Tag Archives: History

Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life

Korean Wave fans in Singapore rejoice! A new and limited time Korean Wave is now here in Singapore, at the Asian Civilisations Museum! This special limited time Korean Wave started on 22nd April 2017 to 23rd July 2017. Fans who love Korean Wave, especially Korean period dramas, this special exhibition is something you must not miss! Inside the Joseon Korea exhibition, get up close and have a good view of the many different types of treasures, fashion, history, heritage and culture that you saw in Korean dramas.

On 21st April, I was honoured to be invited to attend the official opening of the Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life special exhibition at Asian Civilisations Museum. Mr Kennie Ting, Director of Asian Civilisations Museum, gave the opening speech on this special Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life exhibition

ACM Director Kennie Ting said, “Fans of K-culture will not find this showcase unfamiliar, as many of the stories and treasures that we are showing in this exhibition have inspired Korea’s popular culture – from period drama series to contemporary arts and aesthetics, and even fashion. Much of what is regarded as traditionally Korean today had been developments and innovations during the Joseon period. In the same thread, South Korean artist Ran Hwang’s art installation adds to the experience of the exhibition, with its contemporary interpretation of Korean traditions. The Joseon dynasty’s extraordinary legacy not only withstands the test of time by being relevant to this day, but also resonates with new audiences beyond geographical boundaries.”

The Guest of Honour was Ms. Grace Fu, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth, who officially declared this special exhibition opened, accompanied and attended by many distinguished dignitaries and guests of the Asian Civilisations Museum. A grand occasion with traditional beautiful Korean cultural performances that delighted the guests present at the official opening event.

After watching the traditional Korean performances, I visited the exhibition together with my friends. The Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life exhibition is divided into 6 sections –

  • Departing from the Goryeo kingdom sets the stage with an introduction of the transition between two dynasties, including key episodes and figures like King Taejo of Joseon, whose changes and ideas laid the foundation for the dynasty. His move to adopt Neo-Confucianism distinguished a new era for Korea, and shaped its political and cultural life;
  • Royal authority and court culture unveils life inside the royal palace, the roles and expectations of the king and queen, courtly rituals and ceremonies, and even costumes, food and music. The calculated pomp and pageantry that surrounded them was central to asserting the royal authority, and the King’s multiple roles as leader, ruler and scholar;
  • The yangban, which looks at the elite and aristocratic class in Joseon. Considered the moral pillar of Joseon society, their adherence to Confucian ideals and hierarchical values translated to their daily lives and in their living spaces. This examination of the yangban’s public and private lives paints a picture of their prominence, priorities and pursuits;
  • Nature in Korean Art depicts the importance of nature to Joseon artists – not just as inspiration, but also the material for their creations. Among the showcase are traditional buncheong stoneware, popular during the first two centuries of the Joseon dynasty, and the characteristically Korean style of ‘true-view’ landscape paintings that reflect the socio-political climate of developing a distinct Korean identity;
  • Sacred art and religious traditions provides insight to the influence of Confucianism and Buddhism in Joseon ritual life – from grand state ceremonies to private family religious practices. Beyond the connections of the living to their forefathers and enhanced solidarity among kin through such traditions, how Buddhism integrated with indigenous folk religion for mass reception is also examined; and
  • Streets of Hanyang: Everyday life of the people, depicting life in the capital through genre paintings – a major form of Korean art that flourished in the 18th  These vignettes candidly capture everyday life, societal classes, and how important occasions like the first day of the Lunar New Year, harvest festival Chuseokand individual rites of passage were celebrated.

(Information courtesy of Asian Civilisations Museum press release)

I do watch selected Korean dramas, therefore, I was able to relate and understand some of the items that were exhibited inside this exhibition. Some exhibits were intriguing and I was able to learn more about Korean history, heritage and culture.

The paintings and artworks on display were a real eye-opener for me, especially some of the paintings that were quite long in the length and the amount of delicate and skilful display of people on the paintings.

Having watched a small number of Korean dramas that showcased the Joseon dynasty, I got excited when I saw the clothing on display! This was as close as getting to learn more about Korean history, heritage and culture in Singapore since I haven’t visit Korea yet! (Ok, I think it’s high time that I plan a travel photography holiday to Korea)

From artwork, paintings, furniture, fashion, clothing, manuscripts and artefacts, this is a very meticulously curated special exhibition on Korea’s Joseon Dynasty, right here in Singapore, at the Asian Civilisations Museum.

I wasn’t able to view everything on display at the Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life during the official opening event. Therefore, I have to visit the exhibition and add on more photographs to share with my readers here!

To all the Korean Wave (especially Korean drama) fans in Singapore, the Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life special exhibition is definitely worth a visit! While it is not exactly visiting a Korean drama production setup, entering into the world of Joseon Dynasty, you are able to learn more about them and appreciate the Korean drama period shows even better!

I would like to thank Asian Civilisations Museum for the invitation to Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life official opening event and the opportunity to tour the exhibition.

Key information on Joseon Korea: Court Treasures and City Life special exhibition

Location: Asian Civilisations Museum

Period: 22nd April 2017 to 23rd July 2017

Ticketing:

  Price
Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (Adults) $10
Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (Concession: Seniors, Students, NSF*) Free
Non-Residents (Adults) $15
Non-Residents (Concession: Seniors, Students*) $10
Non-Residents (Family of 5) $45

Website: www.acm.org.sg

Tango-enabled VR and AR tour of the National Museum of Singapore

The use of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in the society is slowly gaining acceptance and application in real life. In an earlier article, I shared an article on using AR in a hospitality/hotel environment. Today, I am going to share another story, the use of VR and AR in a museum in Singapore, the National Museum of Singapore.

With the Tango technology platform created by Google, the National Museum of Singapore is one of the first museums in the world to adopt this technology. Tango is a set of sensors and computer vision software that enables smartphone augmented reality that allows users to imagine new spaces, get things done, and play games in a new dimension.

Visitors can enjoy the VR and AR tour with a Tango-enabled mobile device and they can go back in time and history, to retrace and learn about the National Museum of Singapore’s early history, artefacts and exhibits over time. This is a very interesting journey and I had the opportunity to experience, test and share my stories and photos with my readers here. Using indoor mapping, VR and AR, visitors will be able to explore how the National Museum of Singapore has evolved over the past 130 years.

There are six points of interest that participants of this tour can explore on the Tango-enabled Architecture tour with the Museum guide. Let me bring you a sneak peak into some of the VR and AR scenes from the Tango-enabled mobile device.

3D model of the National Museum

At at the Main Rotunda on Level 1 and the Glass Atrium on Level 2, the visitors on this tour can activate a 3D replica of the building on the Tango-enabled mobile device, it provides information on its structural components and allows the participant to navigate around the façade. Visitors can also see how the National Museum of Singapore has changed over the years, just by using the “Time Slider” view.

Virtual World of Past Artefacts

The iconic and famous 90 feet high Rotunda at the main entrance of the National Museum of Singapore, visitors on the Tango-enabled tour are able to go back in time into a virtual world of what this space looked like in the 1950s. Spot the world of past artefacts that were once on display at this location, such as the marble bust of Sir Stamford Raffles and the famous Revere Bell. Observe the floor tiles of the National Museum of Singapore in the earlier days and the floor tiles today, can you spot the difference?

Say hi to the Whale

At the glass passage on Level 2, one of the largest frameless, self-supporting glass structures in the world, visitors can see an AR view of the museum’s iconic Indian Fin Whale Skeleton. Listen to the sound of the Indian Fin Whale “saying hi to you”! Remember to say hi back!

I strongly encourage you to sign up for this very interesting, interactive and informative tour that combines modern technology using Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, with stories from the National Museum of Singapore guide leading you on the tour. This would greatly enhance learning history, heritage, culture and stories of Singapore and the National Museum of Singapore.

The tour is an hour long and registration is free, on a first come, first serve basis. If you keen to sign up for the Tango-enabled tour at the National Museum of Singapore, visit National Musuem of Singapore guided tours link and register.

Please take note that there are limited places, maximum capacity is 15 people on a first come, first serve basis, to ensure that the tour is conducted in a manner that is optimal and enjoyable for all participants.

Seats are limited! Remember to check out on the availability of the places for the upcoming tours for the Tango-enabled VR and AR tour of the National Museum of Singapore!

* I would like to thank National Museum of Singapore for the invitation to try out the Tango-enabled VR and AR tour of the National Museum of Singapore *

Epson and SO Sofitel Singapore collaborate on AR experience

The world of travel, tourism and hospitality has benefitted and also changed from the technology boom over the past few decades. As we move into the future, new technology such as augmented reality (AR) has a role to play in a customer’s overall experience. How does AR plays a part in business operation in the hospitality industry such as a hotel?

AR today and in the near future, they can play a part in enhancing a guest experience beyond the luxuries, amenities, accommodation and hospitality in the hotel. How can they go about doing this?

In Singapore, Epson, a global leader in projection technology and visual communications, partners SO Sofitel Singapore for Southeast Asia first augmented reality (AR) smart glass experience within a hotel, using Epson’s latest Moverio BT-300 smart glasses. At the media event held recently, I had the opportunity to witness the launch and experience AR technology implementation in a hospitality organisation.

This was also my first time putting on the Moverio BT-300 and trying it out in a hospitality context. The Moverio BT-300 was lightweight and beautifully designed, the experience was pretty good with the visuals through the smart glasses and accompanying audio.

Guests can look forward to a true see-through immersive experience with the Moverio BT-300’s HD high-contrast display, which uses Epson’s cutting edge silicon-based OLED (organic light emitting diode) digital display technology. Powered by software from EON Reality, a world leader in Virtual and Augmented Reality-based knowledge transfer, the curated experience transports viewers into a part-real part-virtual world where informative content and videos blend seamlessly with real design elements found within the hotel lobby and suite.

 Pictures courtesy of Epson Singapore and SO Sofitel Singapore 

“It is our pleasure to partner leaders in Luxury Hospitality, Design and Augmented Reality to curate this experience that is a first in the region. With Moverio, Epson believes that the potential of Augmented Reality is limitless for commercial and enterprise usage – to create exceptional experiences using one of the most lightweight and comfortable smart eyewear on the market. By bringing the flavours and secrets within the heritage building to life through our technology, we look forward to deliver new and exciting multi-sensory experiences and showcase the familiar in a brand new way,” said Mr Siew Jin Kiat, Regional General Manager (Southeast Asia), Printers and Visual Products Division, Epson Singapore.

“We are So delighted to partner with Epson Singapore to be the first to launch the augmented reality smart glasses experience in Southeast Asia. When you step into SO Sofitel Singapore, you will be naturally captivated by the different elements of French design blending with local touches. With this AR smart glasses experience, guests will be able to discover and be intrigued by the surprising design elements,” said Mr Piotr Kupiec, General Manager for SO Sofitel Singapore.

On the pilot project, EON Reality Singapore’s Managing Director Mr Sridhar Sunkhad added, “Collaborating with Epson to augment the SO Sofitel unique guest experience will be an exciting journey that will teach us how Augmented Reality will become a part of our everyday lifestyle.”

Source: Epson and SO Sofitel Singapore press release

Starting my AR experiential tour journey from the SO Sofitel Hotel lobby, our first stop was the “The Lion Seal” emblem, designed for the hotel by the legendary Karl Langerfield. Once the AR experience started, I was greeted virtually by Isabelle Miaja, the interior designer of SO Sofitel Singapore.

Walking along the SO Sofitel Hotel lobby, I learned about the inspiration of SO Sofitel Singapore’s beautiful design, French elegance blending with the building’s unique history and modern Singapore, through the Moverio BT-300 smart glasses.

Continuing the journey inside the hotel, we entered into a special suite, the SO Sofitel Lofy suite. Through the Moverio BT-300 smart glasses, Isabelle returned on a composite screen, sharing her thoughts on the hotel design and special touches within the suite. I saw gorgeous art pieces that gave Isabelle the inspiration to combine French indulgence and the local culture of Singapore.

If you are staying at the gorgeous SO Sofitel, do try out the AR experience tour and if you happen to stay in the SO Lofy suite, you can also experience the SO Augmented room tour as well! For members of the public, if you wish to enjoy the SO Augmented hotel lobby tour, you can enquire with the guest relations officer, with sets subject to availability.

The world of augmented reality is now entering into our life, our work, the adoption and implementation is taking place among different organisations and industries. This AR collaboration project between Epson and SO Sofitel Singapore is the first in Southeast Asia within a hotel, I believe there will be more hotels entering and implementing AR technology to enhance their guests experiences.

I would like to thank Epson Singapore and SO Sofitel Singapore for the invitation to experience the new AR experience at SO Sofitel Singapore.

The Universe and Art at ArtScience Museum

The night has fallen, when you look up into the night skyline, filled with bright shining stars, do you ask yourself, is there life in the universe and beyond? Are we able to live in the other planets in the solar system? Why is the universe so mysterious? Is there an explaination to anything besides the universe? How did the human race seek to learn, unravel and discover the universe over the centuries?

In order to seek some answers to the questions above, why not visit the ArtScience Museum in Singapore and enter into the world of The Universe and Art? This is is a very special, intriguing and it can also be a pretty abstract exhibition that unravels the human race journey over the centuries, understanding the Universe through arts, religion and philosophies, and not just science and engineering.

This exhibition, The Universe and Art at ArtScience Museum, is jointly curated and organised by Mori Art Museum in Tokyo and ArtScience Museum. Featuring over 120 original artworks, scientific artefacts and manuscripts, this exhibition presents visions of the Universe from across the globe and through the centuries. Exhibiting alongside masterpieces from around the world, are important artefacts on loan from Singapore’s Asian Civilisations Museum, and a newly commissioned installation by British sculptor, Conrad Shawcross.

Entering into the world of The Universe and Art, there are 4 parts for the visitors to view, learn and immerse into the our mysterious universe

Historical cosmologies

The first part of the exhibition focus on historical cosmologies from around the world, including religious arts from the Buddhist, Hindu and Jain traditions, on loan from Asian Civilisations Museum in Singapore. Visitors can also view the masterpieces by Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, and Newton, on display for the first time in Singapore.

New scientific thinking on the Universe

The second part focus on scientific thinking of the Universe by contemporary artists including Björn Dahlem, Mariko Mori, Andreas Gursky, and the new commission by Conrad Shawcross.

Origin of life in the cosmos

The third part explores the origin of life in the cosmos, through artworks by major figures, such as Pierre Huyghe, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Laurent Grasso, and Patricia Piccinini.

Life in space

The fourth part of the exhibition is about pondering life in space, through the work of historical pioneer, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, and contemporary artists including Arthur Woods, Kitsuo Dubois, Takuro Osaka, and Dragan Živadinov.

The commissioned work by Conrad Shawcross caught my attention, his artwork is titled “Slow Arc inside a Cube VIII”. Shawcross amazing commissioned artwork is a kinetic sculpture inspired by science. With the world’s technology improved vastly over the centuries, radical new theories and vast international space endeavours, the Universe is still like a mystery to us human beings on Earth, there is still so much unknown. Shawcross created this artwork to invite us and make us ponder on the unknown and mysteries of the Universe.

Through the selected photgraphs that I took at The Universe and Art and shared inside my Flickr collection, this special and unique exhibition is something worth visiting, for everybody to learn and understand more about the human race, arts, culture, our planet Mother Earth and the Universe beyond. Do visit the ArtScience Museum website for more information on the programmes organised by the ArtScience Museum that visitors can participate and join.

As I left the ArtScience Museum at Marina Bay Sands, away from the The Universe and Art exhibition, I asked myself again, “Is there life beyond the Universe and our planet Mother Earth?”

I don’t have an answer, I may never have an answer. However, I did learn more about the mysteries and beauty of the Universe through the arts.

I would like to thank ArtScience Museum and Asian Civilisations Museum for the invitation to the The Universe and Art exhibition.

Key information and details on The Universe and Art at ArtScience Museum

Exhibition period: 1st April to 30th July 2017

Tickets can be purchased from Marina Bay Sands box offices and website. Terms and conditions apply.

Ticket prices:

The Universe and Art

Standard Ticket (SGD$) Adult $17
Seniors (65 years and above) $14
Child (2-12 years) $10
Family package (2 kids and 2 adults) $44
Singapore Residence (SGD$) Adult $14
Seniors (65 years and above) $11
Child (2-12 years) $7
Family package (2 kids and 2 adults) $35

The Universe and Art + Future World

Standard Ticket (SGD$) Adult $28
Seniors (65 years and above) $24
Child (2-12 years) $17
Family package (2 kids and 2 adults) $73
Singapore Residence (SGD$) Adult $24
Seniors (65 years and above) $20
Child (2-12 years) $12
Family package (2 kids and 2 adults) $60

For more information on the exhibition, please visit www.marinabaysands.com/ArtScienceMuseum


Created with flickr slideshow.

Canon EOS 1DX Mark II Review

The Canon EOS 1 series, the flagship Canon DSLR camera, the most powerful and fastest Canon DSLR camera, a must have workhorse lens for journalists, sports and wildlife photographers. Once you used the EOS 1 series, that’s no turning back.

My love affair with the EOS 1 series started when I playing with my friends Canon EOS 1D Mark I and Mark IIN, I was totally awed by its high frames per second and the sound of the high speed shutter. In time to come, I found myself owning a used Canon EOS 1D Mark III that I faithfully used for a few years before I upgraded to another EOS 1 series, the Canon EOS 1DX, also a used camera when the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II was announced and the price of a used EOS 1DX started to drop.

During a media event in February 2016, I got my hands on experience with the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II and inside my heart said, “I know you want it, buy it!”. However, my brain said, “It’s out of your current budget at the moment, even though you have a use for it on a professional basis” Therefore, I opted for a used Canon EOS 1DX, that I still love it and it’s now my current workhorse DSLR camera, as much as I badly wanted the EOS 1DX Mark II.

I did have an opportunity to review the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II recently, I was very excited because I am a huge fan of the EOS 1 series, not just on and from a professional basis, also from a photography enthusiast perspective.

During the review period, I had the opportunities to test the EOS 1DX Mark II over different situations, themes and events, from Singapore Motorshow 2017, Chinatown Heritage Walking Trail CNY 2017, River Hongbao 2017, Battle for Singapore Tour media preview, Chinese New Year gathering, Jaybird Freedom Wireless earphones product theme shoot and walking around Marina Bay area in the blue hour and night sceneries walkabout shoot. The experiences were really good and I was secretly lusting for a Canon EOS 1DX Mark II for my professional photography work along with a Canon EOS 1DX as a back up / second camera setup!

Through the various types of photographs that I took with the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II, I have the following observations, views and opinions of this powerful and awesome Canon flagship DSLR camera, written down in this review article.

However, before I begin, first and foremost, let me highlight the key differences between the technical specifications between the Canon EOS 1DX and EOS 1DX Mark II, the information that I extracted from Canon Singapore website by comparing these two Canon DSLR cameras side by side –

DSLR Specifications Canon EOS 1DX Canon EOS 1DX Mark II
Continuous Shooting Speed (shots per sec) (Up to) 14 16
Custom Functions (Total) 31 34
Dimensions (Excl. Protrusions) (mm) (Approximately) 158 x 163.6 x 82.7 158 x 167.6 x 82.6
Effective ISO 50 to 20,4800 (expandable to L (ISO50), H1 (ISO 102,400), H2 (ISO 204,800) 100 to 51,200 (expandable to L (ISO50), H1 (ISO 102,400), H2 (ISO 204,800), H3 (ISO 409,600)
Effective Pixels (Megapixels) (Approximately) 18.1 20.2
File numbering Consecutive numbering, Auto reset, Manual reset Continuous, Auto reset, Manual reset
Image Resolution 5184 x 3456 (L)
4608 x 3072 (M1)
3456 x 2304 (M2)
2592 x 1728 (S)
5184 x 3456 (RAW)
3888 x 2592 (M-RAW)
2592 x 1728 (S-RAW) 
5472 x 3648 (L)
4368 x 2912 (M1)
3648 x 2432 (M2)
2736 x 1824 (S)
5472 x 3648 (RAW)
4104 x 2736 (M-RAW)
2736 x 1824 (S-RAW) 
LCD Monitor Resolutions (dots) 1,040,000 Approx 1,620,000
Max. Resolution (Pixel) (Still images) 5184 x 3156 5472 x 3648
Memory Card Type CF Card (Type I or II) CF cards (Type 1, UDMA 7 supported)

Cfast card (Cfast 2.0 supported)

Metering Mode 252-zone TTL Evaluative, Partial Spot, Centre-weighted Approx. 360,000-pixel RGB+IR metering sensor and 216-zone TTL open-aperture metering, EOS iSA (Intelligent Subject Analysis) system, Evaluative metering, Partial metering, Spot metering, Center-weighted average metering

 

Metering Range (Measured at at 23°C or 73°F with EF50mm f1.4 USM lens, ISO 100)

 

EV 0 – 20 EV 0 – 20
Mirror Quick-return half mirror Quick-return type
Movie Format MOV MOV, MP4
Peripheral Connections Hi-Speed USB, Video Output, HDMI, LAN SuperSpeed USB, Video Output, HDMI, LAN
Playback Zoom (Approximately) 1.5x – 10x 1.5 – 10x
Processor Type Dual DIGIC 5+ Dual Digic 6+
Red Eye Reduction Yes
Standard Power Supply Battery Pack LP-E4N Battery Pack LP-E19 / LP-E4N / LP-E4
Video Resolution (HD) (Pixel) (Approximately) 1280 x 720
Video Resolution (SD) (Pixel) (Approximately) 640 x 480
Viewfinder Information AF information, metering and exposure information, flash information, white balance correction, JPEG Type / RAW Type recording, maximum burst, number of shots remaining, battery check, recording media information, highlight tone priority (D+), composition information, grid, electronic level

 

Image type: JPEG/RAW, Shooting mode, Metering mode, White balance, Drive mode, AF operation, Flicker detection, Warning ! indicator, AF operation indicator

 

White Balance Auto, daylight, shade, cloudy, tungsten light, white fluorescent light, flash, custom, colour temperature setting, personal white balance (Total 5 settings)

 

Auto (Ambience priority), Auto (White priority), Preset (Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten light, White fluorescent light, Flash), Custom (5 settings), Color temperature setting (approx. 2500-10000 K), Personal white balance (5 settings)

 

Based on the comparisons of technical specifications only, the key differences may not seem by many users as a big jump from the EOS 1DX to EOS 1DX Mark II. From my sharing of my Canon EOS 1DX Mark II review, I would share some of the key improvements that makes professional photographers to make their upgrade from EOS 1DX to EOS 1DX Mark II.

Colours

The Dual Digic 6+ processors inside the EOS 1DX Mark II make a key difference and impact to the quality and output of the photographs. They were richer and more accurate in colours, making it even easier and faster for jpeg photographs straight out from the EOS 1DX Mark II to be used quickly for your work requirements.

Dynamic Range

From my observations of the photographs shot with the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II review camera, on various subjects and themes during the review period, the dynamic range of the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II has improved. Therefore, the EOS 1DX Mark II is able to capture and retain more details and information. With this significant improvement, the shadows/dark tone areas of the photograph are lifted.

Anti-Flicker Technology

The Anti-Flicker technology that was first introduced to the Canon EOS 7D Mark II is now available inside the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II. The flickering of the indoor lights always pose an issue to photographers and they can give some photographers many problems/challenges to handle when shooting indoors. With the Anti-Flicker technology, indoor sports or events photography with the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II is so much more easier and pleasant, without the hassles of the flickering lights.

Auto Focus

The Canon EOS 1DX Mark II is the current flagship DSLR camera, it’s a monster machine as I always love (and usually) call it. Their Auto Focus system has improved significantly over the past few models since I started off (still owning it at this current juncture) with the EOS 1D Mark III and I am currrently using the EOS 1DX.

What make this Canon flagship DSLR camera so powerful, highly trusted and widely adopted by professionals around the world, from photojournalists, sports and wildlife photographers, are the AF technology packed inside this camera.

The technical specifications on paper shows how good and powerful this Canon EOS 1DX Mark II is. I recommend photographers who are keen in this camera to try it out and have a go at this flagship DSLR camera, you will then know why it is so highly trusted and widely adopted by the professioanls in photojournalism, sports and wildlife.

Here are the key improvements that are built inside the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II

  • 170 RAW images with CFast 2.0 card
  • Live View RAW – 16fps
  • New AF algorithm and AI Servo AF III+
  • EOS iTR
  • Large Zone AF
  • Newly developed 61-point AF sensor
  • AF shooting is possible on most lenses using all AF points with a maximum aperture value of f/8
  • Intelligent viewfinder II

During my review and research that I done previously for the Canon EOS 1DX, I discovered Canon USA produced a guide book on Canon EOS 1DX AF Setting Guidebook for users to fully utilise and customise the full AF capabilites. This book is now helping me to fine tune my AF settings in my EOS 1DX.

For this review article, I went back to Canon USA website and discovered that they have produced a new book titled Canon EOS 1DX Mark II AF Setting Guidebook. I strongly encourage photographers (whether professionals or serious enthusiasts) to download this handy guide book for their Canon EOS 1DX Mark II DSLR camera. This is a very handy and useful guide book to have for the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II.

Thoughts and views

The Canon EOS 1DX Mark II is the flagship Canon DSLR camera, this camera is highly regarded and used by professional photographers in the fields of journalism, sports and wildlife.

Owning a EOS 1DX is a huge upfront investment, the cost is pretty substantial. Therefore, this camera model is not something that all photographers would choose to purchase, considering their shooting requirements and budget. Moreover, Canon has a series of different professional DSLR camera models for professional as well as photography enthusiasts to choose from, such as the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, EOS 5DS, EOS 5DS R and not to forget the semi-professional camera models such as the EOS 7D Mark II, EOS 6D, EOS 80D etc.

Key factors that make photographers upgrade from EOS 1DX to 1DX Mark II

While the differences between the EOS 1DX and EOS 1DX Mark II may not be that big of a difference on paper, professional photographers who view the photos and read about the key differences in performances, they would choose to let go of their EOS 1DX and go for the EOS 1DX Mark II.

During the period when I reviewed the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II, these key factors (in my personal opinion) are why some photographers are letting go of their Canon EOS 1DX for the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II

  • Improved dynamic range
  • Shadows/Dark tone areas improvements
  • Anti-flickr shooting capabilities
  • Smarter and faster auto focusing with the new AF algorithm and AI Servo AF III+
  • 170 RAW images with CFast 2.0 card

On a personal note, I would really love to own the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II when my budget and finances allow. The Canon EOS 1DX is still a very capable camera, that is still doing its job well for me. Therefore when the opportunity arises, I hope that I can upgrade to the EOS 1DX Mark II in the near future.

I would like to thank Canon Singapore and Ogilvy Public Relations for the opportunity to review the Canon EOS 1DX Mark II.


Created with flickr slideshow.

Precious Artistic, Beautiful and Cultural Eggs Exhibition

Eggs, when you hear this word, what comes to your mind? Food? What are the various ways that I can cook the eggs? What type of eggs? My mother gave me the best answer, “Salted egg yolk” when she saw my collection of photographs that I took recently of this new, unique and very interesting arts exhibition at the Singapore Philatelic Museum, titled “Precious Eggs: of Arts, Beauty and Culture

Like most human beings, the first thought and reaction upon hearing the word “eggs” is about food. I have to confess that I was thinking about eggs in the form of food initially! Upon visiting the Singapore Philatelic Museum, I was brought into an amazing world that I never dreamed of and something that is even possible, it’s an exhibition about eggs!

With a total of 148 unique artistic egg inspired works from the Liechtenstein National Museum, this is the first time that they are displayed outside of Europe and they are now at the Singapore Philatelic Museum in Singapore! When I started viewing and observing the eggs, I was totally blown away, how did the artists managed to produce such fine and delicate artworks on the eggs?

Every egg has a story behind it, from arts, beauty, culture, history, faiths and traditions. There were also different types of eggs used, from quail, chicken, duck, goose, swan and ostrich, as well as eggs crafted from precious and enamelled metals, glass, porcelain, wax, crystal, marble, stone, wood, reindeer horn, cardboard and papier-mache.

The selection of unique artistic egg-inspired works on display at SPM are drawn from the renowned Adulf Peter Goop Collection belonging to the Liechtenstein National Museum. Born in Liechtenstein, Mr Adulf Peter Goop (1921-2011) started to collect Easter eggs in 1985. He was inspired by his experiences as a boy giving painted eggs on Easter morning to Russian soldiers seeking asylum at the end of World War II, who were touched by the gesture of friendship. Numbering about 4,000 eggs, his impressive collection hails from all over the world – some from the Russian Imperial Family. In 2010, Mr Goop donated his comprehensive art collection to the Principality of Liechtenstein.

Ms Tresnawati Prihadi, General Manager of SPM says, “We are delighted to partner the Liechtenstein National Museum to bring this precious collection of egg art pieces to Singapore. We hope this exhibition will challenge Singaporeans to rethink what makes art, and how ordinary, everyday items, such as the humble egg and stamps, can tell such beautiful stories of love, history and faiths, and serve as windows to cultures of the world.” 

Prof Dr Rainer Vollkommer, Director of the Liechtenstein National Museum said, “Eggs are a symbol of peace, love, friendship and fertility. We would like to share this with everybody with this exhibition.”

 Source: Singapore Philatelic Museum press release


The Singapore Philatelic Museum has incorporated multi-media experiences for visitors to this exhibition that they can experience together when they are viewing the eggs exhibition. Visitors can have direct and personalised interaction with some of the eggs. When visitors tap into the “Precious Eggs” network via a QR code, they can have a 360 degrees view of the egg on their mobile device.

At the media preview, we were also introduced to Ukraine’s history, heritage, culture and folktales of Ukraine, via their beautifully decorated Ukrainian eggs and friendly folks from the Ukraine community in Singapore.

This was the Pysanka Eggs demonstration and we had the opportunity to make our own too! You can try it out too, when you visit Singapore Philatelic Museum on Easter Sunday on 17th April 2017, more details in the Annex 1 below!

Key information and details of the exhibition – Precious Eggs: of Arts, Beauty and Culture

Venue: Singapore Philatelic Museum

23-B Coleman Street, Singapore 179807

Date: 12 April – 8 October 2017

Opening hours: Monday – Sunday

10.00am – 7.00pm

Admission charges: Free admission for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents

Admission charges for foreigners:

Adult $8

Child (3 – 12 years) $6

Tel: 63373888

Website: www.spm.org.sg

Tell your family, relatives and friends about this special and unique exhibition about eggs, come on down and explore all 148 unique eggs! Pass It On and spread the word! When you visit Singapore Philatelic Museum, do remember to check out the other interesting exhibitions inside there too!

I haven’t manage to capture all 148 eggs on display at the exhibition yet and I hope to capture each and every one of the 148 eggs on display! Meanwhile, visit my photos collection and take a look at some of the eggs that I photographed!

I would like to thank Singapore Philatelic Museum for the invitation to the media preview of the Precious Eggs: of Arts, Beauty and Culture exhibition.

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Annex 1

Easter Sunday at Singapore Philatelic Museum

Date: Sunday, 16 April 2017

Time: 10.00am – 7.00pm

Usual museum admission applies

Free admission for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents

Admission charges for foreigners: Adult $8; Child (3 – 12 years) $6

Activities:

Easter Craft

10.00am – 5.00pm

Make your own fun pop-up chicky craft!

Donations apply.

Fun Quiz

10.00am – 5.00pm

Visit the museum galleries and take part in the fun quiz to win exciting prizes. Learn stories behind these beautiful stamps as you go on an adventure around the museum.

Pysanka Egg Demonstration

1.00pm – 4.00pm

Come see beautiful Ukrainian decorated eggs and get the opportunity to make your own! These traditional designs on eggs tell stories of culture, folktales and heritage of Ukraine.

Donations apply.

Green Eggs & Ham

2.30pm – 3.00pm

Join us as Centre Stage School of the Arts breathes new life into Dr Seuss’s fabulous story “Green Eggs & Ham”. Suitable for all ages.


Created with flickr slideshow.

Canon celebrates 14th consecutive year of No. 1 share

Canon Inc recently announced that their company’s interchangeable lens digital cameras have maintained the number 1 share of the global market for 14 consecutive years from 2003 to 2016.

I was one of those that used the Canon EOS 300D, the DSLR camera that made the breakthrough and changes to the DSLR market in 2003. This particular DSLR camera was the start of a very eventful and exciting photography journey for me, starting from 2004 (and still ongoing) when I started using my first DSLR, the Canon EOS 300D for taking photographs and also for my holiday trips to Tokyo, Japan and Penang, Malaysia in 2004.

While I started entering into the world of photography way back in the analogue film SLR days, starting from my primary school days when I played and damaged my father’s SLR camera. I only got into more serious photography starting from 2004. From then on, I never look back, my relationship with Canon DSLRs blossomed with the upgrades from the maiden DSLR, the EOS 300D, followed by -> EOS 30D -> EOS 1D Mark III -> EOS 70D -> EOS 1DX, over the years from 2004 to 2017 (and still counting).

Beside owning the various Canon DSLRs that I wrote down, I also had the honour to be given many opportunities to test and review other Canon DSLR models, sharing the photographs, my reviews, thoughts, views and experiences with them right here on my photography and travel site. There is a particular Canon DSLR model that I really like, yet I didn’t own it, the Canon EOS 5D Mark III. This Canon EOS 5D Mark III allowed me to produce some photography works that were instrumental and significant during my photography adventures.

Over all these years for me, partnering with the various Canon DSLR models, I had learned a lot, grown and improved my photography together with them. At this stage in time, I am now in a new phase of my photography adventure, the start of a new era, striving even higher benchmarks, goals and objectives for myself, in both a personal and professional capacity in my photography.

This is my personal (rather lengthy) Canon DSLRs story, now let me share with you, the Canon Inc story –

Canon Inc. announced that the Company’s interchangeable-lens digital cameras (digital SLR and compact-system cameras) have maintained the No. 1 share of the global market for 14 consecutive years from 2003 to 2016*.

Canon develops the key components featured in its interchangeable-lens cameras— CMOS image sensors, image processors and interchangeable lenses— in the pursuit of “Speed, Comfort and High Image Quality, the core concept of the EOS series.” The Company employs these cutting-edge technologies across its entire lineup, from entry-level models that achieve high image quality with easy operation to flagship cameras trusted by professionals, effectively responding to the needs of a wide range of users.

In 2003, the dawn of digital SLR cameras, Canon introduced its breakthrough EOS 300D Digital (EOS Digital Rebel or EOS Kiss Digital in other regions). This groundbreaking camera, which was competitively priced and featured a compact, lightweight design, captured the top share of the global market and set the stage for growth in the digital SLR market.

Since that time, Canon has continued to launch a range of epoch-making products, including the professional-model EOS-1D series and the EOS 5D series which paved the way for digital SLR video recording.

In 2016, Canon introduced an impressive lineup of interchangeable-lens camera products that supported the Company’s achievement of a 14th consecutive year at the top of the global market. In the first quarter of 2016, the Company unveiled the flagship model, the EOS-1D X Mark II, which wields significant clout in the sports photography world thanks to its 14 frame-per-second continuous shooting. This was followed by the EOS 80D for advanced-amateur users, which features excellent still image quality and superb operability when shooting videos. The EOS 5D Mark IV, capable of 4K video, was released in second half of the year. Additionally, the Company’s interchangeable-lens camera lineup was further expanded with the introduction of the high-end EOS M5 compact-system camera in September.

Canon will continue to respond to the needs of its wide range of customers by further bolstering its lineup in 2017. Earlier this February, Canon announced the introduction of n three cameras equipped with the cutting-edge and highly accurate autofocus technology, Dual Pixel CMOS AF: the EOS M6 compact-system camera and the EOS 77D (EOS 9000D in other regions) and EOS 800D (EOS Rebel T7i or EOS Kiss X9i in other regions) digital SLR cameras.

Through the further refining of its diverse imaging technologies based on the Company’s core optical technologies, Canon will further strengthen and expand the EOS lineup through the integration of still image, video and network functionality. Canon will continue striving to create attractive and reliable products aimed at contributing to expanding the culture of photographic and video imaging.

*Based on a Canon survey

 ** Information and picture courtesy of Canon Singapore and Ogilvy Public Relations ** 

Armenian Street Party 2017 by Peranakan Museum

A short stretch of the road and space in front of the Peranakan Museum closed to the traffic for two nights, transforming into a fun party venue for visitors to bring their family, children and friends down, visit the museums and soak in the party atmosphere. This was the Armenian Street Party 2017 organised by Peranakan Museum that took place on 10th and 11th March. The Armenian Street Party made her maiden debut in 2016, I was there too at the first Armenian Street Party!

For this year 2017 Armenian Street Party, I dropped by on Friday evening and managed to catch some of the performances at the street party. The theme for Armenian Street Party 2017 was back to school, going back to the good old school nostalgia days (when we were young), some of you might remember going to detention class, disliking certain subjects such as literature, tuckshop food during recess time, English and grammar class, PE class, music class etc etc.

The Armenian Street Party was also a perfect time to visit the Peranakan Museum and Singapore Philatelic Museum with their family, children and friends. This street party is perfect for the two museums to have more publicity and awareness from the public, they are two great museums with really great and wonderful artworks, contents and exhibitions, that the public may not know as much, compared to her bigger fellow sister museums such as the National Museum of Singapore.

At the Armenian Street Party 2017, on the Friday that I visited, I saw the mass P.E. class by Upside Motion, it’s not a bad idea to conduct P.E. class on the road without the vehicles! The iconic Peranakan Museum favourite band of singers, the Peranakan Sayang, were in action on Friday, with the theme “Balek Sekolah!”, translated to “Back to school!”. This group of singers are really good and they never fail to light up the crowds!

The Armenian Street Party is not just about the two museums, Peranakan Museum and Singapore Philatelic Museum, it’s a community event, the kampung spirit, with fellow neighbours along Armenian Street coming in, participating and be a part of this festive party. Timbre Group, Substation, Upside Motion, True Blue Cuisine and SMU were neighbours, part of the Armenian Street kampung. They all played a part in this year’s street party.

There were also delicious food by True Blue Cuisine, selling all time favourite tuckshop treats, I didn’t manage to go down and eat all the food on Friday. I only manage to eat the laksa during the media preview (I was rushing for time on that day) prior to the street party weekend.

I took the opportunity to visit Singapore Philatelic Museum, a very short walk down the road from Peranakan Museum. I forgot when was the last time I visited this museum, they looked small in physical size yet they packed some pretty wonderful collections inside there. Touring the Singapore Philatelic Museum brought me back many memories, I used to collect stamps when I was a young kid in school and I am beginning to wonder where have I kept my stamps? Probably somewhere in my home!

After touring the Singapore Philatelic Museum, I stayed on and watched two performances –

Literature Class: Music & Prose of the Past

By Cappella Martialis

Literature Class: Will The Night Away!

By Centre Stage.

Two great performances held inside this small and cosy Singapore Philatelic Museum.

The performance “Will The Night Away!” was about a Shakespeare classic “Romeo and Juliet”, that most students would probably have studied if they took Literature during their secondary school days (I didn’t take Literature in my upper secondary school). This is Singapore style, a Singapore spin “Romeo and Ah Lian”. Their play was hilarious, interactive and engaging, with the Shakespeare exhibition theme behind them, this was a perfect setting for Romeo and Ah Lian!

Since I was only there on Friday, I couldn’t catch the rest of the performances and activities that were held during the Armenian Street Party 2017, although I did manage to catch a glimpse of some of them during the media preview.

Personally, I feel that the Armenian Street Party is a great community event that doesn’t need to go massively big, it may not (and need not) be the biggest street party event or museums event, they just leverage and combine together as the Armenian Street “kampung”, the Peranakan Museum and Singapore Philatelic Museum, along with their neighbours along Armenian Street.

Looking forward to the next edition of the Armenian Street Party!


Created with flickr slideshow.

Singapore Biennale 2016 – An Atlas of Mirrors

The Singapore Biennale 2016, with the theme “An Atlas of Mirrors”, was recently concluded on the 26th February 2017, having started on 27th October 2016. This was the fifth edition of the Singapore Biennale and I am glad that I managed to visit most of the artwork exhibitions present at Singapore Biennale 2016 before it ended. Looking back at my own personal Singapore Biennale visits, I covered four out of five editions, starting from year 2008, 2011, 2013 and 2016, with photographs that I took during my visits to Singapore Biennale curated and consolidated inside this Flickr collection.

The theme “An Atlas of Mirrors” for Singapore Biennale 2016, was on the instruments of vision and navigation to explore around the world used by the human race. The atlas was used by the human race to explore and venture all around the world, to discover the unknown and open up new chapters in history and time, not just in terms of landing on a new country, it’s also about the cultural, sociological and psychological revolution and evolution. As the human race used atlas and maps over centuries of exploration, scientific development and technology growth, coupled with more rapid and intense human movement around the world.

Do we know, how and where we see ourselves, see the world, see the future, from we we are right now? With the growth and boom of information technology, internet and social media, are we even learning more about each other from different parts of the world? Or have we retreated into mountains and caves, becoming even more isolated than the industrial revolution era? Do we need the mirror to constantly look at ourselves and ask ourselves questions?

Over my four visits to Singapore Biennale, from 2008 to 2016, they had always been an eye opener for me, not just for my eyes, also for my heart, mind and soul. There were times when some of the artworks by the artists were too deep and complex for me to understand and relate. There were also some artworks that clicked immediately with my mind, heart and soul. The Singapore Biennale is one mega arts event that allow me to explore and learn more about contemporary art in Singapore, the region and around the world.

Couple an atlas and mirror together, that’s the theme for Singapore Biennale 2016 “An Atlas of Mirrors”. While I can’t say that I have every answer to the things I said in my earlier paragraphs, at the very least, it pushed me to think beyond the views and experiences that I have inside me currently, in the business world, in my photography and in life.

Due to personal situations that happened in the last quarter of 2016 and early 2017, I wasn’t able to split my time and visit the Singapore Biennale 2016 a few times, to slowly absorb and understand the artists abstract artworks and the meanings behind them. I only managed to visit them just four days before her closing day. Nevertheless, I am very glad that I did it, feeding my my mind, heart and soul with contemporary art from Singapore Biennale.

Some of the artworks at Singapore Biennale 2016 connected with me in some ways or another, here are some of them

  • There are those who stay / There are those who go
  • The Great East Indiaman
  • Cooking the World
  • “If you can dream a better world you can make a better world or perhaps travel between them”
  • Black Forest 2016
  • History Repeats Itself
  • One Has to Wander through All the Outer Worlds to Reach the Innermost Shrine at the End
  • The Covenant
  • Melampaul Batas (Beyond Boundaries)
  • SONICreflection

Do visit my Flickr folder – Singapore Biennale 2016 and view more photographs that I took during my exploration and adventure of the contemporary art festival!

I leave you with this short video recording (that I did with the Canon EOS M5 review camera unit that I was reviewing during the time when I was at Singapore Biennale 2016) on the artwork produced by Melissa Tan from Singapore, titled “If you can dream a better world you can make a better world or perhaps travel between them”

As the Singapore Biennale 2016 concluded her fifth edition, have you ask yourself, from where you are right now, how do you visualise the world, and see for yourself where you are right now and into the future?


Created with flickr slideshow.

Updates and changes to my photography sites

The time is now, it had been brewing behind the scenes for some time since 2016. There were times when I looked back and reflected on myself, whether things could have been done faster. In life, sometimes, many things don’t go according to plan.

Sometimes, the people around you understand or make a point to seek first and understand, sometimes, there are also people around you that doesn’t want to understand and know what were the circumstances and situations.

As I took the first step into opening my own small business in photography on the 1st day of 2017, there were a lot of things behind the scenes to get things up and running for my small photography business. From setting up a new photography portfolio website, to restructuring and realignment of my other photography sites. The economic conditions are slow and very challenging for year 2017 and 2018. Taking the first step into operating a small business, is a huge leap of faith and courage. I am and I have to work a lot extra harder and smarter, taking on 2 more jobs (helping my friends business in legal services and forex/stocks trading) beside growing and building up my small photography business.

First and foremost, let me introduce to you the updates and changes below:

New photography portfolio website using Format platform – http://www.tghphotography.com

First and foremost, I thought I had a photography portfolio. Yes and No.

A fellow photographer friend commented that my photography and travel interest site (probably in 2015) was messy and people can’t see my true portfolio. He was spot on and I took note of that, without going full steam ahead into making the changes, that was before some things happened in 2016.

In 2016, after personal setbacks and fell right into the bottom of a well. I started to plan and make changes. While picking myself up, licking my wounds and handling personal losses to my loved one and 2 close friends in year 2016.

The process was much slower than I what planned and wanted it to be. Finally, I pieced all my jigsaw puzzles and planning together, giving rise to my new photography portfolio.

Photography and travel interest site – http://www.photojournalist-tgh.tv

This website used to double up as my portfolio, with more than 10 years of photography and travel content (since 2006). It had accumulated a pretty rich amount of photography and travel content. With the establishment of my new photography portfolio, this would be relived of official photography portfolio duties.

She will continue to serve in her capacity as a photography and travel interest / social media / blogging website, my digital marketing, social media and blogging arm for my photography and travel.

Hosting/sharing of photographs in photography/social media communities

~ 500px – https://500px.com/tangenghui

~ Flickr – https://www.flickr.com/photos/tangenghui

These two photography communities are where I have uploaded and shared my photographs from my past years of photography adventures. These two communities are closely linked to my photography and travel interest site, whereby I wrote about the events that I attended, camera reviews, travel etc and visitors can visit Flickr or 500px to view more of the photographs that I took.

With the establishment of my new photography portfolio, my 500px and Flickr would be restructured and realigned them to be secondary photography portfolios.

There might be people who question the need for multiple photography sites to host and showcase my photography works. They each have their goals, objectives and directions in terms of my outreach, engagement and sharing of photographs. Having a presence in the two different photography communities help to expand and diversify my photography presence, outreach and branding.

Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/TanGengHuiPhotography

My Facebook page will remain status quo, no major changes to its direction and usage. This is part of my social media outreach, digital engagement, marketing and publicity platform for my family, relatives, friends, clients and supporters on Facebook.

This Facebook page is not just about sharing my photography works, it’s also a sharing platform for photography tips, news, interesting events taking place and my travel segment as well, from travel news, travel tips and travel events.

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/tangenghui

My Instagram currently is a personal Instagram account, therefore, it’s not specially and specifically curated photography portfolio. This is a pretty carefree Instagram account, not bounded by too many of my own rules and regulations.

I might setup another Instagram account, purely for photography portfolio purposes. Until this takes place, my current Instagram account would take on the role on the Instagram platform, as part of my social media outreach, digital engagement, marketing and publicity platform for my family, relatives, friends, clients and supporters.

Final closing and personal thoughts

A new established photography portfolio, along with a strategic restructuring and realignment of my other photography sites, all these new changes and movements allowed me to streamline and manage my business, marketing and social media outreach.

Nothing in life is perfect, we just have to learn, grow and pick ourselves up from our mistakes and failures. At this juncture in time, all of the above would serve me well in running my photography business and growth in the near future.

Today, reaching this milestone, opening up this new journey, the route leading me towards this post today, was never straightforward and smooth going as I thought it would be. The setbacks in year 2016 spurred me to create and carve my own future. Being stuck at the bottom of the well, climbing my way up and out of it, this was another huge learning and growing curve in my life, to pick myself up from all the hurt, damage, anger, disappointment, lost of confidence and self belief.

Some said, I am slow in doing all these things together. True, no doubt about that and I do not deny that point. I do things a bit slower than others because I am more prudent, plan and strategise further ahead. How many people really knew about the recovery curve that I went through?

Most people don’t want to know the things behind the scenes, the “blood, sweat and tears”, they only see the end results and money, this is the capitalist economy that we live in.

Everything above is a huge leap of faith, it’s a new hope. No matter how much or how detailed planning in life that a person can do, in whatever areas they take on, there are no guarantees in life, I used to learn that there are only 2 guarantees in life, they are death and taxes, now make it 3 ~ Change is the 3rd guarantee in life.

This new journey actually started on 1st January 2017, it’s only with the launch of my new photography portfolio that I can write all my plans, happenings and thoughts here.

I know this is quite a bit of lengthy read, thank you very much from the bottom of my heart, for taking your precious time to read (when most people are not reading much) and for your continuous support, if you have read till the last line here.