Thursday, July 2, 2009

Déjà vu 6 - A Day In Malacca

The last time I was working in KL I went to Malacca thrice in four years, none of those trips were specifically photography orientated... then I got a call from a Creative Exec of Pricewaterhouse Coopers, the brief:

One day shoot in KL and Malacca, among the shots; they will select 5 from each location to be used in their Global Image series.

Would any photographer worth his salt... oh... lens, turn down an offer like that? :-)

So one fine Saturday morning I pack my gear and took a young photographer with me, who that person is; best remained unknown but I am happy to say that the young photog has learnt a thing or two from me.

For my choice of equipment I thought I will give my long idled workhorse, the Nikon F3P a workout. I took with me the 20/2.8, 50/1.4, 35-70/3.5, 80-200/4 and the ultra compact 300/4.5 IF-ED. The Canon EOS1n came along because I can use it for the 15 mm fish-eye. All shots were done on Kodak Ektapress 200 and 400 film.

Follows are some of the shots taken in Malacca, I will blog the KL experience another time. Those pictures "stamped" with © PwC are copyrighted by Pricewaterhouse Coopers and the rest are mine, please respect the rights.

Our first destination was the famous Christ Church which is a testimony to Dutch's architectural ingenuity. It stands exactly as it has always been since 1753. Since we were "rushing", we did not spent time looking inside! I regretted that!

The bright red church has been shots thousands of times, this is my rendition. You will notice that a lot of my shots I have human figure/s Incorporated in the composition, I used them to strengthen the shot; for with them, they actually "make" the shot. Ponder on that for a moment, young photographers.

The church was shot with the EOS1n and the 15 mm full frame fish-eye lens.

As we walked away from the red building I noticed the friendly ice cream man, he is like a Malaysian icon that we all grew up with! For this candid shot I used my trusty Nikon F3P and the ultra compact 300 mm f4.5 IF-ED lens.

This tele is a real gem, I was lucky to acquire a new one in Singapore many years ago; because of its compact size and the IF (internal focusing) and ED glass, it was an standard issue for all Reuters snapper in the good old days.

The friendly ice cream man received nice responses from oversea photographers!

"Very refreshing candid shot, CY!
To me, ice-cream men don't ring any bell, as we do not have any in France!
But I've seen quite a few ice-cream vans in England, and I always thought they were so picturesque!
Nice framing and close cropping.
Very spontaneous smile...
Excellent exposure, sharpness & clarity.
I like the pastel colours."
Marie-Hélène (France)

We have to get up on the roof top of a hotel to get this aerial shot of the famous Kampung Morten which consists of classical Malay houses that are protected and conserved by the Malaysian authority.

Canon EOS1n EF 80-200 f2.8 zoom lens at 100 mm. This is one of the shot picked by Pricewaterhouse Coopers.

Next destination, along the River Malacca; on our way there we saw this Chinese temple and I took a study of this sleepy old man; 300 IF-ED again. Hot day afternoon alright!

Taking a breather in a coffee shop along the Malacca River, I saw this rickety crossing. My F3P and 300 plus a 1.4X were mounted on a Manfotto carbon tripod, waiting for the "right subjects" to cross the river.

It was an hour long wait but worth it...

Further down the yellow river there is a half sunken boat with some bright red mud crabs on the river bank, took a while moving along the bank slowly to get the angle and to shoot through some vegetation for this rather "arty" shot. I like it, do you?

Late afternoon away from the searing sun, exploring the narrow lanes around Jalan Hang Jebat (former Jonker Street); spotted this shocking pink PLASTIC post box on a rustic cast iron gate.

I love the result! So did Pricewaterhouse's creative soul! SOLD! :-)

Further down the road is the stunningly colourful facade of the Hockkien Association. As I was framing with the Canon fish-eye, this boy came out from the door without warning! Instinctively I "fired" my camera.

I feel the boy strengthened the composition but my client want the shot without the boy! They are paying, so they get one without the boy... my gain ;-)

Further, further down the road we discovered this small shop that made colourful clogs, the Canon 15 mm fish-eye lens was perfect for this shot. Pricewaterhouse agreed! Gone!

Finally with time running out, we decided to take a quick trip to the famous Sam Po Kong Temple which was named after a fish that miraculously saved Admiral Cheng Ho's ship from sinking after it had been hit by a storm en route to Malacca from China.

But alas we were a bit disappointed by this featureless temple... the low late afternoon sun cast a nice shadow though. This is my shot.

It has been a worth while and very enjoyable trip indeed! Come to think of it, Malacca is a PERFECT place to hold a photo workshop! Possibilities endless.... mind boggles. CAIO!

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