i Light Marina Bay 2014 (:

It’s been quite some time since the usual suspects met up. Somehow, we agreed on 8th March sometime back. We had no idea where we wanted to go…From Haw Par Villa to the Green Corridor to King Albert Park. It was during one of my lunch walk that it hit me. We can go to i Light at Marina Bay! (:

And we did go to i Light at Marina Bay. Silly me arranged to meet way too early so we spent about an hour plus nuar-ing at the seats outside Esplanade.

What is i Light Marina Bay?

i Light Marina Bay is Asia’s only sustainable light art festival that showcases the creative use of art. The ‘light art’ installations are placed all around the bay – outside MBS, along the promontory and outside Esplanade.

The last time I went to i Light was back in 2010 together with Vivian and Vincent. We went there in our heels and office wear. Can’t imagine how we survived that ;p My experience then was…boring. It’s literally art. They are pretty but that’s about it.

the teddy bears (i Light 2010).

That explains why I didn’t go back when the subsequent festivals. Heh.

However! This year’s installations caught my eye while walking to buy lunch this past week and since we have nowhere to go…might as well.

i Light Marina Bay 2014

How was it? Quite fun! (: The art installations are mostly interactive! You can either step on them or switch on some lights or another.

My favorite has to be this –

B9 - Cloud

B9 – Cloud

The Cloud is made up of many any light bulbs and the “strands” you see hanging are actually metal chains that you can pull to switch on the lights. Like the little kids around me, I went up to the installation and started tugging at the chains and smiling in wonder (if there’s such a description) when they light up 😀 But I think something dropped out while the kids while tugging at it cos I heard something dropped to the ground (sounds like a bulb) and a collective “Ohhh.” from the crowd. Eeps!

The most abstract piece has to be the net hanging at the floating platform. It reminded me of a uterus for some reason. No, really. Don’t ask me why. Hahahah!

the net/milky way.

While on the way out from the floating platform, I turned around and it was an EUREKA! moment. The net was a replica of the Art Science Museum!

eureka!

There are many other installations like giant dandelions, a car that only lights up when you cycle, giant teddy bears, wishing tree where you can write a wish and throw it up (go early!), loads of hearts and many many more. I think we missed out quite a few somehow (and our legs are already crying out for help).

똑똑한 곰. Professor Bear.

i thought they looked like egg yolks. but…it’s a crocodile!!

Here’s one of my favourite photo. The installation is quite plain but I took it from the bottom and was lucky to have caught the perfect timing and hence color!And since I won’t be going to Korea this year to look at the cherry blossoms, this is close enough!

they remind me of cherry blossoms (:

they remind me of cherry blossoms (:

Ohhhh! I had a brainwave towards the end of the walk. There’s this installation where they have light plates on the floor and loads of folks are running around on it. So I told the usual suspects that it would be nice if we do long exposure…Have a person stand in the middle while the rest of the folks are running around them. Heee. DK set it up and we did the shot!

group shot. photo from DK.

DK said we should used flash so that we can see out face. But by then we have already left and JUST TOO HUNGRY! Haha. So yeah.

Should you go to i Light 2014?

Yes! The interactive “light art” installations are pretty fun!

If you have kids, you can bring them along too!

Oh and the floating platform is open. So you can sit on the ‘lawn’ and look at the night sky. It’s really relaxing. When we sat down, we almost didn’t want to move.

If you plan to walk the entire route, do sat aside about 2-3 hours. Otherwise, you can do a short walk around the area after dinner.

For more information, you can visit the official i Light Marina Bay 2014 website here.

 

Peranakan Trail (:

While QC-ing the new tourism site for STB [warning: flash in site. loads!], I stumbled upon the Peranakan Trail. Being 1/16 of a Peranakan, I am naturally curious and I tweeted it to the photog gang!

SO! Last Saturday, Victor and I was itching to shoot and he suggested the JooChiat/Katong district! He even found a really helpful brochure from URA – here.

And viola! Off we go on a Peranakan Trail! (:

colorful houses (:

First time setting foot in JooChiat! And I have to say, it has a rather interesting mix of buildings. A nice modern building can be situated next to a really rundown rustic building. Private estates are mixed with shop houses! POOF! An American pub popping out of nowhere! And I noticed something. There’s loads and loads of hotels. Big ones, small ones and not-so-big/small ones! Here’s a few –

Joo Chiat Hotel.

Jie Wei Hotel.

some random hotel. reminds me of Scarlet though.

Of course, not forgetting the Hotel 81! Didn’t take a picture of it though!

Other than hotels, loads of food stalls too? I don’t know if these are famous but they are places that cook food! I’m not much of a foodie 😄

Fei Fei Noodles.

some coffee shop.

I must have lost my mind or something because I went onto the roads many times that day to take pictures of the building. Hearing me shout, “..if there’s incoming cars, call me!” is common that day!

at the road junction.

As we ventured into the Joo Chiat area, the feeling that we are no longer in Singapore grew. It reminded us somewhat of our trip to Malacca last year! There were rustic buildings, shops that still uses the wooden doors, shops closed for renovation and many more!

rustic.

The best part is, we actually saw little kids playing on the streets. Half-naked with a stick in their hands! Great photog oppurtunity but I think we were a little shocked so none of us snapped that moment. Really feels like kampung!

scooter.

It was really a good experience (: If not for photography and the great photo friends, I wouldn’t have even stepped food into the area! So thank you, Victor! For being the ‘guide’ again. QQ for sticking with us despite not feeling well. And Shuyun! For ditching Kampong Buangkok!

Where are we heading to next?! (:

waiting.

For more pictures, go to my Facebook – Peranakan Trail! Comments and feedback are welcome(d?)!

my virgin trip to Chinatown(:

Okay, the parents owned a shop up till 2008 so we never really had the chance to go to Chinatown during CNY. I mean, sure! I bugged them to drive through Chinatown every new year (when we still have a car) but thats about it!

So when I was assigned by STB to head down to shoot the decorations this year, I was kind of thrilled (:

the 'entrance' (:

Never mind that I didn’t have the media pass for the Light-Up. Jimmy, Veron, Shirley, Ben and I headed down for the light-up ceremony (: 2 days later, Veron and I went down again to the bazaar! JW joined us after his work too!

The decorations this year is pretty alright. The usual flowers and stuff (: I am kinda surprised that they didn’t hang the word “春” upside down like they usually do (:

spring is here(:

beautiful background for portraits (:

It was one-helluva experience! Especially when we went to the food bazaar. It was a hot Monday afternoon but the place was already pretty crowded! I got kinda lost and had to tweet for help 😛

瓜子! i like the salty outer covering 😛

my favorite pineapple tarts!!(:

And who can forget about getting ‘hit on’ by the overly friendly stall-owners?

the overly friendly owners.

Yes, I still have one of their handphone numbers. DO NOT ASK WHY! I was so afraid to walk pass their stall on my way back that I walked one big round instead. Note to self: NEVER visit that place without at least a guy friend! Or any place at all for that matter. I almost didn’t dare to buy muah-chee that day because the stall-owners were all guys. I just DO NOT want to be hit on by weird guys again. As of Jan 2010, that’s like 10 times in a month! GOSH.

ANYWAYS!! Plenty of stuff to see at the bazaar(: And it’s a must-go if you want to soak in the festive spirit! You can also park yourself in the cross-section where there’s about 4 stalls selling Taiwan muah-chee and listen to how they ‘lure’ the customers to buy from them! The funniest I heard was, “..来来!那边试,这边买!” which translates to “..try there! buy here!” Quite cute really!

So yups! Head on down to Chinatown if you can!

And I guess, thanks STB! I love shooting for you guys (: Cause in some ways, I am forced to go to places I would not have gone myself(:

(: havent process lah!

More photos up soon (probably tomorrow) on Facebook! 😀 And my article on visitsingapore.com should be up soon too! (:

Portrait Class and Lesson Learnt(:

Had portraiture class yesterday with the rest of E02 (: Pretty fun!

Favorite shot –

(:

(:

Not as brave as the laoshi or Melvyn, so I went out to the balcony and sat on the balcony ledge instead. And I quite like this shot (: Especially the background.

Someone suggested that I turned the following shot in B&W (hopefully it’s the correct one) –

black & white.

black & white.

Probably more tinkering needs to be done though. But yups!

Lesson Learnt

While going through my photos, you will see that my focus is a bit koyak (that seems to be my favorite word of the month). It is either on the skirt, on the nails or everywhere else BUT the face!

wrong wrong wrong. haiyo!

wrong wrong wrong. haiyo!

Have checked that my camera was not in continuous mode so I have 2 explanations –

1. As I use my left eye (even though i am a right-hander) to look through the viewfinder, my forehead presses again the button and hence shifting my focus box to jump. KNS! Must lock it in the future.

2. (And this is probably the MAIN result) I got too distracted and excited by all the buzz and fuzz around me that I sort of anyhow focus. I didn’t want to lose the moment! So I just made sure that I am focusing somewhere and then *SNAP* GAH!

So, note to self. Calm down and concentrate(:

Another thing is…major FAIL.  I love bokeh. bokeh bokeh bokeh! So when I am using my 50mm, I like to push my aperture DOWN to F1.8. But the thing is, when I am shooting something that doesn’t need a bokeh, I forgot to change the aperture! So my focus was kinda thin. Yups. This can be chucked to the easily excitable factor too.

SO YES! I WILL LEARN TO CALM DOWN! *ohmmmm*

the photoshoot(:

It’s been quite some time since the plurk photog gang has gone on a photoshoot. Like really really long.

Last week, I started bugging Ah Boy (aka Darran) about going back to nature cause I needed the sun! And going back to nature also mean that I can bring D300 out for a spin! YAY! The original plan was to meet at 2pm on Saturday and head to Labrador Park. But then! Victor reminded us that we have been to Labrador Park before!  SO! The plan was to be confirmed on Saturday morning since Ah Boy was not feeling too well.

On Saturday morning, I woke up and sms-ed everyone. Gave them two choices – SBG or Sentosa Nature Walk (Shuyun’s suggestion). Ah Boy was too sick to join us. And Victor + Shuyun both chose Sentosa! So OFF WE GO!!

I was late (as usual) ! And when we went to buy the tram tickets, we got distracted (okay, fine! I got distracted) cause there was this little bazaar going on. And I found this cute little boy running around with a teddy bear keychain.  So I just sort of squatted there and started snapping away.

from victors camera.

from victor's camera.

Look at that grin on my face! I was tickled by the little kid who kept running forward and backwards, forward and backwards as I zoom my lens in and out(: CUTENESS! And I guess, I was happy because I got the shot that was stuck in my head.

holding on tightly.

holding on tightly.

shot of the boy with his very amused parents at the back.

shot of the boy with his very amused parents at the back.

And after a good half an hour or so, we were ready to set off to Sentosa! Remember that our destination was the Sentosa Nature Walk right? Well..guess what? WE NEVER DID REACH THEM! Okay, we did. But we only walk like 10% of the entire trail-.- Why? Cause of the following reasons –

a) Distracted by Pinkys (85% of the reason why)

what is she doing daydreaming?!

what is she doing daydreaming?!

Victor and Shuyun was snapping and placing their Pinkys in various position at this slope that was on the way up to the nature trail. And then when we finally reached the top, they started placing it on objects like the binnoculars and stuff. It was really funny! I tried to take some surroundings shots but nah. Those were never my forte or interest. Taking landscape. PLAT. I don’t know what to focus on or how the framing should go 😦 So..I kinda joined in too-.-

the bunny that was abandoned.

the bunny that was abandoned.

b) Distracted by the happenings around us (10% of the reason).

When we finally reached the top and finished with the Pinkys shots, we decided to have a drink! But! The Tiger Sky thingy thingy just came down and we started crowding around that area shooting.

(Eh..WAIT! I didn’t upload my shot of the Sky thingy thingy! BLEH! Ohwells. This will have to do for now.)

self potrait for September Challenge?

self potrait for September Challenge?

And when we are finally ready to head to Subway for a drink, the snake charmers by the side had a customer! And snap-snap for me!

he looks kinda smug right? :P

he looks kinda smug right? 😛

AND THEN! When we finally reached the Imbiah Lookout, I saw kids playing with water! So snap snap! (While trying to avoid getting the camera wet!)

glee!

glee!

By the time we settled down for a drink, the sun was about to and we got distracted by the Pinkys at Subway again. And when we finally got to the trail …

more pinkys shot with the cable car.

more pinkys shot with the cable car.

c) I was late in the beginning (5% of the reason)

SO! We never did walk through the entire trail 😦

the path to nature!

the path to nature!

And since the sky was already getting dark and we decided not to walk the entire trail, we tried out the interval shooting mode in my d300 (: Cam-whore at its best! Here’s two of the samples!

losers?

losers?

RAWR!

RAWR!

Totally fun, ain’t it? (:

Anyways, it’s been a long time since I went out shooting. No, wait. It’s been a long time since I can shoot without worrying about things or feeling stress. The atmosphere was light and fun (: I can wander off on my own and take as much time as I need. I can also stand around and look if I don’t feel like shooting. There’s no pressure to shoot. I don’t feel like I am in an exam hall. Which was kinda how I felt the last few times I took d300 out. Even when I was shooting at home.

And the pressure of constantly having to buy new equipment. Lens, tripod, more lens, more filter and stuff. the BBB pressure and the urge to buy. It just kinda put more pressure on me when I shoot. That was also the reason why I contemplated quitting E02.

With the stress, I couldn’t focus. And the shots were sucky. And I hated my d300. Contemplating the thought that perhaps I am better off with a compact. But heh. The outing on Saturday changed that(: I feel more at east with d300 now. Still need to learn alot! But all in all, thank you, guys! For providing me such a relaxed environment for me to shoot (:

And I guess, over the weekend, I realised again that shooting is not about the equipment. Or how great the technical aspect of your photo is. For me, shooting/photography is about waiting for the right moment. The picture can mean NOTHING to everyone else. It can be blurred, the WB could be off, the ISO could be wrong. But at the end of the day..As long as you are happy with what you shoot, expressed what you want to expressed with the photos, then okay. YOU GOT IT!

*nods* For now, I am going to stick to my d300 and probably get a dry cabinet. The rest of the stuff? I’ll get them when I feel that I am ready. Which means, I have to borrow a tripod and flash for E02! Anyone? (: