Bare Your Sole 2013

On 1st June 2013, I was back for Bare Your Sole 2013, lending the support for the 3rd year in a row. For the Bare Your Sole 2013, I didn’t walk barefoot like the 2 years before, instead I was exploring around the event village and the festivities. As the years went by, the event got bigger and there were more participants for Bare Your Sole 2013, over 5000 people took part in today’s Habitat-Barclays Bare Your Sole 2013 charity walk, choosing to take off their shoes for either 2.5km or 5km to help raise well over S$ 300,000 for Habitat for Humanity Singapore’s ‘Project Homeworks’ comfortably exceeding last year’s total.

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What is Project Homeworks all about ? Project Homeworks was conceived to help improve the living conditions of Singapore’s elderly, sick and physically-challenged citizens.  It was recently reported in Parliament that there are 35,000 vulnerable elderly in Singapore, many of whom live in single room rental flats all over Singapore in unsafe and unsanitary conditions.

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I walked up to Benjamin Sheares Bridge and took some photos from the bird’s eye view top down of the entire event, it was great to see a sea of blue people among the tents, marquees and the gardens. Going back down, chatting with the PR folks from Cohn-Wolfe XPR, understanding more about the events and activities for Bare Your Sole 2013 and I also shared my experiences from my previous Bare Your Sole walks in 2011 and 2012. At the events village, I spotted my old friend who was walking with his colleagues from his company, they had been avid supporters of Bare Your Sole! This wonderful and charitable event will get better and bigger in the future years ahead, it’s a great reminder to all of us that while we had prospered and enjoyed growth in income and having a higher standard of living, there are still people that wasn’t able to catch up and some were left behind. Through events like Bare Your Sole, we can help them in many ways!

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Here’s my stories recap of my Bare Your Sole adventures and photographs, do drop by and check them out, going back in memories! Do continue to support Bare Your Sole social cause and movement!

Support Habitat-Barclays Bare Your Sole 2013

– Walking Barefoot at Bare Your Sole 2011

– Support Habitat-Barclays Bare Your Sole 2012

– Photographs from Bare Your Sole 2011

– Photographs from Bare Your Sole 2012 

Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

11th Canon PhotoMarathon is on 6th July 2013 !

The 11th edition of Canon PhotoMarathon is coming back on the 6th July 2013 ! An exciting and fun photography competition event in Singapore, attracting many photographers here for a competitive yet fun networking photography time! The competition themes are always very challenging and exciting, a great time to test your creativity, planning, conceptualising and shooting within a short time frame for each theme! It’s just two weeks away from the  6th of July 2013 for the 11th edition of Canon PhotoMarathon 2013 !

Canon PhotoMarathon X 2012 with 2419 participants

Photo courtesy of Canon Singapore

The biggest photo competition in the region, the Canon PhotoMarathon, is back for the 11th year! This year’s competition promises participants in both the Student or Open categories with an exciting opportunity to showcase their photography skills and win fantastic prizes, such as an 8-day expenses-paid photo clinic to Japan, hosted by professional photographer Triston Yeo.

Where: Suntec Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre Hall 401-402

When: Saturday, 6th July 2013, 7am – 8pm

Online registration fee: $10 (for both categories)

Walk-in registration fee: $15 for Open Category, $10 for Student Category

For more info: Visit http://www.canon-asia.com/photomarathon/photomarathon.html or email cpm@canon.com.sg

Reflecting back on my Canon PhotoMarathon adventures, here’s a trip back in time of my Canon PhotoMarathon participation and fun!

Canon PhotoMarathon X (2012)

Canon PhotoMarathon 2011

Canon PhotoMarathon 2008 Themes

My First Canon PhotoMarathon (2008) 

If you have not registered for Canon PhotoMarathon 2013, check out the links for more details and you can sign up online! See you there on 6th July 2013 for the 11th edition of Canon PhotoMarathon!!

2014 Sony World Photography Awards open for entries

The 2014 Sony World Photography Awards (SWPA) is now open for entries and welcomes submissions from photographers all over the world. It is organised by World Photography Organisation (WPO) and it is open to Professional, amateur, youth and student photographers. This annual contest is widely recognised as the leading global photographic awardsprogramme, where talents across many diverse fields of photography are discovered and both professional and amateur photographers are invited to share their talents on a global stage.

The winner of the 2014 L’Iris d’Or/Photographer of the Year title will be presented with USD$25,000 and the OpenPhotographer of the Year will receive USD$5,000. All category winners will receive the latest digital imaging equipment from Sony and the Student Focus winner will receive new, cutting edge Sony equipment for their university. Winning and shortlisted photographs will also be published in the 2014 edition of the Sony World Photography Awards book and exhibited at Somerset House, London.

The 2014 Sony World Photography Awards include the following competitions:

  • Professional – 15 categories judged on a series of work
  • Open – 10 categories judged on a single image
  • Youth – three categories for photographers under 20
  • Student Focus – for higher education photography students aged 18-30

The Open and Youth competition will close for entries at 23.59 GMT on Monday 6 January 2014 with the exception of the Professional competition which will close at 23.59 GMT on Thursday 9 January 2014.  A list of categories can be found in the notes to editors below.

The key dates for the 2014 awards are:

  • 6 December 2013 – Student Focus competition closes
  • 6 January 2014 – Open and Youth competition close
  • 9 January 2014 – Professional competition closes
  • 4 February 2014 – shortlist for Professional, Open and Youth competitions revealed
  • 18 February 2014 – Student Focus shortlist announced
  • 18 March 2014 – Open and Youth winners revealed
  • 31 March 2014 – Outstanding Contribution to Photography recipient announced
  • 30 April 2014 – L’Iris d’Or/Photographer of the Year plus Professional category winners and Open, Youth and Student Focus Photographers of the Year revealed at gala awards ceremony held in London
  • 1 May to end-May 2014– 2014 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition at Somerset House, London

Further details about the Sony World Photography Awards and the World Photography Organisation can be found atwww.worldphoto.org.

Whether you are a professional, amateur, youth or student photographer, this would be a great opportunity to put yourself to the test and learn more about your photography, styles and improve by taking part in competitions such as the Sony World Photography Awards. By participating in photography competitions, we can also learn and improve from observing other fellow photographers styles, perspectives and views. Do drop by Sony World Photography Awards website and enter the competition!

Information above courtesy of Sony Singapore and Waggener Edstrom Worldwide.

Photography Fun – Like An Asian Boss

The Apprentice Asia is now running on AXN and in its first season, we are watching some great exciting actions on AXN. The Apprentice Asia, an Asian reality game show for the participants, they are a group of aspiring young businessmen and women compete for the chance to work with Malaysian entrepreneur Tony Fernandes.

For the participants, it’s the journey to be Like An Asian Boss! How would you like to be Like An Asian Boss ? How would you see yourself Like An Asian Boss ? Would you like to see how others and myself see ourselves Like An Asian Boss ? Let me share with you some interesting photos of how I see myself as Like An Asian Boss.

How do I see myself Like An Asian Boss ? Here’s my photos ! Find more photos of #LikeAnAsianBoss on my Instagram!

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I try to look fierce in the above photograph however I looked too nice instead !

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I think this Garfield cat looks more fierce and dominating than me ! 

You can think, imagine, dream and compose your own Like An Asian Boss photos! Share them on Instagram! Remember to put the hashtag #LikeAnAsianBoss ! Here’s something fun and interesting for you to take part and have fun ! Shoot your #LikeAnAsianBoss photos and gather your friends to like it on Instagram! Gather more than 50 Likes and you can receive something wonderful for you! Visit the site below and submit your #LikeAnAsianBoss photos!

#LikeAnAsianBoss Facebook Tab: http://bit.ly/LikeAnAsianBoss

10 Steps to Photographic Fulfillment

A photographer’s journey is just like a life growing process and journey. We all start from the bottom, learning how to crawl, followed by walking and running. My photography journey has been part of me since about 25-30 years ago when I played with my first camera, a Pentax ME Super SLR camera that belongs to my Dad. While it wasn’t the smoothest and everything photography all the way from then, somehow or another, it had always been a part of me (although it left for a while and came back to me). Reflecting and looking back, I had learned and improved and I am still learning and hopefully improving!

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While I was reading Outdoor Photographer Magazine (one of my favourite photography magazines) recently, the July 2013 edition. I read an article by George D. Lepp, under Tech Tips “10 Steps to Photographic Fulfillment“. His words, wisdom and sharing struck me really deep in the heart and got me thinking hard and reflecting about my photography again. From George’s 10 Steps to Photographic Fulfillment, I decided to use his 10 Steps for my own sharing and reflection on my photography journey.

Step 1 – Photograph With A Purpose

There were times earlier in my photography days that I pretty much shoot anything that interests me and I got bored after some time, to the extent that I said there were nothing more interesting to shoot. This was also a turning point for me when I started to start looking more in-depth into my surroundings, my purpose and what I actually plan or/and want to photograph. Along with life changing incidents and growing older in age, I started to look at things differently and also looking back in time. One key area was the loss of things/culture/landmarks from my childhood and growing up years, that propelled me into Photographing With A Purpose – to document, photograph and share Old Places in Singapore. Photographing and documenting Old Places had been an on-going personal project for past few years and it allowed me to know many more new photographer friends with the same frequency. While my personal project is still on-going, for future photography adventures, I will make a point that I Photograph With A Purpose.

Step 2 – Do Your Research  

Doing research is an integral part of photography, from learning new photography techniques to understanding animals behaviour (for wildlife photography) or where/when to travel for landscape sceneries  shoot. There’s lots of planning and it only helps in your photography adventure and experiences. This would also allows you to enjoy your photography better and it can be a more fun time for you.

Step 3 – Invest Wisely In Equipment

There are always new toys and accessories in the market that is always enticing and attracting you to buy. It can be very tempting but we have to seriously ask ourselves, what kind of photography am I shooting and do I really need this new toy or accessories? Once we decided on a particular field of photography, we shouldn’t rush into buying all the new toys and accessories immediately. Personally, I encourage you all to explore and master your new toy (e.g. lens) and its capabilities and limitations before adding on the accessories to achieve the specialisation that you wanted in your photography. Sharing my own personal experiences, I started sports photography with my Canon EOS30D and EF 70-200mm f/4 L lens and I used this combination for about 3-4 years, shooting Rugby 7s and Singapore GP, before upgrading to a Canon EOS 1D Mark III and most recently adding the EF 300mm f/2.8 L lens. All this was done over a period of 5 years.

Step 4 – Embrace Education

Education, is and should be lifelong and ongoing, never-ending, regardless of whether it is about your work/professional career or hobby such as photography. For myself, photography was a lot about self-learning and exploration, coupled with some guide books, internet resources and one of the most important education that I ever received and I am still receiving was learning from photography seniors/masters/mentors. I am blessed by some bits and pieces of mentoring by different photographers and I am very grateful to them for passing down/sharing their photography tips, techniques, experiences and wisdom with me during my photography journey. While I am still learning the wonders of education in Photography, I am embracing sharing and mentoring through my own photography education and experiences, by teaching photography, I will be able to improve my level of photography knowledge and education.

Step 5 – Pursue Your Project

This is all about making and taking the First big step, in whatever you do. When you decided on your Photography Purpose, it’s now about execution and doing it! There will be ups and downs, it’s all part of your photography journey and do not give up! Just Do It and Keep It Going!

Step 6 – Adjust and Adapt 

While we are make plans to complete an assignment/project/goal, things are never smooth and there will be ups and downs along the way. Therefore, while we all make good plans, we must always be ready for changes and unforseen things happening. We need to be able and ready to adjust and adapt according to the situations, it can be adding/doing extra things into your existing project or taking away some of the things you are doing. Just like taking photographs, we always have to be ready to adjust and adapt to weather, lighting and situational conditions.

Step 7 – Follow Through At The Computer

Post processing initially was never part of my photography workflow. I confessed I was lazy,  I don’t have the expertise, knowledge and software. I was stubborn and  ignorant. After years, I slowly learned more about the scientific aspects behind those camera sensors and how different camera brands design/program them. There is a need for post processing and I began to adopt a simple post processing workflow into my photography recently using Aperture. In my photography adventure, I will ensure that the photographs that I take do not need too much post-processing by getting it close to “correct” based on the situation.

Step 8 – Invite Criticism

One of the human race worst flaw in my personal opinion is not able to take criticism in life. In life, criticisms (that are constructive) help us to improve in the things that we do, in work/career and our hobbies too. While criticisms can be painful at times (and your ego severely deflated), if the criticisms are unbiased, informed, constructive, meaningful and helpful, in the direction of  helping you improve your photography techniques, composition etc … All photographers can take back something constructive from it and move on to improve their photography skills and techniques.

Step 9 – Use Your Work

Share your works, with friends, photography enthusiasts, your local community and people around the world. Your works can be for sale or it can be part of a greater contribution to a social movement cause. Your photography works can make an impact and difference to the society around you and the world as well. I shared my photography works in various capacities and my photography experiences at alumni organisations and school. I have a Facebook Page for my Photography adventures and has a summary of my photography adventures to date. Some of  my personal photography projects are Old Places and The Green Corridor.

Step 10 – Share Your Knowledge

I believe in this personal philosophy Pay-It-Forward, this brings me back to ground level and start giving back to where I learned and started from. That is why I am active in my alumni mater activities and events, going back to my roots and giving it back something meaningful to them (as much as possible) , they are my Dragon Scout Group family and University of Queensland Alumni Association of Singapore. I also personally believe that sharing and passing on my photography knowledge as a mentor would help me in attaining higher levels of photography as I continued shooting and learning new things in photography. Start sharing your photography and Pay-It-Forward, to the wider local and international community out there!

After reading this article on Outdoor Photographer, it just impacted me a lot and reflect deeply. There are still many things for me to learn in photography and I am enjoying photography a lot more than the time when I said to myself “I have nothing interesting to shoot”. Today, I am not only photographing with a purpose, I am also embracing education to learn new photography skills and knowledge.

Moving ahead, I am planning to photograph more different areas and document more photographic stories to tell life stories and I like you to walk this photography journey with me!

“Your First 10,000 Photographs Are Your Worst” – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Red Bull Dark Knights Singapore 2013

A night time down hill mountain bike (MTB) race, held at Pearl’s Hill City Park, a beautiful hill and park surrounded by the city lights around the hill. Red Bull Dark Knights Singapore 2013 returned on 18th May 2013 and I was glad to be there watching high octane mountain biking sports competition and challenging myself to shoot extreme sports photography in extreme lighting and uneven terrain! This night time down hill mountain bike race attracted quite a number of supporters and spectators watching up close and personal to the racing action!

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Starting from on top of the hill, at the summit of Pearl’s Hill City Park right next to a restricted reservoir, the MTB riders will race and conquer many obstacles, navigate through challenging conditions and terrains, through rock gardens and jumping up and down and the MTB Riders even have to land a jump at the finish line from a height of over 10 feet. The Red Bull Dark Knights Singapore 2013 race was conducted in very dim lighting conditions even though Pearl’s Hill City Park was surrounded by many city lights! There were not many lightings placed along the competition route and it was total darkness at some parts of the competition route! This was a great test and learning for us photographers, extreme sports photography action in very challenging lighting conditions, this gave me a chance to learn, apply, practice and expand my sports photography skills, knowledge and portfolio.

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Given the intensity of the mountain bike down hill racing action along with the race being held in the night, it was a big test for older generation DSLRs like my Canon EOS 1D Mark III with its Digic 3 CMOS sensor. I had previously tested and reviewed the Canon EOS 1DX, 5D Mark III and 6D, with their newest and excellent CMOS sensor, night extreme photography in such dim lighting conditions would be a lot easier for sports photographers. Therefore, this was another great learning and training opportunity to put myself photographing in challenging conditions with the constraints faced. During the time when I was shooting the Red Bull Dark Knights in action, it wasn’t easy for me and I slowly got used to adjusting and adapting to the conditions. I also managed to get a few shots with help from other photographers who used their flash (at the designated and approved location of the race circuit) to take the riders in racing action and the flash illumination helps me to shoot the riders in action!

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Overall, photographing the Red Bull Dark Knights was a great and fun experience, challenging and pushing myself to shoot in challenging conditions and constraints. This wonderful and special opportunity to shoot Red Bull Dark Knights Singapore 2013 would not be possible without the invitation by Canon EOS World, I would like to say a big Thank You to Canon EOS World!