It is that time of the year again! This would be my seventh time attending the annual ACG event, with the venue being the modern and fully featured Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.
As what I had written on my recent DeviantArt journal entry, I look forward to meeting up with my local and foreign friends again. After a year of near-continuous photoshoots, I could use a break myself!
(Long overdue update) So I was back in Singapore again for AFA 2011. Apart from meeting up with old and new friends, I went around town to do a few shoots! There were of course a few things happening like the sudden bad weather, loss of transportation and so on. All in all, things work out eventually.
For AFA itself, it is more of the same old, same old. A lot more new folks around, and the place's even more crowded than before. So that is why there's not many photos, although I spent most of the second day at the Regional Cosplay Championship area.
The most epic thing about AFA, were the epic dinner sessions. XD
"We Still Don't Know the Name of the Flower We Saw That Day."
One of my favourite anime series for this year (aside from Madoka), it was a pleasure to work with Chocy-Xin and her boyfriend Jay for this shoot.
We had to split the shoot into two due to unforeseen circumstances, but we had some great help and the lighting for the second part was very bright and nice! Alas, all good things must come to an end and we bade farewell before I depart for the airport.
I was recently interviewed by 3 very different groups of people (photographer, cosplayer, online magazine) for their websites, and I am thankful for the chance to be featured. Answering interview questions was never my forte, so I hope this time I did a better job.
The second interview was conducted by Yunie, a friend of another cosplayer that I know of (Etaru). Her blog is different compared to a lot of other cosplay blogs around (which is good), so check her site out! :)
The third one will be out soon, and I have been asked to do some articles for the magazine... hope I have the time when the opportunities appear. Okay, end of update. Back to my books...
I am one of the 39 photographers whose works are exhibited at the PhotoMalaysia 4th Annual Photography exhibition, held at the Nikon Centre in Berjaya Times Square. To be honest I am happy to be selected for this, as it would be my fourth time my photos have been on display to the public.
During the recent official opening ceremony, I had the chance to interact with the other photographers who came from various backgrounds. We shared ideas and thoughts, and I learnt a great deal about how the rest approach their photography. I always believe that in order to do well in your chosen field, you have to diversify and pick up a few things here and there.
So here are the photos which I submitted for the exhibition. The Sengoku Basara shot was awarded the "Honourable Mentions" category (I won a Marten camera strap) and printed on display, while some of the rest were placed on a digital slideshow. You can check them out if you drop by the area, the exhibition will run until the end of October.
In other news, I also went for the Kuala Lumpur Photography Festival event held at the Mid Valley Exhibition Centre. I met a few of my friends there, as well as bought myself a few new things including a Lastolite TriGrip reflector. There's a good offer for it so why not? XD
I have to say I made a few new business contacts from this event, maybe some new friends too. I guess that's ultimately better than trying to nail the perfect shots from the bevy of beautiful models promoting the camera wares there.
It has been a long while since I last updated here, and now that I am finally done with my backlogs I can talk more about the last few shoots that I did recently, prior to my self-enforced break.
My first time working with Celine and Yume, the photoshoot was fun! Maybe the weather wasn't really that ideal (HOT), but at least it doesn't rain. We had the shoot in Kuala Lumpur itself, at a park next to the Tugu Negara. After the shoot wraps up we decided to talk a walk up to the top to have a look at the national monument. The place hasn't really changed much in all these years, but there are more tourists this time.
This shoot is more of a personal request since I realised Shine would be able to portray the character (Kuroneko aka Black Cat) well. It is also one of the rarer solo shoots that I did in recent months.
We shot near the northern part of Putrajaya, and ended it at The Gardens in Alamanda Mall. The food there is slightly above average, but at least the place's quiet!
I started watching Bleach when it came out as an anime back in 2004. Although I stopped watching it due to the later filler arcs, I continue to catch up with the storyline online.
So its a surprise when Cutie (yeap, another first for me) cosplayed the Shinigami captain Soifon. She did a great job, although it will be a long while before she comes back from the UK. Anyway, its fun to work with her as she's easy going and smiles a lot. :)
It is my fault, because it was my first time driving to the port city of Klang with Byou and her sister Luwen. Eventually, thanks to a few calls I made to my friend, we manage to find the fantastic location which is famous for the old trains and their carriages. A lot of wedding and photography folks been there to do their shoots, so it's our turn now!
Towards the end of the day, the evening light was awesome... I wish everyday's like this.
I remembered that some of my friends have done their shoots at Cyberjaya's MMU in the past, so I suggested the place to Arisa and she's okay with it. Linkin joined the shoot too as he is her driver, haha.
Yes, we finally worked together after months of discussions and last minute changes. Glad it worked out, hopefully we'll have the chance to work again in the near future.
After months of planning by the organizers, we head up the mountain (Genting) towards a huge, abandoned structure where the cosplayers re-enacted scenes from the Sailor Moon series. The shoot has two components - Photoshoot and Videography.
The best thing about this shoot is nobody was sweating it out, but it got really cold towards the end of the day! Special thanks to the head organizer Venus for making this shoot possible, as well as Allen and ZCdave for the logistical support.
I decided to drop by Shine's shoot near Jalan Raja Chulan (the same spot where I did the TouhouVania shoot many weeks ago) since she invited me along, though I am not the main photographer this time round. I took a few shots before stopping as I was tired from the Sailor Moon shoot the day before.
After hearing about Animangaki from my friends, I decided to drop by. I haven't been to a school-based event in a while, the good thing about such events are the cheap food and parking!
I had a very relaxing time during the event because the crowd's smaller and I carry around the minimum of gears (my other friends brought their softboxes and studio setups). Still, I ended up taking a lot of photos so it took me a while to get everything sorted out. Overall, the event's quite nice and well-organized so maybe I'll pop by again next year. Well done, committee members of Sunway University College!
Last but not least, I had a shoot with Jun in Putrajaya once again, borrowing our friend's Mazda MX-5 Roadster to complement the session. The shoot was pleasant and we didn't encounter any crowds since it is a lazy Sunday morning. We wrapped things up pretty fast since I nailed the shots that I wanted, so we spend the next few hours catching up on things.
That's all for now. There will not be any further updates until after the Anime Festival Asia event in November. I'll be heading to Singapore during that time, so once more I will be in the company of my wonderful friends from all over South East Asia. It's good, so till next time folks!
You must be wondering why I am blogging about this digicam out of the blue. Here's the link!
Basically, Panasonic has a history of updating their flagship digital cameras with new features and functionalities. They did it for the LX3 (their old flagship model) and now they are doing the same for the LX5. The new firmware promises better low light performance, white balance as well as AF speed. That's good news!
So come September 13, I will update my camera, and hopefully be motivated to do some street shooting again! It's really good to have, light and powerful.
To end this, I would like to wish my Muslim friends Selamat Hari Raya!
Here are some more shoots that I managed to complete recently, and had time to edit the selected shots. Most of them are friends that I worked with for the very first time!
The first shoot in the long list of backlogs is from the series Koumajou Densetsu: Scarlet Symphony. I was invited by friends from MMU Cyberjaya, so we went to some abandoned buildings in KL for a very straight-forward shoot (minus the dogs that is). It went well although I fell ill that day and had to cancel a fashion shoot the next day.
First time working with friends from Klang, Subang and Penang! Okay, it was a relatively short shoot but everyone had a great time. There's also an army of photographers roaming around the location that day, some photo event/workshop that has a bunch of models mingling around too.
Second time working with Sakura, but first time working with her group. We went to a new location (to me) and the shoot went smoothly. However, because I was tired from the Harry Potter party the day before, I don't think my output's that good. Hope they like the shots though~
Night shoot at Putrajaya. First time working with Alex from ARC Photography, his shots are great and he is friendly too! I didn't take many photos though because I was tired from an earlier trial photoshoot at a tennis court and work.
End of the entry for now! I realized there's a lot of "firsts" happening recently. For example, although I had contributed a few articles to Cosplay Gen (magazine) in the past, this is the first time I was featured on its website for an interview!
Only one word can describe my recent trip to the country of Indonesia. Amazing.
Day 1 - So the moment the plane left KLIA for Jakarta, I had a ride of my life. Okay, it was rather bumpy (even more so than my flight to Manila last year) but everyone on board was rather nonchalant about it. Eventually I got used to the ups and downs of the plane.
I arrived at the airport with none of my friends waiting for me (they were actually late) so I went around hoping to find a wifi hotspot. No such luck, so I got myself a pre-paid card and sat at a corner to wait for my friends after calling them up. The airport's really crowded with tons of tourists, police and taxi drivers milling around even though its a weekday.
Soon enough, my friends (Orochi and Vienni) found me and we happily went along our way to my hotel. The trip took around 2.5 hours due to the heavy traffic so we spent time catching up on things. Luckily the hotel's very decent despite its age, the staff gave me a free room upgrade and threw in a few extra incentives. All's well and good!
Ended the first day with 'supper', met with some of my Indonesian friends at Grand Indonesia. Didn't stay up that late due to my tiredness, I was already snoring in bed the moment I arrived back at the hotel after the gathering...
Day 2 - Woke up, had a really nice buffet breakfast at the cafe. A bunch of Partai Demokrat people mingled around, seems like they had booked a good part of the hotel for some event over the weekend. Everyone (hotel staff, taxi drivers, etc) were very polite and accommodating so far.
Decided to check out Plaza Senayan while waiting to meet up with another group of friends. So I took a Blue Bird cab to the shopping mall, a really comfortable ride although the traffic can be a bit scary in comparison to Singapore or Malaysia. The mall has metal detectors like those you see at the airport, and coincidentally I discovered Kinokuniya there! I ended up buying a book.
After an hour or so, my friends show up and we headed to a nearby stadium for the GARO photoshoot. Finally get to meet Richfield again, as it's been a while since our photoshoot during AFA last year. I was then introduced to the cosplayers, photographers, helpers, and Mark Musashi. Mark is well known in the tokusatsu community for his various movie/game/television roles, so initially I was feeling a bit stressed working with him. He proved to be a very down to earth and friendly person, so the stress went away pretty quick!
In addition, I get to meet Naoki Drachen in person as she dropped by for the photoshoot. She's friendly and cute!
After the photoshoot, we went for dinner at Blok M. The dinner's held at a Japanese restaurant where I was introduced to some of the CLAS:H crew members/organizers and the remaining judges for the event. The only judge left that I was not introduced to was Kaname so I greeted him and presented him my name card. In return he asked me to try some sweet delicacy that he brought along from Japan... everyone has tried it except for me!
Dinner ended late, with a lot of chit-chats and laughters. It was soon time for me to head back to the hotel, but I am already looking forward to CLAS:H itself...
Day 3 - Woke up early again as I was meeting a friend for breakfast. Spent the time catching up before heading to Balai Kartini, the designated venue for CLAS:H.
The place seriously reminds me of the venue for Comic Fiesta last year. Same kind of lighting, same size too! But thankfully the crowd is smaller, so I was able to roam around easily and meet up with the local cosplayers to trade name cards.
Most of the action took place within the performance area though, so I covered the stage together with a few other official photographers. The stage was well lit so I had no problem with getting the exposure right, but the fast and furious action sequences by the cosplayers proved to be a challenge. When they say some of the props will get broken due to the stunts performed, they are not joking!
The emcee's great. His name is Choky Sitohang and he's really good at engaging the crowd, drawing laughs at all the right moments. Just pure wow. And Mark also engages the crowd in his own charismatic ways.
In conclusion the event's really fun, so well done to the organisers for a good job. After saying goodbye to the winners and the other participants of the cosplay competition, I head off for dinner with another group of friends and thought "Well, that's about it. Just a short shoot with Naoki tomorrow and off I go back to Kuala Lumpur."
Well, it's not that simple I guess. :P
Day 4 - Naoki asked me if Kaname and Team Drachen can join in the shoot. I was like "ok!" and pretty soon the shoot involved a few more photographer friends with other cosplayers joining in as well.
I reached the location early in the morning. Called Kota Tua, this classic looking part of the city was actually Old Jakarta aka Batavia itself! Wow, talk about past history lessons being useful here. I befriended a few of the locals there and took some photos of them, then wandered around before settling at Kantin Mega Rasa, a haven for Jakarta photographers.
Long story short we had some delay in getting the shoot started, and I was left with only an hour or so before I had to take a cab to go to the airport. But Lady Luck smiled upon me as both Naoki and Kaname were ready in the nick of time. Lots of funny moments, too bad all good things come to an end as I bade farewell to everyone...
... and here's the end of the long entry of the trip. I really love the food there (buffet rocks) and my friends there have been hospitable to me. Photos are at the respective links below.
I will be attending CLAS:H, deemed as Indonesia's first International Cosplay Show & Japanese Idol Music Concert, next weekend. It's going to be my first time visiting the country, and I look forward to it as I have made quite a few Indonesian friends over the past few years.
Apart from seeing first hand how the local events there are like, I hope to try some of their speciality food as well. Maybe it's time to put my macro lens to some good use, haha!
Anyway that's all for now, so if you are going for the event let's trade name cards. See you there!
PS. For once, I am not attending an overseas event as a VIP... :P
Back from Singapore's biggest cosplaying event, I had a mixed feeling about it.
It was fun, it was good, I get to meet up with my friends again. Some I have not seen even during the past few times that I was back in Singapore.
On the other hand, well. Basically I have been attending this event since 2004, so the appeal of events kinda died off for me. Or perhaps I am still tired from my short trip since I had to contend with moving my gaming stuff back to Malaysia.
Hi everyone, once again it's been a while (busy as usual) but recently I went back to Singapore for a short family trip... squeezing in some time to attend a small event as well as to complete 2 shoots.
Japanese Arts Fiesta (JAF) was fun despite the event being relatively small. I was invited to attend by a few friends who happen to be part of the committee. Media pass and everything. :P
Quite a few number of my Singapore friends happened to drop by and we spent most of the time catching up. There's a lot of new cosplayers around too, they all look young and probably are.
The older generations are still hanging around though... maybe for old times sake.
The Toradora photoshoot went pretty okay even though it rained and a few other cosplayers could not make it for the shoot. The shoot was also a good chance for a mutual photographer friend Joel to hone his photography skills.
Anyway, I will be back again for Cosfest on the 25th and 26th of June, and will be bringing my new name cards to the event. Feel free to ask me for a card or to make a swap. See you there if you are attending!
PS. The next few days are going to be super busy with shoots, will update on that when things settle down.
There was a weekend when I had no shoots, so I decided to join my friend's shoot at KLCC. PC Fair was also held during the same weekend/place so I took the chance to pick up a new thumbdrive. I made a few new friends, mainly youngsters who are new in the cosplay scene.
The shoot was fun, although one of the security guards there told me not to use a reflector. Since he didn't exactly stop the shoot, we just carry on...
A very beautiful love story, I have to thank Shine for introducing me to it.
The shoot was really hot, and was held at the Tasik Perdana Park. Another first for me, I didn't realize the park is close to the National Museum of Malaysia. Last time I was there, it was more than 20 years ago...
My 7th Shana shoot, and probably the final shoot for the bandaged version. Since it is a new abandoned location (to me), I find the area rather refreshing to shoot at. Well, minus the mosquitoes of course. XD
The weather's decent and the evening light was pretty nice, but I didn't retain the colour during post processing. Trying to get the feel right once more...
My first time working with the talented Venus, our original plan to scale Batu Caves had to be cancelled due to her tiredness. We did however find another alternate location nearby, thanks to Anthony (Blur) for driving us around.
A lot of crazy things occur during the shoot but it was good to let loose once in a while... haha.
Another evening to night shoot, the result was great due to the sunset and Putrajaya's lighting at night. We even went to a pretty looking bridge to get shots with the futuristic looking structure as the background. Special thanks to Misao, Yuan, Sky, Kids for their help in logistics and equipment support.
Cappy makes a good Sheryl. Hope to see her do more versions in the future!
And finally to wrap things up, here are some photos I took during C2Age. C2Age is the first major ACG event held in Kuala Lumpur for this year so a lot of people took the chance to cosplay or to meet up over the weekend.
I am not exactly used to events held at shopping malls though, maybe because of all the curious onlookers. It didn't help that some of the cosplayers were misbehaving but I guess it's because they are young? We all do foolish things during our youths eh...
Well, here's the second part of the shoots I did so far. Another busy period but I was having a long term break too, so everything works out well in the end.
The Black Gold Saw shoot was a short one because Shine wasn't feeling very well. We had to stop a few times to let her take a few breaks here and there.
First time using this new location, it was really big and the area looks like it was straight out of a post-apocalyptic movie! Seems like Malaysia have a few of such places around, although you have to look diligently for them since there was not much information found on the Internet.
A Naruto shoot at the Bukit Jalil Park (again), I brought only my macro lens since I wasn't feeling up to the weather. Good thing the shoot was a load of fun with all kinds of joking around, but the biggest surprise was Hani appearing at the last minute to cosplay as Rock Lee.
Rock Lee has some of the most epic expressions in the series, and Hani pulled it off well.
A crazy shoot because we spent the whole day at Genting Highlands, battling heavy rain, car accidents, last minute location changes, and even getting ourselves locked out because the car keys were left in the car boot with a broken boot latch.
Eventually we managed to get the keys back, and had a very late dinner. I suppose I wasn't in the best of moods by then...
Anyway, the Dynasty Warrior shoot was okay. There were some miscommunication problems and we almost got lost, but the photos are pretty satisfactory.
This was the other shoot we did in Genting Highlands, it was getting dark so we had to wrap things up pretty quick (this was before we had the 'car key' problem), but this particular spot looks really atmospheric. It was damn cold though...
Putrajaya! A great place for photoshoots, though certain areas are very much overused.
The shoot was hampered by heavy rain in the afternoon, so we waited till early evening before shooting until nightfall. After that we proceeded to an abandoned structure nearby for some shadow works and low light photography, pretty cool and dark/creepy!
Lastly, a special shoot based on the relationship between two individuals in the series Gundam 00. It was a hot day but the light's near perfect and we had a golden glow sunset towards the end of the day. The location's perfect as well, because as I told a close friend of mine, Putrajaya is one of the very few places in the world that suits the series.
PS. Buzz words from the shoot: Leng Zhai (Ryeain) and Suci Leng Lui (Byou). LOL!