Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Surprise News! I Have Joined Olympus Malaysia

This may come as a shock to many of you, but I strongly believe it is not entirely unforeseen or unpredicted that I have decided to join Olympus Malaysia in an official capacity. I am now an employee and surely, this will change things. 

When I started this blog, I have no idea I would venture so deeply and passionately into the photography world. As I picked up my first DSLR Olympus E-410, I fell in love with the Olympus E-System, and have been a fan ever since. I have been blogging about my photography adventures and sharing my photographs week after week without fail, for the past 8 years. This was a personal blog, meant as place for me to post up personal photographs and share my almost too random thoughts, often even covering true events happening in my life. And then about 3 years ago Olympus Malaysia contacted me and asked me if I would like to do a review for the Olympus E-5. Of course I would say yes and I did it, and ever since, everything changed. 





Since my first review of the Olympus E-5, and many other Olympus products after that, I have always served as an independent blogger reviewing the camera from a photography enthusiast's point of view. I never did anything too technical and all my reviews were strongly based on real life user experience and how I would use the camera or lens for my own shutter therapy sessions. I strongly believe that a photography review should be heavily photography based and that was the reason why I always prioritized in producing photographs that are of at least a certain standard to be used for my blog reviews. For some unexplainable reasons, I must have done something right because I have attracted so much attention and have accidentally built a growing audience, that many have returned for regular blog visits even when I am not doing reviews. The response to my review of Olympus gear has been overwhelmingly positive, and many have used them as an unofficial benchmark for photography related reviews. This certainly has become probably one of the largest accomplishments of my life, which I am truly proud of, and happy about. 

Unfortunately, gaining readership and popularity also expectedly drew in some unwanted attention. I do get people who have been questioning the validity of my review work, whether if I am biased. Yes, my blog is a personal blog with very subjective opinion, and I lean toward Olympus because I am an Olympus fan and I never did anything to hide that fact. Some even went as far as stating that I was paid by Olympus and that I am one of their "marketing stunts". I have no other way to convince them otherwise but my connections with Olympus has been strictly limited to gear reviews only thus far. I never get any tips or insights about the latest camera news, nor was I told about any of the future plans and releases of Olympus products. Olympus came to me when it was very near to the launch of the new products, and I did my part in reviewing the products and after I returned the gear to them, that was the end of our engagement. Everyone was happy, I get to play with the latest gear (most were amazing and beautiful) and review them on my blog, while Olympus gets the exposure through my blog readership, which is quite sizeable during its peak with about 50,000 page views within 24 hours (highest during the OM-D E-M5 reviews). Considering all these facts, to say that Olympus bought me was false. I have never received anything from Olympus apart from the Olympus E-5, which was a payment for three photographs Olympus Japan bought from me to be used for advertising purposes in 2010. 

I was a Civil Engineering graduate, and I have been working in a local Geotechnical Engineering consultant firm in Malaysia for the past nearly 5 years. I love my job as an engineer, and I love working with my colleagues in that company. I was exposed to many interesting projects with developments all around the city, and I have spent so much effort and time to build by career. However, I believe it is not too difficult to see that over the years, my passion and hunger for photography grew larger and larger. For every second that I did not spend working, my mind was occupied with photography world related thoughts. I would find every single opportunity to make some camera shooting happen, combining with my involvement in reviewing the camera gear, photography related activities have taken whatever that was left of my free time. I was drawn to photography and I even started taking paid assignment jobs that include actual day weddings and events coverage. 

So why Olympus Malaysia?



I guess, the opportunity came and I have to decide if I were to go on with my mundane, not so exciting life of a Geotechnical Engineer, or take the chance and do something completely new, something completely different, and something that is completely related to what I love: photography and gear. I like shooting and I like to play with cameras and lenses. I thought this would be a way for me to make a difference in my life, to take what I do best, a step further and see how far I can go from here. I know I can contribute to the growth and advancement of the Olympus Brand. Lets give this a try and I do feel very positive about this!

I am not saying that I am leaving my engineering career behind and not to look back ever again. I have an engineering degree and I have some working experience. Being an engineer has taught and trained me well in many areas of life. I was shaped to see things logically and learned to formulate practical solutions to problems. I was brought up in an environment where technical accuracy is important and we have very low tolerance to error. These are the strong foundations that have always helped me in my photography technical background, and I have no issue controlling and using the camera efficiently. I have always stressed that my major problem with photography was not so much on the technical side of things, but the lack of artistic sense which most engineers do suffer. I don't think you can find many creative engineers around, no offence to engineer readers!




I guess, the biggest question here is how will this change of job affect my blog here?

I have always emphasized on honesty and transparency, hence the decision to announce my employment with Olympus Malaysia here, and now. What are the core reasons I have started this blog? To share my photography work, and voice up my random thoughts on photography and life in general, those core motivations to blog will remain and I see no reason why they cannot be done concurrently with me working in Olympus. I will continue on with my shutter therapy sessions and I am more than willing to share my photography adventures here. That will not change, and as usual whatever random thoughts and philosophical debates or ideas coming out from my mind during those shutter therapy sessions, I will do my best to pen them down right here. 

The gear related reviews however, will probably face some consequences. Shall I stop all review related blogging considering the fact that everyone knows now I am on Olympus Malaysia's payroll? Even if I did continue to blog on Olympus gear review, what is the point of doing so since there is conflict of interest?

I will still do my blog review as usual. And you know what? Some things can be even better. 

I understand if I will not be as credible or believable as a reviewer as before, but if you look at it from another perspective, nothing has really changed that much. I have always, always been an admitted Olympus fanboy, and I took every opportunity to show that. What separated my blog review from many other bloggers is my casual approach to photography, being very user experience based driven and heavily relying on real life sample photographs to demonstrate my points. I may not be the most reliable source to trust when it comes to camera advice but my photographs do not lie, and I have been providing even full size image samples for downloads. I have always did my best to be as straightforward as possible in my reviews and I have been the first reviewer to highlight some of the issues of the previous Olympus gear, such as the less than stellar Continuous AF performance on the OM-D E-M5 as well as its lower than expected battery life. In addition to that my notion of not being too impressed with the 17mm F1.8, though personal has been reflected by a few other fellow photographer/blogger reviewers. 


On another hand, I have not reviewed any other brands, but Olympus! If I did review Canon or Nikon gear, then by making comparisons and conclusions, I would be gravely misleading and biased. Looking at the history of my review, I have never said this camera is better than that camera or this lens is sharper than that lens. Whatever comparisons I have made was within Olympus' own cameras and lenses family. 

This time, I have FULL access to any gear and lenses, which mitigated one of the limitations from my previous review sessions. I believe that will make the review even more flexible and I can respond to requests for testing of certain features even better!

Nevertheless, I would leave this page open to you all beautiful readers. I would like to hear your thoughts of me joining Olympus Malaysia, and do share your opinion!

201 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Nigel! And we should catch up sometime for lunch or dinner.

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    2. Congrats Robin, but isn't Olympus Malaysia we have to congratulate more for
      their new employee ;)

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    3. Thanks for the kind words, F.Renger!

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  2. WOW!!! Thank you for your sharing.

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    1. Honesty and transparency are important. Cheers

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  3. Congratulations on your new job, great news! I am a geologist and I can fully understand your motivation and thoughts, although I get a fair share of fieldwork with some photographic opportunities.
    I can't wait to read your review of the new E-M1!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the kind words Kaspar! Glad to find a fellow man in the same field of work.

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  4. Go go go Robin!!..proud with u Robin..don worry..we will support u!!

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  5. Congratulation on the new job. Proud of u bro.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Kim Hang. will keep you informed about our shutter therapy. I have been quite busy lately, and now you know why!

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  6. One more...already register for this coming 21st Sept for Olympus event. Hehehehe..hopefully can see u there.

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    1. Hey Nik, I saw your registration!! come come!

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  7. Congratulations, Robin! A very exciting move for you!
    I definitely look forward to your reviews, and I am on your side, knowing that you work for Olympus is important to keep things honest, but it does not make your reviews any less relevant. You have always been a source of info on any Olympus equipment I buy, and I'm definitely looking forward to your EM-1 review whenever it happens.
    And maybe you can convince Olympus to not abandon 4/3!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for such encouraging remarks, I truly appreciate them. And believe me when I tell you that the first thing I did when I joined was voicing up the importance of the 4/3 system and how amazing the Zuiko lenses are!

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  8. Congratulations on the new job :-)... as fellow engineer, I'm wondering what kind of job you are doing now with Olympus.
    Regarding the review, I don't see any problem in that... well, you can make some sort of disclaimer for new visitor... but for people who has been reading your blog for some time would know that you like Olympus before you joined them... so, it is expected to read the review a bit biased :D... it's probably going to be like me reviewing a new Thinkpad laptop, perhaps :D...

    Anyway ... again, congrats on the new life! I wish you all the happiness. Cheers!

    PS: I seldom comment here because I prefer to comment with "name/url" option. I can't find the option here :-(

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    Replies
    1. Thanks martocbox! Your words are sure reassuring.
      As for the question on my position in Olympus, I am joining the marketing team.

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  9. Wow congrats Robin! Who would have thought - only yesterday I was reading the very special story of Maitani-san (see http://www.olympus-global.com/en/corc/history/lecture/lecture1/index.html), and today here you come to be part of that great history.

    This is great - I'm very glad for you.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Wolfgang!! You have been here for so long and I really appreciate you staying with me all this time! Keep shooting and I want to see more photos of Tuna!

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  10. Being an engineer is good when you know so many stuff but yet you can't do nothing. It have to be SOMETHING!!!I am very glad that you will have a career ahead because of your truly passion!Keep it up Robin!

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    1. Thanks Ashraf!Indeed I am moving toward my own passion in this career switch, and i hope things go well!

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  11. Hi Robin, great to hear your news and I'm looking forward to your new adventures!

    Stephen

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  12. Wow... it takes a lot of courage to embrace ones dream and do what you like... your perseverance in the photographic world has rewarded you. I'm a bit curious about what specific type of work you actually do in Olympus Malaysia and I thing they did the right move... well, this a great opportunity to embrace a career in photography and a new start for new exciting stories.

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    1. Thanks so much Johan for staying here with me still. Indeed I have persevered!
      I joined Olympus Malaysia in their marketing team. Mostly on activities to further develop and promote the Olympus Brand! well, honestly, that is what I have been doing all along.

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  13. Robin, I can not help but to think back a fews months ago when you where thinking you might need to sell all your photo gear.
    In our darkest hour we cannot see the light, but now it looks like you are walking in the sunshine.
    Will we get that EM-1 review now?
    Happy for you.

    Larry

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much Larry. No news on any new reviews at the moment, but once I have something, you will be sure that I am the first one to push them out this time, since I am working so closely with Olympus now.

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  14. Congrats ! As a new fans of Olympus camera, really hopes to see your review on EM-1 soonest possible.

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    1. Thanks! If there is any new review rest assured you will see it here!

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  15. Congratulations - would you mind trying to persuade those in authority at Olympus that it's time the OM-D had a firmware upgrade, which enabled a focus peaking function?

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    Replies
    1. I shall forward the feedback to the team. Agreed that the focus peaking is an important feature.

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    2. Thanks, glad to hear that you also believe it's important, but I have to be pessimistic that it will happen, we can hope though............
      Good luck in your new post.

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    3. Thanks, glad to hear that you also believe it's important, but I have to be pessimistic that it will happen, we can hope though............
      Good luck in your new post.

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  16. As I have previously posted in your Facebook page: Congratulations!

    Working on a job which you are passionate about is truly a dream come true: you get paid for doing what you love, win-win solution in my opinion.

    I do, however, share a concern about gear usage: you have used plenty of cameras from various brands. Now that you are employed by Olympus Malaysia – strictly speaking – you are to use Olympus. The good news is, well.. I guess you have already known it though: camera technologies have made a quantum leap in period of decades; therefore I do hope that the gear restriction doesn’t hinder you from producing images as you have envisioned from deep within your heart.

    Anyways, I’m rambling (been too much coffee for today, lol).

    So… May I presume that you are about to review E-M1?

    Regards,
    Angga Cahyadi Santoso

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    Replies
    1. Thanks again Angga for the show of support and encouraging words. Nevertheless I am an Olympus fan, I have always been using Olympus and I do not feel any limitation or restriction. The truth is, I would be happier!

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  17. Hi Robin,
    Happy to hear the good news. You definitely desrve this. All those though days you gone through was a sign of better tomorrows. Nothing is better than working and making money to live in the field where one have passion and joy. All the best and looking forward to see many more reviews and shutter therapys. :-)

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    Replies
    1. Hello Dibin,
      Thanks for the kind comments, and yes, more reviews will come and surely the shutter therapy will go on.

      Delete
  18. This is really exciting and awesome news ... I'm so happy for you! I have found your articles, reviews and photos to be very informative and inspiring. I agree with you that if you keep doing the reviews the way you have been, without trying to take a more "professional" approach, then there shouldn't be any problem, and your readers will stay happy and satisfied. As another reader commented, it's really amazing that just a short time ago everything looked so bleak and you thought you would have to sell all your camera equipment. And now look where things are at! It's nice to know that dreams (or things we dare not even dream!) can still come true in this world!

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    Replies
    1. Hey Brian,
      I think life itself is very unpredictable and we never know what to expect in the next turn! It is still early for any celebration but I am very positive and will do my best to make things work!

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  19. Congratulations! I'm very happy for you, and will still enjoy every visit here.

    And just in time to get your mitts on an E-M1, hummm? ;-P

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    1. Hello Bert,
      Thanks! We shall see and hope for the best for the coming any new cameras, and yes I will still continue to review them!

      Delete
  20. Hey Robin,

    Congratulations on your new job! It sounds almost like a dream job for you.

    Now you can "borrow" a nice E-M1 body from your employer every weekend to help with your "therapy".

    I hope it all works out well for you.

    Good cheer,
    Scott

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    Replies
    1. hey Scott!
      Thanks for the kind words. Will I be seeing you on the coming touch and try session? Saw your name in the registration list!

      Delete
  21. Robin! You did it!!!! Great!!!

    All the Best from Germany

    Sven

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    Replies
    1. Hey Sven! Thanks! Long time no hear from you.

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  22. Congratulations bro! May this new job bring you greener pastures, and more fun in life.

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    Replies
    1. Greener pastures indeed, Cyril, thanks!

      Delete
  23. Congratulations Robin!!! This news could not have happend to a better man...I wish the best for you And I will continue to read and support you and your Bolg...Maybe someday i will even get down to meet you in KL..

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the well wishes, and if you do stop by KL please drop me a message!

      Delete
  24. Congratulations Robin!!!,and like snakephoto said, it could not have happened to a better man.
    All the best from Sweden

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  25. Your humility is always so... human, Robin. A what seems long forgotten virtue in our times.
    No need to justify anything before us, your humble devotees ;)
    If it helps to keep your blog running, and even make some money from it, then more power to you!

    Cheers!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for the kind words! But of course I am only human and I am flawed as well. But I am doing the best I can. Thanks again!

      Delete
  26. Congrats Robin! I've been following your blog for a few years and will continue. You are very talented and I really enjoy your photography. That is awesome that you have the opportunity to try a career path you are passionate about. I can relate as an engineer as well. Good luck with the new gig!

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    Replies
    1. Hey Justin
      Thanks for the show of support! Appreciate it.

      Delete
  27. Wow! This is great news- you're a good guy and deserve this. It was your E-M5 review that cemented my decision to switch all my professional and personal photography from full-frame Canon gear to M4/3, and I've never regretted a moment since. I always felt that if Olympus was not paying you for your reviews, somebody should- they are informative and excellent. Congratulations, sir.

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    Replies
    1. Hey Matt,
      Thanks so much for the kind words. I never thought so much on earning from my blog or reviews but the fact that it helped many to decide and make buying decisions were enough reward for me! At least I know that my time and effort spent was on something that does matter.

      Delete
  28. Actually I was kind or surprised that olympus did not givevyou any equipment previously

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    Replies
    1. Hello Colin,
      I guess to maintain my status as an independent reviewer I should not be receiving anything from them!

      Delete
  29. Congratulations. Very real deserved.

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  30. Congratulations, Robin!
    This is more than deserved!
    And I have to applaud Olympus for having the intelligence to hire such a great photographer and reviewer of gear.
    I'll keep following your blog on a daily basis and I'm sure I'll continue to admire and respect your wonderful reviews and photos.
    And yes, as a proud owner of a OMD E-M5, I'll be very keen on having more and more reviews of Olympus and m4/3 gear.
    Keep up with your inspirational blog!

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    Replies
    1. Hello Antonio,
      Thanks for the support and kind comments! I am glad more and more people are using micro 4/3 gear. They are getting better and better!

      Delete
  31. Wow! Congratulations Robin, this could not have happened to a better man. All the best, much joy in your new adventure!

    Tom

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  32. Congratulations! This is truly wonderful news. I've been lucky enough to work for companies that were related to my hobbies and passion and it's a great experience. It's also very eye opening in how business works in that particular field. The only downside is that when your passion/hobby becomes your work, it can burn you out if you are not careful. I actually developed many new hobbies just to take a break from work/hobby.

    You can't help becoming biased toward the company you work for. That said, I believe you will not say something is good when it is not based on your past history. I greatly look forward to you getting to play with the latest Oly gear. It's great timing since the E-M1 seems to be the camera you've been waiting for. Pro build like the E-5 and great support for legacy 4/3 glass.

    This was truly a wise move for Olympus to make. Imaging what a disaster it would be for them if Sony had wised up and hired you instead;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience wataru! Thanks for the support and help all this time as well appreciate them a lot.
      I did not really have an involvement with Sony and I was only mingling with their users/consumers. They already have their own system and I was too new to make any difference even if I did join them.

      Delete
  33. Congratulations, you've made the right move. Cheer!

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  34. Congratulations, Robin!

    I have been an Olympus fan since I purchased my OM-3 in the 80's.

    It is said if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life.

    I have many friends at Olympus US, their headquarters is less than 15 miles away.

    Once again congratulations on your new career, and best wishes to your mother in her recovery.

    My youngest brother had knee replacement surgery yesterday, and is due to go home on Thrusday.

    Don from America

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    Replies
    1. Hello Don thanks for the support and kind words.
      My mom just had her check up done and the doctors said everything was going very well!
      And glad to hear that your brother is doing good and will be going home soon.

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  35. Robin, I am so pleased to hear that Olympus has finally shown you official recognition. You will be such a great asset to their team. I'm sure we will soon see your passion and enthusiasm reflected in future product development, as it surely should be. Good luck with the move!

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    Replies
    1. Hey trevorez,
      Thanks for the kind words!
      I will do my best in my capacity but change does take time and I am working only within Olympus Malaysia. But we shall see how things go. Let's hope for the best!

      Delete
  36. Robin, I am so pleased to hear that Olympus has finally shown you official recognition. You will be such a great asset to their team. I'm sure we will soon see your passion and enthusiasm reflected in future product development, as it surely should be. Good luck with the move!

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  37. Yeahhh!!! was about time :). You really deserved it.
    I can't wait having you reviewing the next OMD and the new lenses that will probably go out in the upcoming months

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Son Nguyen! Will be doing that do not worry!

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  38. A big congratulations Robin. What are you going to do for them? And keep up the great work!

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    Replies
    1. Hey Eugene,
      Thanks. I joining the marketing team.

      Delete
  39. Hi Robin, I really appreciate your blogg and especially your ability to be tough enough to state your personal opinion, even if this makes you vulnerable in some way! But thtat's the big difference! Take the chance and I wish you a great succeess!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for pointing that out Bernhard! Will keep that in mind.

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  40. "I understand if I will not be as credible or believable as a reviewer as before" -- I do not think any long time readers of your blog will have any concerns about your credibility. But, what happens to the A350 now!? (lol)

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    Replies
    1. Hey R Harper,
      Thanks for the reassurance. The Sony gear stays for now but I do have to let them go in near future. Don't think my employers will be happy seeing me shooting around with Sony!

      Delete
  41. greetings from vancouver, canada!
    love your blog and even more i love your photos (i couldn't care less about "GAS" :-) but i do love olympus cameras since they were my first digital camera; i love my epl-1 and more importantly the olympus lens)

    anyhow it would be super cool if olympus sent you to vancouver on business
    if you do make it here to vancouver, let me know and i'll organize a photowalk in you honour!

    ...Roland

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    Replies
    1. hey Roland,
      Glad to find another Olympus user! Canada is sure far away but who knows, anything can happen and I do love to travel. Let's hope it does happen!

      Delete
  42. oh and i forgot to say, Olympus is lucky to have such a passionate and objective enthusiast ! (and you are lucky to work there but i am 100% sure they will get more out of you than you'll get out of them since you are such a great articulator and exponent of photography!)

    ReplyDelete
  43. Congrats Robin! Can't say it was too much of a surprise, but they're lucky to have you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Forest,
      True, probably it wasn't that big of a surprise! Thanks.

      Delete
  44. Congratulations Robin,

    I bought an OM-D E-M5 largely after being inspired by your reviews of this camera, and I'm grateful that I had access to your expert comments when making that decision.

    I'm delighted that you now have new opportunities as a result of your generosity to your readers and your passion for photography. I hope your new position gives you even more opportunities to build on your talent as a photographer.

    Regards,

    Simon

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for the kind words and motivation! I sure hope to continue my growth and development as a photographer. Thanks for reminding.

      Delete
  45. Congratulations. Maybe you can use your engineering background and photographer's experience to have a heart-to-heart with whoever designed the Olympus user interface. I generally use the SCP on my E-PL2, but when I have to dive into the menus it is an adventure.

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    Replies
    1. Hey Patrick,
      Surely we all know how unuser-friendly Olympus user interface and menu system can be. To ask them to completely overhaul the system is quite difficult I would say but perhaps some tweaks to the arrangements should be made.

      Delete
  46. Robin, Wow! and Congrats! Your reach extends well beyond Malaysia. I bought my Olympus 60mm f/2.8 Macro lens after reading your multi-part review, and everything that you said about it in your very thorough review was spot-on. It's nice to know that that will not be the last piece of Olympus gear that I will purchase based upon what you have to say. Again, congrats on the new job!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Gregg! Glad to know that you find the 60mm review useful. And I am also glad that now I have access to any gear as needed!
      Thanks again for your kind support and being here Gregg. Really appreciate that.

      Delete
  47. Congratulations Robin,

    I am extremely happy for you because you totally deserve it!

    Now you can pursue your passion for photography all day long and, despite what skeptics will say, things can only get better!

    Good luck and all the very best to you my friend!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Unknown,
      Do leave a name when you comment next time (many people use "unknown" before) so I can trace your comment history.
      Thanks and I sure hope things will get better too.
      Cheers!

      Delete
  48. Replies
    1. Thanks for the support and being here Dwight Parker!

      Delete
  49. Hi Robin,fantastic news.Now maybe you'll jump out of bed with a spring in your step,excited to go to work!!!You said in a reply to me once I was lucky to have a job I loved(fisherman)and hopefully you have found one of life's most important lessons,find a job you enjoy because you will be doing it for a long time.Bought a Sony RX100 on special($560AU) to compliment the EM5 and very impressed with the IQ.Good to hear your mums recovering well and if it wasn't for the last months events you might not have made the change.Best of luck,Tony Jupp

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    Replies
    1. Hello Tony,
      Thanks! Indeed I believe all things happen for some reasons and we will not see it until everything is over. Always hope for the best and I am optimistic here. Thanks for the kind comments and I appreciate your support!

      Delete
  50. Hi Robin,
    Congratulations! After years of being an unofficial ambassador for Olympus, they finally invited you to join them officially. I believe, to be able to join a company whose brand and product you strongly believe in and love, is probably the best thing to happen to anybody, and even more so for the company. Its like an ardent Ferrari F1 fan being employed by Ferrari to join their Scuderia F1 team. Or finally getting the dream tranfer you want to Real Madrid after being a fan all your life. ;)
    Well, for Olympus they have now gain an outstanding and loyal employee in you, who reach audience beyond the shores of Malaysia.
    I am so happy for you.

    I know it will not be easy now when you review Olympus gears because of your position, views will no longer be impartial. Nevertheless, let the quality of your photography with Olympus gear speak for themselves. I have to admit, i purchased the E-M5 and 17/1.8 lens partly because of your real world review. Real photos / pictures paint a thousand words. Technical review did nothing more than comparing numbers in the lab. Your work speaks volume about the brand and product no numbers can replace.

    All the best to your new endeavour. :)

    Ps. Never underestimate the creativity of engineers ... :)

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    Replies
    1. Hey Calex,
      Thank you so much for your constant support and being here for me! Indeed I am very happy joining Olympus and this will be the highlight of my life thus far. I sure hope I will be able to make a difference and will contribute more to this community.
      I agree with you that real photographs are very important, they themselves tell their own stories.

      Delete
  51. Great news!
    I discovered your blog around the launch of the E-M5. That was actual fatal to my bank account...
    I progressively bought more and more 4/3 lenses (used) and even a E-30.
    You pictures are an inspiration to me and really tell the Olympus story without any bias.
    And I am not expecting that to change!

    In fact I found that move fitting. Olympus is one of those rare Engineer oriented company with a marketing narration as an after thought.
    The amazing quality of the Zuiko lenses for 4/3 are there to attest of that! You are going to fit right in.

    Lucky break enjoy it to the fullest.

    -Tristan (from San Diego USA)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Tristan,
      Thanks for the kind words and well wishes, and I hope I can fit in well ! Thanks for sharing that you have been getting into the micro 4/3 world, and even got yourself the E-30. That is one great camera!

      Delete
  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Great news!
    I discovered your blog around the launch of the E-M5. That was actual fatal to my bank account...
    I progressively bought more and more 4/3 lenses (used) and even a E-30.
    You pictures are an inspiration to me and really tell the Olympus story without any bias.
    And I am not expecting that to change!

    In fact I found that move fitting. Olympus is one of those rare Engineer oriented company with a marketing narration as an after thought.
    The amazing quality of the Zuiko lenses for 4/3 are there to attest of that! You are going to fit right in.

    Lucky break enjoy it to the fullest.

    -Tristan (from San Diego USA)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Tristan,
      Thanks for the kind words, and yes, the amazing quality of Zuiko Lenses! And that E-30 is a great camera.

      Delete
  54. Hi Robin,
    what a pleasant surprise after a tough summer! Good luck with the new job. I hope your enthusiasm and input helps Oly turn out even better products.

    regarding engineers and creativity -- I thought that was an American prejudice. Many of the most creative people I know are scientist and engineers (of course, that may be because most of the people I know are scientists & engineers). Anyways, I assert that the most creative thing that humans do is mathematics. Consider this -- math takes you from counting pebbles to e^(i \pi) = -1 and beyond!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Pete Mao,
      Thank you so much for your well wishes! I think engineers and creativity is a generally known opinion, and it also applies here in Malaysia. I myself can relate to the statement very well because I am an engineer!

      Delete
  55. Wow! That's an awesome news, Robin. Congrats on your new job and I am happy for you.

    I always believe passionate employee is an extra bonus for a company. Today, Olympus gets a very good signing in Robin Wong. Beside John Wong, my ex-colleague at DKSH will be very happy to have you at Olympus Malaysia. On the reviews, I think you have the advantage in many ways compare to outsiders and I believe Robin Wong will remain true to 'what is' in whatever gear review will be.
    When I informed my wife just now, she said, "Wow! That's good! Do you go for the Olympus event or not?" She also feel happy for you, Robin.
    We wish you the best in your new job and keep being passionate in whatever you do.
    May you have a great day.
    John Ragai

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey John,
      Thanks for the kind words John!
      So are you coming for the Olympus touch and try event?

      Delete
    2. Yes, John Ragai...

      Robin, welcome on board!

      Delete
    3. Robin, you knew I always want to go wherever and whenever photography event happen but I am always limit by my transport as my wife is my transport minister. Most of the time, I took public transport if it burden her sending me to satisfy my photography passion.

      Actually by asking those question, she opened the opportunity for me to go for the event and I have registered for the (21/09/13) Saturday morning session (session A). She will send and pick me up. I do not register earlier as I am waiting for her to give me a green light. Husband's skill in handling good wife.
      See you two at the event.
      May you have a great evening.
      John Ragai

      Delete
    4. See you there John! Would be nice to finally meet you in person!

      Delete
  56. 恭喜美夢成真,逐夢踏實!

    ReplyDelete
  57. Good for Olympus, good for you. Congratulations to both.

    ReplyDelete
  58. Robin,

    Major congratulations are in order for you. Very excited to hear what this means for your work. Are you now officially a visionary in Malaysia or is this something different? Thumbs up, man.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Ian,
      Thanks for the kind words! I am involved in the marketing team of Olympus Malaysia.

      Delete
  59. Congratulations Robin. And of course we'll still trust what you say about Olympus - your photos speak for themselves after all!

    ReplyDelete
  60. First off, congrats from Belgium for this "golden opportunity". A man has to follow his dream(s), come hell or high water.

    PS tried to leave a comment yesterday evening from my iPad and using Safari, but each and every time (and I tried several times...) my reply disappeared after hitting the "Publish" button.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Hendrik,
      Thanks for the kind words! And yes your comment is here now.

      Delete
  61. First off, congrats from Belgium for this "golden opportunity". A man has to follow his dream(s), come hell or high water.

    PS tried to leave a comment yesterday evening from my iPad and using Safari, but each and every time (and I tried several times...) my reply disappeared after hitting the "Publish" button.

    ReplyDelete
  62. Big, big congratulations to you, Robin! I am so happy for you. I have been a reader of your fantastic blog for a some time but have not been commenting a lot. Just to say that there are tons of us "silent" readers who really enjoy your photography, reviews and writings a lot. Your blog was a starting point to get Olympus XZ-2 for my wife and get OM-D E-M5 to myself. Unfortunately, I sold my OM-D and I am waiting you to convince me again to get m4/3 system. Maybe the coming E-M1! I am too much of a back and worth of person and the sites like yours are much needed to give expert advice. Once again, my congrats and keep your great blog alive!

    Best wishes from Finland!

    Jonne

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Jonne for the well wishes! Thanks for staying with me and no worries about not commenting, your visits does contribute to the number of page views and that helps a lot too. Rest assured I will be keeping this blog alive!

      Delete
  63. Wow! Robin, this sounds very, very exciting! Congrats for choosing this opportunity and to make it your own way!

    Best wishes from Germany,

    Klaus

    ReplyDelete
  64. Congrats Robin on your wonderful new adventure.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Robin, this is great news. First of all you are about to embark on an adventure you love: photography, with access to the finest equipment.

    Second, as I have remarked several times, Olympus should be grateful to have a valuable asset like you available. You and your amazing work are the best possible "ad" money can buy. OF COURSE Oly recognized this blatantly obvious fact as well and was more than happy to take you in.

    Third, this does not in any way affect your blog or the credibility. Like you observe, you have always been open and honest -not only as a person- about your preference for this remarkable brand and its excellent optical designs. How can someone's love for a certain product affect that persons credibility? Only if it was false or misleading. Neither is the case.

    Fourth, (hence) as far as I am concerned I would LOVE to see you review Oly gear, employee or not. You are honest, and as long as Oly has no problem with honesty, neither do I or other readers of your excellent blog.

    Finally: my friend, I think this a excellent career move. It is a win-win-win: Oly gains an excellent photographer, reviewer, and blogger, we gain the best possible reviews and enjoying the pictures, and finally you do what you love!

    It's fantastic news as far as I am concerned!

    One word of advise: there will always be criticasters. You now what? Ignore them. To paraphrase: I can't give you the recipe to success, but I can show you the recipe for failure -- try to please everybody.

    Do what you are brilliant at and what you love: blogging, photographing, and reviewing. And to heck with the rest :-)

    Congratulations, Robin!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, andre for being so supportive, and I appreciate your encouraging remarks.
      You are right, and I shall heed your advice: the recipe for failure is to try to please everybody. Wise words, and thanks again for being here and staying with me!

      Delete
  66. Outstanding news! Olympus woke up and made a commitment to one of their major assets in Malaysia. Well done, Olympus! I have purchased Olympus gear based on photographs you have taken, Robin, and I have returned to your blog over and over, to show friends what Olympus cameras and lenses are capable of. This is really good news! Can't wait to see what photos and captions will result from your having access to all the gear and having the pressure of the job removed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Reverend!
      Thank you so much for staying with me and thanks for the show of support, really appreciate them!

      Delete
  67. Hi Robin,

    Great news about your Olympus job, I'm sure you will enjoy it and I hope you continue to review their gear on this blog.

    I have some questions about my OM-D EM-5 which I hope you will have time to answer;

    1. To be RGB or sRGB......that is the question.

    I mainly shoot RAW, expose to the right, then process with Lightroom 5 on my Sony SVS13A1S9ES laptop (Sony support says it is a wide gamut display but that it does not support the full Adobe RGB colour space). I'm running Windows 8 pro.

    (a) If I change my camera setting from sRGB to RGB will this have any effect on my RAW files? If yes what?

    (b) To optimise quality I have been advised to 'work in the highest/best colour space available' until the final 'output' stage where I would save the file as RGB (for my laptop) or sRGB for the internet. What do you think?

    2. Lens corrections
    Does the OM-D make any corrections for Olympus lenses 'in camera' for RAW and/or jpeg?

    I know it would be easy just to leave everything in sRGB but I'm saving up for a proper 'wide gamut' display and want to be able to revisit my best RAW files and reprocess - hence it makes sense to work in the highest quality mode possible...

    Thanks,

    Howard

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Howard,
      To be honest I have always set my camera to RGB only, and I have never shot with Adobe RGB. Unless you are doing a lot printing and you know what you are doing, you won't see much or any difference at all in computer or electronic display devices. For further reading you can refer to this well written article: http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/adobe-rgb.htm

      Olympus applies lens correction only on the JPEG level. That is the reason why I use Olympus viewer 3, because it applies lens correction as well.

      Delete
    2. Thanks Robin,

      Please confirm you have your OMD set to sRGB (not RGB as stated above?).

      Ken's article was written in 2006 and is correct however many browsers like (firefox and W8 IE) are now colour managed so that they can display the correct colours by reading the image profile.

      Delete
    3. All my photographs have their EXIF data intact. You may view them and I can tell you I have never used Adobe RGB, as i do not see the need for it.

      Delete
  68. Congratulations from Massachusetts, USA! I am happy that you will be able to continue your blog (though I would guess there won't be a lot of Sony gear being acquired going forward *grin*. Your blog, and Kirk's, are the ones I like the most.

    Best regards, Peter

    ReplyDelete
  69. Wooaahh.. Congrats Robin.. ^.^

    ReplyDelete
  70. Congratulations Robin!

    Your review of the 45mm 1.8 helped me take the first step into Olympus and Panasonic, and my copy of the lens has been used to take treasured photos of my baby daughter.

    Thanks for your blogging, and keep up the good work!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Ash! That 45mm F1.8 is a great lens!

      Delete
  71. Congratulations! This is excellent news. I have been following your blog for a few years now and it is very cool to see how it led to a career change into a field you love.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for staying with me all this time!

      Delete
  72. Congratulations Robin,
    Excited and looking forward to better things to come from you. Best wishes for your new undertaking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello XiooKS,
      Thanks for the well wishes!

      Delete
  73. Well, Robin, you are certainly exploring new territory. Your new employment situation will not stop me from reading your blog but I wonder where you will stand if Olympus decides to edit or in fact interfere with your opinions on their products and if so how would we know that. As for your blog, the proof is in the pudding, you take excellent photos and manage to extract the best from Olympus cameras. I am also a fan of Olympus and as you stated, they have limitations like every other camera but if you can work around them the results are amazing. Although I only have the "lowly" EPL-5 I am really happy with it. And with phase detection (hybrid) nearly at hand things will only get better.

    Ron

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ron,
      Thanks for the kind words, but you were wrong when you mentioned that the E-PL5 is "lowly". I believe it is a great camera, I used it for a wedding assignment and it performed very well! I was very happy with it's performance and the image quality is exactly the same as the OM-D E-M5!
      Indeed you were right, I do foresee my opinion and blog content being interfered, but I shall do my best to stay true to myself!

      Delete
  74. Hi Robin,

    I just want to congratulate you on this awesome step. I am sure your reviews on Olympus gear will be just as great if not even better than before.
    Just because you are now a team of Olympus does not mean that you can not be honest about the gear you review.
    Even though I am a Fuji X user I love to read your reviews and of course your shuter therapy. Keep it going as you do. And if I should come to Malaysia one day I would love to go and shoot with you.

    Take care and stay as you are.

    Greetings from Germany
    Daniel (Stockografie)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Daniel!
      Thanks so much for your kind words and support! If you do come to KL please look me up. Would be glad to bring you for some shutter therapy!

      Delete
  75. Hi Robin!
    I have already written you are a brave and smart guy, I have to repeat that here!
    I am happy for you, because you are going to do what you love, and I am happy for me, because I will enjoy more and more of your gear reviews and STS (shutter therapy sessions). I decided to buy Olympus cameras and lenses after reading a bunch of internet opinions, yours included, and I have never regretted this choice. So keep going as usual, I'll stay by you

    Cheers
    Stefano

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Stefano,
      Thanks for the show of faith, and support! STS! that is a new abbreviation, I like that.

      Delete
  76. Hey Robin,

    what a nice change (chance!?!) in your life. I love to read these news and wish you a really good time with Olympus-Malaysia.

    And Congratulations to Olympus. OM-D E-M5, then OM-D E-M1 and now Robin in your Team. - Clever..!

    The best in life is yet to come... (Frank Sinatra)

    Cheers,
    Andreas

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Andreas!
      You were right, the best is yet to come!

      Delete
  77. Hi Robin,congratulations...the feature is bright!

    All the Best,

    Jan Broekema

    The Netherlands

    ReplyDelete
  78. The most lucky is Olympus Malaysia, I have to say "Congratulation Olympus Malaysia, you have made a great ever employment this year".
    Robin, you also have done well on your job, your shutter therapy as well as olympus gear reviewer. Both you gud luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Rudi! Will continue to do my best.

      Delete
  79. Hi Robin,

    Great achievement, admire your honesty.

    Shall your new career bring you new excitement and happiness.

    Look forward to more of your blogs in the future.

    Chad form Australia.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Chad for the well wishes.

      Delete
  80. Congratulations on your new appointment! It's wonderful to work for a business designing product that you are passionate about. This is my first comment on your site, so I'll try not to ramble too much. I participated in a photography workshop today, and upon conclusion, I asked the teacher what lens I should consider adding to my kit. He suggested a wide aperture prime. So, when I arrived home, I immediately thought of your blog to check out your reviews on the 45mm & 75mm lenses. I am so grateful that I came across your site earlier this year. As a serious newbie to photography, having only leaped into dslr late last year (om-d em-5), I was feeling a little overwhelmed with the myriad of information on this equipment available. You provide a 'from the heart' account of your experiences, which I truly appreciate. I'm not the best decision maker going around, but think I've settled on the 45mm for use on the street in less than ideal lighting conditions.
    Again, thanks for your honest reviews. They go a long long way.
    Cheers
    Anna

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the kind words Anna, and do not worry about rambling too much, I was the one who always have too many things to say!
      That 45mm F1.8 lens is a great lens to start with. It produces amazingly sharp and pleasing images, and you can create blur background with it. The only drawback is the rather long focal length which you might need to step back a little to fit what you want in your composition, but once you are used to the focal length it should not be an issue anymore.
      Happy shooting, and I am sure you will enjoy your micro 4/3 gear!!

      Delete
  81. Congratulations Robin, I appreciate that you are honest, transparency and independent,
    but I know that your "soul" is Olympus, Good Luck!

    I'm waiting your class for OMD-E5.

    Best Regards,
    Teguh Wibisono- Jakarta

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello grageman,

      Thanks grageman!

      Delete
  82. Robin, Congratulations and very well deserved.

    ReplyDelete
  83. Robin, I am extremely proud and happy for you on this new career opportunity. As a creative leanomg individual with degrees in construction management I can completely relate to your desire to find a career that engages the creative side of your mind. I appreciate your honesty about the potential new bias that may arise in your blog as related to you new position.

    But honestly I don't really care because I will keep coming back to your blog for the same reasons I always come here...your humility, your kindness, your sense of awe and wonder for the world, and your delightfully beautiful photographs. These are all very endearing qualities for photography blogger like you to have and I know these qualities will not change. Actually they might even flourish more as your creative potential grows. Goodluck and godgodspeed on your new journey. Namaste, Hal

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Hal,
      Thanks so much for the kind words. Indeed, it is best to be transparent and honest, if I tried to hide the fact that I work for Olympus and yet still do reviews, that would be very wrong.
      I am doing my best to share my passion, and of course my learning photography work here, and it has been a fun and amazing ride so far, thanks to all you beautiful readers! I think being human is very important in photography, and I am after all, a human being.

      Delete
  84. Hi, Robin,

    There should be no problem with your blog as an Olympus employee. You won't have to chose between objectivity and serving your employer's interest. Just change gears and become even more of a teacher in your writing approach.

    Reviews of competitors' products won't fly. Credibility in that regard was forfeited as a condition of employment. Whether your blog continues as part of your Olympus job or in addition to it, you've kept faith with your readers by making it transparent.

    Going forward your natural role becomes that of one who explains and demonstrates. It's perfectly possible to be an advocate without becoming a shill. And, a good bit of what you write about is the experience of photography. Topics that are brand-neutral can continue to be handled that way. Doing so will continue to build your readership and your influence on the company's behalf -- without falling into the trap of adopting the stance of "brand evangelist", a tired and overworked concept.

    Best of luck in the new job. Make it worth your while.

    Michael Matthews



    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Michael,
      Thank you so much for your words of widsom, they are very encouraging, and very true indeed. I believe I shall continue to do what I do best, shoot photographs and share them here, and writing about my experience and discoveries along the way. This blog will stay the same in this regard, and you were right, those things are brand neutral. There are so many things that I have done here in my blog that are not gear review related.
      Thanks again for the well wishes!

      Delete
  85. Hi Robin

    Good on you for taking the opportunity when offered - I did a similar thing job-wise last year and returned to a 'first-love'. I certainly have enjoyed reading your blogs and gear reviews over the past couple of years. Like you, I and my late father have been keen Olympus users from the Om-1 onwards. I have a new Om-D EM5 which I really like (and with which I have fun playing with a range of old OM primes!) and an older E-30 which still takes more than acceptable photos. Love those Olympus colours!!
    Regards

    Grant Stewart

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Stormrev,
      Thanks for the kind words. Whoah, glad that both you and your late father are Olympus users! Om-1 was indeed a legendary camera. I agree, Olympus has the best color rendition out there!

      Delete
  86. Hi Robin!

    Just want to take a moment to wish you all the best and continuing happiness in your new profession. You will do well!


    Chris Sorlie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Chris,
      Thanks for the kind wishes!

      Delete
  87. Congratulations Robin,
    I think you deserve it in many ways but most surely as one the best Olympus freelance ambassador of the last few years.
    Photography is about people and places and your photographic contribution has proven that in many ways. Using Olympus material to do so is making sense as other photographs have just did the same in the past with other fine equipment.
    In fact Olympus is listening the photo users in general which can be regarded as a virtue in this purely marketing world. You are another example of it.
    I hope you the best and thank you Olympus for supporting Robin.
    photodanielm@blogspot.ca

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Photodanielm,
      Thanks for the kind comments, really appreciate it.
      I was also pleased to find that Olympus does respond to their customer's feedback and continuously improve based on that. After all the products released will be used by the end users!

      Delete
  88. Congrats Robin,

    All the best in your career with Olympus Malaysia and looking forward for more great write-up in your blog.

    Regards,
    Dee

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Dee,
      Thanks for the well wishes and surely more gear review will come!

      Delete
  89. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  90. OM20 was my first SLR in the old days (really old days), not long after I started work. For some reasons I changed to using a succession of compacts, 3 of which were Olympus. Your reviews have rekindled my interest in the brand.

    Remember me from the recent Petaling St walkabout?

    Regards
    Cho Liang Yong

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I still keep my OM20 for nostalgic reason.

      Delete
    2. Yes I remember you, we were in the Rakan KL things right? Glad to see that you are coming back to olympus!

      Delete
  91. wish you well! what's your job title? photo engineer in residence?

    ReplyDelete
  92. wish you well! what's your job title? photo engineer in residence?

    ReplyDelete
  93. Congratulations, Robin! It's so nice to read that you can now 100% follow the path that you love. Frankly I wondered for years why it didn't happen earlier given your dedication to your blog, the hand-on approach of your reviews and the quality of your pictures.

    As an IT journalist with several decades of practice, I'd advise you not to carry on reviews. Not because I don't trust your honesty but because it will put YOU in an awkward position. When one gets on a company's payroll, one has to accept its strenghts and weaknesses or leave. Even if a weakness in an Olympus cam is corrobated elsewhere, mentioning it in your review, would be a bit like saying around in a blog that your spouse has bad breath or empties the fridge at night. I frankly doubt that Olympus managers would appreciate it and it would give them a weapon against your other work and initiatives.

    Surely there must be other ways to share your expertise with Olympus equipment, like your own phototherapy sessions or perhaps tutorials on how to get the most from it.
    All the best.

    ReplyDelete
  94. Congrats on your new career.

    So what does your official job with Olympus entail?

    ReplyDelete
  95. So.. Olympus got even better! :) I´m really glad for you, best of luck!

    ReplyDelete
  96. Dear Robin,

    Congratulation!
    I am happy to hear that great news.
    Hopefully everything will be a nice thing for u. :)

    ReplyDelete