This batch of pictures has been sitting in one of my folder for god know how many months. I have no awareness how these gorgeous talent ended up there. But these images kept appearing whenever i do a batch resize to this particular folder.
The reason i did not delete or remove it is because this set of model’s pictures review who i am now, and what i am in the past. Is a self study or reflection as a photographer. Sometimes i wonder what happen to this group of people i had photographed. How is their life, doing what they are passionate about? Am clueless despite my constant curiosity. Am not sure if i have the RAW files as well! *shrugs*
Back in 2007 i was approached by a model agency to do a test shoot for their new talents. First time working with an agency as a young photographer, i was keen to shoot portrait and try to make an impression. I didn’t know what to expect and journey my way to their office to do the shoot filled with excitement. Sometimes knowing nothing can be a good thing, i can concentrate on the process of making picture, and more good pictures.
I recall using a Tamron 90mm macro lens, a cheaper version from the Canon 85mm portrait lens. This macro lens produce quality tack sharp pictures that i used it in most of my portrait shoot in the early days. The only downside is the very slow focusing, with the barrel moving in and out to get the focus in backlighting or low light condition. But i was patient in those days, slow and easy was the way to shoot, no stress, no pressure from anyone. Purely to enjoy the process – communicate and review.
I still keep this Tamron 90mm lens in my dry box and take it out to do macro shoot if needed. Think of it i haven’t used it for the last 2-3 years.
In 2007, i was using a Canon 5D, the first digital full frame camera in the market released in 2005. I was very proud to own it, the camera was very expensive that time and still beyond reach of many people, film was drastically dipping that time. i saved a long time and invested in it for my work. Unlike today. Everyone can easily afford a camera of various types such as a iPhone, mirrorless, compact camera to produce an image, storing memory in millions of pixel into a tiny memory card. The respect of an old digital DSLR camera quickly overwhelmed by the newer models many years down the road..
My holy editing application was on a Adobe Photoshop CS2, Windows version on a laptop. Way before i shifted to Mac till today, i was a PC user. Dealing with colors correction on the screen, frustration with the anti virus software, the heavy weight of the computer. Those day I had learnt a lot of editing skill through my friends and reading to polish my skill. Tutorials online are more interactive these days. There is no reason not to know nothing.
The above gorgeous model, if i recall correctly, her name is Stella. nice personality to work with and clear communication between me and her. I like her persona during the process, she was blessed with an eurasian look as well. Through my viewfinder i can sense she is genuinely enjoying the shoot. Simply nature in-front of the camera at full ease.
Some talents were new, like this lady on top. Clearly stiff and unsure what to do. I don’t blame her, everyone got their first time, the start to becoming better. It was my job to give direction and encourage her to boost confident. Ego bruise, definitely. However, everyone deserve a chance, if one close door on you, look for the next one until someone said yes.
Was on the Boom Lift documenting a site project, been lifted up over 50m in height. It was a great view at the end of south-west part of Singapore. But it can be a bit scary if the wind starts to blow and cause the platform to vibrate.
Anyway, i was busy capturing various scene from such an aerial perspective. I can’t help not to notice there were fighter jets flying around the sky. The jets were not flying at a very high altitude or even super sonic speed. This allows me to see where the jets were heading.
I standby my camera position using a telephoto lenses. Right above the oil tank where the fighter jets are heading, a crane was doing lifting on the roof of an oil tanker. In a few seconds, the jets flew into my frame and i quickly fire off a few shots to get the best position of the jets on the sky. Resulting in the final picture below.
Unexpected moment can be a long wait, or it just happens instantly. Either ways, both are required to observe the situation, wait for the right time to capture that split second moment. The question is are you able to see it.
This is basically a #throwback of a picture i took early this year. I was on my way to capture the old dragon playground in Toa Payoh and i walked past this traditional Chinese building. A building with many names house under it. Singapore Chinese Physicians’ Association, Singapore Chong Hwa Medical Institution Singapore and College of traditional Chinese Medicine.
I received an enquiry last month to photograph a vessel that is docking in Singapore for work. After liaising and quote were done. Date was set but was postponed due to unforeseen circumstances out in the water. That was a time that i need to exercise my patient for the frequent changes. Finally it was finally confirmed one day before, and i was extremely excited to head down to the location.
Next day headed down to the location 15 mins earlier, is better to be early than late. Got all the necessary clearance was a breeze as the client had did a good job with the port authority to get me in.
I was driven in a truck to the vessel location, as the port was vast, i was surprise no cycling was allowed either as compared to other port i worked with. It took about 8 mins to reach the location for a slow drive. I cannot imagine walking in either if no vehicle was available. But the port authority was professional and experience to get things covered.
Boarded the vessel, sign in at the entrance. Went up to the deck to meet the Captain and some of his crew members. I was assigned to a crew member from Egypt who was friendly and very professional. He will be the man guiding me. As i am new here, i asked the crew how are things doing, how old is the vessel (which was a new vessel), where are the good spots to capture some great images, to break the ice. Once communication was “set up”, we proceed up to “Monkey Island” to check out the view.
The image below was the first view that greeted me, a clear sight of the work progress. Blessed with blue sky and the sun still moving up to the top before the peak of afternoon. I had only about 2 hours to work instead of the 4hrs i propose to client. An unique situation i need to be speedy and reliable to capture the best images for my client. I can keep my camera ISO as low as possible as shutter speed was sufficient to freeze the moment.
Using a telephoto lenses to zoom into the grabs, the vessel has 3 cranes in total and all are operating in the same time non stop.
In my mind i already have a vision of getting 3 grabs in one frame, but i know it was not easy. As the cranes were moving at different speed but same direction. I was shooting and observing, secretly pray to have the 3 grabs in my line of view. As i was about to move to another location after a long wait, the 3 grabs aligned! I managed to get 2 frames quickly.
Next the crew asked me whether i want to shoot from the crane operating room? I agreed immediately, knowing it will be sort of aerial images from the top, and i never been up there before. Of course with the supervision of the crew and port authority. Got my hand a little greasy during the vertical climb, no complain at all! But i should have bring my gloves next time! I went up and saw a operator operating the crane back and forth like a pro. I quickly capture some good shots from inside to outside.
I make my way out from the operating room with the guys, i stopped and turned back again to make sure is there anymore possible angles to work at? I told the crews to wait a while while i get in a half kneeling position to stabilise myself while the crane was turning. This was one of the image i captured from the top, outside.
I knew my job was 80% done, i was able to cover the angles with the right lighting available. but i still wanted to capture more angles. I started to do close up of the grab and the cargo.
I was invited to a quick lunch on board by the crew before i left the vessel, said goodbye and thanks the crew member and Captain. As the earlier light was not in my favour for the entire vessel shot. This was the last time i can captured it on ground before am been escort out of the facility. I approached many angles and below is one of the image i did.
Overall the shoot went very well, no injury and everyone was safe. Safety is very important as advised by the crew and i had to obey their instruction. I went back to the office, i carefully select and edit the images. I always heard some photographers dump all the whole chunks of pictures for the client without QC. I only selected the decently good or best pictures, never mind if is repetitive as long the quality is good. I never know what client had in mind in certain images for their usage. As usual, i uploaded all my high res and low res for the client to download, with a secure password for them to access. Outsider would not even able to see the set as well.
End of assignment.
I was on Google Images page and was typing out some keywords am using in my website. I tried ‘Singapore Shipyard Photographer‘. A list of images popped out. It was good to see the images i captured were on the top of the search engine!🙂
This was my search about 2-3 weeks back
This was my search on 18th April 2016
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