We've been planning for a long time to have a photoshoot with family and friends. But as the saying goes, "When planned, it won't happen."
For five to seven years, it really never happened.
Until recently, one of my cousins came home to visit and I said, "Let's go. Pack two to three clothes and let's go. Let us just see where we will end up." With two of my other friends, a Fujifilm XT2, a drone, gimbal, and a tripod, we set on a road trip with the goal of just taking pictures for memories. We ended up with 936 photos and 24 videos.
How's that for an unplanned photoshoot?
Of course, having friends who love taking photos and have great photography gears is a must if you don't want to spend a lot in photoshoots. Haha. So, guys, choose your friends wisely.
Because we want a day with minimal expenses, we went to this cute little park in Balete, Lipa City.
Disclaimer: We are not Catholics. We merely used the facilities for a great backdrop with fewer people.
The place is called Marianne Orchard. It has a 50 pesos entrance fee. What's $1 for a hundred photos?
When taking photoshoots, you must also have a great eye for a place to take photos. The picture above is a great example that not all beautiful places can be easily seen. You have to get out of the beaten path.
When we have saturated the place, we hop on the car again and continued down the road. Since I'm the navigator, I decided to just go up to Tagaytay.
Tagaytay is a great place to take photos without spending a lot!
Because all the smiling, clicking, setting up the tripod, driving, climbing bridges and trees, and trying not to fall made us all hungry, we decided to look for a cafe that not only can we order food but also where we can use their facilities for photoshoots.
One cafe really stood out. Since the two of us girls are wearing dresses, we wanted a place that has an ambiance of Victorian-style. And the Bag of Beans Cafe Charito branch perfectly fit this setting.
Just make sure the photos you're going to use is for private use because one of the waiters said that they have packages for photoshoots. I went to the website just to check how much but I didn't see any photoshoot packages.
But since we're using their facilities for free (should I say free? We ordered food. Basically, we're customers, right?) and since our 'photoshoot' is mainly for memories and IG's, we just decided to abide by their rules.
Every time somebody asked me for a restaurant in Tagaytay, Charito Bag of Beans is always on the list I gave. Not only do they have great ambiance, but their food is the BEST! Note: Bag of Beans have a lot of branches. They all have fantastic ambiance but Charito's is my favorite.
Just before heading down to our town, we stopped to have a photo of the twinkling lights. I have hundreds of photos shot exactly in this spot in the past and it's always in the daytime. This was the first time I have a photo taken with all the beautiful lights in the background. It was hard. It was difficult. Man, you need 3 people to take this photo! But it was worth it!
To summarize what you need on (almost) not spending a dime for a photoshoot, you need:
Friends - friends who have photography gears, a great eye to see the extraordinary out of the ordinary, and who are willing to die just for you to have that perfect photo.
Camera - Fujifilm XT2 is a great camera that will give you vibrant colors.
Gimbal - We use the Zhiyun Smooth 4 gimbal to take videos. (Watch out for the vlog on this photoshoot!)
Drone - We have the DJI Mavic Pro. We used it only once so I wouldn't say that you really need this. But if you or your friends have a drone, then use it!
Clothes - Bring your own clothes. Two to three set of clothes will be perfect.
Tripod - You would need this if you want everybody to be in the photo. Also, this is a must for night photography.
An app - Install an app in your phone that you can connect in your camera so you can take photos of everybody.
To end this post, I would like to give special thanks to my three friends who made all of this possible. E.J, D.Y., J.P., as having the only person without a period in my name, cheers to a lifetime of friendship!