Alisa and Krissi

According to a research, people tend to hang out in a group consisted of those who share the similar level of attractiveness. Is this a fact or an alternate fact? Anyhow, I like to think that I am quite a good looking bloke because I have quite a few friends that are professionally attractive, i.e. being attractive is a part of their job. I wish I could utilise my good look to bring in some money but usually they give me a paper bag or a mascot suit to cover myself up before giving me compliments and money. 

Alisa had a little sore neck.

Alisa had a little sore neck.

As I had a little free time and I love to shoot portraits when I can to develop my skills. I asked two of my dear friends to step in front of the camera for me, Alisa and Krissi, both whom I knew from uni. They are both very successful in their modeling career, being casted many times for commercials and printed on various local community newsletters advertising anything from local kuay teaw shops to local moonshine (this part is fake, just like CNN, FAKE! only watch Fox & friends folks, best show, tremendous show!).

I shot these two projects using petzval 58 and petzval 85 on my digital cameras either the lovely Fuji xt2 or the Nikon d810 with the new 64mm daguerreotype on a Canon eos5 film camera. 

I think I should do a test/review video of these Petzval lenses. I love them very much but they tend to get a tad too contrasty for my liking. 

 

 

 

Nepal and my Fujifilm X70 part 1.

During the end of last year, I went to Nepal to do a little trek in Annapurna region. I have always been fascinated by the mountains and apparently Nepal has quite a fair few famous one. Before the trip I could name one and that's the Everest but after trip I can name two so that's a progress. 

Due to my ignorance and having zero knowledge on Nepal, I decided to ask my facebook friends if any of them traveled there before. Among many that replied, one of them was Suman, a friend from my uni years. He told me that he's now running a travel company there and would love to help me out. He suggested that I should try the Poon hill (which I told him I have had quite a few though out my teenager years up till now but not too many that might come across as a disgrace) which I agreed to. 

For this trip, I was thinking about taking my film camera but I decided against it and opted for my little compact Fuji x70 instead. I also brought along my Lee filter big stopper, a crappy soft grad 2 stops, a remote for bulb mode action and my trusty Manfrotto be free tripod. 

I got in on the 26th of December and spent two days in Thamel, Kathmandu which was really nice but a little too dusty for my liking. At first I thought it was from all the ongoing constructions from the earthquake damage but Suman told me that Kathmandu has always been like this.  

Massage mister.

Massage mister.

Lady in red

Lady in red

After a quiet day one, we got up early to try to go to all the touristy places in one day. We jumped on a cab outside our place and we hit up Swayambhunath which isn't that far from our place. 

A lady touching her forehead in Swayabhunath.

A lady touching her forehead in Swayabhunath.

This lady was kicking up so much dust and the sun was at the perfect position while monkeys just being monkeys

This lady was kicking up so much dust and the sun was at the perfect position while monkeys just being monkeys

Next place on the list was Kathmandu Durbur square, a beautiful place but the damage from the quake can be clear see. 

Quite a fair few pigeons here, get here early to capture some epicness and some respiratory diseases. 

Quite a fair few pigeons here, get here early to capture some epicness and some respiratory diseases. 

A lady looking up

A lady looking up

And then we went to Bouddhanath Temple which was cool but we got there during mid day so it wasn't photogenic plus all the surrounding buildings got some sort of a Disneyland renovation to them. We hopped on another cab after a nice afternoon tea and got to Pashupatinath Temple, which is a Hindu temple therefore we couldn't go in because we are believe in Jesus Christ, his dad and his holy spirit mates so we took a little walk around the temple instead. 

Beautiful dogs.

Beautiful dogs.

A shadow figure

A shadow figure

Hello

Hello

After a whole day of traveling around the bustling town of Kathmandu and many shots after, the x70 was still alive and well. I am super happy with the battery life and the 35mm equivalent 28mm lens allowed me to get up super close to my subject while being wide enough to let me capture the background. The colour is super nice and created great raw files that I can work with in post, a great little camera indeed.  

Russell

I met Russell at the end of 2015 on a film shoot in which he had to wear a rather heavy coat in 30+ degrees day in day out and he never ever complained once. He's a very talented and passionate actor that everyone wanted to work with, we hit it off and agreed that we should definitely work together on a short film but due to our hectic schedule we never had time to do it. He recently departed Bangkok to return to his homeland back in the UK to pursue his career in acting which I'm sure he will be killing it over there. 

We ended up doing a little photoshoot together, as a small parting gift from me to him, and here it is. 

Bee

I've recently been posting quite a few photos of my friend, Bee, whom I met during a make up video I made for a friend. I then somehow convinced her to be in my latest short film, 4.4, which she was more than happy to come and hang with us (no pun intended). 

She've recently quit her architecture job to pursue modelling so I told her I'd return her a favour by doing a photoshoot for her with a promise that it'd be a high key shoot and she will be able to use these photos for her modelling comp card, clearly she didn't know any better and said yes. 

I ended up shooting a much more low key & high contrast photos for her. She should have been quite crossed with me but she's too nice for that. 

shot with Mamiya RZ67 on Fuji Acros and Kodak portra 160 

Sri Lanka

My mum is quite religious and every year, she would go on a buddhist pilgrimage trip with her friends and for the past seven years she's been to India six times and last year she went to Bhutan. This year I decided to go and it was well worth it. Sri Lanka is an amazing country to visit. 

Once we arrived at the hotel, we had a little time to kill so I decided to go for a little wander around. I came across a construction and I was drawn to it, I met the site manager who invited me in to have a look around. One thing I noticed straight away was how friendly Sri Lankans are, I turned on the camera and started to take a few photos of the workers. Right there and then I decided to give myself a portrait photography assignment for the whole duration of the trip. 

I was using the Sony a7s ii and a single lens which was the super takumar 50mm f1.4 for the whole trip as I was lazy and wanted to get to know this lens a little more. A few things I notice was that after starting to shoot at f4-5.6, life has become much easier, especially with the ridiculous amount of ISO I can push with this low light beast and the stabilizer that helped me a lot with my shaky hands. This lens does flare a lot and I didn't mind it at all, sometime it does become somewhat annoying but overall it's pretty good. I love it most when the light sources add the horizontal streaks into my picture, if the light source is a bit toppy in the corner then you'd get this 45 degree streak right in the corner, a little too much and you won't be able to see anything. With old lenses that have swirly bokeh, they tend to be highly unusable wide open unless the subject is right in the middle but this lens is more forgiving and only exhibit the typical soft wide open characteristic which isn't that bad, just buttery smooth goodness if you're in a mood for it. 

There were a few times that I wish I have brought a wider lens with me, I did miss my 35mm and I did miss some shots because I had to back up a little bit more. 

If you have time and don't know where to go for your next trip, go to Sri Lanka.

Here are few sample photos from the trip.

Sahita & Tom

Earlier this year, I had an honour to attend one of my good mates wedding in New Zealand as the wedding photographer. 

I've met Tom when I was studying at Shirley Boy's high school, Christchurch, New Zealand.  I believe I was in year 10 and we possibly met in front of the science block. We didn't really become close until a year later when we did attend quite a few sausage parties together. At that time Tom was this manly macho man, so steaks and rugby were his main dish. We started to hang out a bit more when we were in the same rugby team, the 2nd XV during our year 12. We also started doing Dragon boating together, I'd hitched a ride with him after school to get to Lyttelton for training. 

After the race one time, we somehow ended up chasing a car full of Christchurch Girls high school....girls through the desolate QE2 road, it was under the speed limit and the feelings were mutual as in we didn't chase them like how Jason chases a screaming girl while wearing a hockey mask. Tom was pretty good at driving, another manly point. We ended up being left hanging in a hot tub withstanding a hail storm sausage fest style while the girls didn't show up to our "gathering" later on that night. We were never that good with girls I guess, well at least I was.

We were quite close at one point, as in front row close, hugging each other all the time during the pack down before the scrum. Tom became our head boy and I became a prefect, We got into the 1st XV together, he ended up being quite a force for the team while I torn a ligament in my elbow before our first game and became a bum.

We grew apart after high school as I decided to join the monastery of CPIT jazz school and Tom went onto Canterbury University. We would occasionally bumped into each other but it wasn't that often. 

Since my move back to Thailand, I saw Tom twice, the first time he told me that he's seeing a girl. I didn't really read into it too much other than a handshake and simple "well done mate". The next visit his girl came with him, that was when I first met Sahita properly. I heard quite a fair bit about her and how they travelled around together, how they got engaged. We had a little meet up and they asked if I would be able to take a few photos for them at their wedding, nothing was set in stone then, not until a few months before the wedding that they took a leap of faith to chose me to become their photographer for their important day. 

Tom had an all-vegan wedding. If you would have told me this back in the day I'd possibly laugh my ass off but he did have an all-vegan wedding. Tom has grew into this perfect balance of macho manly man and warm soft sensible optimistic gentleman. What I saw was the pure joy and happiness between these two lovebirds, the genuine true love people talks about, I got quite jealous.

I'm glad I could witnessed it and captured it (sorta).  

Love you both. 

Leica M3

So I picked up this Leica M3 about two weeks ago, it's in a pretty decent condition for a pre-loved camera. 

I felt quite nervous using a camera without a built-in meter as I used to be able to rely on it but now I just have to rely on using a light meter and trying to learn more about estimating the correct exposure. 

The first two rolls came back, using Kodak pro100 and porta400, which are quite forgiving, I managed to take a few decent photos during my trip for location scout down south and to my gf's hometown. 

Location Scouting

One thing I love the most as a part of my job is that I get to travel around and I love to have my camera with me. This time we travelled to Pattaya and Kanchanaburi, here are a few photos I took while others were busy working and I was just strolling around with my camera. 

I've recently got rid of all my digital cameras and now solely work on film (nothing against digital, I just prefer to use film for my personal enjoyment). 

 

taken with nikon f6 on portra 400

Shooting film

I recently did a graduation photoshoot gig,  The client demanded that I use slides with a few rolls of negatives and b&w so I took my Nikon F6 out with old ai-s lenses. The 85 f2 produced nice and creamy bokeh that I like. 

Shooting slides required one to be spot on with exposure unlike shooting negatives. So I asked my mate, Pat to assist me on the job, metering all the shots. 

I majority used 81A filter to warm up the colour a bit on slides (add 1/3 of a stop on top of metered exposure for the photo to be correctly exposed) and due the lack of discipline I did manage to leave it on while shooting negatives. I also shot 3 photos bracket for every one of them (+1 stop, normal and -1 stop) 

Below are taken with Kodak Portra 160. In sequence 1 under, 1 over and normally exposed.  My favourite stock ever. 

I found that shooting against the light can be quite challenging on film, sometime it worked out fine and some other times, it punishes you without mercy.  As an example below, the first photo is actually 1 stop under, the second one is 1 stop over and the last one is normal. Notice that the one under produced a reddish skin tone while normal exposed shot rendered the skin nicely. These photos were shot with Velvia 100F. 

here are some more from the day. 

New Zealand

a beautiful place I used to call home

A little two weeks trip down to this part of the world, went to Lake Tekapo for some timelapse videos. 

Two test shots from this gorgeous place, the second night I had a better luck with the stars as the super moon that was interrupted my first outing came into the sky a bit later on. 

I shall post the time lapse video of the second night when it's done. 

sunset
The church of the good shepherd

The church of the good shepherd