Monday, October 27, 2008

Happy Deepavali !

Some Indian Sweets for all my Hindu Friends !

Happy Deepavali !

Saturday, October 25, 2008

My DIY Project : A Smaller Softbox

My 2nd audition of the Sony Double Exposure didn't go well. The judges told me to wait for phone call if I will be accepted into this competition or not. Well, I do understand that this was a polite way to say :"You are out !" LOL.

After the audition, I was a little bit disappointed and got home and start doing things in my so-call photographic-cum-DIY room. I have this habbit: when I face something bad, I just kept quiet and start to do things so I could forget about my bad feeling. To my surprise, I could finish those tasks that I didn't manage to complete on good mood days! LOL

This time, I made myself a smaller softbox ! I call it Softbox Mini ! LOL

My Softbox Mini !

This softbox measures about 12" x 12". I would make it small enough to be held by hand, and small enough to limit the flash spill to a certain area only. Yup, I am trying to make myself a LumiQuest Softbox. I know that this Lumiquest is super expensive, and I don't think it's available in Malaysia. So, I just make one for myself lah.

First thing first, measurement ! How deep my soft box I need for a 12"x12" flash coverage? I donnu. But it's very easy to find out. What I need to do is stick an Ikea measuring tap onto the wall, and position my flash from the wall so that my flash spill is about 12" like this:

And the flash is about 1 feet (300 mm) away from the wall so to have a 12" flash coverage. If I do remember correctly, my flash was zoomed at 24mm.

So, I have my dimensions. For the material use, I didn't get the corrugated sheets for my Softbox Mini, but the Eva foam sheet that I found in Tesco.

Yup, it comes with black colour, and it's cheap, only RM 5.90 for a piece of about A2 size. One sheet is good enough for my softbox. It's lightweight, easy to cut and easy to shape.

So, just cut out all four sides of the softbox, glue in the aluminium sheets to the internal side of the softbox, join the four sides of the softbox with cloth taps, cover the opening of softbox with the mahjong paper as diffuser, and walla, I have my Softbox Mini !

So, how do I install my softbox mini to my flash ? With the rubber band! LOL. Since it's so lightweight, the rubber band is good enough to secure the softbox in place and soft box stay tight with my flash if I hold it downwards.

My Softbox Mini vs Softbox Ver 2.0!

Ok, let's see the result ! The below photo was taken with F42 + soft box mini on camera left:

Notice the WB is out ? Yup, I forgot to switch the WB ! LOL. It was on AWB.

To my surprise that this softbox mini is small enough to be secured on my F42 and the flash is mounted on my camera! And the result is as follow:

Wow, look at the shadow ! Soft ! And look at the WB ! Now, I confirm that the auto WB function on my F42 works ! LOL

However, I do find the mahjong paper does not provide satisfied result. Hence, I'd gone to Kamdar and brought myself some length of white cotton cloth. I measured the dimension of my softbox mini, and paid a tailor a small amount of money to sew a velcro tap around it and walla, I got a better diffuser !

So, I have this loops side of the velcro tap on my diffuser, and hook side of the velcro strap on my softbox mini, and I'm done !

What I do with this Softbox Mini ? I camwhore !! LOL

I had a really a bad hair day, the barber didn't cut my hair that I wanted, and I have to live with it for about 3 weeks before my hair is long enough to do another cutting.

By the time I finished my Softbox Mini, a call from Sony confirmed my place in the Double Exposure competition. Yup, I'm one of the 30 participants in this contest, and I have to rushed back from Penang a day before the competition starts !

Am I happy about this being "selected" into the competition ? Hmm... well, I knew I wasn't good during the 2nd audition. So, I call myself as the "selected rejected" ones. LOL.

Anyway, since I'm in the competition, I should accerelate myself towards the winning line !

And I had signed a something like a MOU with Sony that I suppose not to Blog about this. Hence, no more post about Double Exposure. :p

Until then, wish me good luck on the competition ! Thank you thank you.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Balik Kampung ~~~ But not me.

My wife is.

This is her 37th week of pregnancy. We could expect to meet our son soon, "very soon" as told by the doctor from her last Monday check up.

Yup, we are preparing to go back to my hometown in Perai, Penang. I always wanted my child to be a Penangite. Well, once a Penangites will always be a Penangite, no ? She will be doing all the one-month long pantang thing in my hometown with the help of my mother.

And that's mean, I'll be home alone for almost 2 months !

So, is it a good news ? Or a bad news ?

Good news is I can start to do lots of things without my wife's knowledge, such as..... *ahem* secret. LOL
And the bad news is I have to do my own laundry ! LOL

Not so easy, Lover Man, said my wife. I'll bring back the laptop and have a 24 hours civilian scout on you ! She grinned evilly ! LOL

Yup, this is the good o'laptop that she's gonna scout me 24 round the clock !

Anyway, we are expecting our son in just one or two weeks time. My feeling is such a mess up that I couldn't tell either I'm in happy stage or in worry stage. Things will be not that easy already, and I shall have to switch myself from a loving husband to a loving father.

"No more gears ! " said my wife.

Well, I guess I have to live with my current toys for a very very long time, eh ? :p

Thursday, October 16, 2008

My Post α Journey - New Kid-to-be in The House!

OMG ! I hear he says:"Ai ya ya ya ya ya ya ya ya ya !"

He talks to me !

But, what did he say ??

Can someone care to spare me a baby talk translator ?

I'm urgently need it !


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

My α Journey - Episode 6 : Beyond the New Frontier...

It was a tiring 2 and half days convention. Talks after talks had been conducted. Once during the convention I felt I was so overloaded with so much information, and yet my build in organic memory storage seems had reached its maximum capacity. I'm thankful to the organiser who had put their effort and time to make this convention to a success one ! Kudos to you guys !

The Speakers.

Well, of course, this is the time when Sony officially announced its latest flagship DSLR, the A900. It's indeed a poisonous piece of gadget to hold. I had to pop in lots of antibiotics and wore an updated Poison Shield before I have gut to step into the convention hall, that is located in the Le Meridian Hotel, Kuala Lumpur.

The poisonous A900 !

Is that a great camera to own one ? I have no comment. I'd write my very own review on this A900 in my next post. No doubt it's a beauty to hold....

What is the best way to poison us to get a copy of this poison ?

Easy, by letting you holding it up and seduce you with cool motorbikes with hot babe !

We had fun ! The Convention came to its peak when the organiser announced the winner who will walk away with an A900 and the winner of Blog and Win Contest, which he/she will walk away with an A700 + SAL 18250 !!

So, how to win an A900 ? It was that easy, by asking questions as much as possible and we stand a chance to win this new A900. Too bad I was such a shy person that only manage to grab some small amount of stickers.

So, who won the A900 ?

This senior owner of Alpha proudly walk away with his A900 !

I participated into the Blog and Win contest. Writing 5 blog entries in English is more complicated than I thought, cause English is not my first language. Well, I am in fact much rely on the spell check plug-in from Firefox, and that was the first time I felt the Oxford Dictionary is such a good book to own one ! A solid 4 days 3 nights of time had been spend into thinking, writing, searching for photos, taking photos and fine tuning my blog entries.

So, does this hard work pay off ? Did I win anything ?

Photo by Jidin. Download from Azrin's Blog.
I did ask if anyone could provide me my hand-sake photo from Alphanatics, but seems like no body wanted to give me a copy. Well, what to do, I'm not famous maaaarrrr ...
Haha !

Yes, I did. 1st Consolation Prize. And what I get ? A handsake with George !
No way !
Of course not the hand sake only lar, but an accessory kit with bag and a batteries. Too bad I had already have this kit...

Then, who won the A700 ?

Azrin won the A700 !!!!!!!
Congrats to him !! He is rock ! His blog is awesome ! His story is such a drama !!! Look at his blog here.

Congratulation, Azrin ! You are the Best !

I was such a little bit close of reaching this A700 + SAL 18250, that's what George told me. Hmm... I might lost because of my bad English. Haha.

You might ask, "You got an A700 liao mar, why need one more ?"
Well, raising a family is not easy, especially my son is going to say hello to this world. Some extra cash would mean a lot to me. :D

Anyway, worth to mention the door gift I received during the Convention. It is a photographer vest which could house a complete camera set within it.

How does the vest look like ? Well, I've ask a supermodel to showcase how the vest look like :

Wow ! So Sexy !
Haha !

Only after that, I found out that the vest had been wrongly wore. So, we corrected it, and re-shoot :

Yeah, that's the way how the vest suppose to be wore. So, it's a great vest ? Yup, it is ! With this vest, no more bag ! See Albert's blog to see how good this vest is !

So, who is this supermodel who show case us the vest ?
Presenting, the great super model :

Yup, that's me !

Oh, I sense lot of vomiting sound out there. LOL

What to do ? I'm not known to most people, and I do not have any pretty girl friend who willing to become my model maaaarrr. So, I have to call this supermodel instead. He charged me a bomb just to take these three pictures only, you know !

So, that sum up my alpha journey, of course, my journey would not stop here. I'll continue to explore more adventures along the Path of Unknown to the New Frontier, that I could never imagine.

Would this come into my life in the future ?
Let's wait and see...

I shall continue my quest to look for The One, The Quest of the Searching The One Photo that Speaks A Thousand Words ....

My α Journey - Episode 1 : In the Beginning ...
My α Journey - Episode 2 : The Evolution...
My α Journey - Episode 3 : In Search of Light ...
My α Journey - Episode 4 : Capturing the Joy of Pre-parenthood ...
My α Journey - Episode 5 : Walking through the Path ...

Thursday, October 9, 2008

My α Journey - Episode 5 : Walking Through the Path ...

The Alpha ...

The Alpha, α, the very first alphabet of the Greek letter. Scientifically, it has many variables, such as coefficient of thermal expansion, the thermal diffusivity etc. But the most important meaning of this alpha is : The first unit in a sequence.

My very first DSLR is an Alpha camera, my first DSLR in my life. That was the time of the year 2007, and I joined the Alpha Community at the first Sony Photographic forum, the forum. Not long after then, the emerged as the main knowledge sharing platform for all Alpha DSLR owners.

Through the forum, I've met new friends everyday. New friends from different background, different races and different occupations. But this never stop our passion in getting to know each other more closely.

The Outings ...

Outings are organised, and we are set to explore places surrounding the place we live. Talks and trainings are provided by some professional photographers.

The 12 Hours KL Photographic Marathon.

The Putrajaya Outing by

The Sungai Congkak Outing by

I gained much knowledge of photography from the outings. Reading in photographic books would only provide me the theories and rules of photo taking techniques, but the hands on would complete the whole training process.

Comments and critics session from each outing reveal all my mistakes. Knowing my own mistakes is essential to bring myself to a higher level of my photographic skill.

The Pros are not hessitate to point out the mistakes make by the participants.

The Convention ...

It is the first of its kind to be organised by Sony Malaysia. Many well known photographers are invited to lecture on their valuable experience of the path their had gone through to reach their professional level. Nothing come in easy way; hard work is the key of elevating himself to a higher level.

400 members had registered and been welcomed to this big event which last for 3 days (10th - 12th October) . The event take place in The Le Meridian Hotel, Kuala Lumpur.

The A900 Tester, professional photographer, Mr Kris LeBoutillier.

The environment is much hotter on the reception area although ball rooms are well chilled.

The anatomy of the A700 on display.

A hot motorbike without a hot babe...
No wonder I feel emptiness in this photo.

Kudos to the men and women for their hard work of making this convention happen.

This is the path I am walking through, the path of Alpha. It all start with the word Alpha, and I have not stop learning from every angle along the path, gaining more and more knowledge on photography so to continue the tradition that once my father started 40 years ago. By the time my son is born, I believe I am knowledgeable to make lots of pictorial memories of him in an artistic ways. One day, when he's grown up, he would tell his young ones the history of the family, that once his father who owns an Alpha camera and he keeps a great photos of me ....

My Alpha journey is not stopping; the journey will continue to the infinite world of unknown ...

My α Journey - Episode 1 : In the Beginning ...
My α Journey - Episode 2 : The Evolution...
My α Journey - Episode 3 : In Search of Light ...
My α Journey - Episode 4 : Capturing the Joy of Pre-parenthood ...
My α Journey - Episode 5 : Walking through the Path ...