Not too long ago, I bought my first film camera (Pentax IQZoom 90MC) online from artofcam on Carousell (the only reason why I’m giving him a shoutout is because I could tell he was very passionate about film and actually spent an hour giving me a tutorial about film 101).
Some of these shots are out of focus, others taken with the wrong settings, but I guess it’s all part of the learning experience!! Film is something I’ve wanted to try out for a long time now and I’m so glad I finally stopped making excuses and went for it. There’s a certain beauty about the wait—nowadays, pictures can be reviewed instantly upon taking them but film incites a sort of anticipation that compels you to appreciate and be excited about the little things, even just a configuration of pixels on a screen.
Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk.
Key events: Commendation Day, last day of school, Euphoria
Camera: Pentax IQZoom 90MC
Film: Kodak Colorplus 200
Continue reading “first film roll” →
EUPHORIA! — the event of the year for most of the students in my JC to celebrate the end of the school year! I’m glad that I got to be part of the backbone for this event in council. The most surreal part about the whole day was watching my own little doodle making its worldly manifestation on everyone’s shirts–people I love, some not so much; people I’ve known for years, others only for a few days. The paths I’ve crossed this year are really not to be understated. Every friendship and encounter, whether pleasant or fleeting, matters.
Continue reading “EUPHORIA” →
whenever i see you tear along
the same circuit, only to return
in a joyless amble
to where you always begin,
i remember that remembering is a
i. sunlight seeping in borrows a rosy hue from tinted window glass, dancing off your tousled hair.
ii. the stereo murmurs a dull synth-pop tune to colour the silence, inside the lines.
iii. buildings we pass melt into a nondescript blur, like abstractions of ink on a drenched book.
iv. the weight of my baggage surrenders to the one tugging at my chest. i know i am not half-dreaming.
v. there’s only so much i can read from the back of your neck, like newspapers shrouded by the dark of morning.
iv. you mean so many things to me, things no tongue could explain. not even to myself.
iii. this silence amidst noise is killing me. i would rather burst into a rhapsodic wail, out of tune.
ii. this moment will not yield to captivity. like a firefly in a jar, the only glow i see is put out by the last breath of a dying dream.
i. heart and soul, mind and soul, maybe it’s time to let this firefly go?
I loaned a camera for a week and I made some pretty good memories 🙂
disclaimer: I didn’t take these shots on an actual film camera! I used a normal DSLR camera and tweaked each photo with VSCO to achieve faded, grainy and vintage effects. I think there is a certain aged beauty to film photography, even if I didn’t exist in the time when they were the most popular mode of photography.
here are some of my own personal tips about how I achieved these effects on these pictures below:
- VSCO filters: AU5, AV8, F1, Q5, A6, P5, FN16, FS4, K2, Q8 (of course, there are more! the final effect you achieve depends on how you choose to play around with the settings)
- apply vignette (around 50-70%)
- the grain effect may help to achieve a dusty/mid-quality effect to the pictures but don’t overdo it. I suggest using RNI film for overlays.
- try removing shadows
- try the fade option
- I personally used the tint effect (either end of the spectrum may work) but this is really contingent on how the original photo looks like and the effect you want to achieve. in reality, different brands of film will produce different tones so you can emulate them accordingly. for example, fuji films tend to have a greenish tint)
- lower the contrast
- in some cases, I increased the brightness for a slightly overexposed effect
discord sown in the fields of my own mind
grow to be weeds, strangling the little seedlings
that cry for renewal, for a fresh breath,
gulping down the last yolk of sunshine for supper.
they tell me that it’s all in my own head:
a mass of tissue and neurons entangled with
the steady beat of my soul, stretching and contracting
like train couplers reconciling cabins that will never touch
all the time, I think about your typicality,
yet having to think implies mystery.
how is it that you never look at yourself in mirrors,
given how you’re so god damn beautiful?
why have I never tasted pretence in your voice,
but have only heard the purest thoughts, organic and
some questions will always be questions.
thus I, deciding whether these are tears or raindrops,
stagger back into eden, crawling
back into the soil of late winter,
retracting my roots in the wait for rebirth next spring.
Last November, I travelled solo to Shanghai to meet my dad there. He wanted to expose me to the F&B franchises in China at an exhibition as well as to show me around Nanjing, where he spent a lot of time working in the past. It was a really great experience to once again revel in the upbeat city of Shanghai and to take a walk back in time on the historic grounds of Nanjing.
Continue reading “shanghai & nanjing, china” →