Events Planning

How to Prepare for a Boudoir Photo Shoot

Are you ready for one on your birthday?

More and more women are getting into this genre of photography. Their reasons varies from wanting a liberating experience or just simply wanting to feel good about themselves or wanting their sexiness be captured on camera.

A celebration is always a good reason to have a boudoir photo shoot, whether you are getting married or having a milestone birthday is a great way to celebrate, but a lot of women are actually doing this for themselves. Two months from now, I will be celebrating my 40th birthday and I would like to have something to look back years from now. 

What is a Boudoir Photography?
The term "boudoir" may also be ascribed to a genre of photography.Typically shot in a photographer's studio or luxury hotel suites, it has become fashionable to create a set of sensual or sexually suggestive images of women (and occasionally men and couples) in "boudoir style". The most common manifestation of contemporary boudoir photography is to take variations of candid and posed photographs of the subject partly clothed or in lingerie. Nudity is more often implied than explicit.  - Wikipedia

Photography by : Kathy Cuadrante of KSnaps Productions

I can already see your eyebrows raising right now and I can hear some of you saying "but I'm fat, or too big, or shy, or can't do it. Yes, I am not that big, but I don't have that model figure also. But you see, being sexy is not all about nudity, being sexy is just a state of mind.

Thinking of having one? Here are some tips and tricks that will help you prepare for your boudoir session.

1. Conceptualize
What concept do you have in mind? Do you want it to be cute, sweet, or classy? Try to research on the web on what particular style that suits your personality. You don't need to bare it all if you can't. Some times, just the right amount of sexiness is all it takes to achieve that "classy look".

Discuss the concept with your photographer and brainstorm on  how to achieve that "look". You may also prepare a story board to guide you during the session.

Photography by : Kathy Cuadrante of KSnaps Productions

2. Hire a Professional Photographer
Let me ask you again on why are you doing this? If you are young and sexy and a "model-wanna-be", chances are you will be invited to  an ex-deal open photo shoot. An "open shoot" means you have other photographers around you that will be taking photos of you. You don't have to pay for the photographers and you will not be paid as a model also. That kind of agreement will benefit both the model and photographers because that leads to the expansion of your portfolios.

I have nothing against an ex-deal open photo shoot, but I want you all to be careful, be very careful in joining one. Bear in mind that the photos are owned by the photographers and that they have the authority over it, they can use and release the photos in any manner or for what ever purpose they intend to. I am not generalizing, but  a lot of "newbie photographers" out there joining open shoots have other intentions (read as gusto lang mang bastos or maka-isa!). Remember  there is a thin line between "porn" and "art" and not all people with a high powered DSLR can be called a photographer.

If you really want to do this for yourself, I strongly suggest to hire a female photographer whom you can trust (read as, delikado na ngayon uso ang rape!). Again, I have nothing against male photographers, but I think you can express better  with a female one.

Photo Credit : Mark Gana
See! I'm wearing a mini dress :-)

3. Hire a  Professional Hair and Make Up Artist
Although "skin smoothing" can be done digitally (read as photoshopped), I still suggest to work with a HMUA to help you complete the look based on your concept.The shoot can take as long as 3 hours and you will surely need assistance with your outfit and accessories. Oh and don't forget to use fake eyelashes to achieve that "sexy look". 

Photo Credit : Mark Gana

4.  Select the outfit and accessories that you will need
Look good by wearing something that makes you feel good. Even if you have something really super nice but you don't feel comfortable, you will have a hard time when the camera is pointed at you. 

Don't wear lingerie if you are not used to, you can wear a corset, white shirt /  polo , mini dress, bandeau or a boy leg instead of usual under wears.

Photography by : Kathy Cuadrante of KSnaps Productions

5.  Choose a perfect venue
Historically, the boudoir formed part of the private suite of rooms of a "lady" or upper-class woman, for bathing and dressing, adjacent to her bedchamber, being the female equivalent of the male cabinet. 

The session is usually done on a studio or a hotel room. In choosing the venue, I suggest you do it in the comfort of a private hotel room.

Photo Credit : Mark Gana

6.  Prepare physically.
For this type of photography, you will be in many different poses that you may not be used to. You might experience some bone-craking and muscle tensions during the session. Drink lots of water and take a light breakfast only to avoid being bloated. Avoid also wearing tight fitting clothes if possible and avoid wearing a tight bra on your way session as it leaves elastic pressure line on your skin.

Photography by : Kathy Cuadrante of KSnaps Productions

Photographer : Kathy Cuadrante of KSnaps Production

Behind the Scene Photographer : Mark Gana (my husband)
Venue : Marco Polo Hotel Manila
Outfit : from JLo's closet

What are your thoughts? Are you ready for one?


career talks,

Blogging with a Purpose : My Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs 2014

2014 marks the 8th year of the Top 10 Emerging Influencial Blogs 2014 Writing Project that seeks in identifying new and emerging blogs who are making an impact to its readers in 2014. These are blogs that started anytime from August 2013 to the present.

So what makes a blog influential? 

Influence can not be attributed only to traffic and readership level. For me, influence can only be measured on the effect on the character and behavior of someone, it cannot be dictated or imposed.

The next question is, what are my personal criteria in choosing my Top 10?

Here are my parameters :

1. Credibility
2. Informative
3. Inspirational
4. Consistency
5. Uniqueness
6. Personal 

Here it goes (drum rolls) : My Top 10 List of Emerging Influential Blog of 2014

1. Dizkarteng Noypi (
Jhojo Villa's mission is  to spread financial literacy to help every Filipinos in achieveing their dreams and gain financial independence. Dizkarteng Noypi is informative, motivational and straight to point. I am happy that a lot of Filipinos nowadays are starting to realize the need for financial literacy.

2. Raket Hub (
Raket or Side Business, this is what a lot of  Filipinos need nowadays. A self-proclaimed "raketera", Sherlane Fortunado shares with her readers business ideas that can help Filipinos augment their income.

3. JLofied ( 
Work hard. Give More. Play harder! Jennifer Lopez - Gana talks about celebrations and living life to the fullest. Aside from sharing tips and tricks on all things pertaining to parties and events organizing, JLofied is also  about inspiring  and empowering people to be the best that they want to be. The blog also advocates for creating a second source of income by being an events organizer to help her readers increase cash flow.

4. Pinions and Plumage of Love (
Mommy Joy Lojo is  a full time wife and mom with a 2-year old daughter. She shares with her readers her stories on being a SAHM (Stay-at-Home) mom. What I admired about her is that you can really feel the sincerity in her posts, no rants, just pure bliss. She talks about blessings, greatness and beauty with God as the center of the family.

5. Sole Searching Sole (
Apple Allison, "Ang Lakwatserang Mansanas" blogs about her travel while working or what calls "Workcation". Her Date in Daet 2014 campaign which encourages Bloggers and Businesses and other stakeholders be closer to Daet aligns with her purpose of making a difference in a community one trip at a time.

6. Matakaw Na Bata (
Just from the domain name alone, you will easily get an idea of what is it all about. Christian Melanie Lee is a certified foodie. She will blog about anything about her foodie adventures
whether it's a simple instant pancit cantom or or  a famous restaurant.

7. Mommy Bloggers Philippines (
I was surprised that Mommy Bloggers Philippines blog site is only less than a year old. I've been part of this  community and I've met a lot of mom bloggers whom I've networked with already. Mommy Lani Lyutz built this community to bridge for everyone who wants their services, products, a cause to be examined in true life by mother who have their own passions in unique fields. 

Are you on a look out for trending topics? Mc Richard Pagcalinawan's blog should be your       go-to-site for interesting topics / articles on news here in the Philippines and  around the world.

Dok Tour  is all about food, travel and adventure. I always look forward to Brian Macasa's  post about his  adventure whether its about food, family vacation, events or places to hangout within the Metro.

10. Astig.Ph (
Know the hottest news in technology, entertainment and lifestyle. Great layout and visuals.

This writing project is sponsored by :

To know more about this writing project, visit this link : 



Three (3) Membership Cards that Every Filipino Event Planners, Bloggers and Other Freelancers Must Have

When I embraced the the world of Social Media early this year, I entered a new world wherein some online friends knows me more than my real friends.  I get to meet some during events, while there are still some that I am still looking forward to meet in person someday.

At some point, I am envious of their flexible time schedules, no rush hours, can work with their jammies on and more. I would like to make it clear that I am writing this having  a perspective of a  regular employee  receiving competitive salary and perks. 

According to Coach Genesis Reonico of Online Jobs University, almost 2 million Filipinos are working from home doing projects for various companies and individuals internationally. The figure does not include other freelancers yet such as  event planners, photographers, musicians and artists.

Though the advantages of being a freelancers are plenty, you need to have a strong discipline to make your dream lifestyle happens.  Big projects will sure come along the way and you will be paid really well.

What do I mean about this discipline? I am referring to planning about the future. As a freelancer, you have to bear in mind that you are your own employer and that you should also provide benefits and perks to yourself as your own employee. 

To help you with this, I came up with a list of  "must haves"  that every planners, bloggers, and other freelancers  to consider to help you plan for the future.

Social Security System

Social Security Benefits :
1. Sickness
2. Disability
3. Retirement
4. Maternity
5. Death and Funeral

For as low as 110 pesos every month, a member can avail of the benefits subject to number of contributions and other documentary requirements.

Sickness benefit - is a daily cash allowance paid for the number of days a member is unable to work due to sickness or injury.

Disability benefit - the program adopts the disability that states as any "restriction or lack (resulting from impairment) of ability to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being"

Retirement benefit - is a cash benefit either in monthly pension or lump sum paid to a member who can no longer work due to old age.

Maternity benefit - is a daily cash allowance granted to female member who was unable to work due to childbirth or miscarriage.

Death benefit - is a cash benefit either in monthly pension or lump sum paid to the beneficiaries of a deceased member.

Benefits and Programs :
1. Membership Programs
2. Provident Savings
3. Housing Loan Programs

For a minimum monthly contribution of 200 pesos, a self-employed person regardless of trade, business or occupation, with an income of at least P1,000 a month and not over sixty (60) years old can be a member of the Fund.

Pag-IBIG Fund guarantees the refund of of member's total accumulated savings (TAV), which consists of the member's accumulated contributions, the employer counterpart contributions, if any, and the dividend earnings credited to the member's account upon occurrence of any of the grounds for withdrawal such as : (1) membership maturity; (2) retirement; (3) permanent or total disability or insanity; (4) separation form the service due to health reason; (5) permanent departure from the country; (6) death.

Housing Loan Availment :

Two (2) modes of applying for a Pag-IBIG housing loan :
(a) Developer - Assisted - the developer assists the member in his/her housing loan application and 
(b) Retail - the member applies directly to the Fund.

PhilHealth &/or HMO

The National Health Insurance Program was established to provide health insurance coverage and ensure affordable, acceptable, available and accessible health care services for all citizens of the Philippines. It shall serve as the means for the healthy to help pay for the care of the sick and for those who can afford medical care to subsidize those who cannot.

Those who work for him/herself and are therefore both the employer and employee are qualified under the Individually Paying Program.

Eligibility Requirements

1. Payment of at least three (3) monthly premiums within the immediate six (6) months prior to the month of confinement. For pregnancy-related cases, dialysis (except those undergoing emergency dialysis service during confinement), chemotherapy, radiotherapy and selected surgical procedures, payment of nine (9) monthly premium contributions within the last 12 months shall be required except for those enrolled under the KASAPI program.

2. Confinement in an accredited hospital for at least 24 hours (except when availing of outpatient care and special packages) due to an illness or injury requiring hospitalization.

3. Attending physicians must also be PhilHealth-accredited.

4. Availment is within the 45-day allowance for room and board.

Feel free to share any thoughts or additional information that you would like to share with us.  



What Event Planners and Other Pinoy Freelancers Should Know About Registering with the BIR

To my readers whose been following this blog since its inception in January, some of you may have realized by now that aside from being the person behind jlofied and KidiKraft, I am also a government employee. You see, it has always been my advocacy to inspire people to create a second income without leaving their profession or without quitting their regular day job.

To do this, you should be able to get a business that you must really be interested in and something that is low maintenance. A business that you can just do online after your day job or something that you can do over the weekends. You can be a Blogger, Virtual Assistant, Event Planner, Online Seller, Stylist, Writer, Musician, Photographer, Graphic Artist, Singer, and the list goes on. In the past 6 months, close to 200 people  were added on my FB friends list and most of them are freelancers. 

Every business comes with a great responsibility, and paying taxes is one of them.

Recently, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) launched their campaign entitled "Easy as RFP" with this "nakaka - LSS" upbeat song. RFP stands for Register, File and Pay and I really do hope that the process is really as easy as watching this video because I will be registering as "mixed income earner" within the year.

Another information that I would like to share is the difference between a Business TIN and Employee TIN. Please check out the graphic below to assist you before filing for a TIN.

We are all aware of the flaws of the government and I will totally understand if you have "sentimyento"  with the government. However, I am encouraging you to do our share in helping the economy. 

For more tax related inquiries, you may visit or visit their BIRs FB page at



A Guide to Organizing Successful Bloggers Meet-Ups

I have been organizing social events like weddings, birthday, Christmas parties, team buildings and corporate meetings for 15 years already, but organizing a bloggers event to promote a product or service is still something new to me.  I am  not a "marketing" person, but after my 6 months of training with DigitalFilipino, I see myself doing Social Media Consultancy in the next few months. 
Digital Filipino Club Members and Bloggers Meet-Up
August 16, 2014, Valdez Hall, UP Bahay ng Alumni
(Melanie Austero, Marco Polo Demo, Jennifer Lopez-Gana, Sherlane Fortunado, Rochefel Ocampo
Ms. Janette Torral, Rey Baguio, Tiger Costales, RM Nisperos)
The challenge with this event is that I was given only less than two weeks to prepare for everything. Lucky me for being able to tie-up with the DigitalFilipino Club Members and Bloggers meet-up last August 16 and I don't need to invite bloggers by myself.

Hosting a bloggers event relies on practicality, creativity and giving back. With that, I am sharing some practical guide to organizing successful bloggers meet-ups based on my experience and learning with my CBSME Module 3 project.

1. Define your goal 
2. Determine Type of Event (and Budget)
3. Start Small (Set an Attendee Limit)
4. Don't Do It All On Your Own
5. Choose Your Sponsors Carefully
6. Find the Perfect Venue
7. Provide Food and Drinks
8. Provide Activity (Lecture, Project Updates, Product Presentation)
9. Don't forget the Give-aways
10. Make it Social and Have Fun

I've met some great people  who've taught me so much about this new found craft, and the experience of being a part of a group is immensely rewarding. I hope this simple tips will help you on your way in organizing meet-ups on what you are passionate about. If you would like to share some tips, please give your best practices on the comment section.

This event  would have never been possible without the help of our sponsors. 
Known for decades for it's great affordable student meals and friendly staff. Lopez Canteen has been serving the tastiest and the best-value-for-money meals among generations of UST students.
Lopez Cantee's Must Try Dishes
Kare-Kare, Palabok, Embotido

Mel Bagnate-Austero
0908 874 6401


Riel E. Gamiao