Saturday, August 31, 2013

Auto driven society

When I was born, life is still filled with a lot of manual chores, hand washed clothes, thesis-es, letters and documents typed using the type-writer,  not everyone had a computer nor a cellphone and there's no world wide web access for everyone during that time. 

Figure 1: Manual focusing the lens is a challenge.
Most of the fun I had during my early childhood days were out of the house and most of them were engaging with others in real-time. Life was simple and yet filled with fun and surprises. You never knew that person until you talk to them and interact face to face.

Those were real, and I first learnt to drive using a huge manual four-wheel drive. With a little bit of scolding here and there, I finally mastered that at the time huge 2500cc diesel monster and I didn't even went for a proper class for that, that's how effective home schooling is I guess.

Figure 2: Smiling before the rain.
These days, everything is so automatic, you can know that person's biography without even meeting them to say Hi. You don't even have to have a deep conversation in a date to know her. Social sites have spelled it all out for you about that person's personality or if you're unlucky the other way around.

Camera's are very automatic these days, especially auto-focusing. I have to admit I am spoiled by those lightning fast AF that I lost touch of manual focus. Now when I tried it back, I have to admit, it is a very tough feat to actually manual focus and I really respect those who do so professionally.

Figure 3: Manual focusing in the heavy torrential rain.
Life is getting more and more automated and we're getting more and more lazier to work things out. I found this slightly disappointing due to the fact you can actually get more fun when you override to manual. It gets tougher but more fun. 

Figure 4: Dark heavy clouds engulfs the horizon.
It's like having a sports car with all 6-speed manual gear instead of an auto shift-er if you get what it mean. Well, for myself to actually own a sports car is probably in my dream but to appreciate fully, I would say, get a feel of manual then slowly shift to auto. You'll definitely miss manual. 

*The pictures in these post are taken using manual focusing, this is where I got my gear drenched in the rain too, so it actually worth it to invest in better weather-proofed cameras*

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Childhood triumphs

I treasure my childhood days, the days when you don't think much about responsibility but more towards having fun almost all of the time. These are the times that shapes you into the person you are and develops your true passions and paths in life. 

Figure 1: My gadget friendly childhood friend.
I am gifted to live my childhood days in a small island where the communities are packed in the village+housing area. Since most of the parents of the families staying close by are colleagues at work, automatically my childhood friends consists of housing+school friends.

Figure 2: One of the influences in my photography.
There are some of those friends which I are still close to me and every-time I hang out with them, we reminiscence all those crazy and stupid things that we have done. We would rave about our bravery, our achievements during the debate and even the stupidest things we do.

Figure 3: Why isn't your table made of marble.
There was one story, which to me, is very funny. It happened when my friend, a group of them went out to the jungle just at the back of our housing. And one of this naughty and stupid friend told that if they were to encounter bees, just drop down and pretend you're dead.

Figure 4: The fighter and warrior.
We'll there's bees, and of five of my friends, two stupid kids drop down dead. And while there at it, the other friend who drop down complained, why are these bees still stinging me. The three smarter friends ran away laughing at their calamity.

Figure 5: The one with a long sighted 10K above ambition.
Even after we changed schools and transferred away from this small island, have a career of our own, we always come back to meet up. Now that we're all grown up, these interesting and funny stories are what we have left of our memories. We still hang out at our regular hanging out place which is just in front of my friend's house.

Figure 6: A hot lecture on health.
There are too much memories that I have inside that slips away and I forgot all about it, but each and one of my childhood friends personalities are different and unique. One may be tough and aggressive, one is filled with ideas and logic, while another might just observe and grab the next best opportunities. 

Figure 7: At our regular place and time.
We've grown up, getting married and even having children, but our memory stays with us and that is what makes our lives unique and original. What makes us strong will definitely make our future generation stronger.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

A small act of kindness

Today was an eventful day, so I have hoped for a smooth day, but things just don't always work out as planned. This is predictable but then without the glitch I wouldn't been able to experience this extra-ordinary act of kindness.

Figure 1: When you leave this world, only your deed are reminisce. 

I planned for a sunset on the evening, but the urge to go cycling was strong, so I decide to rest my camera on the table and go out cycling on that supposedly beautiful evening. I cycled from my home to the beach where I get to see with my own eyes a beautiful sunset.

I saved that in my limited mind memory and decide to head back home. As I cycle back towards home, it was already getting dark, with the highest gear I paddled to reach home as fast as I could. Suddenly the ride got rough and the back tire is out of air.

I brought a small pump with me, but to no avail as air gusts out of the tire easily. So, without further ado I get ready to push the bike a long way back home. I wasn't discourage by this and I didn't find a reason to complain, I was amazed that I am not miserable at all.

Still a long way and a hill away from home, a white old 1.5 tonne lorry passed me, I didn't notice as a lot of vehicles pass-by which is normal. Then it does a U-turn on that tight road and came back to me honking. I looked and saw two elderly uncles calling to me, Boy, do you need a ride home?

I say, I'm fine, it's just a little more walk, which isn't true. The uncle driving the lorry insisted me to follow. So I lifted my bike and climbed up the back of the lorry, but the uncle say, Don't sit there, come here into the cabin. So with full obedience I followed.

The uncles were contract workers working under the state's power utility company and they were seasoned men. They mentioned to me that, there was nothing to do at home, and it's a hot day so they decide to go out for a walk. They pity me for pushing the bike especially when it is at night.

I was amazed again today, and this small act of serendipity has touched and instantly made me ponder. They send me right up to my doorstep, as I shook their rough hands, I thanked them, three times, but more in my heart.

They are good people in this old old world and despite what others think, life isn't bad at all.

Figure 2: Life in a caged small world.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Dreams of my dream

Figure 1: Dragon's stone.
I have a dream, a wonderful dream. It's not a dream only dreamt once but again and again. I dream about it in my sleep and occasionally I day dream about it. It's unreal yet I believe I can achieve it in time. It's a dream intertwined in a lot of elements.

When I am caught in a day dream, I always focus my eyes in a direction which I didn't intend to focus. I stared away out of the blue unintentionally sparking interest with my eyes. I wasn't aware but it was noticed and as I warped out of my dream, eyes meet eyes.

My focus wasn't spot on, I need to delve in further to improve myself, my personality to be worthy of that position in life. It isn't an easy journey but it is easy to dream about it. Nevertheless, I have hope that one day, my dream will come true. I have set a focus point on you.

Figure 2: Focus on a point.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

A world of chances

Figure 1: A chance of a lifetime.
Every now and then, there are rare opportunities that I didn't reach out to grab. I knew about the opportunity was good but I still don't have the guts to go ahead and take the challenge. I saw the chance to explore a new place only to see that chance go without a try.

I have faith and believe in God. I always pray for guidance regarding chances as I am always afraid of the possibilities of failure in an attempt. This out of the world faith has made me to believe that the first chance to arrive that I will take whenever I prayed for it.

Even though chances come and go, I never believed in luck. I don't believe that someone end up rich or poor due to luck itself. To me, chances of a lifetime are rare but it is never a mistake to let go of a chance. People maybe dissapointed with you due to your decision but always stand firm.

If your chance haven't arrived, to have a dream job, to have a beautiful wife, to travel around the world or even just to taste delicious food, never be dismayed as there's always a chance, it may not be what we exactly wanted but it will be what we need.

God blesses each and everyone of us. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Wants and misses

Figure 1: I want to climb this mountain again.
I miss my homeland but I miss my love ones more. I miss the cooler climate and lush greenery landscape of my homeland. Even though it is not so noisy here, but I sleep more peacefully at my village. There's always something special there, but most of all its about the people.

Figure 2: Earthly wants rarely last for long.
I thank God for giving me what I have now and I really appreciate those blessings, but as a normal human being, I was always expecting more. All of what I have now is enough, but my instincts tell me to gain more. I am such a selfish and greedy person to want more. 

Figure 3: Moon early in the morn.
I must persevere with patience in me and I have to hold on to my principles. I believe there is so much more in life than what I plan or what I want. I believe that God has a plan for me which I can never comprehend in my little mind. God's plan is more what what I want or miss. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Wishes for the night

Figure 1: The milky way.
When the night comes and the world turns into a state of dark, I am still wishing to capture some essence of light in the darkest state of time. As a small kid, I enjoy staring at the stars when the skies are clear. The beauty of those light from the distance is beautiful and breath-taking.

Earlier last week, I've waited for the Pleiades meteors to show, I didn't manage to capture nor see it due to the cloudy sky. There are a lot of instances when I missed the milky way directly above my head due to the light pollution. There are so many limitations to my photography due to my current kit set-up. 

I currently need a good iso 3200 camera with a f2.8 aperture opening lens. This is so that the lens opening and sensor will be sensitive enough to gather light from the dark sky. Will look into this soon, as I am still yet to afford a full-frame sensor and a lens for it will be pricey.

These are my little wishes to capture the beauty of the night, the moon at its full glory is also one of the attractions of the night. The clear skied night certainly holds a lot of surprises, there's much to capture as any sunrise or sunsets.

Figure 2: The night skies when it is clear.

Thursday, August 15, 2013


Figure 1: The final round.
A sports tourney earlier this month was a demonstration of an epic story about sportsmanship. This team, organized just a week before with just enough team members to participate in my homeland wide street soccer "futsal" tournament.

The captain, who is a pastor, played for the whole tournament. They barely able to rest till the next game, yet they continue on fighting to do their best for the goal. I am not sure if they even have time to strategize and have proper training but all of the player are very skilled.

The team faces heavily trained teams with endless substitute, they went on playing filled with spirit and confidence. Of course before every match the team captain, gathers together the teams and prayed for a good match.  

Not satisfied to place yourself only into the semi-finals, but able to get through and enter the finals. Stamina drained and continuous playing leads to players fatigue with not enough substitute. Still they fought a great game and grabbed the second prize.

I enjoyed taking photos of the whole game and I felt that spirit in each one of you guys. Most of all I believe that, God is with you guys all the time. A tournament well played.

Figure 2: Semi-final round.

Monday, August 12, 2013

A sunset with You

Figure 1: The sun setting down. 
I love sunsets, those are the best moments of the day. It is when the light is the most spectacular and rich with golden and burning red. I love the warm breeze which softly whisper through the air. I especially love a beach which has a lot of people hanging out.

Figure 2: Sun setting with a small storm cloud approaching.
This is a part of my homeland which I must visit whenever I come back to the capital city. It's beaches are clean and sandy. The surrounding area is urban but the beach is still in very pristine condition as most ships do not sail close to the area. A polluted beach is an eyesore for me.

Figure 3: My special person.
The best part of watching and enjoying a sunset is to have someone special. It really means a lot watching something spectacular which intrigues two people at the same time. I really think that sunset watching is a must and it is very romantic to be together as the sun sets into the horizon.

The first time I watched a sunset together with someone really special is with her. That is the time where we talked till dusk. I have never enjoyed such an interesting conversation. However when it comes to staring at the sunset, we stared at it together till it disappear. 

Figure 4: Reddish after effect of the sunset.

I am missing my homeland more and more. Soon and very soon I'll make time to go back and meet her again. It has been quite a span of time since I've seen her. She's a very important person to me. Despite not seeing her for some time, I can't stop thinking about her. Is that true love?

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Learning the hard way

Ever since I went to school, I have been spoon fed with knowledge, large spoonful of information which I sometimes am not even aware of or not interested of. I never find learning at my school engaging or interesting. I tend to dream off and draw while rejecting the spoon-fed food.

I am different, I do not like to receive something, without giving anything back, such as effort or diligence as in the end, it will be in vain and it is as if I have receive nothing. I might be such a selfish brat, as people around me, especially my whom parents are already trying their best.

I learn the hard way, I need to be pitched into tough trials and experience the heat, then I know that I have learned something. This way of learning is very painful and there are times when I had to bow my head down low and be mocked. It really hurts.

In the long run, as I matured, I have to always remind myself, to keep myself updated and always be aware of my surroundings. Everything changes, people, times and season follows with it. A storm might be coming which can destroy everything and the next a bright sunny day.

No matter what your preference for study is, there shouldn't be a reason not to learn. Never give up no matter what your method is. Learning should only stop once your breath flows out of your body. It is a life long commitment to learn and be a light to the world.

Figure 1: The wind of change.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Care Less

Figure: Light ray shining across.

I've been up and about these days looking for interesting things, still not much seems to pop out of this island. It seems that hope is fading and the weather is getting worse. Can't have a decent sunset until then, but this one little thing that is spreading around is bothering me.

One of it is,

"The less you care, the happier you will be"

When you think about the quote above, it seems to empower the person with promise of happiness when you care less. I wonder how will that work? Why can caring less, make yourself happier? I can't imagine the closest people to me caring less about me. I would be utterly miserable.

Another is,

"Just keep moving forward and don't give a shit about what anybody thinks. Do what you have to do, for you" 

This is a very famous yet really selfish quote by actor Johnny Depp. It really focuses on yourself, your own self-development, your own advancement and your really don't have to care about how people around you are doing. 

You step on others even when they have complications due to your own decisions. "Well, who cares" is one of the words that are really hurtful for those who have tried their best to meet expectations yet remain invisible to those who are superior.

Being selfish, or being focused to only yourself will only ruin you in the long run, it seems to be today's trend to make yourself feel good by reading and trying to apply these quotes, but as all other quotes these came out from humans too.

Give these fifty cents a thought, I bet it will make you and other people around you more happier. I think the best quote that I would like to share is,

“If you have a candle, the light won't glow any dimmer if I light yours off of mine.” 
― Steven Tyler

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

What are gears?

Figure 1: Mirror mirror on the wall, which is the best lens of them all.

This is a big question for all photographers, especially photography freaks who collect gears but rarely utilize it. This is not such an issue for people who are lucky enough to be financially blessed with a lot of money. But for me, since I have limits in my spending I monitor my lust daily.

Having the best gear, but not using the correct technique to use the lens is a fail in the face. It is also true, when you simply just buy it just because other photographer recommended it as a good lens. If your passion is not in that zoom range then, its always best to skip it.

Pros always says its all about the lenses, well that's true, if you have a wide selection of lenses according to your brand, then stick to that brand. Jump ship or changing brands is really quite a waste of money. Always changing camera bodies one generation after another is also another common indicator.

For me, since I am just taking photos as a hobby, it doesn't make sense to invest in the most expensive gear. I just can't afford it. So I take second hand stuff, I help those wanting to dispose their unneeded gear and I utilize it fully till it can be properly disposed.

For now, I am a Nikon user and have only two lenses which I always use. One wide angle lens and another fix focal large aperture lens. I enjoy photography and it has opened a door which has once closed to me after I left drawing. It relieves me from worries of the world.

So keep to your passions and let those creative energy flow instead of gear acquisition.

Monday, August 5, 2013


Figure 1: At Bundusan beach.

This is my cousin, he's from my mother's side of the family. Since small we've had our adventures together, from fire building, playing with fire crackers, making a canon till getting beaten up by granny for playing fire at home. There are lots of precious memories together.

Figure 2: My cousin's a tall slim guy.

We grew up in different places and environment, I was raised in an island town, while he was raised from the village. Every time, when it was school holidays, I was so eager to go back to my mother's place of birth just to hang out and go around the village with him.

Figure 3: Just got into photography.

He's one year younger than me, and we've fought before, about a girl, well, that was when we've had that crush thing, but we've always get closer once more and forgive each other. Whenever I think about it, that was seriously embarrassing. Still it happened.

Figure 4: Landscape photography.

Now, well, we still hang out occasionally whenever I have the time to go back to the village. We'll go out for drinks, hangout at our favorite aunt's place and sometimes when he's free he'll bring me out to one of those awesome places to take pictures.

Figure 5: I am Nikon, he's using Canon gear.

I am so fortunate to have him as my cousin. He's the best. 

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The star

Figure 1: An eventful sunset on the other-side.

I am always curious about the starfish. Why does it's shape resembles a perfect five pointed star? and the fact that it is moving and alive. I manage to encounter a live starfish during my last outing. It certainly doesn't look pinkish like Patrick but it is quite an interesting discovery for me.

Figure 3: 5 pointed starfish.

I wanted to go to the other side of the island but due to the horrendous jam, I didn't manage to go there. So I settled on this part of the beach facing away from the sunset. I was quite devastated as the view on other far side of the island is spectacular and I missed it. Oh well, another day.

Figure 3: Spotted star fish.

Back to the stars. Now star fish or sea stars are echinoderms and belong to the class Asteroid-ea. Echinoderms are marine invertebrates with five part tube type bodies which are radially symmetrical. So far I have only encountered this brown one, there are other colorful ones to find.

So, I'll keep looking for other types of these five pointed little things which always hides under the sand.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

A great start

Today is a very devastating yet tiring day. I am challenged mentally and physically. Tested at every single turn of the problem. One after another every problem seems to stems out as another one is rectified.

I find myself struggling at every step that I take, cautiously and carefully executing yet exhausting myself little by little.

I am supposed to be a troublesolver.. A troubleshooter, but my skills and experience is still yet to be proven and tested.

This is a tough call to make. Still not a valid reason to give up just yet, just like running, I need to hang in there.

Thank you August, I'll hang onto You Oh Lord..