Makati Museum Crawl: Experiencing Local Art Through the stunning Lens of the Huawei P30 Pro

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Makati City is known as a bustling business district and, in more recent years, a growing hub for homegrown restaurants, bars and pubs, and coffee shops. But Makati City is also home to a rich yet underrated local art scene, with museums and galleries hidden in nooks and corners all over the city. The TRAVELIFE team decided to capture the beauty they see with the HUAWEI P30 Pro Flagship Phone.

Underground Gallery, taken with Huawei’s 40MP main camera vs Huawei’s 20MP Ultra-Wide Angle Lens

The Underground Gallery

Originally found in the basement of Makati Cinema Square, Underground Gallery is now on the top floor, with more space exhibit local works. The current show, entitled “blackgreywhite”, includes pieces that explore the versatility and texture of these three colors.

The HUAWEI P30 Pro captured the dramatic and stark contrasts found in the black and white details of such works. This includes Bernardo Pacquing’s mixed media canvas, Untitled After Malevich’s Black Square, and Jan Balquin’s Graphite Charcoal & Bone installation.

Finale Art File

Known as one of the premier gallery institutions in the Philippines, Finale Art File has showcased contemporary works of talented artists for more than 30 years.

Kamot by Pipo Alido in Finale Art File, taken with Huawei’s SuperZoom from left to right: 40MP main camera; 5x optical zoom; 30x optical zoom

The sprawling space of Finale Art File has three multi-functional galleries: the Tall Gallery, which is the biggest space of its kind, is where visitors may see huge paintings and installations; and the Upstairs Gallery and Video Room, which allows for multiple exhibits at a time.

Ballast and Curved Waves by Abi Dionisio in Finale Art File, taken with
Huawei’s SuperZoom from left to right: 40MP main camera; 5x optical zoom; 30x optical zoom

The expansive space of the Tall Gallery allowed us to view paintings from afar and up close. With the Huawei P30 Pro’s SuperZoom, we were even able to capture the intricate details of Ballast and Curved a few feet away.

Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery

Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery is home to unconventional types of art, with artists leaning towards more surreal and postmodern styles. Many of the pieces touch on cultural themes and even political issues through experimental installations and mixed media pieces.

The Other Side by Ciane Xavier in Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery, taken with Huawei’s 40MP main camera
The Other Side by Ciane Xavier in Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery, taken with Huawei’s Night Mode

Ciane Xavier’s The Other Side is a unique exhibit that was both disturbing yet moving. The walls and the ceilings of the room were completely black. The only sources of light came from the small light fixtures of each miniature figurine, and the twinkling blue lights dangling from the ceiling. Because of the Huawei P30 Pro’s SuperSpectrum sensor, wide aperture, and stabilization, we were able to capture the exhibit in its entirety, as it automatically adjusted the lighting to fit our needs for the perfect shot.

The ultra wide angle can also double as a macro lens, which means it can capture even the minute details of a small subject, such as the miniature figurines in the exhibit. The camera can be as near as 2.5 centimeters of focusing distance and the image will still be clear and sharp. Using Huawei’s Time of Flight (ToF) Camera gives more depth and drama to the photo.

The Other Side by Ciane Xavier in Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery, taken with Huawei’s Super Macro Lens
The Other Side by Ciane Xavier in Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery, taken with ToF camera

J Studio

J Studio is a small two-level gallery currently exhibiting a great masterpiece by Norman Dreo entitled My Little Museum.

My Little Museum by Norman Dreo in J Studio, taken with Huawei’s 40MP main camera

The triptych oil painting measures at 90 inches by 336 inches, though it only took Dreo a year to finish this work of art. This is a significant feat considering the painting’s intricate details. The piece is like a gallery within a gallery; it includes important works from over 400 years of flourishing Western art movements — from the Renaissance to the Baroque Period.

My Little Museum by Norman Dreo in J Studio, taken with Huawei’s 20MP Ultra-Wide Angle Lens

With the Leica Quad Camera System of HUAWEI P30 Pro, the team was able to capture this magnificent piece, as well as zoom in on unique works found within. Huawei’s 20MP ultra-wide angle lens captured the entirety of Dreo’s piece, even as its SuperZoom lens can zoom in on individual details in sharp focus. This allowed us to look at the painting from different perspectives, from macro to micro.

Bonus Feature
Where to Eat: Kite Kebab Bar

Kite Kebab Bar, taken with Huawei’s 20MP Ultra-Wide Angle Lens in night mode
Kite Kebab Bar, taken with Huawei’s 20MP Ultra-Wide Angle

Home to restaurants, pubs, and bars, Poblacion is a bustling area in Makati City that comes alive at night. Grab a bite at  Kite Kebab Bar and enjoy authentic Mediterranean cuisine. Kite Kebab Bar was recently renovated, and this perfect timing allowed us to shoot the colorful and interesting interiors of the restaurant.

Mezze Sampler, taken in night mode

The Huawei Time of Flight (ToF) Camera is also very useful for food photography, as it mimics most, if not all, of the features of a DSLR camera. Portraits taken with the ToF Camera are vividly colorful and clear, capturing each dish as it’s presented in real life.

Mezze Sampler is a sumptuous appetizer that gives diners a taste of different kinds of Mediterranean snacks. The platter includes samosa, falafel, and pita that can be dipped in either hummus, baba ganoush, or tzatziki.

The Shirazi Salad, on the other hand, is a mix of seasonal vegetables drizzled with extra virgin olive oil. Pair the Basmati Rice or Turmeric Rice — both flavorful in its own right — with the Chicken and Beef Kebab. Enjoy the rest of the night with a drink and relax in Kite Kebab Bar’s sultry and intimate ambiance.

Flat lay food photography, taken with Huawei’s 20MP Ultra-Wide Angle Lens
Kite Kebab Bar, taken with night mode

Huawei Rewrites the Rules of Photography

After venturing out into Makati City with the Huawei P30 Pro, where the Travelife team used it in a variety of ways, it’s safe to say that this is one of the best smartphones to take photos, whatever the environment or scenario may be.

Some of our favorite features include the Night Mode, as it’s versatility allows us to use it in a number of ways, including food shots, low light interiors, and even outdoor shoots with little to no natural light. Another highlight is the ToF Camera, which is very similar to the bokeh effect that photographers typically achieve with their DSLR cameras. It’s a useful feature that heightens the focus on the subject while softly blurring the rest of the background. Suffice to say, Huawei has managed to rewrite the rules of photography with the innovative P30 Pro.

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