Friday, 10 April 2009

Bokeh Madness

I like DIY stuff.. if it turns out nice or if I ever use it remains questionable :-)

Many moons ago I stumbled on and blogged about it here. It was a messy attempt just to see if it worked. The results were nice.

Because of the way it was built and the materials (ya it was just paper and some masking tape) used, it was no way conveniently portable. Thus it then stayed somewhere in the closet till it landed up in the bin. Often when I had my tripod with me when the sun was no longer trying to dry us up, I would look at the twinkles and wished I had a bokeh filter readily available.

Moons passed until I decided to really look into it. My criteria were;

  • Conveniently portable
  • Affordable
  • Presentable
  • Multiple bokeh shapes
My search led me to the Cokin P Series Filter Holder and I opted for the compatible Tian Ya filter ring. Why not the original filter ring? Well I saved RM12. You may ask why not the Tian Ya Filter Holder then? I would have only saved RM3, so better get the original :-) If you clicked the links you'll notice it brings you to, where I normally shop.

Cokin P Series Filter Holder, Tian Ya filter ring, DIY bokeh filter holder (that's the best I could think of) and the bokeh shapes.

Using it is simple, as you can see above. The bokeh filter holder is made of 2 layers so you can easily slide the bokeh shapes band in.

The results?

Nicely shaped bokeh..

For easier viewing..


Is it Christmas already?

Friday, 13 March 2009

How do I keep it simple?

I had a few friends asking how I made the photos in the previous post.

Attached the lambency diffuser with the orange dome, set the flash to manual mode, dialed in 1/128 on the flash unit..

Placed the setup on my laptop like below and snapped with a 50mm f/1.8 II lens. This setup made possible the photos from the previous post. The distance from the lambency diffuser to the object was about 5 inches apart.

1/100 sec at f/8.0, ISO 100.

The following night, I was again bored.. So I did what some bluntly call cam-whoring.. or would it be cam-gigoloing for my case? Same setting for the flash unit.

Because the lambency is now close to the object(my face) I dialed in 1/125 sec to get the effect I desired.

How did I make this piece?

After many tried and one side of the eye partially blinded..

I had a friend who also asked if my place had a blackout. My room was actually well lit with a tungsten up-light. If it was in total darkness, I'd reckon the AF not to work and MF would be rather 'impossible' when u'r trying to shoot yourself hand held haha.. Go ahead and play with the manual settings on your DSLR, you'll soon get the hang of it.

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Keep it simple..

What does one do when.. he has nothing constructive to do?

Off camera flash, lambency diffuser with orange dome.

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Grandma's Fruit Cake

I was fortunate, when my visit up north for CNY prized me with my grandma's fruit cake recipe, not only that, she made a couple, stressing that the methods are what makes it her's and not their's.

Her fruit cake is one of those cakes known within the family. She has only taught a few, me being one of them :-)

This is my 2nd attempt, 1st turning out very well. I'm happy. My 2nd attempt is a success! Let's wait a couple of days for the cake to mellow..

The results of 4 hours of work.. an hour of waiting..

Monday, 9 March 2009

Ayam Panggang Kenyalang

It was a lil more than a couple of months back when I read this article in the papers. I seldom believe newspaper/magazine writeups on food, just too many bad experience. But I decided to give this a go.

So one fine day off we went to hunt for the place.. it was indeed a hunt.. many wrong turns.. asking the locals didn't help that much..

We ended up calling Awang himself when we were just about to give up..

What I can recall is to locate the "Church of Visitation"(on your left). Follow the road until you reach a junction with a "Fire Station"(on your left). Take a left at this traffic lights equipped junction. Head towards "Ampangan". From there you would see a signboard saying "Pantai" to your left. Take the left turn and I presume you're on "Jalan Pantai" as the article mentioned. However I didn't see any road signs saying that was indeed Jalan Pantai. Soon you'll see a "Petronas gas station" on your left. Awang's stall is on the right of the gas station.

No coordinates this time mates.. At the time of this writing, I can't quite locate this place on google maps.

It's easy to miss Awang's stall, as I did so too causing me a couple of U-turns before calling Awang.

A visual of the stall.. the almighty AYAM PANGGANG KENYALANG!

As you look on into the stall, to the left..

Succulent birds waiting for u..

An option to be served with rice.. Don't forget the soup..

As the article mentions.. the sauce is the magic.. for this I'm willing to make a trip to Seremban!

When 2 unite..

Pasta Zanmai @ Mid Valley Megamall

Sushi Zanmai now Pasta.. this place serves Italian Japanese fused with abracadebra.. The results? Magic! Ok I must admit I ain't a fussy fler when it comes to food. As long as it tastes good to me, it goes well.

It was me buddy's birthday and I insisted, well kinda insisted that we buy him dinner at Pasta Zanmai. While the rest hadn't visited the outlet before and knowing very well my "low-standards" of satisfaction, they were rather sceptical of the place.

Even after being seated, they still spoke of my 'low-standards'..

Until the food came.. until they bit into it.. until.. they shaddap for the rest of the evening on the topic.. even mentioned I'm a changed man (sense the sarcasm in there?)..

Something hamburg..

Sirloin steak ;-)

Squid cum pasta..

Tofu.. A simple thing like this, made nicely..

Some chicken..

Check this out.. Avocado pasta ;-)

Unagi pizza.. simply the best!

Some Ebi pizza.. bery good too..

Results? Polished plates..


Hmm it's been some months since I last blogged, mainly due to my Vaio being sent back for some repairs early December.. and guess what? Vaio has still not returned to me. Say what? That's like 3 months?! Yeh, tell me about it.. bravo to Best Denki for it's "marvelous" service. That's another story all together.

So.. Malaysians know/have heard/have seen/have awed this city named Putrajaya. Many of us say it's an overkill. Once u enter the city.. u soon feel.. like u'r in a different world.. vast structures with architertural perfection(at least from the outside) greet u with arrogance.

These structures look cool in the day.. they turn into gems by dark..

Space is not an issue..

Putrajaya is too renowed for it's creative bridges. Say what? Creative bridges? Only one here..

This lake side where cafes and restaurant welcome you for a relaxing meal..

Central park? Maybe not, here's where families father and have a good time in the evenings. Badminton free style, footbal, u name it, u'd perhaps see the kids giving it a go..

Many more structures and landscapes that a 4 hour visit cannot cover. I reckon we'd need many more 4 hour sessions to cover Putrajaya's beauty..