PhotographerName/Photographer: Joserl "Jet" Rabe
Based in: Manila, Philippines
I have read from somewhere that a child follows what their heart says. Ever since i was a kid, i’ve been joining art related activities, i was a member of the art club for many years and been joining drawing contests. A lot of times i was caught by my teacher for drawing during class hours. I guess my artistic inclination showed even at my young age. It however remained dormant for years.
Fast forwarding to 2011, I came across some photography magazines. I felt something deep inside me stirred. I bought my first dslr camera, a Nikon D90.
I was bored. I thought I’d start out with photography as a hobby. So I started taking snap shots of everything. My camera occupied my breakfast, my lunch and my dinner. I devoured photo magazines like crazy. However, my inspiration came from watching a lot of movies. It has that visual appeal to me. I paid attention to the play of colors, the dramatic effects, angle of shots, background, foreground, etc.. It did not take long I guess, to awaken my artistic inclinations through my photographs.
My passion for photography had me trying out various photo equipment, leveling up each time, thank to my ever supportive parents.
Since then, i’ve travelled to a lot of countries, sometimes solo or with the family, always bringing with me my photo equipments. I took photos of city landscapes, mountains, water, monuments, buildings and other subjects that I thought interesting.
I’m an avid fan of car racing too. Whenever there’s a motorsport event in our country, i volunteer as the photographer even without pay, I knew that i can learn new things every time i take photos of racing cars. A lot of my friends have nice cars so i got to take photos of their “toys” too. I began to try out automotive photography as well. My passion towards my hobby made people who counts to take notice. It made a serious turn when i landed a job with a popular local car magazine. It opened up doors. I was able to get media accreditations to prestigious motorsports events in Belgium, Singapore, Malaysia, USA, Japan, Macau and other Southeast Asian countries.
One of my early inspirations is a local landscape photographer, his name is Edwin Martinez. Through Flickr, i was able to see his amazing works and i was quickly amazed on how beautiful his images were. Another landscape photograher that i also admire is Yen Baet , i love her blue hour photos of different cities. And so in 2012, i began to attend workshops (Landscape, portrait, and post-processing) and i learned a lot of techniques during that time. During my freetime, a lot of times i go to local places to take photos of picturesque landscapes. Some of my landscape photos were featured in various photography groups and websites.
During my travel to different countries whether personal or business trips (motorsport assignments), i developed an eye for street photography. I must admit i’m a keen observer so i also fell in love with that genre of photography. Another was documentary style of photography, I read and bought books of the famous photographers in the world, to inspire me better. I am a fan of Henri Cartier Bresson, Steve McCurry and Vivian Maier. I also admire the works of contemporary street photographers like Eric Kim, Tatzuo Suzuki, and my LA-based friend Jeff Mercader. I became friends with Jeff Mercader when i met him in 2013 and he introduced me to the world of fine art black and white photography and since then my works got featured in some websites. As for my achievements in Street Photograhy, I am a member of the second largest street photography group in the world which is the Art Photo Feature . One of my works was chosen as one of the year’s best (2015). And recently i won 1st place in the World Street Photography awards.
As for my personal background, i'm 34 years old now and I am currently working in our family business and this would be my first time to showcase my work in IPA.
PrizeGold in Special / Travel/Tourism
Whang-od is a Filipina tribal tattoo artist from the remote village
of Buscalan, Tinglayan, in Kalinga province, Philippines. At the age
of 97, she is considered as the last "mambabatok", (a local term
for tattoo artist) of the Philippines, if not the world.
The tattoo ink she uses is a mixture of charcoal and water that is
tapped into the skin using citrus thorns and a bamboo stick. For
thousands of years, this ancient technique called "batok" is quite
painful compared to other tattooing techniques. Ever since a
popular tattoo TV show featured her sometime in 2007, local and
foreign tourists want to get a tattoo from her and since then she
became famous amongst the backpackers.
Due to her status as the last tribal tattoo artist, many people are
lobbying for her to become one of the National Artists of the
Philippines. With the the increasing popularity of Whang-Od and
her art, she is now training a few young ones from her tribe in this
These series of photos were taken in February of 2016 to
document her work and life in the mountains.