Singapore Trains

Singapore Trains series was a sudden burst of idea in a afternoon back in Dec 2016, i thought how a single scene with multiple tracks with each train running on it designated route look like? Honestly i was also sort of inspired by Stephen Wilkes day to night series.  I ever read online that mentioned, don’t look at other artist’s work to be creative, be original. Is like indirectly stealing visual for your own usage. I beg to differ, for me i require good visual to inspire myself to come out with my own original idea.



The 2 images above are made in Jurong East. The first round was doing scouting, sniffing out possible positions and the type of composition. The next trip was to bring my gears and returned to the spot where i will be executing the shot. I know most people don’t do scouting at all, they lug their entire gears along and start to trigger immediately. Personally there is nothing wrong with it; however scouting allows me to be more visually focus, fix the scene in my mind, ample time to better understand my surrounding as well, pre-determine what are the right gears to prepare. That is my type of preparation before any commercial shoot. For this case, personal work.

There are not many train tracks in Singapore that has more than two train tracks side by side. Much time were burnt on scouting of the location, checking out map and random train pictures from online. When the actual shoot took place for that day, i only hope for the best weather after studying the weather forecast, before that i even monitor the daily weather to see if there is a same pattern. The above two images are made in Choa Chu Kang area.

As the saying goes: “the more you practice, the better you will get.” After making  mistakes and keep on improve from it. The next shoot will always be in less difficulty, mistakes allows me to gain the experience that book never teach you. Bear in mind no 2 shoot is ever the same. That is why the experience built up is more than ever important to handle new challenge. The above image is made in Punggol area.

Same scene but different perspective

Scene #1

Scene #2

A little bit of background. The building architect is Iversen Van Sitteren & Partners. This building is name Shaw Tower. Standing along Beach road. A 35 storey tower building meant for offices and retails. Precast concrete panel fenestration allowed floor to ceiling gazing in the office units. It offer the building’s undisturbed views of the sea. Shaw Tower remains a distinguish feature in the commercial district today.

Look at the two pictures above. Am wondering which one do you prefer? Some may prefer both images. Some may not even like it at all for whatever reason. A few may choose one of the favourite from the two pictures. Sometimes it can be a headache to select the best picture out of the many. Let’s use this 2 pictures to have a quick discussion.

Scene #1 was the first picture i took. The light was great as you can see, the sky was in saturated blue which i totally love it. A bit of puffy cloud to add as an extra element on the sky. Sometimes i like to include a taxi vehicle inside my frame as my personal style of work. Common colours of taxi vehicles in Singapore are usually in red, blue and yellow. However, i dislike the tree branches on the left of the image. It seems to distract my main focus on the architecture.

Scene #2 i start to make improvement. I’ve adjusted my distance and composed in a way the tree branches is out of the frame. Now you can see the sky is completely in blue colour, the viewers can easily now focus it attention on Shaw Tower. However, there was no taxi at that point of time for my personal style of work. The flow of the traffic is hard to predict, sometimes many vehicles can come all in one time, making it hard to wait for a single taxi vehicle to appear even after a long wait.

What makes a striking image if i have to decide the best out of the two. I think a great photograph rely on line, shape, form, texture, pattern and colour. These are the basic elements of good composition. Every successful photograph rely on one or several of these elements, regardless of the subject.

As i am writing this now, i have a clearer perspective scene #2 would be my ideal choice. If you looked carefully at scene #2, 3 colours; blue, yellow and green caught my attention. And also without any distraction of the tree and vehicle on the road. The building is in a proper vertical manner for architecture photography work.

‘Hidden Door’ on ArchDaily

‘Hidden Door’ project is a documentation of series of doors in the backstreet of Singapore. This photo series has been very close to my heart for many years. But there is a problem. No one knew about it, despite all the SEO were in place, it was hardly searchable because there was no need for it. Although i did get some attention when i posted it in my personal social media. There was an overwhelming response from friends, which was great. But somehow i feel is not enough, something is lacking. This become a problem for me for a few years.

Until recently, i just wanted to message ArchDaily. This is an architecture website that serves inspiration and information to architects around the world. The viewership has an over 10 million monthly visit and over 2 million followers on Facebook. Am not sure whether are they interested in my project, but i knew if am not going to ask, i will never know whether ArchDaily will be interested or not? So i send a message. Guess what?? The person that replied me was interested in my series! More messages were exchanged and before i knew it, Boom! ‘Hidden Door had appeared on their website, comes with 595 likes! Simply amazing!

Just do it!

11TH ANNUAL BLACK AND WHITE SPIDER AWARDS HONORS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

11TH ANNUAL BLACK AND WHITE SPIDER AWARDS HONORS PHOTOGRAPHER Ricky Gui FROM Singapore

LOS ANGELES 05 Nov 2016 – Professional photographer Ricky Gui of Singapore was presented with the 11th Annual Black and White Spider Awards Honourable in the category of Professional Architectural at a prestigious Nomination & Winners PhotoShow webcast Saturday, November 5, 2016.

The live online gala was attended by over 10,500 photography fans around the globe who logged on to watch the climax of the industry’s most important event for black and white photography.

11th Annual Jury members included captains of the industry from National Geographic, Washington DC; The Armory Show, New York; TBWA, Paris; Victoria Film Festival, Canada; Aeroplastics Contemporary, Brussels; Studio Hansa, London; Fratelli Alinari, Florence; Australian Centre for Photography; Young & Rubicam, Lima; and Anthem Worldwide/Marque Branding, Sydney who honored Spider Fellows with 627 coveted title awards in 31 categories.

“It is an incredible achievement to be selected among the best from the 7,556 entries we received this year,” said Basil O’Brien, the awards Creative Director. “Ricky’s “Esplanade,” an exceptional image entered in the Professional Architectural category, represents black and white photography at its finest, and we’re pleased to present him with the title of Honourable.” Jury member Paola Anselmi, interdisciplinary curator and arts writer in Australia added, “As always it was a real treat to be part of the program. Congratulations to all involved and to all the remarkable photographers who gift us new insights into the world and ourselves.” “A truly amazing set of entries, so many deserving winners,” added Marcel Wijnen, Creative Director at Anthem Worldwide.

BLACK AND WHITE SPIDER AWARDS is the leading international award honoring excellence in black and white photography. This celebrated event shines a spotlight on the best professional and amateur photographers worldwide and honors the finest images with the highest achievements in black and white photography. http://www.thespiderawards.com

Contact: Ricky Gui
Telephone: +6598489316
Email: ricky.captureasia@gmail.com
Website: http://www.captureasia-photography.com

11TH ANNUAL BLACK AND WHITE SPIDER AWARDS HONORS – 2

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

11TH ANNUAL BLACK AND WHITE SPIDER AWARDS HONORS PHOTOGRAPHER Ricky Gui FROM Singapore

LOS ANGELES 05 Nov 2016 – Professional photographer Ricky Gui of Singapore was presented with the 11th Annual Black and White Spider Awards Nominee in the category of Architectural at a prestigious Nomination & Winners PhotoShow webcast Saturday, November 5, 2016.

The live online gala was attended by over 10,500 photography fans around the globe who logged on to watch the climax of the industry’s most important event for black and white photography.

11th Annual Jury members included captains of the industry from National Geographic, Washington DC; The Armory Show, New York; TBWA, Paris; Victoria Film Festival, Canada; Aeroplastics Contemporary, Brussels; Studio Hansa, London; Fratelli Alinari, Florence; Australian Centre for Photography; Young & Rubicam, Lima; and Anthem Worldwide/Marque Branding, Sydney who honored Spider Fellows with 627 coveted title awards in 31 categories.

“It is an incredible achievement to be selected among the best from the 7,556 entries we received this year,” said Basil O’Brien, the awards Creative Director. “Ricky’s “HDB,” an exceptional image entered in the Architectural category, represents black and white photography at its finest, and we’re pleased to present him with the title of Nominee.” Jury member Paola Anselmi, interdisciplinary curator and arts writer in Australia added, “As always it was a real treat to be part of the program. Congratulations to all involved and to all the remarkable photographers who gift us new insights into the world and ourselves.” “A truly amazing set of entries, so many deserving winners,” added Marcel Wijnen, Creative Director at Anthem Worldwide.

BLACK AND WHITE SPIDER AWARDS is the leading international award honoring excellence in black and white photography. This celebrated event shines a spotlight on the best professional and amateur photographers worldwide and honors the finest images with the highest achievements in black and white photography. http://www.thespiderawards.com

Contact: Ricky Gui
Telephone: +6598489316
Email: ricky.captureasia@gmail.com
Website: http://www.captureasia-photography.com

Winning architecture photo competition in Singapore

Am extremely humble to be one of the many winners of SkyVille@Dawson photo compeition organized by WOHA. I never thought i would have win anything, my objective was to document some really fantastic pictures from various angles and lighting i had observed, post it up in my Instagram account and particpate in the competition.

WOHA is Singapore famous international architect firm behind the design of SkyVille@Dawson. WOHA has also designed many projects that can be seen by the public, naming a few are, Park Royal Hotel at Pickering street, School of the Arts Singapore, Stadium MRT station, Crowne Plaza Changi Airport.

Below are my three winning image and clips created by WOHA instagram. You can check out the pictures in my instagram as well.

Selected for “Most Powerful Story”

Selected for “Most Powerful Image”

Selected for “Best Photographer”

I did not study architecture for a living, my knowledge of architecture is very limited. But belt with more than 10 years of photography experience. My approach towards architecture photography was to capture the essence, in the most profound way from various angles. Spend time to study it, repitive journeys – till i have the feel to “interact” with the architecture.

There is a proverb saying “Less is more”. With one picture, relating the entire story in a single frame, it is very empowering especially in photojournalism, street photography, landscape etc. However, for architecture, there are many way to showcase the building. Using different ideas to compose it, i can opt for a symmetrical format if the design allows, using a long lens to shoot details, using a tilt shift lens to capture is amazing as seeing the building in a non converging manner etc. So you see, there is almost no dead end to it quality if one can see the possibilities out of it. A building is not just a piece of concrete block placed there for it’s usage purpose. But people living and working in it, generate useful ideas to create a better world.