Posts Tagged ‘photography’

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Food photography, or something like that…

August 23, 2009

Yet again, I am pushed to the limit.   My photo bud has beat me to the punch and he has again made an image ahead of me. On top of that, I have to watch a movie with my boy, which is mostly in Afghan language… in subtitles.  So if I  become incoherent… it is because of Kite Runner, so far it has been  quite good… but distracting to photography.

I had to scramble to do my assignment.  I had to make something simple.

Off to the fridge!

A lonely tomato.

I shot the tomato using a white plexiglass which I picked up in a signage workshop when I was still stationed in Thailand.  Got it for free and I still kept it and brought it with us here in Singapore as it is quite useful…

That plexiglass got me my Istock contributor status… it been really good.

I had cut the tomatoes and place them on top of the plexiglass put a Canon 550 ex underneath set at 1/4 power. The flash was triggered by a poorman’s wizard.

That’s pretty much it.

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the Generic Asian

p.s.  Here are his images and explanation

used available light (direct sun)

f7.1, 500s, iso100 (veg 016)
f7,1, 40s,  iso100 (veg 008)

these 2 are a staple in every refrigerator unit in the philippines.  its almost that a day will not pass that the simple onion and / or tomato will not be pulled out for use in the kitchen (in this case differently).  used most often as an ingredient to dishes, in the philippines, it extends its use as salsa or salad.  you see us pinoys can barely eat our food without having ewach and everyone’s side dish of salad (in our case its called “sawsawan”) which literally means to “dip”.

Jerico... my friend's image set upNice simple set-uplast one
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Spoon & Fork

August 16, 2009

Being Asian, by and large, you either eat with your hands or with chopsticks.

On the other hand, some come from a part of Asia which uses the spoon. I use it as part of my regular arsenal of dining artillery.   Yes I like my spoon as much as I like my fork.  Let’s say I am an equal opportunity diner.

In photography however, the spoon has been difficult to photograph side by side its beloved partner, the fork.

The shape and curves of the spoon and the fork are different.  Those westerners may have been onto something.

This is again part of a series of images we will be trying to make on a weekly basis.

I found that it was extremely difficult to include both in one image.  My agreement with my shooting buddies is that we will shoot both spoon and fork in one image.

Very challenging from a lighting and  composition point of view.

fork in chili

The thing with shiny objects is that they are a beast to light.  This was particularly difficult with the fork I used, as this was our normal everyday utensils.  They were scratched and abused and therefore not very photogenic.  I also could not polish it as my wife would probably kill me if she sees me using some form of chemical to polish them.

To overcome this, you would probably want to kill all the shadows.  I did this by using a extremely large light source, which is not so difficult if your photographing small objects.

The other thing I had to watch was the reflections.  To recall, light travels in a straight line.  Placement of the subject relative to the light and lens is critical.

I shot the above image with a Canon 550 EX on TTL, with exposure bias of + 2.  The Speedlight was fitted with a softbox.  I set the aperture at f 2.8 aperture priority.

See my setup here.

set up shot

I had to shoot at almost 90 degrees to the softbox to avoid glare and reflections.   I also used a white plate below which helped fill in some shadows.  I also brushed some oil to the chili so we can get the pickled fresh chili look.

I thought it was a pretty neat and simple setup.  No frills TTL lighting.

However, I was still spoonless!  SO in my lame attempt, here is a shot with the agreed spoon.  The chili was added to the scene to create tension.  I can here the fork whisper “Come on Ms. Spoon… spice me up!!!”

fork in chili 2I also added a yellow kicker to give the spoon some points for interest.

Anyhow, that’s it for now.  I am open to suggestions and comments so please drop me a note or two.

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the Generic Asian

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Khun Am folio

October 23, 2008

I was listening to a podcast by Brooks Jensen called Lenswork.  He is probably one of the most insightful photographers I have come across on.

In one of his podcasts, he did mention that he was working on what he called a folio.  A folio, as far as I can remember,  is a body of work without it necessarily having tied up to a theme.

So this week, I would like to share with you a folio I shot for a model who wanted to build her book.

I shot the sequence of photos entirely using one or two canon 550 ex off camera.

You can see the rest of the photographs I made of her here  http://www.flickr.com/photos/thegenericasian/sets/72157608168640812/

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the Generic Asian

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DIY Snoot or maybe we can call it Monster Honey Comb

July 24, 2008

NOt sure how to call it or what it is… I’ll let you guys decide.

I recently finished my DIY shooting table using PVC pipes and had some left over scrap pipes which I set aside.

So far so good…

The PVC is cut to about 3 inches long and tied together by using some of those plastic tie things….

I can only muster and gang a up 5 pipes from the left overs, but it proved to be enough.

I then wrap it on the tried and true tested Ikea kitchen cabinet liners…  These plastic liners are also my strip lights on some of my shoots.

Here are the initial results…..

Now back to making more experiments on this babies..  See you later!!!

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the Generic Asian

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Stuck in Changi Airport

July 12, 2008

This is a first for me…  I have been travelling business for quite a while now now, if memory serves me well, my first business trip was in May of 1992.  I remember that clearly because I almost missed my flight. Being a novice business traveller, I underestimated the length of time I would need.

Fast forward to today.  I estimate, and I must say it is a very feel based estimate rather than one based on fact, I must have traveled at least 1 day a month of every month for the last 4 years. Just to get a feel of how much this is, my peak traveling clocked at around 150,000 Krisflyer airmiles for a 12 month period of traveling.  This may not be a lot for the more seasoned traveler, but it is not a push over either.

Since I moved to Bangkok, I do not travel much anymore. In the beginning I actually missed flying.  Gradually as time moved on (about nine months), I gradually did not miss it. In fact I liked it quite a lot. Being more at home that is.

I thought about this and said hey, I can have more time for my photography.  And then there is the other group of people I live with.. (wife and kid)

I also thought and said to myself, at some point though I will need to travel and travel I did.  Being in an airport always gives me a funny-nice feeling.

The concept of flying was not new to me. I can’t explain it, but during this trip it felt a bit awkward.  But I guess its like riding a bike.  You never lose the “skill”.

So, there I was in Changi airport.  It felt good, it felt right.  I was on my way home after a good meeting with a customer.  I was tired, lacked sleep, a bit hung over, but hey I was going home and so I thought.

I checked in, did the usual stuff and then I went through the usual look-see of the duty free items and BLAM… I totally lost track of time and the plane had left without me.

I began to melt like ice in this global warming stricken world.

It was a sense of panic, then calm then acceptance and then I felt really really really stupid.  Then I thought to myself, how the hell did I miss this flight.

Was it because I did not have my regular travel “workout”.   Maybe I was just too hung over…

Whatever it was it made me again try to think of this experience and relate it to photography.  Afterall, this blog is about me and my photography.

This also happens a lot in my world of photography, it maybe plausible that I can apply the same train of thought.  Is it possible that I can lose my head in photography with inactivity.  My sense tells me yes.

I cannot control the amount of business or leisure travelling that I will do, but I can sure find a way to ensure it does not happen to me in my photography.

So I am here after 12 hours still in Changi and its 6:00 in the morning, still in the lounge of Transfer F, waiting for confirmation that I can get booked on the next flight.  Stuck in Changi Aiport…

See you home soon..

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the Generic Asian