Hyper Japan 2013

1/100 at f/4.5, 3200 ISO

Do you know why I love going to events like Hyper Japan? It's because I get to use my 40mm prime lens without feeling like everyone is sending wary, furtive glances in my direction. I also view it as a way of practicing for when I (will eventually) take the plunge into street photography. If you're anything like me, you'll find yourself acutely aware of the fact that people have eyes let alone whether they're watching you. In an event where it's expected that there will be a dense population of trigger happy camera wielders, you can pretty much go forth without any anxiety. That doesn't mean that you can be oblivious to the disgruntled face of someone evidently edging away from you (or diving away from that matter), but you will generally find more willing subjects like the girls in the above picture.

Catch-up with Nia from MyKinksandCurls

I know what you're thinking. The post title and the post image doesn't match up, but honestly how else was I meant to draw you in? Truthfully I don't think that I'm particularly good at food photography, but be honest, this cake is drawing you in. The reason why the cake is the main image of this post is that my friend, Nia from My Kinks and Curls,  has started her own YouTube channel (click here) and she bought a Canon 650D to get started. I don't know much about filming but she asked me to teach her what I knew about photography as it would ultimately help the filming process and with her blog. We met up, but there wasn't much to photograph so we ended up going for lunch in a Brazilian restaurant called Cabana at Westfield. Their food was very tasty and we couldn't resist getting this cake, which was a Brazilian flourless cake. Tasted a lot like a brownie. But besides satisfying our sweet tooth, the cake also served as a photographic subject for testing out different settings including different types of metering.

When I First Started Photography...

Crystal Ring

.... I couldn't get enough of it. This post somewhat links to my previous post of getting my mojo back. I talked about my friend's kitten inadvertently re-awakening my love of photography, but truth be told that was about all it did.

Struggling to Pick up the Camera

I'm opening with a gratuitous kitty shot in the hopes that it softens the fact I've been MIA. There have been many reasons why I haven't been posting (I won't bore you with them) but there was one reason in particular which leads to why blogging hasn't been at the forefront of my mind. Recently, I've been really struggling to take pictures. I know everyone has gone through a point where they get stuck, but this wasn't anything I've experienced. Nothing inspired me. Nothing. Not even the leaves turning a beautiful golden-red tone. Not the rain which makes everything look saturated with colour. Nothing (lovely start isn't it?).

Portfolio Building Photoshoot

This was a portfolio building session I had with my good friend Shila! I know you see posts with her in it a lot but this was the first proper "shoot" that we decided to do. I'm still in the portfolio building stage where I'm trying to focus on what I want to go into (I definitely know it's people) and what my style is, and dare I say it, I think I'm starting to get into a flow with it.

Amanjot and Kiran Photoshoot {Belated Post}

Amanjot and Kiran

Meet 2 of my close friends! The girl on the left is Kiran, who's studying medicine, and on the right is Amanjot, who is studying neuroscience. They've been best friends since secondary school, so they're practically like sisters.

"Outsider's" View on Photography

Chinese Bracelet

How I Edited It

Usually, the first thing I do when after choosing the pictures I want is increase the contrast. I personally find contrast adds more to the image though I think there is such a thing as too much. Anyway, I increased the clarity slightly and I tried some split-toning. I chose green and pink to give it a old-ish feeling (though I wondered if I achieved that). That's all, just a simple edit.

Back to Blogging! And How I Edited It: Diamond Ring

What's Been Going On?

I've been on hiatus for a while, I know. I'm not going to make excuses but I will say that I've had so much work, both coursework and exams which didn't go as expected. I was so stressed, there was a point where I didn't physically touch my camera for a MONTH! I hadn't been feeling like taking pictures and not being able to take pictures made it worse. The only way to push through the creative block is to just take pictures, even if they're mundane. It gets you using your skill so it doesn't get rusty. Anyway it's been a while since I've taken anything, although right up until I stopped I was my usual trigger happy self. The picture in this post is from a group meeting I had in university for coursework, but my mind was wandering and I had bought the 40mm. I should add that the 40mm has taken up residence on my camera and I've rarely taken it off because of the large aperture (2.8, not as big as an aperture of 1.4 but I'm not complaining) and it's macro capabilities. 

Diamond Ring

Thoughts on the Nikkor 40mm f/2.8 Macro

Emerald and Topaz Ring

To be completely honest, I haven't been taking many pictures but I'm trying to make myself do it even if I'm busy. Moving on, I bought the Nikkor 40mm about a week ago and it's been so interesting to see everything from a different perspective. I haven't done any portraits yet but I'm hoping to do a shoot with this sometime between now and Christmas.

Party in a Restaurant with External Flash

Okay, so the title doesn't have the wonders of creativity that many people can just throw out, but it is what it is. This picture is a favourite of mine that I took during my friend's 19th birthday. I love it so much because it looks unposed (to me anyway) and it looks kind of... fresh. I like that her hair isn't perfectly in place, although I do think that "perfect" pictures are beautiful, I think there's also a kind of beauty and likeability when the picture isn't groomed to perfection. During processing I purposely tried to not put in too much colour, I even took out a bit of colour to make it look a bit more real. This was the first time (apart from MCM, which I will be doing a post on eventually) I used my Nissin Di226 outside of the house. I'm generally quite pleased with the results, but there were times where I didn't know how to use the flash in order to properly light up my friends' faces.

Tip: Look Back at Previous Photographs

Jom Makan Noodles

This is something that I need to do and yet try not to do too often. When looking back at previous photos, many people tend to get stuck on the way they look, the technical aspects, the composition. I'm one person that tends to beat myself up a lot about my photos but in small doses, this helps us to progress. If we don't like a picture, we look at it, we think about the moment taking the shot, what we could've changed to get a different look from the one you currently have. This pushes us to take better pictures (which is fine in small doses). You shouldn' get to the point of depression or anger because you can't create a picture like someone else or you couldn't get it a certain way like whoever you're comparing it to. I'm constantly thinking "ugh, why didn't I do that? It would've made it soooo much better, like such and such on Flickr or Deviantart or blah blah blah..." but looking back has helped me progress (well, I'd like to think so anyway). Like most people, I suffer with creativity, or more like the lack there of. Through the year, I gradually learned tips like not everything in the middle is a great picture, or trying different angles of the subject may get you the picture you didn't know you wanted. You and me are individual people with different thoughts on different matters, so try not to compare too much!