MANILA - A month into the already extended enhanced community quarantine covering Luzon, Metro Manila- the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic- remains removed from its busy, traffic-congested previous reality.
While authorities have been railing against motorists and pedestrians violating the lockdown, the temporary transformation of the metro is still apparent in many places, especially the main highways.
Makati-based freelance video editor Vir Ascabano captured this in a video titled "Uncrowded: Metro Manila," which shows the skyline and city streets from sundown to sunrise free from the usual hustle and bustle.
The video, set in somber music, also captured various frontliners such as health workers and street cleaners at or on their way to work.
Ascabano said he shot the clips in snippets for nearly a month since the start of the lockdown during the times he had to go outside to do errands.
The video, uploaded on April 15, also used clips from Ascabano's earlier video "Makati: Uncrowded," which offered a rare glimpse into the quiet central business district at the first week of the quarantine.
"I just wanted to capture an angle of what it looks like outside. But this time, not just in Makati but in some areas also," he told ABS-CBN News via chat.
"I observed the same uncrowded streets and peaceful areas. But not sure though [about streets leading to] other areas since I only travel [in the] major roads."
One thing he noticed during his trips, however, were street dwellers and people begging for food and help. This was why he also began using his errand time to drop off assistance to those he encountered.
Ascabano said his Makati video became an unexpected source for the assistance after some companies and institutions used clips from it for their own productions.
"I decided to use a portion of what I earned and gave it to those people. It may be not much but a little could help."
He said he has adjusted to the lockdown and plans to use the remaining time to continue developing his multimedia skills.
"Because of this positive feedback to the video and the current situation, it inspired me to make more videos that give a positive impact and [a] sense of calmness and peace in times like this."