Tuesday, December 28, 2010


I hope its not too late to share about Christmas. Quite a busy period with all the Christmas activities.
Hoping you (and me) for better year in 2011!

Season's Greeting

Mini Christmas


Obligatory Turkey :)

Friday, November 19, 2010

In Search of A Perfect Picture

I've encountered few issues over these few days. First of all, dusty lens! Just found out  that the Voigtlander I just bought have dust on the inside. But actually this is normal for any lenses. I thought it was the dust which caused spots on my shots, but turns out that it is the sensor itself caught dust. Now I must clean the sensor myself.
Then there's the autofocus problem on my Tamron. I suspect it was the PDAF algorithm since CDAF is perfectly fine.

Given the experiences, I come to a conclusion that, like life, there is no perfect lens (and photographic forums around the internet confirm this. Amen) But there's always a good news at the end of it, right ? Right ?! Yep! I just bought the carbon fiber tripod that I need (not want.. I swear :P), and the second GM firmware for my iPad runs without getting a WiFi problem anymore.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

New Lens! Voigtlander Nokton 58mm/f1.4

I just got a new lens last week. I was very excited because of the technical review at photozone rate this lens as one of the best lenses. Sure enough after I try it, the lens produce stunning images!
Even everyday objects came out beautiful. Its a manual focus lens in Nikon F mount, with aperture control and metering. I think its a bit overexposed for my liking though.

On my Nikon :)

See.. the lens produce nice images that just leaps at you. I had to sell my Voigtlander Classic 35mm to fund this lens. Nevertheless.. I have no regret :) This lens is highly recommended. Its sharp wide open, nice OOF and good color rendition. Cmon, what else would you ask for ? ;)

Thursday, November 04, 2010

iOS 4.2 for iPad

Can you say Folders ? Multitasking ? Yaay!
I took the plunge today and install the unofficial release of iOS 4.2.
And yesterday I got Bloomberg app for Android, plus an iTunes voucher to buy paid apps on the iPad.
Some screenshots to enjoy

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Shopping List

Ok.. maybe this list is to compensate my lack of skill, but some of the items here are really the essential tools for serious photographer, like the tripod. I just burn my budget for this month.. so.. (and still have to pay past expenses installment for the next few months LoL)

- tripod (Manfrotto, Sirui)
- flash, preferably SB 700 or up
- monitor color profiler (Spyder or i1)
- A3 printer (Canon or Epson)

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Have i told you that i like my new iPad?
The colour rendition is just superb. I like to browse through my recent Turkey trip photos and look for the details in the picture that I did not even notice when I took it. People at the window, the sparkling sand, ....
Not mentioned it has tons of books and magazines. And the recent NatGeo travel magazine is featuring Istanbul =D

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Shopping Spree *kind of*

Today my books order just arrived, the Fine Art Printing for Photographers: Exhibition Quality Prints with Inkjet Printers, 2nd Edition. And Ctein's Digital Restoration from Start to Finish, Second Edition: How to repair old and damaged photographs. I'm quite interested in printing fine art quality photograph, which means I have to cough more money, which I already don't have. I was going to get a dye-based A4 printer, but upon reading the book, the image quality degradation for dye based ink is much faster than pigment inks. So I'll probably get pigment based A3 Epson R1900.

The photo book from my recent trip to Turkey have finally arrived. It only takes three days to finish and deliver it. Quite impressive.

I have bought a dry cabinet for all my camera gear. I guess it is a necessary investment *cough*..
Not mentioned I also bought an iPad.. I'm bleeding money, I should go to the hospital now. *cough cough*

Friday, September 24, 2010


Today the photography community is filled with enthusiasm when Fuji announced a revolutionary camera design. The significant innovation from Fuji is dubbed the Hybrid Viewfinder, which many photographer has longed for for some time.

The good news is its priced around $1000. Quite affordable for its quality.

Along with that, there are other notable technologies. What I'm interested in is the maturing plenoptic lens from Adobe.
Truly an exciting time to be a photographer

Monday, September 20, 2010


Another strip of my desktop SDRAM has died two weeks ago. This is the second Samsung RAM that quit on me. I advise you not to buy Dell products. My last ASUS mainboard lasts for 5 years without any problem whatsoever. My next rig will definitely a DIY. Cheaper and more reliable.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

More of Turkey

One thing that strikes me about Turkey is its water. I'm baffled why the guide recommend us not to drink from tap water, even after boiling it. But I think now I know why. Turkey depends on its agriculture sector to be self sustained, hence the widely used fertilizer.. or pesticide can affect the underground water system. No amount of boiling can get rid of the chemicals.

Turkey is a beautiful place with nice people.. (and beautiful too).

The most breathtaking hot air balloon ride in the world! (until I get on something more exciting :D)

Wednesday, September 08, 2010


Few days ago I borrowed a pen tablet to edit in LR3. I often have to dodge and burn the pictures taken with my D300. The problem is that it is difficult to use mouse to follow the various shape / contour of the object. For some pictures such as landscape photos, I can just apply a GND filter effect to it. Using a pen on tablet greatly improve the editing experience. It is so natural like hand drawing.

See the difference ? But still.. I have problem with the edge of the object. I have to edit them very carefully to avoid aberration like effect.

Monday, September 06, 2010


Not the one you have on your plate :)
Just got back from overseas trip with some wonderful people. And have learned a few lessons in taking pictures too.
The most important one : Go with a friend, preferably a pro photographer! So you have a good pictures of youself! LoL

I find DSLR metering is a little bit unreliable, I prefer the Live View system, because human brain is still the best tool there is out there.

Kaiser Wilhelm Fountain

The Blue Mosque
Topkapi Palace

Yeah.. so 'touristy' I know ;p

Sultanhani Caravanserai

Too much picture in one post.. I'll continue later :)

Wednesday, September 01, 2010


My lens list so far :
Nikkor 70-300G
Tamron 17-50mm / f2.8

I think I'm quite happy with the Tamron. Just got back from a holiday. Versatile and capable lens.
Now if only the photographer was equally capable ;)

I'm considering a prime or two, possibly 35 and/or 50mm.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

To Do List

  • go to Japan
  • go to Turkey *21-8-10*
  • backpack to Central Europe
  • go to Greece
  • visit New Zealand!
  • I heard Alaska is beautiful.. so why not? =D
  • go somewhere and see herds of sheep.. (yes, that's right.. sheep!)
  • enjoying New Zealand's view and laid-back lifestyle :)
  • learn Seven Stars Sword style
  • buy a better camera (affordable ones hopefully =p), eyeing Nikon D90/D700 *Aug 10*
  • iPad! Do I need to say more ? xD *done 9-10-10
  • Go to Bali (for the fourth time..)

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Twitter is the new FaceBook..

... almost. One thing I don't like about FB is that nowadays people are using it for commercial purposes. They tag their friends or acquaintances in their products photos. Its a social network, not network marketing site!!!
Now I've been using Twitter for some time. Its relatively free of junk. Most of the messages are genuinely sincere, and there are just few nonsensical messages (unless y'know.. people problem). So why almost ? Twitter stability problem thats why. It often overloaded, even though they are using Amazon cloud services, it just doesn't scale.

Anyway.. I'm waiting for D90 replacement as expected by a lot of people. But then again that means I have to pay early adopter's tax. -_-!

Thursday, June 24, 2010


I guess it'll take quite some time to get an iPad here. *sigh*

Ok.. now more digital darkroom awesomeness.. by LightRoom 3
Unadjusted RAW image (left) - Processed image (right)

HUGE difference!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Model, lens and Lightroom.

Had my first outdoor model shoot last Saturday, the model was beautiful and friendly, to say the least ;)
I learn a lot of thing from the session. Having brought three lenses, two of which are native micro four thirds lenses and one manual focus lens, in the end I only use one lens. Tried the 20mm pancake first. Hmm... nope.. too far. Next was 14-45 kit lens. The problem is this kit lens produced blurry images!! What?!?!? It suppose to auto focus, right? Right?!? Honestly I don't know what the cause of the problem, but I don't have time to waste. So I switched quickly to Nokton VC 35mm/f1.4.

My Panasonic GF-1 with VC Nokton Classic 35mm

I got about one thirds of good pictures out of my camera. By good I mean well focused image with good lighting and composition. I found out that at f1.4 the lens will produce slightly soft results, which is the problem for the rest of the images. I don't have the exact information because being a mechanical lens, it doesn't feed any data to the camera to be saved as EXIF data. But the lens produce beautiful images nonetheless.

I personally prefer to shoot raw because there are much more dynamic range available for adjustment.
And that is where Adobe LightRoom 3 come into play. I'm impressed with this software, and its the first expensive software I will buy, other than the OS itself three years ago.
See the difference ?

RAW (left) and processed image (right)

What really helps me is the ease of use and workflow process. I took about 300+ shots that morning. All I have to do is import all the RAW files into the catalog and tweak them with a few clicks of  buttons or some slider adjustment. In the above picture, I corrected the white balance and few light adjustment. I haven't been able to get significant noise reduction though.

She picked this picture for her tweet.

Update: I took the plunge and bought LR3 this morning.. yeaay!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Activist Photographer - Save the ocean life

A presentation from a photographer on TED. It makes me so sad to watch it.
Good thing I don't like seafood. Perhaps I should start learning how to dive..

Thursday, June 03, 2010


I have this urge to buy a printer and do my own photo printing... hmmm...
Lets see.. more expenses.. OK maybe in 1-2 months from now..

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Slow hand

Took some night shots tonight after dinner. I think my steady hand limitation is only about 1/20 - 1/15. Anything slower, the picture will be blurred. LoL. I understand why people say tripod is an essential gear for night photography, but for me its too cumbersome. I had a few successes with 1/10 or so, depending on luck :)

Lucky shot, sharp at f1.7, 1/20s

The next camera I will own shall have IS.

On a side note, I think DSLRs are becoming common these days. I saw at least ten people with DLSR just tonight. There was even a girl whipped out her DSLR out of her handbag!
I attended an event, and the place was swamped with photographers. Not mentioned the ones who shot at well... awkward angle. OK maybe its not that unusual.. but please wear a more fitting attire?

Not mentioned photographers are ruining the scene. I mean.. where can I get a clear shot without those guys in the picture?

Can you count how many photographers with SLR in the picture ?

Even this kid have an SLR...

Yes.. really!