Faces of the Philippines 2012

It was back in November 2009 that I first visited the Philippines and started my journey into humanitarian photography.  Since then I’ve clocked up over 100,000 miles, documenting work in Haiti, Guatemala, Zambia, Malawi, Nicaragua, Bolivia and Sri Lanka.  It’s been an amazing couple years and I was so pleased to have the opportunity to go back to the Philippines where it all started. Each and every country I’ve visited has given me such rich experiences but the Philippines still holds a very special place in my heart. It was nice to see friends I made on my first visit and also have the opportunity to cultivate new friendships. I visited communities that had taken great strides in pulling themselves out of poverty, shirking off those barriers which try to suppress them; as well as going into new areas where Outreach International are in the early stages of development. It was a great trip and I’m already looking forward to returning!

I’m currently in the process of cataloging and editing my images from this assignment but here are just a few I’ve selected for this post.

Philippines-20 Philippines-19 Philippines-18 Philippines-17 Philippines-16 Philippines-15 Philippines-14 Philippines-13 Philippines-12 Philippines-11 Philippines-10 Philippines-9 Philippines-8 Philippines-7 Philippines-6 Philippines-4 Philippines-3 Philippines-2 Philippines-1 IMG_9988


All photos by Wayne Rowe – Visioning Images

My Gear

I’m currently in the process of getting ready to travel to the Philippines on my first assignment in 2012. I wouldn’t normally submit a post like this but there are photographers out there who are interested in the gear you take when travelling abroad. So here’s a list of my main equipment, of course there’s also an array of cables and power units which goes along with this gear. The equipment I take on each trip is forever evolving, some items I find I can do away with whilst other kit may find its way into my bag.  I’m always trying to keep within the airlines weight limit which varies from airline to airline but I usually get it about right.


  1. Macbook Pro 15″
  2. NatGeo Walkabout Back Pack
  3. Benro C1180T Carbon Fibre Traveller Tripod
  4. Thinktank Holsters, Harness and Belt System
  5. Manfrotto MH055M8 Q5 Magnesium Photo Video Head
  6. LCDVF LCD View Finder
  7. Canon 7D
  8. Canon 5D Mk2
  9. Canon 50mm f1.2 L
  10. Canon 24-70 f2.8 L
  11. Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS L
  12. Light Craft Workshop ND Fader
  13. Zoom H4N Audio Recorder
  14. PocketWizard MiniTT1 & FlexTT5
  15. Spare batteries & chargers
  16. Canon 580 EX2 Flash
  17. Fujifilm X100 Camera
  18. Polaroid Pogo Printer
  19. Thinktank CF Card Wallet + various CF Cards
  20. Sennheiser Wireless Transmitter & Receiver + Lapel Mic
  21. Iomega Ext. Hard Drive
  22. Lens Pen
  23. Firewire 800 CF Card Reader

Of course, on top of all this is my general travelling kit but that may be for another post further down the line.

Faces of Guatemala

My recent assignment in Guatemala was a wet affair, to say the least.  Many of the images I’d seen from other photographers taken in this country had an array of bright colours and vibrant blue skies but unfortunately there wasn’t a single day without a blanket of cloud and torrential rain whilst I was there. For me it was an inconvenience that hindered me from doing what I was assigned to do but for the communities we were visiting rain like that meant even greater hardships than they already had to endure. During my stay, mudslides caused havoc around the country and loss of life was a daily occurrence. Walking around the communities which Outreach International support wasn’t easy as we slipped through the wet mud. But again, I was reminded of what this weather meant for the locals who had to walk miles to farm the land for their food, often carrying heavy loads whilst battling these elements.

As I spoke to various community members and listened to their stories I experienced a roller coaster of emotions, from the heart-wrenching sadness of hearing the woman who had no way to pay back the loan-sharks, suffering the consequences of not being able to do so, to the joy of seeing happy children in a newly built kindergarten school. As with all the places I’ve visited where Outreach International are involved there is an air of optimism and resolve from community members which I continue to find truly inspiring.

I’ve chosen a selection of images from this trip for my Faces of.. post, I hope they convey the character of some of the amazing people I had the opportunity to meet and share with.

Guatemala-1 Guatemala-2 Guatemala-3 Guatemala-4 Guatemala-5 Guatemala-6 Guatemala-9 Guatemala-10 Guatemala-12 Guatemala-13 Guatemala-14 Guatemala-15 Guatemala-16 Guatemala-17 Guatemala-18 Guatemala-19 Guatemala-20 Guatemala-22 Guatemala-23 Guatemala-24 Guatemala-25

Although this last photo shouldn’t really be a part of the ‘Faces of’ posts I thought I’d include it to give an idea of the wet and muddy conditions.


Images – copyright 2012 outreach-international.org

Photography by Wayne Rowe / Visioning Images