Thursday, September 16, 2010

LED Maglite 2AA

A well constructed torch light with an LED bulb producing bright, white light and more energy efficient than traditional bulbs. Apart from wanting to use it in dark situations, I initially wanted to use the Maglite for pupils examination. In the end however, I found the light to be to bright and irritant to the eye for practical use. It has 4 modes: 100% brightness, 25% brightness, SOS and strobe. Overall, an excellent torch light for adventures in the dark!

Brunton My-Ti Titanium spork

A lightweight, well sculptured spork made out of titanium for my travels and adventures. It also has a carabiner which doubles as a bottle opener. Unfortunately I found that sporks are not as good with noodles or pasta as proper forks, and does not hold as much liquid as a proper spoon would. Still, I'm extremely happy with having this supposedly tough spoon and fork utility to carry around while travelling.

Just after Eid prayers

Wore a purple Baju Melayu for this year's Eid

My new Contigo mug

My new spill proof, thermal mug from Contigo arrived today. So far extremely happy with the build quality, and it works marvellously! I can now carry hot water in my backpack without fear of it spilling. The size is larger than I had expected, being a 16oz mug, but very sleekly design. Overall, happy with my new purchase!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

On photography

It was on the 8th of July 2010 when I bought my second DSLR camera, a Canon 550D. I was on a manic shopping spree in KLCC and on the same day I had debatably irrationally bought 2 Crumpler bags (more on them in a future post), an Adidas aqua sports shoes for swimming activities - and to square everything up, the RM4000 Canon 550D.

Don't get me wrong, it's a huge purchase that financially burnt a gaping hole through my credit card pocket and at the time, the purchase made little sense.

I say the purchase made little sense since my hobby in photography has been on a three year low. My interest in photography has been dwindling since coming back from the UK.

Partly to blame for the lack of interest are my failing equipments; the 580EX Speedlite produces flash infrequently, missing many key occasions and my Canon 400D SLR shows up "error 99" more often than not. My premium 24-105mm F4L lens - which costs a small fortune, was also showing "mount error"s.

I was deeply disappointed at my broken equipments, which I remember reared its ugly head for the first time at an important occasion: my brother Ramadhan's wedding. It was since then that I rarely used my 400D which was before that like a best friend.

The journey back to Malaysia unfortunately broke many things precious to me.
The occasion that partially rekindled my interest was Sarah's recent keenness in seeing photos of her toddler years, while we were all in Wales and Coventry. Seeing how Sarah's eyes lit up looking at her younger self rejuvenated my desire to record our adventures in the form of photos.
Now, my interest in photography is like a roaring fire feeding on dry logs thanks to my recent trip to Kuala Terengganu for Aidil Fitri. While capturing photos for the festival, I was reminded of the exhilaration of trying to successfully capture the colours, the moments, the activities and the emotions using just a camera. More profoundly, I rediscovered the thrill of trying to capture the beauty of nature in a single photograph. It's akin to attempting to bottle lightning.

Kemasik beach was the place that made me thankful I had bought the Canon 550D. Combined with the wide angle 10-22 Canon EFS lens, and my now fixed 580EX flash I was happy with the sharpness of the images, the wideness of the vistas covered and the richness of the colours produced.

I now hope to travel to many other such places for more photographic adventures. I now have a long list of photography equipments I would like to buy;
  1. A Canon Speedlite Wireless Remote Transmitter ST-E2
  2. A second Speedlite, perhaps the Canon 480EX II
  3. A circular polariser
... the lists goes on and on in my mind, but those three are top priority.

God knows how expensive photography can be as a hobby though, sigh. However, if the results are good then in may be worth it in the end.

I imagine myself in the future, looking back at the photographs I had taken as a youth and reminiscing on how life has changed: much like how Sarah reminisces on photos of her youth.