Griffin Hammond, the Panasonic GH5 ambassador was in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia speaking on documentary film making. One of the perks of leaving Olympus Malaysia, was the freedom to receive invitations to attend such cool events, and actually be there!

Griffin Hammond speaking for Panasonic Malaysia event. 

I was back in my hometown, Kuching for the past few days. Those were full days of shooting, catching up with family and friends, shooting and even more shooting!

I was home to shoot for my cousin Andy's wedding, which was a beautiful ceremony and I cannot wait to share some photos here soon from that wedding shoot. It has been a while since I last shot any wedding assignment, so this was particularly challenging for me, but I had such a blast capturing overabundant joy and happiness of the newly weds together with their family, relatives and friends!

I also spent an evening volunteering myself to cover a local poetry/creative writing/spoken words event, Word Of Mouth 9 (WOM9): Hunger and it was quite an experience being immersed in a different artistic medium for a change. It was quite inspiring seeing local Kuching talents sharing their talent and creativity on stage.

I made sure that I spent as much time as I could with beloved mum, who is doing great by the way, and we celebrated a belated mother's day in Kuching. It was a miracle that I still managed to find time to catch up with a few other close friends.

I squeezed one morning just for shutter therapy. I did not get many usable shots, but it was amazing shooting alongside Jee and Madey, both street photographers whom I have exhibited together with earlier this year. I really did wish I had more time to shoot on the beautiful streets of Kuching, but I also believe that getting my priority right is more important. Time with beloved mum and friends was well spent.

All images were taken with an Olympus PEN E-P5, Panasonic 14mm F2.5 and M.Zuiko 45mm F1.8 lens.

Orange on Orange

Lighting is the most important consideration when it comes to making a photograph, after all, a photograph consists of nothing but light and shadow. However, lighting is not ideal in most cases.

The worst that can happen, is a strong backlight, rendering the front subjects in dark shadows, and everything else in the background overexposed and burned out in highlights. This is especially true in street photography, you cannot relocate your subjects (I advice not to do so, but if you must, feel free to practice your own style), you cannot change the available light situations. Yet, some subjects are worth shooting despite the crappy light: interesting character in a portrait, which I have encountered so often.

Therefore, I would like to share how I deal with difficult lighting conditions when I am out doing my street shooting, especially when it comes to strong backlight. Kindly take note that these are my own shooting preferences that fit my personal photography style, they may not work for every one.

My old nemesis, the 35mm perspective that I never quite get when it comes to street photography, is something that is a work in progress. I have stated before, that 35mm is not something I prefer to use for my own photography, if I have the luxury of choice. Nevertheless, I am not giving up on 35mm just yet, and I intend to spend as much time I can with it, doing my shutter therapy session. Sometimes, to improve yourself, you have to face your weakness, put yourself in a difficult situation and deal with the issue head on.

I have kept the Olympus 17mm F2.8 pancake lens, one of the oldest Micro Four Thirds lenses out there, with possibly the slowest AF (perhaps the only other slower lens than this, is the Panasonic 20mm F1.7). I find myself difficult to let this lens go, since it is so small, and it does not cost much anyway. While the autofocus is not fast and the lens is not the sharpest of the bunch, I thought I would hang on to a 35mm equivalent focal length lens to help me with my personal battle.

Man, I just love pancake lenses. We should have more! 

A lot of people have been asking me, so how is life after Olympus? What is next?

Honestly, I have taken a short break from everything for a while, to refresh myself, and to reorganize my life. My priority was fixing my sleep patterns, eating habits, sorting out plans for income generation since I do not have a full time employment now, and of course, focus more on photography growth.

What better time to focus on repairing my health than now, since I have the flexibility to do it, by having at least 8 hours of sleep daily, going to bed and waking up at consistent hours, eating more healthily, avoiding quick meals and convenient lunches that I have had so often for the past several years.

Mum visited last weekend, for the first time, in Kuala Lumpur, since I have worked here many years ago, and I spent the whole weekend with her.

Do not worry, I have not forgotten about this blog. Far from it actually. Oh I have such huge plans! And as I mentioned, all will be revealed soon. Just give me a bit more time to work out some kinks and finalize the preparations, before the official launch.

I have been busy shooting as well, both for myself, as well as taking in some paid assignment, just to keep some money flowing in.

Life in Olympus Malaysia was fantastic, but that life has come to an end, and it is time to move on.