Thursday, February 26, 2009


I volunteered myself as an event photographer for Kompilasi: A survey of contemporary Indonesian Art three days ago.

I went there with my friend who's in charge of a popular Indonesian magazine in Melbourne.

Having been to several art exhibitions before in my limited lifespan, this one addressed some common social issues in Indonesia. For example, mass housing

You could see how interested Australians are regarding any form of art.

One of the artworks was kind of 'interactive' since it requires the audiences' participation. You basically take a flag from the serving tray..

stick it on the artpiece

and write your name next to it.

"free the artistic expressions of your citizens"

If you don't read, you don't forget. Intriguing

A pair of artists completed this mural in front of the gallery. The fellow with goggles is asking for 'Prayers of blessings"

Of course, there was a short speech by the art curators detailing what sort of activities would be held within the small art space.

This art space is kinda like a small NGV (national gallery of Victoria). Its small, cramped, and ugly, but it works and I like it.

Chinatown's dingy lanes have always been the same since I arrived here.

Last night, I dropped by the Suzuki Night Market. Sadly, its the last night market event for the year.

A group of Cuban musicians were performing

Camel rides are the way to go

Sometimes, I wished life was as simple as a shuffle of tarot cards...

or Photoshop

Judging from the cook, what's in the pot doesn't look that delicious nor nutritious

I think she's making some Okonomiyaki

There was a cuban dance class at 8, but I left early since it was getting cold & I didn't have any mood to continue any longer.

Perhaps i just need a break.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Osaka Twilight Festival

Dave and I attended the Osaka Twilight festival last Sunday held in the Treasury Gardens

The City of Melbourne's international relationships are integral to the perception of Melbourne as a contemporary center for business, education and cultural exchanges. Six sister city relationships were developed in the past 40 years; Osaka being the first in 1978. The other cities are Tianjin, Thessaloniki, Boston, St Petersburg, Milan.

Apparently there’s a local Japanese broadcast on SBS radio every Sundays and Mondays. These ladies were promoting their booth. I used the FL 50 on FP mode as fill in flash. It works great!

The lady on the left was afraid if I was going to post her picture on facebook.

Boy, was she right.

There were stalls selling lose Japanese items; from clothes to stationery, CDs, bookmarks, cards, etc. They weren’t cheap though.

There were three kendo performances, but I just attended one of them while the light was still good. I was impressed with the intensity of the students in keeping with the ‘spirit’ of the sport during their sparring sessions.

There was a yukata competition for the guys and ladies. You could see the kids smiling from ear to ear as they’re received their Anime DVD prizes. This summer garment is a common sight at fireworks displays, bon odoris and other summer events.

Of course, one should not forget the famous Bon Odori dance. The public responded enthusiastically and tried to keep up faithfully with the dancers.

Japanese Blues Cowboy George Kamikawa has been bringing his unique music to the streets of Melbourne for eight years. Apart from singing and strumming on his guitar, he also uses a kick drum and harmonica to accompany his performances and is unfailingly polite and grateful to his audiences.

Although the 35-100 is 100mm shorter than the 50-200 SWD, I admire this lens in terms of its:

  • sharpness – its sharper at f2 than the 50-200 wide open
  • usage of lower ISOs – at an equivalent focal length, I’d be using ISO 400 on the 35-100 compared to ISO 640 on the 50-200, for example.
  • This lens also offers better contrast and more vibrant colours than the 50-200, in my opinion. The difference is subtle, I believe.
Of course, I could ramble on about lenses for the rest of this post, but in the end..

Some of the Kimonos I observed were beautifully detailed,and had large, colourful ribbons to match.

Some were a little too young to participate, but they formed part of the audience, nonetheless.

It’s a wonder how some Australians are able to sing Japanese pop songs fluently. This singer is from a local band called ‘Aussie Super Dry’. I wouldn’t be surprised if their love for Sake has influenced the name of their group!

Two ladies from the drum troupe very kindly allowed me to photograph them.

The evening ended with a splendid Taiko Drumming performance. (Taiko – literally great drum)


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