Friday, May 26, 2006

Arrival @ Narita Airport - 23 May 2004

My backpacking trip to Tokyo, Japan, was a very fun and relaxing holiday for me. I flew there alone and stayed with my ex-colleague Evon @ her home in Araki, Chiba Prefecture.

Took Singapore Airlines, Flight SQ 998 from Changi Airport, depart 2340 hrs (Singapore time), reached Narita Airport (situated in Chiba Prefecture, 60km from Tokyo) in the morning, 0730hrs (Japan time). It was still very cooling (a bit cold) when I touched down. Narita Airport was a modern and hi-tech airport but they don't have the lively nature of Changi Airport.

The real fun begins right here, I was supposed to find my way to the train station and board the Keisei line train and meet Evon @ Narita train station. So I went and walk around and found the timing on the ticketing machines, trying to figure out how to buy the tickets. I was so lost at that point in time that I did not take any photos around the area. Anyway, if I remembered correctly, photography was prohibited in certain areas.

Finally, I found my way and did not get lost on my first solo trip on the trains. Met Evon and placed my baggage in her place before travelling to Tokyo and that was the start of my holidays in Shibuya. It was an eye-opening experience to be away in a faraway country and assimilating the culture and atmosphere.

Had coffee in one of their cafes, thereafter, continued to be brought around by my tour guide Evon around Shibuya and walking towards Meiji Jingu Shrine.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Quick Updates & Moving Ahead

I had not been updating my work for the past 1 week. Things cropped up and I was tied down with it, facing issues, challenges, pressure etc etc

Nevertheless, things are hopefully sorted out for now, won't be totally settled down. Presently, looking foward to continue the work that I set out to complete and improving the standards and photojournalism style that I hope to create the niche for myself moving ahead into the future.

I would be writting up my Japan backpacking trip travel log, with an emphasis on locations that I visited and had a great experience there. Moving further on, I would be digging up my older photos from my Australia university days and share with all of you.

My 1st class @ The Photographers Gallery had not started yet, keep u readers posted when I start taking studio photos proper !

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Going to learn from my senior, Jeff of The Photographers Gallery

On 13 May 2006, I finally got the chance to visit The Photographers Gallery, opened by my secondary school Dragon Scout senior, Jeff. The link to the Gallery is on the sidebar. Please do go in and take a tour of the works displayed there.

Met Jeff in the afternoon at 1530 hrs, I was admiring the artworks and photos display when he showed me around his Gallery. The works were awesome, learned from Jeff that they were not necessarily professionals who displayed their works at the Gallery, yet the artists and photographers artwork caught my eye and attention, something they really like to do and specialise in e.g. taking nature macro shots, panoroma shots etc.... It was awesome, unique, special and beautiful art of photography.

I was wondering, searching for something inside me, what do I need to do to make it special? I am and seem to be taking a lot of photographs and I have not found what I really wanted to shoot. "Find something you like and create a niche for yourself" - advice from guru Jeff. Reflecting on my out of sorts photographs, I am planning to start off with nature and travel photography.

Jeff is also conducting a studio portraiture course and I have signed up for it. Maybe this field of photography would allow me to improve my skills & creativity further. I might like studio photography so much that I could do it for my friends, relatives, colleagues in the future ! Got chance already, can go find models for my studio photography .....

Later on, I showed my works to Jeff. Learned many tips on picture composition, positioning, creativity and digital workflow. "Shoot in RAW" - Jeff. Ummm..... looking foward to taking photographs in the future in RAW format.

I certainly looked foward to the class and bring my photography skills to a higher level. I would be updating my lessons and photographs along the way.

Friday, May 12, 2006

A Lonely Plant on an Abandoned Track

Looking at the lonely plant in the middle of the abandoned railway track, isn't it what we face in life sometimes?

However, this plant displays courage and independence to grow and develop in this environment.

Am I that plant that is both lonely, courageous and independent ? Or I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For ?

"Down an unknown road, to embrace my fate, where a hero's welcome, would be waiting for me ....."

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Sunrise - Dawn of a New Beginning

A beautiful sunrise sighted from the hills of Colmar Tropicale Resort, Bukit Tinggi, Malaysia

Sunrise, dawn of a new day, a new beginning. Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery. Let this moment of truth inspires and always be something new, unique and special for all, the vision of light shining on everybody who leaves a mark here.....

"When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us." - Helen Keller

Monday, May 08, 2006

Becoming a Photojournalist ?

Photography had been a long time hobby since my days in secondary school, taking photos of my Scout Troop, the Great and Mighty Gan Eng Seng Dragon Scouts. I cannot forget the year 1993 when we celebrated our 70th Anniversary and I was involved in taking our Scout Group photo and the 70th Anniversary Celebrations and Campfire photos.Do take a look at our Gan Eng Seng Dragon Scouts Homepage
  • Gan Eng Seng Dragon Scouts

  • Recently, I was involved in fin-exis advisory (my company's)
  • fin-exis advisory Pte Ltd
  • Grand Opening Launch as the company photographer and events team that oversee decorations on the track and field stadium venue at the National University of Singapore. I was part of the Guiness World Record Event set by Dr William Tan, who wheeled backwards for 24 hours. Being the company photographer with my wonderful assistants Raymond and Samantha helping out in back up photography and videography, we had a really good time taking memories into our hearts and soul. I would probably be writing more on this grand event once I received clearance over certain issues.

    Nevertheless, I had been involved in events photography, for both my company, my group of friends and wedding photography. I felt a burning desire to improve myself further in my photography skills and somehow or another, I could be a photojournalist and benefit from my passion towards it.

    Today, Christine looked at my photos of our recent Pulau Hantu trip and asked me a question that made me went back in time. I once aspired to be a National Geographic photojournalist. I pondered her words and was thinking hard whether and how I could go about doing it. Finally, I made a decision to keep it as a passionate hobby, probably go into semi-professional in the future.

    I was also talking to Jack (my colleague, unofficial business associate, referral, internet marketing guru) on how I could improve my travel log, generating interest, internet traffic and some benefits as well. After learning a few possible avenues, I would develop my travel blog into something more interesting with greater content, promoting 2 of my passionate activities, Photography and Travelling. Combining it together and becoming a Photojournalist.

    First and Foremost, I shall let my photos and travel writing do the talking..........

    Friday, May 05, 2006

    Pulau Hantu Outing on 3rd May 2006

    Wednesday 3rd May 2006 Travel Log

    This day was a very fun and enjoyable outing for the whole bunch of folks from our big family. It was extremely well organised by Andrew and Jerlyn. Big thanks and kudos to them for their great efforts to make it such a wonderful event for all. To all those who went there, all of you make it a memorable day for everyone there.

    Sometimes, we don't realise that our small country Singapore does have places of nature that are so beautiful and peaceful. We are able to see the corals and fishes so close to us in the lagoons.

    Arrival Destination: Pulau Hantu, Singapore
    Geographical Location: Southern islands of Singapore.
    Place of embarkation: West Coast Ferry Terminal
    Cost of sea transport: $160 for 2 way trip (boat for 12 people)
    Duration of travel: 30 minutes
    Number of travellers: 23

    Wild Singapore has a detailed and comprehensive web page on Pulau Hantu, Take a look Pulau Hantu

    We were supposed to meet at 0900 hrs but due to some unforseen circumstances, we left at around 1030 hrs. Interestingly, we had to bring our NRIC for our departure from mainland Singapore and arrival back. We split into 2 boats and headed to our treasure island. On the way there, we saw the importance of maritime and shipping industry for Singapore, a huge area of shipping industry.

    Upon reaching our treasure island, it was low tide and we could have walked across the lagoon to the other side of the island. Some of us were already exploring around the lagoon during low tide. We quickly settled down with our favourite national past time: Eating. After that, some of us were exploring, others were playing volleyball.

    We were all having lots of fun, laughter, letting our hair down, relaxing and it really feels great to be away from the hectic city lifestyle for a change and from working life...... and be close to Mother Nature.

    We soon settled down and we started Nature exploration (back to school days). Walking along the beach, into the shallow lagoon, we found fishes swimming so close to us, mudskippers, hermit crabs, prawns..... corals. Wading around the lagoon during low tide was exciting and we could walk towards the sea and enjoy the beautiful scenery and serenity surrounding our friendship island.

    Groups started to form, some played volleyball, some went exploring further around the island, some just sitting back to enjoy the tranquility and peace.

    At a later time in the afternoon, we were enjoying the hot sun and most of us were becoming "roasted". We played Captain's Ball on the beach and Beach Football, it is a big challenge to play football on a sloping sandy beach, we have become better football players after our game. Some went swimming, some taking a nap, some went to the breakwater and enjoyed the breeze.

    Soon, it was near to 1700 hrs in the evening. We washed up and packed up, getting ready to return back to mainland. The boats arrived at 1830 hrs and we were on our way back to our concrete jungle ...... enjoying the sunset along the way. Although the sunset was clouded, I believe everybody no doubt tired does enjoy the moment in time.

    Arriving back on mainland Singapore, we proceed to Pasir Panjang hawker centre for dinner, seafood dinner, eat eat eat ...... delicious....... yummy...... At the end of the day, 3/4 of the group continued their activities with singing at KTV ..... while I went home, relax and looked back at my wonderful (but very tiring) week consisting of our fun and exciting outing and a record breaking charity event.

    Folks, let's all appreciate and celebrate the friendship, fun and family buidling that we had build since June 2005 (especially my batch) and enjoy our Singapore's Mother Nature.

    You'll Never Walk Alone