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Showing posts from December 7, 2008

Morning Has Broken

Saturday.  The leaves have been awaken at the first ray of sun.  Good morning from Hong Kong!

Acquired-gears-In-Deficiency Syndrome

Let me be straightforward: How many cameras do you own?Your Market Research Here The SydromeI own several, including a Ricoh, two Minoltas (the 7000i not working now), three Olys (one film P&S, two free bank gifts), a Polaroid and some lens, flashes and accessories. As those gears are acquired over a period of almost two decades, I am at a relatively early stage of what I call the Acquired-gears-In-Deficiency Syndrome, or AgIDS. Personal encounters and forum browsing show that 99.9% of the photographer population is infected:"How did you do the motion look in a photo? I can’t do it with my 450D." (Is the dial on my friend’s 450D glued to P mode?)"I own a LX3 and have just ordered a G10." (Does he know that LX3 can actually take photos? A typical terminal case.)"How do you spot-meter?" (But the user is talking about his high-end DSLR!)A novice using an expensive camera asked: "Why does the LCD of my GRDII flicker when pointing to the TV? Is that no…

Important Note from the Editor: A Call for Charity Subscription

Who will shelter them from the chill of night Who will comfort them shine a warming light Who will kiss soft cheeks show them it's alright Who will guide young minds teach them wrong from right Children crying who will end their plight Children dying Who will hold them tight The Children ~ Robert HermannDear readers,A personal friend of mine has just written to me in his capacity as Ambassador of the LivingHope Children Foundation (LHCF) to appeal for donations. I have his permission to publish his letter here so that more innocent children can receive help:QUOTE-(For donation: Please click banner below)Just a short description of LHCF and my relation with the organisation. I have been visiting the orphanages at Bejing and Shijiachuang from time to time since 2006. As an ambassador of LHCF, I feel an urge to tell you about what we do in the hope that you may make contribution as well. Our vision is to provide a home where they (the children) do not have a home and hope where they …

Dragon and Marriage

In an exhibition of embroidery I visited some weeks ago, apart from the tiger theme, there was a theme on dragon.  To the Chinese, the dragon not only symbolizes bravery, power and prestige but is also esteemed as an auspicious creature.  In the Ancient Book of Changes the dragon conjures up the highest aspiration and perfection, full of life and enthusiasm, soaring into the clouds, mysterious and lofty.
(A tradition new bed made ready for the newly-weds.  The character on the drape is "Double Happiness")
The last but most interesting theme was marriage.  In the Chinese tradition, the new bed is of great importance in a wedding.  On the auspicious day selected according to the lunar calendar, which is a couple of days preceding the wedding, the new bed is moved to the right position by a man of good luck.  The position must be calculated to match the Eight Diagrams figures for the bride's and groom's dates of birth.  The bed is forbidded to be placed vis-a-vis the sha…

GRDII, GX200, R8 and G600: Good Design Award 2008

To keep it on record, and just in case you haven't heard about it and wish to know the long and short of it, here you are:
The Good Design Award of Japan is one of the world's three prestigious industrial design awards, the other two being Germany's IF and Red Dot Award. GRDII won the highest Gold Award while GX200, R8 and G600 won the Good Design Award. There are a total of 29 photographic tools given the award for 2008, among which four are Ricoh's.
That was really an achievement. Well done, Ricoh's designers. Next time, when you carry around your Ricoh camera, there is another feature to boost about: the design. (Yes, unrelated to photography. This is something on top of photography)

In parallel, GX200 and R8 have won a GQ Select Design Award given to 10 digital items by a GQ Magazine in Taiwan.

GRDII: Gold Good Design Award
(Among the Best 15 selected from 3,023 entries)

Designer's Comment:
We want the GR series, which has earned a br…

Off Topic (OT): Science Journal Uses Brothel Ad for Cover

Pardon me for being off topic but this is definitely eye-opening: A respected German research institute wanted Chinese classical texts to adorn its journal, something beautiful and elegant, to illustrate a special report on China. Instead, it got a racy flyer extolling the lusty details of stripping housewives in a brothel. The characters go like this: We pay dearly to hire the ladies to serve daytime guests Two popular pimps (KK and Ga Mei) joins forces to offer you young ladies There are northern ladies with gorgeous movements Also are there young housewives with hot bodies All charming things are to serve you right away The news report from the Independent is here. (Read through to the last paragraph for a tip on tattooing next time in Hong Kong:) )

Just Released: GX200 Firmware v.1.20

This version of firmware modifies the following phenomenon: When you playback a 1:1 image in the playback mode, the small window may not move to the right edge in the position display window that is shown in the right corner in the LCD. Unfortunately, Ricoh has not rectified the problem with RAW images which show a dataless black stripe in certain post-processing programmes. The firmware can be downloaded here:

Let There Be Light

(Nature's Dialogue: This was shot in Nathan Road, the main thoroughfare in Kowloon, Hong Kong. I turned on the marco for this one. Some passers-by mocked me with their mystified looks about what photos could be made out of a modest roadside flower. This shot is only possible in autumn. During any other time of the year, the sun would have been too high or strong for this.)A friend of mine who runs a unique boutique hotel in Bali travelled to Hong Kong for several times. She was badly impressed by the sultry summer weather here. Poor thing, it couldn’t be more wrong: summer is absolutely not the season to visit Hong Kong, except maybe for business.(Sitting Out: The low rising autumn sun in the morning brings out interesting shapes and shadows. The man left immediately after this shot, probably having found my shooting annoying.) For the best season to visit Hong Kong, don’t look beyond late October to late January. The cool and breezy autumn weather starts around late October. This…

Sunset Lookout Location Map

Just in case you're wondering the exact location of Hong Kong's best sunset lookout point in town, the first location is the corridor between Harbour City and Salisbury Road and the second is the top of the Harbour City as shown on the above map of Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong.

When the Rule of Sun Coming to an End

Sunset is a very popular theme for photography. Where is the best place to shoot sunset in the place you live? If you live in Santorini of Greece (hope the rioting subsides soon), it should be Oia. I was given a memorable sunset trip there. The bus trip on a bumpy ridge access to the site was memorable in itself because a young European lady almost sat on my thigh throughout the trip on the crowded bus. When I reached the sunset site through an old-village-converted shopping alley, the hill was dotted with anxious watchers from the top to the base.If you come to Hong Kong, take a boat ride to the Lautau Island for the best sunset (and sunrise too) lookout on the second highest mountain, the Lautau Peak (934m). Visitors tight on time should head to the West Kowloon Cultural District site, or the more easily accessible Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront.(Sunset at the Gold Coast Beach, the New Territories, Hong Kong)Sunset RuleOkay, now we are at the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront. But where exactly?Wa…

Hong Kong Phallus

(Hong Kong Phallus: A statue of red, inflamed male genital erects in silence and solemnity, probably on the blink of ejaculation, on the harbour front echoing the tallest building, International Financial Centre [IFC] building on the Hong Kong Island. The IFC on the Hong Kong Island is like Yao Ming standing incompatibly among the beauty pageant contestants.)At the sight of the giant phallus, for a second of two, I stood speechless. Then I whispered, “What the (s)ell!” I had no idea until recently that there is now a better thing than the Victoria Harbour to flaunt about Hong Kong to visitors: the shock given by the Hong Kong Phallus (commonly known as penis) erecting solemnly on the waterfront promenadeThe hellish phallus is a challenge to my belief of decades: If there is one thing to flaunt to allure visitors to Hong Kong, it must be the beauty of the Victoria Harbour:(Harbour Glitters: A view to the Victoria Harbour at night from Tsim Sha Tsui East along the waterfront promenade w…

Selected Excellence: The Summer Ocean

Similar to the first set, this second set of works by Ye Li from Shanghai, China, also features photos taken with a Canon 5D along with a  DP1.  Just in case you're interested to know the comparative size of their sensors, read here.
(Courtesy and copyright of Ye Li.  Taken with Canon 5D and DP1)Again, can you tell for sure which was taken with which camera?The clue is in the unique strength of the different sensors.The anwser: Ye Li said that photos with a shallow DOF was taken with the 5D while those with an extensive DOF with DP1.  But he didn't specify which is which.  He just quite can't tell it without looking at the EXIF.  Yes, DP1 has a bigger sensor than your G10, LX3, GX200 or GRD1/2.  But, hopefull, having seen the works by Ye Li, Mark and Mitch, you are now quite convinced and tempted to use your serious compact for some works more serious than street shots.  Just do it!The link to Ye Li's wonderful works is here.Model: Sweet Sety