Dagit Arts Fest 2016

Unknown to many, Dumaguete is home to artists who have excelled in their respective fields including Japanese potter Toushin Maruyama, furniture designer Karl Aguila, painter Kitty Taniguchi and Palanca Award winners like Ian Casocot. ~ DTI Dumaguete

According to l Salvarita, Creative Coordinator of Dagit Arts Fest 2016, the event is initiated by the Provincial Office of the Department of Trade and Industry. This is to celebrate the National Arts Month highlighting the creative works of local artists, crafters, musicians and designers.

As mentioned in their blog, the said fair aims to encourage local artists and  also students from different schools to come  up with unique, contemporary, and affordable design oriented items like paintings, ceramic products, sculpture, photography, craft items, borloloys, bags, clothes, music, books and other creative products and services.


The event runs from Feb 25-27 at the Robinsons Mall Atrium. There’s also an acoustic session with the Bell Tower Project musicians from 6PM to 7PM. The exhibit opens within mall hours from 10AM until 8PM.

You still have time to bring your family and friends.

For updates and schedule you may check their blog here


Updated: VIVID: Photo Exhibit

They say a picture paints a thousand words. It is a captured moment in time which conveys emotional content to the viewer or to the photographer himself. The photographic technique is a plus. Today four of the local photographers in Dumaguete City whose made names not just locally but also across the nation and internationally come together for a photo exhibit this February.

VIVID: Photo exhibit will run from February 12-29, 2016 at the Paseo Perdices located at the Rizal Boulevard. The photo exhibit is available during Paseo Perdices’ mall hours. Let’s get to know the four photographers behind VIVID: A photo exhibit.

Witness the photo exhibit of these four local photographers from Dumaguete City who are acclaimed international for the works they have done for their passion in photography.
Witness the photo exhibit of these four local photographers from Dumaguete City who are acclaimed internationally on the works they have done for their passion in photography.

Hersley-Ven Casero

Let’s start off with Hersley-Ven Casero. Casero is a visual artist–photographer in the city. He received his BSC in Marketing and an Artist of the Year Award from Foundation University. Who wouldn’t know an artist who’s painted most of the wall murals around the campus of Foundation University?

As a natural artist, he fell in love and immediately got hooked into photography. Being born and raised in Dumaguete, the city has shaped Casero’s perspective as a visual artist. The city, being the center of culture and the arts of Southern Philippines has served as Casero’s stage for many of his paintings and photographs. He was the Champion of the first Buglasan Festival Photo Contest in 2006, finalist of the First Philippine Air Lines Photo Contest 2007, finalist of the Water is Life Photo Contest 2008, one of the Top 3 winners of the Philippine Sports Photo Contest 2010 and finalist out of more than 30,000 participants coming from 166 countries worldwide of the HIPA International Photography Award 2015 with his photograph “Golden Harvest”.

He has been featured in local and national publications including the Dumaguete Metropost, Negros Chronicle, Cebu Daily Inquirer, The Visayan Daily Star, The Freeman, The Philippine Star, Philippine Daily Inquirer, and the first Dumagueteño being featured in “Picture Perfect” of Manila Bulletin among others.

His works have also been recognized and published in international publications like front cover of Jaipur India Infomedia Magazine, the Lonely Planet, Cebu Pacific Smile Magazine, View magazine in Germany, National Publication in Denmark, Los Angeles Times, Stern Magazine and have been given due acclaim in various blogs, journals, e-magazines and online publications. Casero’s illustrations have also graced covers of books like “Dare to Win”, “Light Bearers” and “Heartbreak & Magic”. He motivates others by collaborating on art projects like the laughing boy “Ha? Project”. He is one of the photography instructors of the international South Pacific Photo Workshop. Currently, he is photographing twins for “The Twins” project and preparing artworks for upcoming shows. You can check his online portfolio at www.hersleycasero.com

Charlie Sindiong

Next in line is not other than Charlie Sindiong, who is an Electrical Engineer by profession. At present, he works as a production manager of the family-owned business, Dgte Asian Printers. Sindiong’s appreciation for photographs started at an early age. However, his passion for photography only made its break when he got his first Digital SLR in midyear of 2005.

Self-taught, and with his own calculated styles and principles, he is known to treat simple things or complex elements to a profound and powerful imagery. He imbues his character in every un-choreographed photo he makes.

From nature to still life, festivities and the streets, the smallest ground creature to the galactic beauty of the boundless sky, he handles every subject of interest with high respect, in-depth planning and careful execution. Thus, his distinct kind of work has gained recognition and has made through numerous publications in and out of the country.


  1. Placer, Mudpack Festival Photo Contest, 2005
  2. Category Placer Cebu Sinulog Festival Photo Contest, 2007
  3. Finalist, Water is Life Photo Contest, 2008
  4. Grand Winner, Buglasan Festival Photo Contest, 2010
  5. Grand Winner, Kabulakan Festival Photo Contest, 2011
  6. Third Placer, Sipong Festival Photo Contest, 2011
  7. Category Winner, Buglasan Festival Photo Contest 2011
  8. Category Winner, Sandurot Festival Photo Contest, 2011
  9. Grand Winner, Buglasan Festival Photo Contest, 2012
  10. Second Placer, Buglasan Festival Photo Contest, 2013
  11. Finalist, Pagcor 3rd National Photo Contest, 2015

Since 2009 Sindiong has participated in five different photo exhibits excluding the latest one, VIVID: Photo Exhibit. Here are the exhibits he has participated:

  1. My Negros Oriental 2009
  2. My Negros Oriental 2010
  3. One Day Photo Safari, Bayawan 2010
  4. One Life, Many Moments, 2010
  5. Images of Faith, 2012

You may visit his gallery to check out more of his photographs at http://www.pbase.com/wishland.

Randy Bandiola

Then we have Randy Bandiola, an Information and Communications Technology Specialist and an advocate, a teacher, and entrepreneur. He earns his keeps through their family company, Algorithm Computer Services.

He  became a photographer by accident after his wife gave him a point and shoot camera. From there forward, his lenses and phone camera have captured landscapes, human interests, people, family gatherings, and the occasional selfie.

He is a great believer of Ansel Adams’ famous photography quote “There are always two people in every picture:  the photographer and the viewer.” Since then his photos are his expressions of  the simple everyday things and encounter we take forgranted, which can subconsciously convey messages that stir emotions and feelings. Bandiola’s photography hobby has become his medium of advocating care for people and the environment.

Bandiola has also actively participated in My Negros Oriental 2009 and My Negros Oriental 2010 photo exhibits.

Luigi Anton Borromeo

Completing the list is Luigi Anton Borromeo, a registered nurse who graduated from Silliman University. As a student-nurse, Borromeo dabbled in photography through shooting college events and experimenting on portraits and landscape shots. Borromeo’s fascination for this form of visual art must have exponentially intensified that by the time he obtained his license as a professional nurse, he seemed to have temporarily tucked away his nursing equipment and made full use of the shutter machine as a professional photographer.

His dedication to his craft was soon rewarded with the establishment of his photography studio, Creative Stills, and his subsequent recognition as an accomplished photographer in the region winning awards such as Buglasan Festival’s 1st place Contingent Category, 1st place Festival Portrait, and among other awards in 2010. In addition, Borromeo has clinched national and international exposures through various publications.

He was chosen as Top Photographer for Amir Sali’s Search for the Next Top Model, and his coverage of the typhoon Sendong was featured in National Geographic Online. Borromeo continues to be among the sought after wedding, fashion, and portrait photographers in Negros. On top of that he still dips his hands on travel and landscape photography.

Exhibit will run from February 12-29, 2016 at the Paseo Perdices located at the Rizal Boulevard. Exhibit officially opens on February 12, 2016 at 4:00pm.
Exhibit will run from February 12-29, 2016 at the Paseo Perdices located at the Rizal Boulevard. Exhibit officially opens on February 12, 2016 at 4:00pm.

Dagit Dumaguete Team had the chance to tour around the exhibit area during the opening on February 12, 2016. True enough, the exhibit name VIVID holds true of the images the four photographers have decided to showcase this exhibit. If you check the meaning meaning of vivid, you can come up with a lot of things associated to its definition. If there’s one thing in common that we have gathered from the exhibit, it is how the photos of each photographers have vividly produced strong feelings and emotions as you look at them. We can say the exhibit itself is VIVID!

Guests getting some closeup look of the photos captured by Hersley-Ven Casero
Guests getting some closeup look at the photos captured by Hersley-Ven Casero (Photo by Junpao Wanderer)

Each photographer selected their nine best photos to include in this exhibit. Yes, given these photographers achievements and experiences, we all can assume they must have captured a lot of pictures through the years. However, for VIVID: Photo Exhibit the four decided to stick with nine photos each all arranged in the same manner and layout. The team were also hands on in making the ground floor area of Paseo Perdices turned into an area which has a photo gallery ambiance and feel with its lighting effects. Not only that, the team behind the exhibit spent some sleepless nights to make the exhibit possible, not to mention they must have spent some ample time deciding which nine photos will make to the exhibit.

The photo above are entries from Hersley-Ven Casero. When we had the chance to ask him if he has his personal favorite among the nine, he said all nine photos are his favorites and could hardly decide to choose one if he is asked to.

Photo exhibit of Randy Bandiola
Photo exhibit of Randy Bandiola (Photo by Junpao Wanderer)

We moved next to Randy Bandiola’s exhibit whose photos mostly had to do with water. According to Bandiola, it was hard coming up with the nine photos for his exhibit. He wanted his photos to have something to do with water but he also consulted the other three photographers to help him finalized his nine entries. His personal favorite among his nine photos is the pump boat reflected on calm waters. He likes how serene the water is and by looking at the photo it also gives you a calming feel. However, Bandiola said that he can’t miss out the photo below his favorite one. The photo where a child looking downwards was walking on the sea. It gives out an emotion different from the serene water. The photo feels lonely he said which we all agreed looking at it.  Bandiola shared that both photos were taken on the same place somewhere south of Negros Oriental during sunrise. He remembers vividly when he took these photos and how the fine weather felt that day.

Photo Exhibit from Luigi Borromeo
Photo Exhibit from Luigi Borromeo (Photo by Junpao Wanderer)

Next, we dropped by Luigi Borromeo’s exhibit. He shared that he considered giving out a summer vibe in selecting his nine photos for the exhibit but he can’t miss out on some of his festival shots. According to Borromeo his festival photos will always have a place in his heart because that’s  where he started. He shared that he used to join the other three photographers doing photo walk and covering festival events and activities within the province. When asked to select his memorable photo among the nine, he chose the first frame on the left side where a naked child was happily jumping off a boat. Borromeo narrated that the photo was taken on the wharf of Siquijor. On the day he went to Siquijor for some landscape photo shoot, he happened to be on board this specific boat, whom someone committed suicide by jumping off the boat when it was few kilometers away from Dumaguete already. The incident made it to the news. The body of the person who committed suicide was never found. He said he captured this boy’s moment because of how reality hits him from witnessing a shocking moment of losing a person’s life to how happiness takes over after the rain as if nothing happened.

Photo Appreciation. This one photo is from the exhibit of Luigi Borromeo
Photo Appreciation. This one photo is from the exhibit of Luigi Borromeo (Photo from Junpao Wanderer)

Even with the success of his business Creative Stills which mostly covers events like weddings and the likes, Borromeo said it always feels good to have something to go back to. For him, it is his passion for landscape photography and festivals. Taking landscape photographs serve as his anti-burnout activity from his busy schedules and appointments with Creative Stills. What he likes most about it is how he owns his time. Compared to covering a wedding where he and his team are expected to come up with an output to meet deadlines, Borromeo said that with his passion in landscape photography, he can take all the time he needs without having to worry of putting down one’s expectation or considering beating a deadline.

Photo exhibit of Charlie Sindiong with some guest asking some questions regarding his takes.
Photo exhibit of Charlie Sindiong with some guest asking some questions regarding his takes. (Photo by Junpao Wanderer)

Lastly, we ended up at Charlie Sindiong’s photo exhibit which are a mixture of everything — from the technical aspects of taking a photograph down to the emotional content of the photo in its entirety. We asked him the same question to choose one photo among his exhibit. He came up with two. One for the story behind the photo which touched our hearts after hearing the story (will not spoil the photo because will be making spotlight entry for that) and one for its technical aspect. The last having said, he chose the photo on the upper right corner where a silhouette of a bird on a branch against the rising moon was captured. He liked that photo because of its technicality. He said to capture such moment one has to be at the right place and right time. It only takes few seconds for the moon and the bird to fall in one line given the moon is rising and the bird may fly anytime. One has to be ready for that picture perfect moment considering the time, the angle the photo has to be taken and the other elements that make up the entire photograph.

Sindiong emphasized that personally for him he wanted to capture those un-choreographed moments without losing the artistry value of the picture. He said he wants to play with the viewers mind. He wants the viewers to be personally involved when they look at his photographs by making them ask through their minds how the photo was done or how the moment was captured when they see his pictures.

Tarp at the exhibit area.
Tarp at the exhibit area. (Photo by Junpao Wanderer)

After seeing the vivid photos of the four photographers and talking about the different emotions conveyed through their pictures, we asked them which is more important for them: emotional content versus photographic technique.

According to Bandiola the camera is just a tool. How you use this tool is what’s important. For him personally, you don’t need to have those extravagant camera’s to tell a wonderful story and convey feelings and emotions through photographs. You just need to have an eye for the perfect picture moment. He said both elements should always come together, however, the photographic technique will be useless if one doesn’t know how to capture an emotional photograph.

Borromeo, on the other hand, said that with Creative Stills they sometimes have to juggle with both elements. It always pays to capture the raw emotion of a moment and being able to relay that to the viewers while also making them feel the emotions existing when the photo was taken. At other times, they just have to stick with photographic techniques depending on the situation and needs.

Moreover, for Sindiong he wants both emotional content and photographic technique to be balanced at all times. According to him the subject is already given especially when you’re made up on what to shoot but with proper photographic techniques involved in capturing the moment, a photographer can intensify the emotions he wants his photo to convey to the viewers.

So if you guys have nothing to do, don’t forget to check out their VIVID: Photo Exhibit at the Paseo Perdices up until the end of February.

Typing job, anyone?

Meet Concepcion Caballes the famous woman in the downtown area of Dumaguete City who offers typewriting services for a living.

Mrs. Concepcion Caballes the typing master of Dumaguete City sitting on her little work station along the sidewalk at the downtown area of Dumaguete City.
Mrs. Concepcion Caballes the typing master of Dumaguete City sitting on her little work station along the sidewalk at the downtown area of Dumaguete City.

It was September of last year when Mrs. Caballes’ story came out in Rappler.com after Lorence Valencia, a third year law student from the University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJR) sent her photo to MovePH. Mrs. Caballes’ story highlighted on her typewriting business and service amidst the fast-growing and changing technologies today. For those of you who missed out her story in Rappler you may read it here.

Indeed, who would be using typewriters especially with today’s generation who has easy-access to computers, smartphones, laptops and other electronic devices which help us out in our daily grind? For Mrs. Caballes the story is different.

Dumagueteños who have lived long enough in the city and frequent the downtown area would surely recognize her in an instant. Back in the old days, Mrs. Caballes and her husband have established their identity in the downtown area of Dumaguete City for their typewriting business. Back then, the couple stayed in a small room tucked between Handumanan, which is still in the same area offering native products and then Nijosa.

In recent times, you would see her around the area just across Nijosa outside a pawnshop along the sidewalk. Yes, she still offers typing job but the once small room cramped with mounds of paper has changed into a single yellow-desk and the old shelves have turned into an envelope of stack papers. Dagit Dumaguete had the chance to talk to her for a few minutes before 2015 ended. However, the lesson and the inspiration we gathered from her remained in our minds and continued to touch our hearts up until today.

After all, it is never too late to share such an inspiring story. It was one of those days when the city street around downtown wasn’t busy and most of the establishments were closed for the holiday when we decided to go around the area to check if she was there for the day. We saw her sitting beside her desk with her typewriter locked up and covered with an unused banner. She was simply enjoying the view of a quieter downtown area. We were hesitant to approach her at first because she looks strict on first impression. However, when we introduced ourselves and told her (in vernacular) “Te, did you know that you came out of Rappler? It’s a social news network in the internet” and she laughed out loud remembering how a guy took a photo of her. She must be referring to Valencia.

The next thing she said cracked us up. “How do I look in my photo?”, Mrs. Caballes asked us with a wide smile. She told us she remembers being photographed and intentionally covered her face with the paper she was holding. True enough, if you checked the story in Rappler, her faced was half covered.

Mrs. Caballes related that around 1966 she and her husband dominated the typewriting business in Dumaguete City. When computer was out of the picture and only a buzz word in the city their business was brisk. The couple offered typing job for school reaction papers, term paper, thesis and documents.

If she thinks about it, Mrs. Caballes said that they’ve been running the typing business for more than 50 years now. She furthered that when they were still in their old place (between Handumanan and Nijosa) papers cramped the tiny space. That was their normal daily scene before computers boomed. She said even on ordinary days a lot of people most especially students would drop by their place to have their projects done.

“We had a lot of sleepless nights reading different kinds of works, topics and even different handwriting styles” she added. The couple would type these projects till dawn breaks without complaining. According to her their busiest days usually fall on month ends where people swarm their little room to send in papers for typing as well as people who are collecting their finished files to beat deadlines.

When computers kicked in the typing business slowed down. There was no need for the couple to work double time since students now prefer to go to computer shops to get their papers and projects done. So when technologies came in full blast, the average earnings per day lowered to Php200.00. According to Mrs. Caballes this is insufficient with the family needs.

However, the slowing down of business came at a very convenient time for the family she added. Through their typing business both her children finished their studies and earned their respective degrees at Silliman University.

“I had to stay up late until 4 am before. Every paper I finished meant the future of my children. They wanted to study at Silliman University. I wanted to give them the best education they can get.” the typing master narrated. Today, one of her children is working in Dumaguete City Water District while the other one teaches in South Western University in Cebu City.

“I am very thankful to the Lord Almighty for giving us the chance to send our children to school to get proper education and degrees before computers came.”

Today, she only does forms like deed of sale, bio-data and other application forms that need to be typewritten. Her rate per page is Php25.00 for double space and Php30.00 for single space. She added there are still customers who prefer their forms to be typewritten. “As long as people like them exist, the city still needs our service” she discloses.

Now that her husband has joined the Creator above and both her children have their own lives to live and work of their own, she only spend few hours a day on her little work station along the side walk. Apart from the typing job, Mrs. Caballes still serves as the Barangay Treasurer of Barangay Motong for three terms now. She reports to work in their Barangay Hall every morning and comes around 12:00 noon to her typing work station downtown of Dumaguete.

Mrs. Caballes explained that she goes to her post at the downtown area in the afternoon to check on her things. As a typewriting master she uses her typewriting skills on the paper works her barangay needs at no additional cost. She added that at times she frequents government offices running errands as their barangay treasurer.

Mrs. Concepcion Caballes remains a hopeful and happy woman with all the things she has accomplished today for the love of her children and family. May her story continue to inspire people to reach for their dreams.

After hearing such an inspiring story from Mrs. Caballes, one of the admins of Dagit Dumaguete couldn't help but pose for a photo with her.
After hearing such an inspiring story from Mrs. Caballes, one of the admins of Dagit Dumaguete couldn’t help but pose for a photo with her.
“Don’t let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was.” – Richard L. Evans