*Click HERE to read the article with the full set of photographs

The advantage of living in an archipelago is that the beach is never too far away. If the urge to escape the urban jungle of Manila bites me, I simply have to decide whether I want to drive north, south, west or far east. Either way I land on the shores of the Philippine Sea or the Pacific Ocean.

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Ternate, Cavite ©MTHerzog

My first escapade to Ternate Beach in Cavite with my cat, Champagne was so memorable that I promised to return to this simple but blissfully quiet beach a mere hour’s drive from Metro Manila. This time I was with friends – yes and the cat, of course. The weather was far from ideal, having rained all morning, so I wasn’t really sure I would be able to shoot anything at all. Not wanting to get my hopes up, I gave up on the idea of a sunset photo shoot as the rain came pouring down on the car. By the time we reached Ternate, after a lovely meal in Maragondon, the clouds parted and the sun shone partially through the fluffy gaps.

Having learned to love clouds from a fellow photographer, I looked up and realized that the overcast sky provided the loveliest of sun rays that made everything on the water or ground looked as if it had been kissed by an angel. Perhaps it was.

My cat opted to stay in her cage and watch me (and the roving dogs), although her door was wide open. The water was cold though, and as I set up my tripod in the water, I wondered whether that had been a good idea at all. The lower the sun went, the more brilliant the rays and scintillating the colors of the sky. Most non-photographers will walk away the minute the sun disappears behind the horizon, but photographers know to wait around for Blue Hour, when the drama begins.

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