On my visit to Cambodia with the youth volunteers of Rakan Muda in 2006, I spent time in 2 villages, Kampung Kandal and Kampung Thom. During my stay in Thom, the volunteers were busy building a community center. There were kids running all over the place, hugely fascinated by these foreigners in their midst.
I felt very strange during today’s walk. I had several people who agreed to have their photo taken. I did take their picture but I wasn’t very happy with the outcome. It was as if I was afraid and hesitant to have human contact today and instead of going in close and get really connected, I hesitated and kept my distance.
Each portrait must be special otherwise so I must learn to overcome that so that I don’t waste time (mine or any other people).
Sometimes I get to take pictures of very interesting characters. These 3 friends were just sitting down in the KLCC Park. I went up to them and asked them if I could take their picture. They didn’t say no (and they didn’t say yes either). They just looked at me with this look. One of them completely turned away from me and wouldn’t look at me. Was it a signal to go away?
Today was a good day for my street portraits and I am getting less inhibited in approaching people. My next approach would be persuading people to get in the right lighting instead of just capturing the portrait where they are sat….
A pasar malam (night markets) is a kind of bazaar food, clothes and ornaments usually held once a week at any location. The the traders there would often rotate from pasar malam sites all over the particular locality.
One of the biggest change in the way I take pictures when I bought My Leica M8.2 was how easy it was to carry around. Gone are the days when I had to struggle with a zoom lens and another one in my backpack. I now carry a small cloth shoulder bag with some tiny M lenses and an extra battery. Not having equipment get in the way is like a breath of fresh air.
I took these images today during a wedding I was invited to. I just can’t help bringing the camera. These 2 flower girls were getting ready to do their thing and I managed to snap a quick one.
I always thought the Leica ‘glow’ was a lot of nonsense but I take it all back. There is a kind of glow to the images I take with my M8.2. It’s not in all the images but when it’s there, it’s beautiful.
Is it the light? The aperture? The time of day? The subject? The mood? Is it destined to be completely dependent on luck?
Someone tell me how to replicate this?
Take all of the images you have taken and select the best 100. From the 100, select the best 20. From the 20 select the best 6. These 6 images becomes your all time greatest images you have taken so far. Ask yourself the question, ‘what do these 6 images tell the viewer about me’? I learnt more about my photography by doing this then I did taking thousands of pictures.
For me I always return to these 3 image I took in Cambodia,
There are more ‘happier pictures’ that I took in Cambodia during that period but they are less memorable to me. What does it say about me?
It’s almost impossible for us to be without a camera. Whilst some of us would insist on taking pictures with a dSLR and no trust anything else, we should remember that that it no longer required.
I recently write on my Facebook page about,
‘What’s the ideal camera for you? It’s the one you already have. Whether tacebook pait’s in a phone or a small digital compact or even the old film camera you left in a box somewhere. Master that one first before you start thinking of buying a new one. Cultivate your vision and imagination first then find the equipment to bring your vision to reality’….
If you enjoy photography, there is no need to go gear crazy. Just use whatever you have.
This picture was taken with the iPhone 3GS. Effects supplied by the Chase Jarvis’ iPhone apps Bestcamera which is a great little app…