Reflecting My Year 2011 in Photography

First and foremost, I am not a full-time photographer, I am not a professional photographer. I am just a hardcore photographer who loves photography, travel, sports and events!

Photography is one of the most beautiful and interesting art form in its visual sense, it can also be provocative and photojournalistic at all levels, it also allows me to appreciate arts in its other forms, such as paintings, abstract art, performances etc etc … The photography style defines each and every photographer, uniquely and individually, sometimes the photographer knows his/her photography style, sometimes, he/she might not know at all. At times, it takes another photographer to help define and update another photographer what’s their style of photography. It’s so special and unique to each individual photographer.

Looking back and reflecting my year 2011 in Photography, there have been great moments/opportunities to be invited and be part of major events photography, armed with media access privileges, with many many big thanks to my networks of PR companies, business partners, friends and alumni groups.

– OCBC Cycle 2011

– Bare Your Sole 2011

– Singapore Social Media Day 2011

– Canon Lion City Cup 2011

– VAS SG Beach Volleyball Open Championships 2011

– SCC Twenty-20 Cricket Tournament 2011

– Singapore Handball League Tournament 2011

– SCC Rugby 7s 2011

– 20th WOC World Orchid Conference Singapore 2011

– AAS 56th Anniversary Gala Dinner 2011 – Official Photographer

– Special Preview – Gardens By The Bay

Without a doubt, the access to the above list of events were a huge highlight for me, it’s not just about being very happy to be able to shoot at those events, it’s also a small little testimonial for me on how far my photography, social media networking and writing, my 3 in 1 strengths had brought me today.

As for my skills and knowledge in photography, even though I have a certain level of knowledge and skills in photography, there is still a lot for me to learn, there’s always something new to learn in photography, from skills to styles to techniques. Learning is a life-long journey and I must always keep on learning – this will also and must be applied to my photography!

The year 2011 is also a year that brings me closer to the heartlands, back to the roots and be involved in some form of community activism, with my personal projects on

Old Places Singapore

We Support The Green Corridor in Singapore

Heritage, Culture, Preservation and Conservation

What defines my photography style? Ironically, maybe I know, maybe I don’t know, maybe it needs another photographer to give me a hint ?

Reflecting back at my photography in 2011, here’s my collection of photographs taken in the year 2011, shared on my Flickr ! Happy viewing !

Looking ahead for my photography in 2012, what lies ahead ? Well, I will do my sharing after I go away into my deep thoughts, thinking, “digging” through my heart and soul and brains of course, before writing it down. Stay tuned !

I would like to wish all my friends, partners, supporters, partners, readers etc etc … Happy New Year 2012 ! Good luck & all the best in the Year 2012! With blessings, great health & career growth!Good luck & all the best in the Year 2012! With blessings, great health & career growth! May your photography grows exponentially too! Thank you very much from the bottom of my heart for your support and giving me the opportunities, privileges and blessings in my photojournalistic journey in 2011 !

Bukit Timah Railway Station to Holland Road (Bridge)

Not too long ago, there were train operations in Singapore, operated by the KTM and running from Tanjong Pagar Railway Station through Bukit Timah Railway Station before heading up towards Woodlands, across the Causeway and travel into Malaysia. With the agreement between Singapore and Malaysia Governments, the KTM Railway Stations and land space were returned back to Singapore  while the tracks were supposed to be removed and returned back to the Malaysia.

During the period leading up to the return and last day of the KTM Railway operations in Singapore, it gained massive interest and following, from taking photographs, trekking along the railway tracks, reminisce of the olden days, public consultation on the future of the Green Corridor and outcry over the removal of the railway tracks. I would not go too much into the details of the happenings and timeline after the return of the KTM Railway, it can probably become a mini thesis of the happenings and follow-ups, public consultations, exhibitions, discussions between different bodies. I had been documenting, photographing and writing on the Green Corridor as much as I could, do check out my The Green Corridor Collection on Flickr!

Map of the Green Corridor Stretch (Bukit Timah Railway Station to Holland Road)  – Maps attributed to OneMap by SLA, http://www.onemap.sg/index.html and CY Leong.

This Green Corridor is now officially known as the Rail Corridor, while the plans and ideas are currently still in discussion, planning and consultation between different bodies, the public and the government, the final plans for the Rail Corridor is still unknown. Most of the Rail Corridor is currently not yet open to the public again, however, there is a 1.4km stretch of station and railway land open to the public from September 16, southwards from the steel bridge along Bukit Timah Road towards Holland Road, that was announced via Channel News Asia. I had been wanting to walk this stretch and see for myself first hand how the changes were really like after the removal of the tracks, the surroundings. My business, time and other personal commitments stalled my plans, finally, I was able to set aside a bit of my time on Boxing Day, to explore this 1.4km stretch.

First and Foremost, with the removal of the railway tracks, some things once removed it will never be the same again. 

The railway tracks were covered up with soil/earth, grass is growing nicely on top of it, although not as natural as the surrounding flora and fauna, it somehow tries to fit into the greenery and surroundings, considering the factors, it’s quite good actually. There was a concern on the greenery, the wildlife and reserve, known as the Clementi Woodlands, being affected by the removal works. From my trek up and down this 1.4km railway land stretch, the damage (if any) looks minimal, the wildlife can be seen and heard, from the birds chirping away, to the dragonflies and fishes inside the small clear flowing stream and pond.

It’s definitely comforting that this stretch of the Rail Corridor still retains the aura, greenery, tranquil and natural beauty, while it’s a real pity that the railway tracks cannot be retained, I sincerely hope that this Rail Corridor or Green Corridor, will stay as a green belt, a green spine that gives Singapore a outdoor recreational and leisure area, for Singaporeans to remember her railway history, heritage and culture, along with space for trekking, running, walking, nature and wildlife studies, cycling. What exact plans/developments will the Rail Corridor be in the future ? We will know it soon in the next few years to come. Do follow We Support The Green Corridor or the Rail Corridor and look out for the updates!

Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

Nature Society (Singapore) Public Walk @ Bukit Brown 24th Dec 2011

A lush beautiful and peaceful greenery tucked away close to the middle of Singapore, near her Central Catchment Area, affectionately known to the locals as Kopi Sua (in Hokkien) or 咖啡山, this is the Bukit Brown area. This area is of great importance and significance in our Singapore’s history and heritage, with many pioneers and philanthropists of early Singapore buried there.

With Singapore’s limited landspace and thirst for expansion, Bukit Brown is slated for re-development, firstly, with the building of roads across this area, supposing to ease the traffic woes around there. This is only the initial stage with future plans for Bukit Brown being further re-developed into areas for housing development. There was a public outcry, it wasn’t just affecting the dead people below the ground at Bukit Brown, we are destroying flora and fauna, wildlife and animal sanctuary, and most importantly history, heritage and culture.

I was also following the developments and discussions of the Bukit Brown, reading it online via the social media channels and decided to join Nature Society (Singapore) Public Walk @ Bukit Brown on 24th December 2011 morning, led by Hang Chong of NSS, who gave us a great tour and overview of history, heritage, wildlife, flora and fauna of Bukit Brown. When I was hiking around  with the rest of the group, the lush greenery is very tranquil and beautiful, the peace can hardly be found in modern cosmopolitan busy hectic Singapore.

This was also the time to learn more about our culture, heritage and history, we can do so much more in this few areas, it was an eye-opener for me, a reminder to myself, we must always keep on learning and never stop learning, in one area, learning from the forefathers of Singapore, with their entrepreneurship, philanthropy and giving it back to society is something so precious that no amount of monetary value can be placed on it and many of them are there at Bukit Brown.

You can do a part too, support the movements to preserve and save Bukit Brown, follow them on these 2 sites on Facebook

Save Bukit Brown Cemetery – The Roots of Our Nation

Heritage Singapore – Bukit Brown Cemetery 

We are not just preserving history, heritage and culture. We are also preserving a lush greenery belt that is a sanctuary for wildlife, flora and fauna and lastly an untouched green space in concrete Singapore. There are still much for me to photograph and document and I would plan to go back there soon again, to continue with the photojournalism coverage of Bukit Brown.


Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

Epson Projector Launch

Epson,  a world leader in digital imaging and they are the top projector manufacturer in the industry, hosted us on a friday evening, 16th December 2011, at Talent Cafe in the Tanjong Pagar area. It was an evening of fun, technology presentation, reviews, hands on experience with some of the Epson projectors on display during the Epson Projector event.

Photograph Courtesy of Epson Singapore and XPR.

A great time to catch up with old blogger/social media/photography friends, network with the friendly and hospitable Epson Singapore staff and of course, the friendly folks from XPR. Nice food with drinks in a cosy and comfortable environment, it was a nice location to know more about the projectors!

There were 3 projectors showcased during the evening

 MG 850 HD 

Photograph Courtesy of Epson Singapore and XPR.

EH-TW8000

Photograph Courtesy of Epson Singapore and XPR.

EB-435W

Photograph Courtesy of Epson Singapore and XPR.

After a short presentation, we tried and tested the 3 different projectors and had our dinner, drinks and back to testing the projectors. The projectors showcased were targeted for different purposes and usage, a small technical review is available on my personal blog post!

Photograph Courtesy of Epson Singapore and XPR.

Photograph Courtesy of Epson Singapore and XPR.

Beside the projectors, we had fun being photographed and had our photos printed by our lovely hosts Epson Singapore and XPR, using the Epson portable photo printer, for us to bring back home! The Epson projectors are state of the art, modern and powerful projectors, do check them out and you might find a projector that suits your needs and budget!

Elephant Parade Photography Adventure @ Marina Bay

A morning photography adventure, to capture colourful elephants around the Marina Bay area, don’t worry, they are not the real life mammal elephants, instead, they are the elephant statues, with each and every elephant uniquely coloured and painted by an individual artist. The Elephant Parade is the world’s largest open air art exhibition of decorated elephant statues, its purpose is to seek and attract public awareness and support for Asian elephant conservation. More information on how the Elephant Parade started can be found here!

The Elephant Parade Singapore 2011 is visiting Singapore from 11th November 2011 to 11th January 2012, presented by ABN AMRO Private Banking and there are 162 uniquely designed and colourful elephant statues, by local and international artistes around Singapore. On a Sunday morning, 18th December 2011, there was an Elephant Parade Photography Adventure, organized by: Marina Bay Singapore/Urban Redevelopment Authority and supported by: Elephant Parade Singapore, Asian Civilisations Museum, The Fullerton Hotel. It was great fun photographing the Elephant Parade, knowing more about the Elephant cause and saving Elephants movement, the honour of meeting some of the artists along the photography adventure, listening to their sharing on how their unique designs came about and their inspirations behind their drawings and designs on the elephant statutes.

This was also a great time to network and meet old friends and make new friends, from the photography circle to the social media/blogging/twitter circle. Starting from One Raffles Quay South Tower, walking towards Marina Promontory, Marina Bay City Gallery, Marina Bay Sands, Esplanade, Raffles Place MRT, Asian Civilisations Museum and finally Fullerton Hotel. The morning rain showered us twice, however, it didn’t fail to dampen any of the photographers spirits! We just rush and find shelter that’s all and wait for the rain to stop!

At the end point of the photography adventure, we were kindly hosted by Fullerton Hotel with light refreshments, relaxing and having fun with the quiz, hosted by Juliana Tan of Marina Bay Division, who was also the main organiser behind the Elephant Parade Photography Adventure at Marina Bay.

There are still more Elephant Statues around the island of Singapore for me to capture, I would try to capture all 162 of them before the exhibition tours another country!


Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

 

Let’s all help to spread the cause, let’s save the Elephants !

 

Heritage Along Footpaths

Do you remember these Old Trades, Food and Services ?

Street Barbers

Cobblers

Born in the late 70s, growing up in the 80s as a young kid, I still can remember the above Old Trades, Food and Services, even though I didn’t go to the fortune teller when I was a kid and didn’t get to taste the ice ball, I can see the cobblers and kachang puteh sellers around Singapore. One of my best memories was the kachang puteh seller at the Old Cathay Cinema when it was just a 2 stories cinema (it is now the Cathay Cineleisure Cineplex) and I would love to buy the sweet kachang puteh from him!

Fortune Tellers

 

Singapore’s National Heritage Board organised a Heritage Event, known as Heritage Along Footpaths, bringing us back in time and history, to re-introduce trades that were once common in Singapore. This would definitely suits the older generation because it would invoke many of their memories – childhood, teenager, growing up years and suits the younger and middle generation too, sharing the memories that their seniors/forefathers had last time

Ice-ball Sellers

Heritage Along Footpaths was held on 2 weekends, 3rd and 4th December and 10th and 11th December 2011, from 10am to 5pm, at 2 locations : The Singapore Art Museum and Stamford Arts Centre (along the mural wall facing Middle Road). I went to the Singapore Art Museum and I had a great nostalgic time there, eating my kachang puteh, tasting ice ball for the first time in my life! Well, I didn’t get my shoes repaired by the cobbler or got my fortune told by the fortune tellers, nevertheless, it was great to see them back again, even for a while.

 Kachang Puteh Sellers

Our Singapore’s Heritage Along Footpaths, will you remember them ? Will they survive in this fast changing cosmopolitan modern city living ? How can our future generations remember what is their forefathers time like ? I sincerely hope that they will be able to survive and continue on, even though the challenges today just make it very difficult. For a start, let’s all start to spread the word and continue the story telling, of our heritage, culture and history to our current young and future generations.

Let’s Welcome Verve Pizza Bar at Marina Bay City Gallery!

Verve Pizza Bar, the 4th restaurant opened by Verve Holdings, an awesome dining place (with great views of the modern cosmopolitan Marina Bay) for authentic Italian Pizza and homemade Gelato! My first visit there was on 24th September 2011 and we were hosted by Rob and Karen, along with their wonderful, friendly and hardworking staff of Verve Pizza Bar, to a great dining experience with my friends, the beautiful memories and experiences written down here! Their motto is “Simple Things Done Right” and they definitely live up to their motto with their delicious authentic Italian Pizzas and Homemade Gelato!

On 1st December 2011, I was kindly and honoured to be invited by Rob and Karen, and through Marina Bay Singapore, to be part of their official opening event for Verve Pizza Bar at Marina Bay City Gallery. Rob and Karen are great hosts, very hospitable and friendly, a hallmark of Verve Pizza Bar and these traits can be seen across all their staff. Verve Pizza Bar is a great venue with awesome landscape views of Marina Bay, excellent authentic Italian Pizzas that I still can’t get enough of and of coures, homemade Gelato that is simply irresistible.

There’s a great list of authentic Italian Pizzas, you have to visit Verve Pizza Bar and try all of them! Do check out their list of pizzas here on their website! Oh yes, you must try their Homemade Gelato!! Do check out their list of Homemade Gelato here on their website! During the official opening event, we had a great time tasting the various authentic Italian Pizzas that the friendly staff of Verve Pizza Bar were serving out to us guests there!

 

Here’s some useful information for all my readers!

Verve Pizza Bar

Opening Hours :

Sun till Thur – 11am till 12mn

Fri, Sat & Eve of PH – 11am till 2am

T: 6634 3220
11 Marina Boulevard

Ground floor, Marina Bay City Gallery
(next to open air Wilson carpark)
Singapore 018940
Website : http://verve.sg/
Congratulations to Rob and Karen, on the official opening of their 4th restaurant, Verve Pizza Bar at Marina Bay City Gallery!! Awesome pizzas and gelato, you have to visit them and try it out!!

1st Total Lunar Eclipse – 10th Dec 2011

For all the things in life, there is always a first time, that is a very true real life quote, in whatever things that you do. On 10th December 2011, it was my first time photographing a total lunar eclipse! Even with years of shooting photography, having the internet and Google search engines to help you find tips on photographing total lunar eclipse, it’s still an interesting and awesome challenge to try it the first time!

A group of photographers and friends, were invited to view and photograph the total lunar eclipse together, at One Fullerton Rooftop, a great time to catch up with old friends from the photography and social media scene, making new friends too, under the stars, watching the Total Lunar Eclipse taking place, sharing tips and experiences! Sing Astro volunteers were there too, with their giant telescope for us to view the solar system, educating and sharing their knowledge with us, on the eclipse and the planet Jupiter with the moons orbiting the planet Jupiter! Oh yes, do take a look at how I positioned and prepared my camera setup to capture the eclipse!

Eclipses are one of the most fascinating natural astronomical events that can happen in the sky, a wonderful natural phenomenal by Mother Nature, something very unique and special, that does not happen often. The Total Lunar Eclipse on 10th December 2011, commenced at 7:33pm local Singapore time and ended on 1:29am (11th December 2011).

 

 

Various types of Lunar Eclipses

1)   The Total Lunar Eclipse, which occurs when the moon travels completely into the earth’s umbra (shadow) and turns into bloody red colour at totality (approximately 10:30PM on that day).

2)   The Partial Lunar Eclipse, which occurs when the moon is oriented in a way that only part of it dips into the earth’s umbra.

3)   The Penumbral Lunar Eclipse, which occurs when the moon passes through the faint penumbral portion of the earth’s “weaker” shadow.

Information kindly provided by Sing Astro.

This was my first maiden total lunar eclipse photography, it’s very challenging and fun, bringing me back to this golden rule that I hold on to – “Learning is ongoing & lifelong, a rule that I always hold on to & it applies to my photography, always learning & trying & shooting.”

This wonderful event would not be possible without the organisation, coordination and execution by Juliana Tan of Marina Bay Division, URA, Fullerton Heritage and Sing Astro (non-profit society). Many thanks to all parties for providing us photographers and social media people, a gathering of fun, networking and photography! For updates on events and happenings around Marina Bay Singapore, do Like and follow them on their Facebook Page!

December 2011 Marina Bay Events

It’s December 2011 and there’s many interesting events and activities lined up at the heart of Marina Bay, to celebrate and usher in Christmas and New Year!

Here’s some of the wonderful Marina Bay Events that I am looking forward to for the month of December !

Extreme Sailing Series at Marina Bay

Date : 9th – 11th December 2011

The final and ninth Act of the global 2011 Extreme SailingSeries and Marina Bay will be graced by 10 Extreme 40 teams out on the waters of Marina Bay in Singapore and I am looking forward to catch them in action there!

Marina Bay Singapore Countdown and New Year Eve Fireworks

Date : 31st December 2011

My all time favourite event is to find a spot at the Marina Bay, find a location to soak in the Countdown atmosphere and to shoot the beautiful, amazing and exciting New Year Eve Countdown Fireworks with the gorgeous night landscape of Marina Bay as my background! Check out the various fireworks of Marina Bay over the past few years here on my Flickr and if you like to learn about fireworks photography, check out my Fireworks Photography Tips here!

Do check out Marina Bay Singapore Facebook Page for more information and updates, remember to LIKE the page and stay updated! Here’s the online version of Marina Bay 2011 December events !