I’ve just realized I haven’t posted quite a lot of Trippin’ photos lately, as I have not been out of the country with the camera lately. So in an effort to bolster my Trippin’ collection on this site, I’ll have to regurgitate some photos I’ve taken from my New Year’s trip to KL.
As I was waiting for everyone to return from their shopping, initially I tried to sleep off the afternoon to lessen the effect of the previous boat/plane/bus/LRT ride, but how can you when KL is beckoning just downstairs? So with camera in hand, I set out to explore a bit of Jalan P. Ramlee, and what it has to offer.
Instantly as I set out of the apartments, this was waiting for me at the shoulder of the intersection. Composing it against the background of blaring lights and music, sets off a tone of normalcy against the hectic city life. Great area we stayed in actually, stalls just down the road, a small grocery shop (important!) and a great Indian eatery just a bit of walk away down a small road, where I get my breakfast everyday while everyone’s still out of it on their beds.
I find that I’m a bit reluctant to shoot on the streets of KL. While the other lads are more than happy to hang around and shoot their hearts content along Jalan Bukit Bintang, I still feel a bit concerned about whipping the darn thing out in public. My lenses aren’t actually tiny, save for the 50mm and the 105mm, but I tricked myself that I’d be more inclined to shoot in public only if I have the 50mm with me. I’d have done so too, if we weren’t too busy shopping and eating! Yeah, show me to the nearest Adidas boutique or sports apparel shop, I guarantee you you’d find a shopaholic in there (me!).
Oh I wanted to try the steamboat after a long night of partying, but at 3AM, it was already gone. Darn.
First and foremost, Happy New Years 2009 everyone! Hope you had an awesome time in 2008, an awesomer time at New Year’s Eve, and the awesomest time in the year ahead!
As you can clearly see, I was back in KL to do a spot of partying, a spot of R&R;, and a spot of photography, if you can believe that. Figured I’d stuff my bag full of clothing rather than photography items, I gambled on just bringing my D300 body and 50mm f/1.4D, as my main target was to do another shoot with my fave model there. And I’ve worked out a booking with Ted Adnan and Barebones Studio so I have my shooting space and lighting gear ready when I got there, so I have the opportunity of utilizing a bigger shooting space, without having to lug my heavy lightstands around, as my backpack is heavy enough, and finally get a chance to meet one of the region’s Strobist heroes.
My travel was not without it’s perils. The boat, Seri Anna, taking me to Labuan disembarked so late and travelled so slow that by the time I reached Labuan terminal, I was literally already late for check-in at the AirAsia counter at Labuan Airport. Got out of the terminal, I whistled for a cab and when it came near The license plate said fresh and it had dice in the mirror. If anything I could say that this cab was rare, but I thought, “Nah, forget it. Yo, holmes to Bel-Air!” I pulled up to the house about 7 or 8 and I yelled to the cabbie, “Yo holmes smell ya later!” Looked at my kingdom I was finally there, to sit on my throne as the prince of Bel-Air.
…sorry, sorry… Internet meme… Had to do it…
Anyway I whistled for a cab, got in as fast as I could, paid him double so he could get me to the airport within like, 5 minutes, jumped out when I got there, ran to the counter. I asked what the closing time for the counter was, and he said, “9:45”; the exact time I have on my watch. The same kinda thing happened as well when I was going to KLIA’s LCCT. Finished the shoot quite late at 4pm, while my flight was supposed to be 6pm. Ted’s studio was in Kajang. KLIA was quite a ways away. Traffic was jammed.
Under the predicament at hand, the model need not send me to LCCT, she was late for an appointment anyway. But she sent me still anyway, getting lost in the process. And people wonder why she’s my favourite model… Well fortunately that’s the end of my perilous journey to KL. Hopefully in the near future, I’d pick out far better travel arrangements so as not to stress myself out during my supposed R&R; session.
Anyway, here’s an ubiquitous shot of Petronas Twin Towers at night. I’ll post other shots soon. Again, limiting myself to one lens is quite a good exercise in getting the shooting cobwebs out. More shots to come soon!
Again taken with the 20 year old lens, 105mm f/2.5. Part and parcel why I chose to shoot Nikon was the extensive number of old lenses that can be mounted on new digital bodies. A heritage stretching back to the first of Nikon’s SLRs, the F mount has not seen any radical changes over the years. At a minimum, any old lens, save a few exotic ones, can be mounted onto any later model cameras. While there’s the Pentax K mount, which can still be mounted on later day model Pentax cameras, or Minolta lenses that can be mounted on the later day Minolta, and by extension, Sony DSLRs, there’s no denying that Nikon lenses are still prized today as they were decades ago, so there’s still a large market of used lenses still available, and the ease to find these gems are getting ridiculous, with the Internet connecting everyone, everywhere. I got this baby in fact from Malaysia, but any number of eBay shops still carry this.
So go out, go to your pawn shops, go check the display cases of your local camera store. They might have a gem in the rough.
I find that, in a pinch, my manual focus, Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 ais, does a wonderful job as a stand in for my 70-200mm. I think I’m beginning to get a hang of this lens, and seeing it’s almost as tiny as my 50mm, I think it’ll go along with me the next time I go to KL again. I’m planning on sitting in a corner of Bukit Bintang, snapping away, as I rarely got the chance to do so the last time I was in KL.
I’ve been pretty much out of sync with my shooting lately, and someone suggested going full on manual for the time being to root out the cobwebs outta my head. While I might not go full blown Hasselblad-ing Bukit Bintang, the wonderful clarity and sharpness of this 20 year old lens might just give my other lenses a bit of jealousy fit. I mean, with an optical formula dating back to 50 years, why mess with a good thing, right?
More photos here.
Had a lovely hi-tea at the Sheraton Utama Tasek Brasserie yesterday. Along with me was Airbiscuit and several other members of the media. The food was great, and it was a warm and cozy afternoon. Thanks Wena for the invite, and for the great company. And it was also nice to meet you Norizah. I’ll be sure to extend the invite to you for the event on the 12th. 😀
More photos here.