowd going is Jean and Bromley.
One of the dance crews competing for the prize was Hydef. I really gotta give it up to their cool [stage] names--I was jealous when I met folks like Joosi and Contra. So I had them come up with my name--Click...get it? Camera? Ok.. bye.

Action shot of Hydef above.

Pictured above is emcee Mickey Cho and vocalist Hanna. These two were definitely down to earth as they were easy to talk to. You have to hear this guy--dope lyricist!

Pictured above is Michelle Martinez, an upcoming R&B/Pop singer from San Francisco. Long story short, I knew her when we were both budding high schoolers when I used to chill at her dance practices of Gen II. Good thing she remembered me! haha

Pictured above is one of the coolest comedians of the night Mark Zhang. He was definitely down to take a picture and kept Gee and I laughing with his jokes in between frames.

A guest performer, Groove Against the Machine, they blew up the stage with their high performance.

I wish I took better [lit] video because Andrew Plan was singing an impromptu song about me and Gee photographing him. Definitely cool guy with the guitar.

Pictured above are the Kollaboration's interview crew with Nicki Sun holding down the mic and Dan Fontaine with the video cam. Look out for the videos soon on Nicki's YouTube Channel.

The winner of the vocalist contest of the night is Esna Yoon. You HAVE to take a listen to her on her YouTube Channel.

Pictured above is one of the acoustic singers Charito Soriano.

Pictured above is one of the guest judges Victoria Pham, the 2009-2010 Miss Asian California.

Last but not least is Alex Salizar and Vince Wang (drummer). Definitely take a visit to Alex's YouTube Channel to take a listen to his grown vocals.

Thanks to all who were able to take a few minutes to have an impromptu photoshoot session with me. To the artists: if you choose to copy and save the photo, feel free to do so but just give me credits back to

Or! Shoot me an email at jcasas(dot)photography(at)gmail(dot)com, and I'll give you a larger file and all.

Hope to remeet you again on a photoshoot set! Peace.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Press Pass: Kollaboration SF (@ Palace of Fine Arts, 04/10/10)

I had the privilege of being one of the photographers for Kollaboration SF's 1st event in San Francisco's Palace of Fine Arts.

The event was a collection of great, amazing, and talented performers ranging from dance to music with a contest for prize money and guest performances as well.

Above is a picture of the program with the schedule of the performers and guest performers--the event itself was sold out and so the people knew there was gonna be great talent under one roof.

You can take a visit to Kollaboration's website and the list of performers here.

Pictured above is myself with the director of the event Christina Lee. Thank you again for the opportunity of having me there to photograph the event and the wonderful artists. Just a head's up, I have to say that I couldn't have felt any shorter when pictured among my fellow Asian Americans artists hahah. [You'll see below]

Blurry but still a keepsake: pictured with Mark Zhang, a comedian based in the Bay Area.

Pictured with Jean and Bromley--the two dancers got the crowd really cheering for their high energy choreography.
With Andrew Plan, a guitarist and singer originally from Longview, Texas.

With the artists' interviewer Nicki Sun and Dan Fontaine for Kollaboration. And yes, I got to hold the official KolabSF mic as Nicki wrote down her contact info on my Moleskine.

You can visit Nicki's website here ( and be sure to subscribe to her YouTube Channel since her interviews will be shown there first!

With the guest judge Victoria Pham, the 2009-2010 Miss Asian California.

Pictured with Charito Soriano, a great vocalist who can definitely sing with the guitar.

I hope to see this young woman perform and record a record already as she won the vocal contest with the crowd definitely voting for her with their cheers, Esna Yoon. [This is probably the only exception of me being shorter than almost all the performers haha So thanks Esna! =) ]

Pictured with two talented musicians Vince Wang (drummer) and Alex Salizar with the grown vocals at the age of 17! Definitely take a listen to him on his YouTube channel.

Thanks as well to my friend and fellow photographer Gee Bantay for helping me out with the portraits I took during the event.

After meeting all these great talents, I do hope in the near future to remeet them again but this time on a set for photoshoot. ;)

Stay tuned for the portraits I took on the spot coming soon!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Impromptu Photoshoot with Ghetto Fab "Light Pole"

While the planned photoshoot for today didn't go down as planned, I figured we'd take a few shots before tearing down. A quick explanation of the equipment I was going to primarily use for the day and then the following shots made with one light [okay, two really if you count the sun =P].

This is my quick overview of my Ghetto Fab "Light Pole":

Here's some [unedited] shots from Jino being a stand-in for me with Gee holding the light pole and then us fooling around before tearing down and heading back.

The mood for the shoot would be of something of the two shots above. Was told that the clients like something of nature setting and being able to turn full daylight into dusk would definitely have brought real good shots for post processing.

I put a smile on despite the day's turn out.

Gee posing [finally] without having to hold the light pole haha.

Lastly, Jino gleefully jumping with his cam.

Thank you though to you both for being able to come out despite the turnout. Definitely in the near future there'll be a photoshoot hahah.

Respect Time

I felt the urge to write this after having the afternoon to just rest [and watch the Giants game finished strong against the Braves going 4-0! woo hoo!] after being disappointed on how today unfolded.

Basically, I had a photoshoot scheduled today in San Francisco and if you'd like to stop reading from here, just know that there was no photoshoot at the end of the day.


If you're still here and wondering what my blog's title has to do with anything then read on. If you've followed my "What I've Learned in Nursing" blog posts, then this is somewhere in the lines of "Time Keeper"--my first ever post of that blog reel. As a forewarning, this blog posts will be a reiteration of "Time Keeper" but catered more to doing [photography-related] work.

I titled this post as general statement. I'm not just talking about my time that is to be respected but also to really just respect time: his/her time, your _fill in the blank___'s time, nature's time, and even God's time.

When it comes to anything, I don't like things being wasted. A little soap left in the tube? I'll cut it in half so I can scrape the last bit of it [that's a tip for you just in case =)]. Food to be left at the restaurant? I'll ask for a to-go box or just eat it on the spot [my girlfriend and I coined it "Garbage Time" to pick up the leftovers of her plate and/or family member's plates hahah]. But yes, nothing to waste.

So when it comes to time, that's probably the most I hate being wasted. I try to stay positive and prevent myself from saying "If I only knew, I could be doing _______." The reason why I prevent myself from saying that is because that prevents me from just living in the moment and taking in what really is in front of me and seeing the upside of things as much as I can.

Today was more than just a drive and hauling equipment up a hill in San Francisco. It was contacting a rep and manager back in forth in emails, my friends who also took their time to help assist me, time to make a photo treatment detailing a schedule [even with directions from their hotel to the location!], and scouting this location the previous day to ensure a location is ideal and just really pray for good weather for the day of the shoot.

As someone who's trying to go far with photography/arts, I really take in the mantra of "Live your day as if it's your last" and apply it to myself as "Complete your next assignment as if it's your last." So that means I'll go big with my efforts so I can go home happy with no regrets.

Regarding today, I arrive as scheduled [and agreed upon] which was 1pm even though they called around 11am to reschedule to 1pm. Meaning, I woke up 9am to double check equipment, load all equipment, drive to location, unload, assemble equipment--and that's all by 12:45pm. With everything ready, we wait.

Call and texts back and forth and no show by 1:25pm. I tell my crew 1:30pm hits we'll go. But in my heart I want this to work so I wait as I contact them until 1:50pm I give up and decide to go. So we pack up and jet.

On the way down, I finally see them but in my opinion, I've been ready for 2.5 hours and so I had to explain on my way out it wouldn't work out and apologize for the missed opportunity.


What I learned in all this is RESPECT TIME. I for sure will know in the future to not be late in meetings [and if I am, let them know ahead of time and if I say I'll show up in 15 minutes, I'll be there in 14 minutes]. In this case, I felt that the client should be able to respect my time as well and should have shown up in time after having to reschedule already once. Not just respect my time but my friends as assistants as well.

And oh, I also learned to respect the city's time: I got a friggin' street cleaning parket ticket. hahah Sigh.

So the upside from this? Well, we got to breathe fresh air and have a mini shoot [next post I'll put up results].

Monday, April 5, 2010

Engagement Photoshoot: Gaby and Edgardo (San Francisco, 04/03/10)

Luckily we shot this on Saturday since Sunday in San Francisco was raining cats and dogs! We were definitely blessed to have a good morning til noon in San Francisco and Marin Headlands where we shot this.

I met Gaby a couple of years ago since she actually hired me to be the after school photography teacher [as I've posted here under Beginning Photography] and will now be photographing her and Edgardo's wedding in May. =)

Both Edgardo and Gaby were so sweet to each other during the shoot and I'm sure had fun being the stars for the day. I love how they were just comfortable with each other and just felt natural despite me snapping away and the crew I brought along to help (there was a total of 6 of us!.. I'll explain during the behind the scenes post of this haha).

Probably one of my favorite shots (above) since the morning sky was a clean white all across and I was able to use it like a white background.

We headed to the Missile Base in Marin and just had fun taking pics in a grungy and edgy surrounding. This was my favorite from the set we took there.

On our way to our shoot, we noticed there was a running event going on and thought it was appropriate to choose one to include in my edited selections. You can also get a glimpse of the behind the scenes with Gee with my one-light set up and Francis on the right taking behind-the-scenes video/stills on a DSLR.

Literally the last shot I took on our shoot.

I'd like to say thanks to Gaby and Edgardo for the wonderful shoot we had that morning. I'm just even more excited to be there photographing you both for your wedding!

Behind the scene posts and video will be up soon courtesy of MotionScope Studies. Stay tuned!