Nikon Df on the Streets of Singapore

Last shooting session with the Nikon Df. Thank you guys, it’s been fun.

And what a day to shoot because it was pouring like cats and dogs. While waiting for the rain to stop, I took some shots using the AF-S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.4G lens. The Df is a head turner. Some passers-by slowed down and tried to look at the camera around my neck. It has a good vintage look.

The lighting was bad due to heavy rain, and people either walked fast or ran to cross the road. I dialled the ISO to mostly 1600, so I could get a fast enough shutter speed to freeze the movement of the people.

Hendra Lauw - Street Photography

Nikon Df has a weather sealed magnesium alloy body. I wanted to test it by exposing it a bit to the rain, but maybe next time. It’s not my camera yet. Again, Santa, are you listening? Christmas is only two weeks away.

Sometimes photography is a waiting game. You wait for the light, for the moment, for the right timing when all elements come together in a picture. I stood under the shelter and my eyes wandered looking for subjects to photograph. It was a busy intersection, but patience can be worth it.

Street Photography by Hendra Lauw

 

Hendra Lauw Photography

I dialled the shooting mode to Manual and set the ISO, shutter speed and aperture. With people moving and some backlighting, it’s easy to get different and wrong exposures when shooting in auto or aperture/shutter priority mode. By shooting in manual mode, I free myself from worrying about the exposure and just focus on my composition.

Hendra Lauw - Life through the Lens Photography

Hendra Lauw - Life through the Lens Photography

Hendra Lauw Photography

Hendra Lauw Photography

Hendra Lauw Photography

It has been fun shooting with the Nikon Df. Time to return the camera. I will miss the dials on top of the camera, but I hope all cameras in the future will have those dials for the frequently used functions. I just love vintage looking cameras. Thank you again to Nikon Singapore for having me to shoot with the Df.

Nikon Df on a family trip to Indonesia

I brought the Nikon Df and two large aperture lenses with me on my family trip to Indonesia. All fit nicely in a small messenger bag. The one thing that I immediately noticed upon receiving the Df, aside from its vintage design and look, was its weight. It’s very light for a DSLR camera.

We were on a mission trip to surprise our family. My daughter wanted to especially surprise her grandma and cousin. The two cousins were born about six months apart and almost have the same size of sandals now.

Hendra Lauw Photography

I could have shot in Aperture Priority, but again, I chose all Manual so I could play with all the buttons and dials. I am a sucker for them. :)

The Auto White Balance in the outdoor setting gave me a more accurate skin tone, compared to my old Nikon DSLR. Hence, it required little adjustment in Adobe Lightroom.

I did not want the background to be distracting, so all these were shot at f/1.4, the largest aperture of the AF-S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.4G lens. A very sharp lens.

Hendra Lauw - Life through the Lens

I love photographing people, especially documenting the life of my own family. When my daughter was born, I took her photos daily for the first year. The passion for family photography continues until now. There are a lot of small cameras on the market nowadays. It’s a consumer market now. Many have dumped their big DSLR cameras in favor of smaller mirror less cameras. But I can actually imagine having Nikon Df and 50mm f/1.8 lens as a daily camera, since it’s not that big and it’s also light. Christmas is coming. Are you listening, Santa?

When I shoot family portraits, I like to let the family members be in their most natural pose. I will let them talk and forget that I am there. I love photographing smiles, laughter and family interactions. Something to cherish many years from now for these two 9 year old cousins.

Hendra Lauw Photography

Hendra Lauw Photography

Hendra Lauw Photography

Life is too short, take more photos.

A Walk in the Park with Nikon Df

I am crazy about buttons and dials on a camera. I just love the look of it with those buttons and dials sitting nicely on top of the camera. I am also crazy about anything that has a vintage look. I bought two old typewriters from eBay recently, for example. I have also collected some old cameras over the years. I foresee this hobby will continue for some time. 

So, when I was offered an opportunity by Nikon to shoot with their new Nikon Df, I was excited. I couldn’t wait to play and shoot with it. They gave me the black version, even though I was hoping it would be a silver one as I love the look of the silver one more.

The first camera I bought for myself was a Nikon compact film camera. It was the LiteTouch Zoom70W AF QuartzDate. I bought it when I wanted to document my first vacation with a girl, who is now my wife and the mother of our 9 year old daughter. So, I always have this sentimental feeling about Nikon.

Even though I did not start with those Nikon FM and FE cameras, the buttons, the dials and the vintage look of the Df help to bring back this feeling of nostalgia.

I brought my daughter to the park, about two hours before we had to leave for the airport. It was a mad rush but I enjoyed every second of the shooting experience with my daughter and the Df. The Df is a powerful digital SLR camera, and comes with nice addition of dials for frequently used settings like ISO, shutter speed, exposure compensation, aperture and shooting modes.

Hendra Lauw Photography

I mainly shot in Manual mode because I love playing with the dials to set the ISO, aperture and shutter speed myself. This helped to get a constant and correct exposure for all the frames. 

I shot mostly at the largest aperture of both the 50mm f/1.8 and 85mm f/1.4. I wanted the background to be out of focus so that the main subject stands out from the surrounding distractions. My daughter was tired after jumping for few times and she rested but I just kept shooting. :)

Hendra Lauw Photography

Hendra Lauw Photography

Life through the Lens by Hendra Lauw

Having a nice cold ice cream wrapped up our short shooting session in the park.

Thinking of the next move

iPhone 4s.
Original version shot with the Hipstamatic app.
Cropped to a rectangular format instead of square.
Chinatown, Singapore.

iPhone Photography - Thinking of the next move

Best iPhone Photography – April 2014

Howdy all, here are my top 12 of iPhone photos that I have shot in the last six months. I am still using iPhone 4s till now. I tried my wife’s iPhone 5s and I love the speed of processing, but I’ll wait first till June. Let’s see what Apple will reveal (if they do).

iPhone Photography by Hendra Lauw - 12MORE +

Happy New Year 2014

A little boy fishing at Pandawa Beach Bali - Sony A7 and Leica Elmarit 90mm f/2.8

Using just the fishing line rolled on a piece of bamboo on his left hand, this little boy was trying to catch some fish at Pandawa beach, Bali. Throwing and pulling many times. He just kept trying. HAPPY NEW YEAR 2014 everyone! Keep going! Don’t give up on your dream!

Image was shot with Sony A7 and Leica Elmarit 90mm f/2.8.

Legong Kuntul Dance

Legong Kuntul dance in Ubud Bali Indonesia

I shot these images of Legong Kuntul dancers in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia using a slow shutter speed. It was either 1/3 sec or 1/4 sec. I have other images of the dancers where they appear sharp (shot with high shutter speed), but I prefer the ones that they don’t. It’s quite a fast moving dance hence I prefer to see the ones that show movement of the dancers.

So, when you are shooting a dance performance next time, try something different by using a slow shutter speed to capture the movement. You can have the subjects appear sharp while still showing the movement if you have a flash that is set to a rear-curtain sync mode. Try that too if you like using flash, but be mindful that the flashes of lights could be a distraction to the dancers especially if you are close to the subjects. I did not use flash to shoot these images.

All shot with Sony A7 and Zeiss ZM Planar 50mm f/2. Enjoy the images.MORE +

The Key Master In Joo Chiat – Singapore’s Vanishing Trade

The Key Master in Joo Chiat - Singapore's Diminishing Trade

He looked very focused when I saw him sorting out the keys on the floor. He didn’t seem to have problem looking at them from a normal reading distance. At his age of 78 (I believe that’s what he told me his age), he certainly still have pretty good eyesight.

Mr. Choo Kok Foo is a key master who has been servicing his customers for 40 years. He starts working at 10am and finishes at 5pm. I met him recently in Joo Chiat. Not sure if that’s the same place he has been at for these past 40 years, but you can find him at 92 Joo Chiat Road now. He allowed me to take some photos and I started talking to him in my broken Hokkien. He gladly answered my questions. There were some that I didn’t understand though. He also proudly showed me a newspaper article that featured him some time ago.

I will be going back there to give him his printed photos.

More photos below.MORE +

Bussorah Street Shophouses

Bussorah Street Shophouses

This was shot with an app called AutoStitch, a panorama stitching app, on iPhone 4s. You take multiple shots of a wide scene and it will stitch them automatically. It works best when you are far away from the subject. The one above was shot from a close distance of about 4 to 5 meters, hence the distortion when the app tried to stitch the multiple images. MORE +

Kampong Glam Panorama at Night

Night scene panorama in Kampong Glam.

iPhone 4s does Kampong Glam in a panoramic format. Shot with an app called AutoStitch. The app allows you to take multiple images and then stitch them for you. A cool app if you like shooting panorama.

A Pear

iPhone Photography by Hendra Lauw - a Pear

An attempt to produce something artistic with a pear and an iPhone 4s. Shot with a camera app 645Pro and converted to black and white using FilterStorm app (both the Black and White conversion and Curve). MORE +

Facebooking on Sunday morning

20131013-161457.jpg

Some say Facebook is a great way to keep in touch with friends. But for these men, gathering on a Sunday morning is a great way to keep in touch.

Shot on iPhone 4s. Processed with vsco.

iPhone Photography – Best of September 2013

iPhone Photography - Best of September 2013

Browsing the archive of my September iphone photos, I realized that I did not shoot as much as I did in the previous months. However, I have more photos of my daughter in September, mostly taken at Changi Beach Park over three weekends. So, that’s good. I taught her biking on a two-wheel bike and we have been going to the same park every weekend since. She is a proud biker now. I also took many photos of water droplets on fallen leaves. It’s the September rain. I chose one of them for my Best of September.

The other one below is my other favorite for September. It’s the photo of my daughter watching plane landing from Changi Beach Park. MORE +

100 Strangers Project – No. 27

100 Strangers Project by Hendra Lauw - No. 27

His name is Md. Basheer and he is my stranger no. 27. Mr. Basheer is a retired photographer who shot interior design and food during his 40 year career shooting for magazines in Singapore. He is now driving a taxi but still teach photography sometimes. Mr. Basheer has six children and seven grandchildren. He was going to meet some of them for dinner at his son’s place after he sent me.

I took the photo using my iPhone inside the taxi. The only light source was the overhead lamp. My apology for the digital noise on your otherwise white shirt, Mr. Basheer.