This online shoebox contains random pictures, notes, whatever. I've been a professional writer-photographer for so many years now. It's a damn good excuse to carry a camera around.

Posted By Lester V Ledesma

The recently-concluded PhotoTreks: Bali was our best PhotoTrek yet, with 15 participants of all ages and skill levels joining our 3-day shootfest. Between watching out for my posse and making sure the tour runs smoothly, I managed to squeeze off some keepers:

 

Baturiti, en route to Jatiluwih:

Bl01

 

Preparing for a temple festival, Baturiti:
Bl02

 

 

The cherry picker kid:
Bl03

 

Take the umbrella. No, you take it!:
Bl04

 

Waiting for the rain to stop at Pura Besakih:
Bl05


 
Posted By Lester V Ledesma

The sun sets over Mt. Besakih in Central Bali.

 

Besakih

 

I first visited the Island of the Gods back in 2007 to pick up a photography award. The PATA Gold Award was major, but I'm glad to say it wasn't the most important thing that I took home from Bali :)


 
Posted By Lester V Ledesma

 

#4) PhotoTreks: Hanoi

 

04

 

March 17, Vietnam: I may have been smiling when I faced this happy group, yet deep inside I was just a little bit terrified. I know my stuff when traveling on my own. But to take a group along with me - man this was something I had never done!

 

And so began the first ever Smile PhotoTrek. The idea here was to take workshop participants on a shooting adventure through North Vietnam, and show them my favorite aspects of this destination. Whether or not this idea would succeed, however, remained to be seen. As the days proceeded, I gave the PhotoTrekkers plenty of cultural immersion. We gorged on bun cha and cha ca and walked the narrow streets of Hanoi. We raided the floating villages of Cat Ba Island, and held photography discussions in the middle of Halong Bay. At the end of it all we were tired but happy, our cameras steaming from all the shooting we had done.

 

The group hug at the airport said it all - PhotoTreks was a rousing success!

 

 

#3) The Balinese Left Turn

 

03

 

February 3, Indonesia: Turn left. I just had to turn left. Driving a motorbike en route from Tegalalang to Ubud, I saw a narrow country road and felt sudden urge to make a detour. Maybe it was curiosity, or maybe it was something else. This was in Bali at the height of Galungan, the ten-day Balinese Hindu equivalent of Christmas. A time of spirituality and festivity throughout the island.

 

Ricefields and a dead end greeted me at the end of the road. And then from the paddies it appeared; a village procession in full swing. Garbed in traditional attire, the locals carried on their shoulders the effigies of their protective deities; Barong Landung, a black, sabre-toothed creature, and his fair-skinned wife. Accompanied by prayers and gamelan music, this unusual parade made its way down to the main highway. Of course I followed them, stunned, excited, awed by the splendid serendipity of this left turn.


 
Posted By Lester V Ledesma
Four months into 2012 and its already been a crazy busy year for me. Ten locations in 12 weeks, so many highlights, so many new experiences. So many new friends.

1st 
Quarter '12

And it's only April 2012!

 
Posted By Lester V Ledesma
This kid rides the waves like a a cowboy rides his horse. Kuta's local surfers are 100% homegrown, yet they speak english with a distinct Aussie drawl.

Kuta Kid

And yeah, they surf like the soul-surfers they are...


 


 
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