Friday, February 29, 2008

Internet and its influences to Malaysia's politics stage

I wrote a post two years ago in 2005 on two malaysian opposition politician utilizing the mass internet media to reach out to the blogger community. The two prominent politicians are YB Lim and YB Teresa. Jeff Ooi at that time, the most controversial blogger in the internet are making his mark as an independent journalist who got the balls to write against the government openly. Many thought that he won't last long and would be thrown in to ISA to be humiliated and brain wash. Now, he is still alive and kicking with the new prospect as a DAP representative to contest in Jelutong parliament seat.

My previous post is mainly about the DAP YB's new blog and this significant news knowing that they do realized the importance of blogging as a future road in media information. I would like to quote the last paragraph of my previous post.

Can blog writers make changes on the real political area and make bloglitical as a word politically and get its wide acceptance from general community in Malaysia? Jeff Ooi seems to be a major favorite for me, and might be we can see some others as well. So what do you think?

I did not get any respond on my comment box. Now, two years after the post, Jeff Ooi standing contesting for a Parliament seat. It doesn't make me surprise when he announced of his candidacy after few speculation if he decided to contest or not and which party he will be representing. This election will prove weather a blogger can make any different in a real world political platform rather than barking behind the internet curtain.

I also did a similar post about blogger in political platform and spit out two names of possible first blogger MP. Even thou this post not really fully about politic issue and more on a silly incident that happen, i did speculate about the chances of blogger in political scene. Blog really change a lots compared to few years ago. The ignorance and alter ego among conservative politicians towards blogger vanished after they realized that internet with blog really can make a difference.

The presidential candidates for 2008 America general election has utilized the internet to reach out to a constant and rapid growth of internet community. I read a news article on edison chen's scandalous photo in which highlighted a new word. "Netizen" is defined in wikipedia as i quote,

A Netizen (a portmanteau of Internet and citizen) or cybercitizen is a person actively involved in online communities

Youtube was utilized fully by the presidential candidate as an important media asset to their campaign. CNN and Youtube successfully collaborate to organized a Democrat and Republican debate and give the chances for anyone of us all around the world no matter one is citizen or not an opportunity to express a question to the candidates. This is a great big step right after Neil Armstrong’s first step on the moon to the advancement of our civilization. The future is looking better and brighter.

Internet really changes the mind of many and it still does. The significant to Malaysia’s political stage is the first blogger MP if he wins the contest. This will definitely give us an assurance of free speech through internet for another 5 years.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Ravejoint: A place where you really can find a place to eat

I saw lots of blog about food growing more and more in Malaysia blogosphere. The most famous one i think is kyspeak. I believe that he is the most reliable and trusted food critics’ blogger in malaysia. I always see people who in food blog wrote a general description on what they eat. Basically, if this particular dish delicious or not or cheap or expensive and then the end. Another problem is that they way they direct people the location of the shop. Let me show you how kyspeak draw a map.

It is a very detailed and interesting map for a person with a mouse and paintbrush. This map was drawn with lots of pain talking steady hand and mouse navigation. That why most food blogger not putting any self made map on their food blog. I found out there is a local website that provided a very creative and advance way for most of the food blogger out there. It utilized the google map technology and the recent high quality photo mapping and road mapping around malaysia main town.

Map like this look more professional and neat. No more pains taking effort using that little mouse and hurting your eyes every time you do a food review. Let me quote some text from it’s about page.

Ravejoint is a place for people passionate about food to hang out and share their enthusiasm. We want to create a place where you can discover the best food and places to eat as well as share your experiences. For those who are food critics at heart can easily blog about your favourites and even recommend personal favorites to friends through your profile page.

Indeed, this website offers lots of practical and easy way for blogging food locally. I'm not sure if this website is the first for food blogging but it merely match the google map web based site where you can find almost anything but limited to specific places. Nevertheless, this website offers a specific application for blogging that is food.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Forum Post: Photography Profession

I was looking at flanegan's photo forum Borneo Shutter and reading some post thread that he made and made a comment on one his topic.

Photography is not an easy field to venture mainly because of the high cost of the equipments you need to invest. People who want to change his steady job to not so stable photography career need to think twice before doing that. My venture to photography was a coincident because i started my work holding a video camera and graphic design. Photography comes in as equipments for a company that i work that at last not really work out for me.

The influx of beginner photographers in wedding field pushes the market price to its lowest. Dslr cameras become cheaper to most people to own. Thanks to the marketing strategies and the competition among the camera brand to make dslr affordable to everyone. Still, never do they know that the cheaper dslr camera does not really meant professional as it to be. During the old days, what really divided the point shot camera and slr is the ability to control the camera mechanism such as aperture, shutter speed, iso sensitivity and flash level. Point and shoot camera setting is controlled by the on board chips that did everything that needed to set in slr camera. digital point and shoot are even better in term in creating an image with all the setting can be preset and the touch up can even done by the on board camera chip without we even realized it. Cheaper range dslr is a hybrid of point and shoot technology and professional advance and setting in dslr. Just imagine a point and shoot camera can use all the pro dslr equipments such as the flash and lenses. Not all really, just lens that designed for digital slr camera.

i don't have any problem with people who want to venture into wedding photography as a career change or part time. The problem is when they offering a dirt cheap price for their services. This will give a general impression to the people that they don't need to spend such as this amount to a wedding photographer. Just let your cousin or friend to do your wedding function and save your money to go to honey moon or wedding dinner expenses. If they lucky, they will get some great shot of bad composition and exposure of photos of their most important day and then no one to blame after that. I don't think a cousin or friend of yours who do a living full time in wedding or other field of photography would agree that their services should be dirt cheap. One general aspect is the equipments that they use. One has to know that professional photography equipments not just fall down for the sky. One need to spent or borrow money to have a full spec of equipments to create a good and commercial standard of photos to the customers and let the customers know that photography no mean all cheap. Money needed to spent not to the time itself but to the equiptment and the artistic skills and experience of the photographer. This is how a photography field will get back its old time of glory and respect.

Yes, some does argue that it doesn't need a great or expensive camera to create an amazing photo. Yes, but half true. Photo was taken via point shoot and hand phone camera doesn't have its technical artistic content. Indeed that I admits to saw lots of good photo taken by point shoot camera in internet. thou, those amazing and technically artistic photo mostly taken by high end photography equipments that require whoever is the person to use it, must has an adequate knowledge and experience in photography itself. All nice photos taken via point and shoot can be categorized as lucky shot for me. i took lots of lucky and unlucky shot photos using a point and shoot camera. Then it turns to be all the way unlucky shot for me when i started to use a dslr 2 years ago. I realized the technical knowhow and experience make great different between the hobbyist, armature and professional photographer.

I realized that some might not agree with all what i wrote above. I understand. Still, to whoever wants to change his day job and venturing photography as a main income need to think thoroughly. The cheap equipments sold in camera shop are not adequate to be use in a commercialized setting because of the lack of accessories that cost many times that the camera itself. The photography skills and the professional work etiquette is important to create a overall good work and impression to the photography field. Letting those ahbeng and ahlian who charge less RM100 per day for a wedding services, how are the professional or full time photographer going to earn a living then? No matter in whatever field in photography, new waves of cheaper range photographer is coming to town. So, for all who dedicated full his heart and equipments in photography, hold tight and brace yourself for the impact. In another way of speaking, learn more skills to get your distance away from those who offering dirt cheap price of photography services.

So, what do you think?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Wedding Photo: Elvin and Tian Yen

I went to sandakan for a wedding assignment on 29 December 2007. This assignment was different to others wedding assignment because i used 2 digital camera that allowed me to use two different lens setting at one time. I use the 17-70mm lens as a primary which offer wide and zoom and 50mm f1.8 as a secondary lens for better lighting and depth of field effect. I had problem in getting used to this setting at the beginning but i managed moment later

The weather is a bit cloudy and not really ideal to take any good photo. The second problem that i had was not managed to look at the church in advance to get experiment with the church's lighting condition.

As usual, i started the photo shot at the bride's home. It is quite a home with warm reception from the father and mother of the bride. I use the 50mm f1.8 for a specific subject i want to take and a little bit portraits shot.

50mm f1.8 allowed me to take a portrait without artificial flash. Natural lighting from windows is a good for portrait photo for any subject.

The photo above was taken during a cloudy day. Even thou the light was bright enough for a snap shot, the color not really projected very well and accurate that caused by the imbalance of the white balance. Cloudy day can turn the day a bit blue dull.

The bride’s father looking at her daughter arranging the flower bouquet with the help of her brides mate. It is a classical example of wedding photojournalist technique.

A silhouette effect with outer glow of the bride's veil give a very interesting effect and give a curiosity and wonder impression to the bride when the most important day of her life is within the last few steps.

The twin is so energetic during the walk to aisle. The movement blur shot was accidental but it turn out to be a very nice photo.

The altar view of St Michael Church in which the light shine bright in two directions giving a balance of amount of bright and shadow exposure.

The bride was reading her vows on paper hold by Pastor Clarence.

While waiting for the signing ceremony to start, i managed to snap a photo in which the ring on the hand and the wedding record book that is a witness of many previous weddings.

The grooms kiss the bride reenactment because ceremonial kiss was too fast to be captured and i actually missed it. I always ask for second kiss reenactment because the couple was not anymore feeling nervous.

Flower tossing is a must for every western style wedding. This is among the must have event photo in a wedding.

Again, another movement blur photo that i turn out to be nice. The composition of the stair gives a swivel point to the photo.

Personal portrait shot on the couple's new room.

A syn flash setting that was turn out to be nice. The dinner hall is so big i had to compensate the ambient light of the background with the front subject to avoid a dark background.

Yam seng is a Chinese wedding cheer from the guest to the newly wedded couple for good and happy wishes.

The chains line of people project a very interesting interaction between friends all the way to the bride inside the car.

I took about 1500 photos on the wedding and processed about 200 pieces of photo to put in the customized photo album that i finished a moment ago. Most of the time spends on reviewing the photo and thinking the design and photo flow for the wedding book. Designing a wedding book not easy for me and i need about one month to create an original and different book for each wedded couple. The job become even harder on the day that two couple want a wedding book for their photo in which i use about 2 month to finished it because i don't want both book look the same.

To see more photo of this wedding, please click here for the bigger slide.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Food: Restoran Kampung Hainan

I was told by my friend that his family is opening a new food restaurant somewhere at the inanam main bus stop. I never being so choosy in food because my tolerant demand to good tasty food is still low except for one particular dish that is "Bak Kut Teh".

I'm not writing about bak kut teh today, but on this particular restaurant that specialized in chicken rice. It is Hainan style chicken rice to be more accurate. There are only few food restaurants that offer hainanese style chicken rice. Most of the food restaurants just have normal chicken rice served with normal rice. Hainanese style chicken rice is different from other chicken rice in term of the rice preparation and chilies blend.

I rarely took photo on food. I did it one year ago. Taking photo shot of a food or dishes not really easy as thought. To have a good photo on food, one has to find a nice perspective and angle to project the food and taste. So, the first thing in food photography is the texture and detail of the food. People tend to influenced by the food texture and detail of the food. Second is the color of the food. People tend to choose a basic color and bright food compared to dull and dark color food. That why most of the food photography look bright and colorful.

I choose to eat lunch at my friend's place because of its hainan style chicken rice. The chicken they used for the chicken rice was fed organically in farm without extra supplement of vitamin and fat. I tasted most of my friend's cooking and most of them taste good without cutting down and compromised the original ingredient. This chicken rice is drumstick portion and cost more and it is about RM6.00. The normal price for other part cost at RM4.00.

The next dishes called soft tofu with crispy dry prawns, friend onion as topping and sauce of sesame oil. This is a big portion of tofu to be served. They will be serving a smaller portion of tofu with the price range around RM3-4 ringgit.

This one is called Yi Ping Wo. I don't really get the taste of this food because i never taste it before. So, it is hard to tell whether it delicious or not. If you want to know, just go to there and try it yourself.

This one was called roti hainan. Something toasted bread with something filling inside a pure hainanese breakfast dish. It cost RM1 a piece and quite cheap for a breakfast. I wrote a review and location details at ravejoint website. If anyone of you all want to give a try on this restaurant click here for the direction and food update for this restaurant.

A new working logo

I created a new logo for myself to embed it into my newly designed business card. This logo is also going to be use as watermarks on my works of photos and video starting now. I'm trying to stay away from being a photographer or video man because my skills are more than that.

My work included lots, from creating photo (photography), creating video (video man) and graphic (computer based artwork) and embed it as one design. I did most of the works because i don't have an office or people who help me with. I truly work at home. It is a brand name that suits to my lifestyle working professionally independent as a designer. Professionally in this term defined that i currently work this job as full time basis even thou doesn't has a proper company.

I wish to have a proper company for everything that i done for these few years but i realized that i am not ready to compete for the real markets without risking of losing lots of money. So, at the moment, working at home does have its advantages now but in long run I have to step out from it.


I discovered that some one is using my name to write a comment at another people's blog. I don't know what is the intention to do it but i believe it is not a good one.

Please be notice:

1. I never write comment into chat box. I only gave comment at post comment.
2. Please check out with me via my contact email before accusing me making a bad mark on your site. If i find my comment was not true, i will apologize publicly.
3. Police report will be made and investigation will be done to find the culprit. The owner site will be able to track the IP address of the culprits.
4. I will personally take court action against any person who ever trying to spread false impression about me or my business.