Thursday, July 28, 2016

A Portrait of Carmen

A dear friend Carmen was participating in the Celebs and Blogger's Bazaar, sort of a like a fashion flea market for lifestyle and fashion bloggers. I was no where in the neighbourhood and decided to stop by just to say hi. Carmen was looking stunningly beautiful with her bright, Burgundy Red hair colour in contrast with the black and white dress she was wearing! A spontaneous quick portrait session ensued, and we decided to scout around the location for a nice, non-busy looking background to work with. We went up to the mezzanine floor and found that the entire floor was vacant, and there was a huge, plain white wall which looked just right for what I had in mind. The large window panel with afternoon sun was just the perfect side lighting I needed for this portrait, and we Carmen hit some simple poses and shutter started clicking away.

Carmen Hong is also an Olympus shooter. 
You can check her out in her blog at http://www.carmenhong.com or follow her on Instagram @itscarmenhong


Image was taken with my Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II and M.Zuiko 25mm F1,8 lens, at very low angle.

Minor adjustments were made during post processing to balance the colours, as well as lifted the shadow around her hair to emphasise the brighter red.

I'd say, simplicity works, each and every time! And I think I should do more portrait shoots.

Monday, July 25, 2016

A Quiet Sunday, A Short Photowalk with Shaun from Brisbane, Australia

Shaun from Brisbane, Australia is visiting again and we had a quick photowalk yesterday. We went to Chow Kit, hoping to catch a glimpse of the old market building before it was being torn down. Fortunately the building was still standing, but now almost fully evacuated. It will be within days the demolition work begins.

We had a slow, relaxing walk and we shot anything that got our attention. I armed myself with my Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II and my most favourite lens, the M.Zuiko 45mm F1.8. The focal length was familiar and comfortable for me to work with, and the lens, being so small and light, felt right at home on my hands.

Shaun visiting from Austtalia

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Fading Old Market, Chow Kit

At the time I fell in love with street photography (or more appropriately put, photography on the street, just so that I do not insult the "traditionalists"), I discovered this hidden holy grail of street hunting ground in KL, Chow Kit. I fell in love with the place instantly, and every single trip I made to Chow Kit has been fruitful, and I always came home with the SD card filled with photographs, many have become keepers from this wonderful location. Unfortunately, the original, old building of Chow Kit that houses a huge area of the market, and the surrounding lanes and storage locations will be demolished very, very soon. I was told by the locals that they were asked to evacuate the premises, and demolition work has already begun phase by phase. In one or two weeks time, the main building will go down.

When I heard the news, I did not exactly know how to feel. For many years now, I have spent so many hours camping, and strolling around these streets in Chow Kit, inside and around the main old market building area. So many wonderful shots, so many friendly faces and smiles, so many beautiful moments, now all that's left, are nothing but memories. I do feel sad, because I do not think there will be a place like Chow Kit else where in the world, this is truly a unique location, and strangely, it has defined the look and feel of many of my photographs I have displayed here in this blog. 80% of the close up strangers portraits that have become my favourites came from Chow Kit. The beautiful, diffused yet directional light in a relaxed, easy-going environment made it an ideal place for street portraits, and people in Chow Kit are just the friendliest of all KL streets. It is impossible not to be able to make good street portraits here.

With mixed emotions, I picked up the Olympus PEN E-P5 and the M.Zuiko 25mm F1.8 lens, and just walked casually around last Sunday, and shot a few images. Nothing specific I wanted to accomplish this round, just taking my time, in a way, to say goodbye to this place.

I don't think this blog will ever be the same if I have never found Chow Kit in the first place!

Dangling legs

Saturday, July 16, 2016

5 Reasons Why Olympus Micro Four Thirds System Is Suitable For Insect Macro Photography

I have written lengthily before about my shooting techniques when it comes to Insect Macro Photography, if you want to find out more about the equipment I use and how I get my shots, kindly read my post here (click). 

In this post however, I will not discuss about how to shoot, but rather why I find that Olympus Micro Four Thirds system is highly recommended for newcomers to photography who want to explore the world of insect macro.

Being the mirrorless system, Olympus OM-D and PEN cameras are generally smaller and lighter than DSLR alternatives. Adding useful features such as 5-Axis Image Stabilization, large Electronic Viewfinder and built in wireless flash TTL control capabilities, you basically have all the tools necessary to shoot extreme close up insect macro. The M.Zuiko 60mm F2.8 Macro lens offers a large magnification of 2 to 1 (in 35mm equivalent) which is plentiful of magnification for small insects shooting.

Image Credit: Tian Chad