chinatown

Binondo at Night

Binondo or the Chinatown of Manila is very lively at night, especially the streets near the Binondo church. You will find calesas (horse carriage), decorated pedicabs and jeepneys, food vendors selling varieties of snacks on the streets and even a roadside karaoke station. I was shooting with my Leica M9 and Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f/1.2 ASPH V2 that night. A great lens for low light. That f/1.2 can suck in lots of lights.

According to Wikipedia, Binondo was established in 1594 during the Spanish era and it is now the oldest Chinatown in the world. The Spanish Dominican fathers made Binondo their parish and succeeded in converting many of the residents to Catholicism. The Binondo church, also known as Minor Basilica of St. Lorenzo Ruiz, was built in 1596. One of its altar boys, Lorenzo Ruiz, who died in 1637 was canonized in 1987 to become the first Filipino Saint.

You can see part of the church in the photo below.MORE +

Happy Father’s Day

A little boy needs daddy
For many, many things;
Like holding him high off the ground
Where the sunlight sings!

Like being the deep music
That tells him all is right
When he awakens frantic with
The terrors of the night.

Like being the great mountain
That rises in his heart
And shows him how he might get home
When all else falls apart.

Like giving him the love
That is his sea and air,
So diving deep or soaring high
He’ll always find him there.

(Author: Unknown)

To all fathers, Happy Father’s Day. May you all have a good time with your loved ones today. Let us all remember to always count our blessings, whatever they are. You have them!

The above picture of a pedicab driver holding his son was taken on the street of Binondo, Manila, at night, during my trip there recently.

Chinatown Panorama by iPhone 4s

I think I have fallen in love with Panorama Photography using my iPhone 4s. I shot this series in Chinatown this evening. I brought my mum who has been recovering well to see the vibrant Chinatown  before she leaves this coming Friday.

With lots of people moving, it becomes very tricky for the app to stitch. The same person may appear twice since he/she moves and may appear in the next image, hence confusing the app. But, that’s okay. It’s just a camera phone. I have the excuse.  :)MORE +

Waiting for the move

Everyone was waiting what move that guy with the hat was going to make. :)

I can’t get enough of shooting these in Chinatown as you probably can tell from my previous posts. I love shooting them playing these games. Their expression, and also those surrounding them, are priceless. They are competing, but they and the spectators are complementing each other to make a good photo for you. You just need to wait, wait some more and then click the shutter button.MORE +

One Good Day

I love the story of this image. Can you see the hands of those teenagers eager to get their ice cream? It was a good day for the ice cream man. You can’t see the complete crowd here, but there were about 80-100 teenagers standing around the ice cream man, eagerly waiting for their turn to get their ice cream. It was a hot afternoon in Singapore’s Chinatown. MORE +

100 Strangers Project – No. 15

His name is Robert V and he is my stranger no. 15. Robert came from Tasmania and spent his time traveling between there and Singapore. He is a member of the Singapore Urban Sketchers, a cool group who usually go on a monthly outing together to draw. When I met him, he was drawing a tea shop near the Kreta Ayer market in Chinatown. MORE +

Sleeping and Concentration

The guy in the middle fell asleep while the two men were concentrating on their game. Shot with Leica M9 and Zeiss Planar 50mm ZM f/2 lens.

Olympus Pen E-P3 Review – Part 4

This is the fourth installment of my Olympus PEN E-P3 review, the latest Micro Four Thirds camera from Olympus. If you miss the first three, check them out here, here and here. I shot the images here using the two kit lenses 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 and 40-150mm f/4-5.6. All photos here are the JPEG straight out of the camera with no post-processing. I just re-sized them for web viewing.MORE +

Which one is healthier?

Shooting in Chinatown is super fun. Lots of cool subjects to shoot. Just look around, see and be prepared to shoot. I was watching people playing the Chinese chess at Kreta Ayer market when I saw this. I first  saw the man with the pipe and then suddenly the second man came into the frame with his banana. He actually had a bag of them with him. The first thing that came to my mind when I was shooting the images was the title of the blog entry I would write for this. I would write “Which one is healthier?”.MORE +

Playing Chinese Chess – 2006

I am slowly re-posting my old photos from the old blog that I have unfortunately deleted after changing the design of my website few times. Here are photos from the posts I made back in 2006. They were taken in Chinatown, Singapore. The above photo was shown on the UK Black and White Magazine in August 2006.MORE +