photo by: Aeson Baldevia
today I met Kim Komenich.
I felt soooo starstruck, Kim Komenich is just one of the photographers who lived to freeze moments of the Edsa Revolution in film.
Earlier in the day, me and my classmates Marc, Cleo, Aeson and Dani went to visit the Museo de La Salle to check out the exhibit of "some foreign photographer" turns out, his pictures were reaaaally wonderful. They were taken during the time of the people power in almost every event that took place. He had pictures of wars, riots, deaths, Filipino depictions of bad leadership, soldiers, Marcos, Cory's oath-taking, Cory in office, and pretty much everything that took place during that time.
The best part of his photographs were that they showed so much depth that you'd feel as if you're in that exact moment, and you are living vicariously with those people, sharing the same emotions and struggles.
Whenever, Edsa Revolution/People Power is being talked about, I usually just don't care because I have the mentality that I wasn't even born during that time and that I never went through that, and I'm never gonna have to. I am however, aware that the country suffered from the dictator that is Marcos, but I also deem that it is pointless to make such a big fuss about it. I know it sounds very insensitive, but it's just me. As much as I understand how these events had affected so many people's lives, I just didn't find it in my heart to care, until now.
I saw the pictures in the exhibit of Kim Komenich, and I realized that he has been around the country(and the world) so much. It struck me even more when I saw the local pictures that were taken in Murcia, Banago, and just anywhere in Negros Occidental. It felt too close to home, it felt real, as if, although it happened a long time ago, in a way, it happened to me. My parents went through it, my grandparents fought against it, my aunts, and uncles, and even some of my cousins; they were there, and it could have been them in the photographs, those who were crying, those who were working in the farms, those who were in Edsa, fighting for their freedom, or worse, those who were dead.
When I found out that the photographer behind those beautiful photographs was in the school for a talk, I was so giddy. You couldn't understand how much I idolized this guy instantly after just a few minutes of entering his life during the 80's. I was really stoked, I wanted to meet him and ask him so many questions. People would not get the enthusiasm I feel towards meeting a photographer like him, it can only be explained in a way that I am like a 3 year old who was about to meet Santa Claus. I was glad Miss Hannah introduced me to be his assistant, but he didn't need much help in his presentation, I was just glad to be there and listen.
His film about looking for the people whose photographs he took during his stay here in the Philippines throughout the EDSA Revolution was touching. He found those people and their lives have been changed in different ways. Each person has a beautiful story to tell and I wish that video could also be shared to the rest of the world. It was very inspiring, and genuine and the man behind it all was just sitting there, making funny comments about his hair, how he looks, and the different people he met. Outside content, the material was also technically beautiful, the background music used, the environmental shots, the camera angles and lighting during the interviews, and the way the story was told. All in all, it was a great experience to realize the strength of the history of my country and how it affected the lives of many people, including, Mr. Komenich.
I was proud of being in the same room with him, he is very talented, and inspirational, and it was really nice to meet him.
Did I mention he won the 1987 Pulitzer Prize for the pictures he took? Oh and he is a hero too. ;)