I'm a Singapore event photographer; specializing in corporate events, weddings and birthday parties.


Singapore Karting Championships 2012

Photo was taken during the afternoon practice session. The actual race is at night. It's held at the Formula One pit-stop building next to the Singapore Flyer, but the track is a lot smaller than the F1 street track. 


  • Nikon D7000, 55-300mm f4.5-5.6
  • At 300mm, f11, ISO 800, 1/2000 seconds
  • Aperture priority, center-weighted metering, auto white balance
  • Picasa: Crop, straighten, auto contrast
There's a lot of distracting clutter on the race track. You want to isolate the drivers by zooming in and cutting out the background. It's a bonus if you can add some interesting geometric patterns as well.

Stopped down lens aperture to get more depth of field, a common problem when using telephoto lenses. Telephoto perspective compressed the apparent distance so it looks like he his tightly squeezed in between the plastic barriers. 

With the 1.5x crop of the D7000, effective focal length of the 300mm lens is 450mm. And that still wasn't enough for me to "zoom in" as much as I wanted. Cropping the photo on the PC, pushes the effective focal length to about 1000mm, leaving only a quarter of the megapixels in the image. It's times like this that you really make use of the megapixels in today's cameras. 


First Red Bull Flugtag 2012 Singapore

This is the first Red Bull Flugtag ("flying day") in Singapore. Participants make crazy contraptions and attempt to glide them off a ramp into the sea.

This entry is from Singapore Polytechnic. Wings look weak to me. If you've seen video footage of the flights, you'll notice that most of the time the wings break off in flight. 

The glider is being pushed up the ramp to the launch point. Somehow, the scene reminds me of the Pacific Island Cargo Cults after World War II. 

This is right at the end of Siloso Beach, near the Rasa Sentosa hotel.
  • Nikon D7000, 55-300mm f4.5-5.6
  • At 116mm, f11, ISO 100, 1/1000 seconds
  • Aperture priority, center-weighted metering, auto white balance
  • Picasa: Crop, auto contrast, fill light
With a telephoto lens, default aperture is f8 or f11 for usable depth of field. Which means that you don't need a big, heavy and expensive f2.8 telephoto lens for outdoor use (that's an indoor lens). Today's "consumer" lenses are excellent performers, giving you quality optics at a low price. Don't you just love capitalism?

Telephoto applications is one area where the cropped sensor DSLRs have an advantage. On the D7000, a 300mm lens is equivalent to 450mm on a full frame camera.
Access is everything in photography. Without an access pass, I wandered around outside the barricaded security area and managed to find this unblocked view of the ramp. Couldn't get a good view of the launch point to photograph the actual flight. Much of the crowd was watching on large video screens instead. 


Old Chang Kee, Sentosa

Aside from its food, Old Chang Kee ( http://www.oldchangkee.com/ ) is known for being one of the early Singaporean companies that expanded regionally. It's famous for its curry puff but I prefer the chicken-mushroom puff. It also sells various deep-fried snacks on-a-stick.

This particular franchise is in Sentosa, near the Beachfront LRT and bus stations. It's a standalone shop, making me think of Edward Hopper's Nighthawks.  

The pink floral basket on the left is from a well-wisher as this franchise had just opened. 
  • Nikon D7000, 40mm f2.8
  • At 40mm, f4, ISO 400, 1/60 seconds
  • Manual exposure, center-weighted metering, auto white balance
  • Picasa: Crop, auto contrast, auto color, straighten, fill light
With the glowing signboards, this scene is trouble. Best to go to manual exposure immediately. Judge the exposure from the LCD playback and adjust accordingly. 

I don't use the 40mm f2.8 much. It's a macro lens and I bought it to take close-up photos of wedding rings. I was on my way back from a Registry of Marriage ceremony, which is why I used the lens to take this photo.


Sentosa Beach Tram

I'll photograph anything that has bright colors.

Free bus service along the beach road. The bus travels slowly, so the open sides are not a problem. All bus services on Sentosa are free, since you pay an entrance fee to get on to the island ( http://www.sentosa.com.sg/en/getting-to-around-sentosa/getting-around-sentosa/ ).

Traditional-looking buildings on the right (with fake atap roof) are actually part of a hotel.
  • Nikon D7000, 18-105mm f3.5-5.6
  • At 66mm, f5.3, ISO 6400, 1/90 seconds
  • Aperture priority, center-weighted metering, auto white balance
  • Picasa: Crop, auto contrast, fill light. 
It was 7pm, already getting quite dark. Difficult to tell from the photo because the camera will expose the photo until it looks like daylight (there was still some light from the cloudy sky to evenly light up the scene, unlike a real night scene).

One indication that it is evening, is that you can see that the passengers in the front are being illuminated by the interior lights (compare with the passengers in the rear), which is why they are slightly yellow and not in shadow. In full daylight, the interior lights would be overpowered by the sunlight and would not be noticeable.

I was testing out ISO 6400 on the D7000. Turned out better than I had expected, but I later bought the full frame D600 anyway for even better high ISO performance. I'm keepng the D7000 as a travel and backup camera.


River Cruise Boats Under Ord Bridge

Ord Bridge is at one end of Clarke Quay. It's an old bridge, built in 1886. Solid industrial design.

This was near noon on a Saturday afternoon. Peak river cruise time is in the evening, so these boats were taking a break. It looks like a lot of boats, but if you count them, there are only four. They do make a pretty pattern. 
  • Nikon D7000, 18-105mm f3.5-5.6
  • At 105mm, f11, ISO 100, 1/180 seconds
  • Aperture priority, center-weighted metering, auto white balance
  • Picasa: Straighten, crop, auto contrast, fill light
Set f11 to get sufficient depth of field to get all the boats in focus. Lots of light. Not often that I get to use ISO 100.


Segways at Pahlawan Beach, Sentosa

Segway rentals from Gogreen ( http://www.segway-sentosa.com/ ) at Pahlawan ("warrior") beach on Sentosa Island.

I thought that the riders made an interesting pattern. 
  • Nikon D600, 28-300mm f3.5-5.6
  • At 190mm, f5.6, ISO 6400, 1/1000 seconds
  • Aperture priority, center-weighted metering, auto white balance, -0.5 exposure compensation
  • Picasa: Crop, auto contrast

Got my new D600 this week. Testing out the ISO 6400 performance. Quite happy so far. The 23-300mm is remarkably sharp considering its high zoom ratio. Sharper than the equivalent (but older) 18-200mm DX lens.

With the high ISO performance of the D600, together with the zoom range of the 28-300mm, you can set the D600 at IS0 6400 and cover almost any indoor or night situation, and still get high quality images. 

I'm experimenting with setting a permanent -0.5 exposure compensation. I'm not sure that the D600 over-exposure problem is as bad as the D7000's, but setting some negative exposure compensation seems like the safe thing to do, no matter what. It's easier to correct under exposure later on the PC, than over exposure.


Food Alley at Smith Street, Chinatown

Smith Street is closed to vehicles in the evening. Chairs and tables are brought out to seat the customers of the food stalls (on the right). There are regular restaurants in the shophouses on the left. You can see the Shenton Way skyscrapers in the background. 

It's not crowded now (7pm) but the tables fill up fast after 7:30pm. Not just with tourists, lots of locals eat here. The street is about double the length shown here, the photo was taken about half-way down the street.
  • Nikon D7000, 18-105mm f3.5-5.6
  • At 45mm, f8, ISO 400, 1/15 seconds
  • Manual exposure, center-weighted metering, auto white balance
  • Picasa: Crop, auto contrast
Stopped down the aperture to get enough depth of field for this perspective shot. Timing is critical, not just to get the right light, but also the right crowd configuration. I bought a cup of coffee and took a seat at a table, snapping a photo every few minutes.