Monday, December 26, 2011

Anseong Cultural Festival

     I was glad that the next festival on the list is held here in Anseong.  It's actually a pre-festival festival.  It might have been scheduled a little early in the middle of the week, and I still have to work during the opening, but I'm still glad it's just nearby.  The problem is I have the dates and time mixed up.  It's not a really big deal but I was really looking forward to attend the opening.

Festivals and Chaos

     Hyoseok festival experience gave me a lot of mixed feelings. Feeling disappointed on myself for not performing well, but feeling proud that I got good enough pictures.  Feeling good that I got to see some other places (thanks to this hobby), but also feeling bad that I don't get to experience the events much.  But the most dominant feeling is the craving for more of this.  More events to attend to.  More places to visit.  And most especially, more pictures to take.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

It's not all that bad.

       I figured out what was wrong with me.  It's my body that's been telling me to take a break.  I wasn't losing interest at all!  I was simply losing energy.  From my post "Cropping out the Fat," you can tell how much I go through to take pictures.  Lack of sleep, fatigue from work, fatigue from carrying such weight while walking for endless hours, stressing out on getting the right shot, blah blah blah.  Just that the consequences came crashing down on me.  So I guess all I needed was rest.

       So I had a lot of rest!  My god, the difference it makes when you're well conditioned for the task.  I have been to many other events and took a lot more pictures.  I was just guilty of complaining and that's why I haven't written anything for the past months.

       But I'm back!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Losing Interest

       I don't really know if this is going to be another of my common victims of "ningas-cogon".  It's a Filipino expression that means starting up something very enthusiastically then gives it up half-way quickly.

       I mean, I love my work.  I love photography.  But somehow my drive is lost.  I think it all started when I sold my laptop.  It's like I'm missing a part of my photography system.  Even though that laptop only lasted a short time with me.  But it feels like I can not function well without it.  And then comes the night scenes.  I've gone to places repeatedly and I think took many pictures of them repeatedly, that it's starting to get old.  I got an extension tube that got me introduced to macro-photography but in my heart, I really am not so interested with it.  Now, I just got a new Samyang 85mm 1.4 lens.  For some reason, I'm not so excited on using it.  Even when it just arrived.  There's nothing wrong with it.  I think it's me.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Hyoseok Cultural Festival

       So I finally got myself out of the house and went straight to another rural area called Jangpyeong.  It took me some hours in the bus and even missed my stop.  It wasn't so much a bad thing since I'm out to photograph, regardless of where I'd end up.  A couple of locals started staring at me which made me uncomfortable, so I was only able to take snap shots of a bridge and a river.  It's too bad that I didn't see much of this place.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Follow Through

       I'm lucky enough to have an eight-day holiday on-going this week.  I still have a couple of days left but boy did I waste a huge lot of them.

       Right after work, I could have gone to another city, two hours from my place.  An exhibition of traditional martial arts (Korean and other countries) was being held for some days and I'm about to witness the last day.  I gathered all the information I needed and I've been to that city more than twice.  So there shouldn't be a problem...  Actually, there is.  As usual, I got so tired from work, I fell asleep just as I got in my room (this happens all the time).

       With the approaching Chuseok (big holiday in this country), I was worried about having my bike checked-up and fixed.  All businesses will close within those 2 days and sometimes more.  That alone, set me back by cash and by time.  Something in the engine needed replacement (I'm still bummed with this new purchase) and it all costs $100.  Right now, I'm not really tight on cash, only a bit tight on budget.  You see I've been wanting to buy a new lens.  And my laptop money is just there waiting.  I got others saved for other stuff.  But the laptop money is also a lens money.  It's a choice between the two.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Extended Versions

       Did I mention I got a three-sectioned extension tube from that John guy who sold me his bag and tripod?  Yeah, I only heard about extension tubes and not really looked into it.  But it got me curious so I placed it on my camera.  During these times, I am getting more and more fond of the nifty-fifty lens (Canon 50mm 1.8 II) so it's what I attached to the tube.

       At first, I was wondering why everything was so darn blurry.  No matter where I point the camera, it's either totally black or just a cloud of blurry white.  At that time I was thinking "tele-converter" and not "extension tube".  So it's my fault for not reading.  It only came to me when I was about to set my camera down to check online, when I happen to glance at the viewfinder and saw a bit of detail.  That's when I realized that it takes to get close to see something.  OMG it's a MACRO!!! Yeah, that's what I exclaimed once I got the lens-tube combo to work.  It's awesome!  And I got really excited even by merely looking through the lens without thinking of taking shots...

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Maybe it's time to change my lover Part 2

       Ever since I bought Shiela, I didn't really considered her permanent.  Selling her after a year of use was the plan.  But George (my first motorcycle) kept acting up so many times, I got irritated and put him on a retirement home.  Only to be borrowed by some random people, occasionally.  I love him and that's why I can't find it in my heart to sell him, even for cheap or for parts.  But seriously, I just have to move on.  Shiela, however, stood by me even though I never did treat her as good as George.

George in his retirement home. 

Maybe it's time to change my lover Part 1

       I went out on my bike (Shiela) for breakfast this morning.  It's Saturday.  I still have work today.  But I planned to start the day feeling good.  So I went out with all my gear, hoping to take some morning pictures before breakfast.  Turns out, it's a non-cloudy morning.  That didn't bother me.  Shiela takes good care of me and my total weight (almost 100kg with full gear).  I enjoyed my breakfast.  On my way back, I tried to stop by a store to get some food for lunch.  The parking road was grimy, dusty, and not even cemented.  For some reason Shiela slipped.  I was thrown away from her for about 2 feet and skidded face down for about 3 feet.  Hands down and protecting my body (at least I have my helmet on), I only had scratches on my palms and knees.  My right limbs took the most damage but that was it.

Fresh meat? 

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Weeding out the Weak

A follow-up on the post, "Evolving"

       I was wondering how people store their multitude RAW files.  I personally haven't decided which photo-sharing sites best suit my needs for storage.  I'm currently a paying customer for flickr but I fear my photos won't be accessible once I get back to being a regular "free" user.  I once thought my photobucket would be a nice place to store all my images, thinking it'll be a nice basis to look back and see how my progress look like.  Even though I'm just a free user, photobucket doesn't seem to restrict how much I upload there.  The problem is it's means of saving space.  All my photos look decent enough but they're all resized so small, I might as well just make it a scrapbook.  I don't know if uploading photos on my facebook has limits.  What made me sway from making it a storage is how it reduces the quality of my images.  I don't really care if people see all my bad pictures there.  It's not meant to be a portfolio and I'm not promoting myself there as a photographer.  Just merely to update my friends what I've been doing.

       Having only a humble HDD on all my computers, I started to get worried when I saw my raw files fill up my hard drive space up to 40%.  That's huge!  CDs and DVDs can only handle so much Gigabytes and I can not rely on its longevity.  Online storage might be a good idea but I fear they'd shut down anytime without warning (I might look more into it, though.  Feel free to suggest any).  I could get myself an external hard drive dedicated for this.  But for now, I just finally decided to start weeding out what I think shouldn't be kept.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Travel with 10 legs

      People who know me nowadays know I'm a loner.  I've very seldom go out with a partner.  Let alone a group of people.  I'm still shy when it comes to photographing in the presence of another photographer.  Especially if said photographer is much more experienced.  Maybe it's more avoiding the lectures and sometimes condescending tips.  It's not that I don't want to learn.  But it's more wanting to move forward from the regular lectures of Aperture over Exposure over ISO, that they seem to keep telling in the very beginning.  So yeah, I expected that from one of the group at least... I was wrong.

       Saturday night, I was hoping to get some sleep that night but as always, I didn't.  Time passed by so fast, I didn't realize it's 6 am already.  A little bit of editing my pictures and such and I didn't realize it's 9 am already.  Damn!  I was supposed to buy a tripod bag at 10 am.  Finally got it though.  There's still some time for whatever before the group walk.  I was looking for a cheap motel but spending time looking for that motel, and ending up going to a farther but familiar one.  Good thing I didn't check in.  It was already 2:30 pm!  C'mon!  Can't a guy catch a little break here?

Friday, August 26, 2011

Goodbye, dear friend.

       I know I get sentimental on my stuff.  I have 2 old computers that I don't really use much.  I have an electronic keyboard that I played only three times.  I have a saxophone that I haven't even touched.  George (my first motorcycle) that someone wanted to buy but I just couldn't sell him like that.  A playstation 2 that's just standing beside my 2 computers.  A playstation 3 that's just layed flat beside the others, collecting dust.  I got cable tv and don't watch.  These are aside from my small gadgets.  I could've easily disposed of them all but I've had good memories with them that I hold dear.
       I expected to feel the same way with my new laptop but I really hated it when I had problems with it, along with the fact that the screen resolution isn't 1080p.  So I resented it but had no choice but to use it for the meanwhile.  I really can't go back to editing pictures with my tv.  Time passed and I fell fond of the laptop.  For whatever I was thinking that time, I posted an ad on craigslist selling it.  I can't even remember why.  I got responses but they're all offering a bit too low from my asking price.  I could lessen my asking price down to minus $50.  But not more than that.  Everyone's asking me to lower it down to minus $100.  Now, if this was done earlier, I might've taken the offers.  But it grew in me and, to be frank, I wished none would offer.  Now came a guy named Paul.  I didn't took him seriously but I had to be courteous enough to respond to his inquiry.  He didn't haggle.  Instead, asked the state of the laptop.  I should've known that's a good sign for sale.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Cropping out the fat?

       I'm a bit overweight but I'm okay with that.  I'm a care-free person who mostly just go with whatever I have.  So I don't really mind whether I go thin or not.  It's all up to whatever comes natural.

       On my past blog, I posted some current pictures of me to illustrate what the 50mm kit lens could offer, as John taught me one night.  I received some compliments with regards to the pictures:
"It looks good."
"Nice portrait."
"What is this?  A night selfy?"
"Your pictures look better on that site.  Keep it up."
All are good comments and I'm more than glad to receive it.  But what caught my attention was when I was asked if the picture I posted are current.  Of course it is!  I looked at the pictures to see what the deal is... and I agree.  There were some changes.  I looked like I lost weight.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


       I'm mostly self-taught so my progression is slow.  I'm okay with that.  My goal in photography is not so high.  All I want is to make pictures worth looking at, or to be more specific, at least be considered worth displaying in the living room.  I don't intend to go commercial or aim to sell my photos.  More like just want to show them off and people go "wow" in an instant.  That's my goal.  I have no reason to hurry up and gain money to get back what I've spent.  That's not how my mind works.  Of course photography burns a lot of holes in my pocket.  In fact, it burned my whole pants.  But as soon as I handed out the money, I've already accepted it as gone for some exchange.  Never thinking of getting it back, instead, thinking of how it'll satisfy me to the extent of forgetting the cash.  As for that cash, I could always just keep my day job and wait for next month's pay.  That's how I see it.

       At first, I was enthusiastic.  I get to finally try out those Aperture and Shutter thingy people are talking about.  I get to take pictures just as how I take them with my digicam, only manual.  Composition didn't bother me much.  Framing, rule of thirds, horizons, lines, whatever those things are, they're all out of consideration since I didn't know those

Monday, August 15, 2011

The one-on-one

       I ran out of space on my flickr page and not having a pro account is really bugging me.  I'm cheap and very rarely pay for these things but I'm starting to enjoy what flickr's giving.  So I considered being a paying customer.  The problem is the payment.  Should there have been other means than a credit card, I'd have sent the money already.  Or if they would accept local credit cards (like Samsung or something), I'd have asked my boss to pay for me.  I have one last person to ask but I really don't want to talk to her for now.  I have not asked my family any favors for a long time.  Sure, anyone of them in the U.S. could do me a favor.  But really, I don't want to talk to them... long story.

       I first asked some of my friends in other countries, hoping they'd help me out.  Unfortunately, they too don't have a credit card.  Last idea I have is to ask for a favor from any American in here.

       Saturday night, I met

Thursday, August 11, 2011

It's just my personality.

       Back home when I was a lot younger, I was usually described as cocky.  I don't know.  I get excited over something I achieved sometimes.  But who doesn't?  What made me feel like they're all ganging up on me is when I see other people do the same thing and the public isn't bothered.  So how come when I go sometimes half of their enthusiasm, people get really annoyed.  To the point they just want to bring me down however and whenever they can.

       I had a talk with a friend (Mars) whom I asked, "What do people really think of me despite everything I do to please them?"  Here's how he explained it:
You got many good qualities in you and one of those things, Jackson, is being smart.  You're smart and you still read.  And the best thing about that is that you share.  But the problem is how you share.  You share so much it's overwhelming, people think you're not helping anymore.  More like just showing off.

       Thanks to another friend of mine (Gilford), I became a video game enthusiast some time ago.  There was this kid a bit clueless with the main game Gilford and I were playing.  That kid and I became friends and in turn,

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Endangering Myself

I've been passing by a tunnel that I really like to photograph.  More like have an idea of photographing it.  I just don't have much drive to do it, and no idea how to do it properly.

The plan was to shoot the tunnel while in motion.  Sort of like in a movie or something.  Like a warp special effect.  Problem is, I don't have a gorilla pod.  Hell, I don't even have a decent tripod yet.  So I've been trying to figure out how to do it but really just taking it lightly.  It was a dangerous photoshoot after all.

But an assignment came up which lead me to finally

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Another lesson learned

       I have to note to myself to really check and know what to check next time I buy another electronic gadget.  Especially second hand.

       I suspect the laptop I just bought was a test product.  It did have the upgrades and software I needed but one of the most important part (screen resolution) was far worse than what I'd consider having.  I'm very upset to discover that it'll take me a panel replacement just to get it to function as the ones sold online.  I spent the amount of a brand new and a bit better specced for this.  And now I even have to spend more just because the other parts weren't functioning.  I really hate myself today.  And I think I'm going to try to sell this and get the one that I really wanted in the first place.  It'll be another expensive life lesson.  I've been suffering shortage of money because of this purchase.  Uff!  Uff!  Uff!

       I asked the first owner where the MSI A/S (After Service) center is and was directed to Yongsan.  I dread that place 'cause of past experiences.  Sure, it's one of the most popular places here in Korea, due to the plethora of electronic stores.  People claim it's the place to go if you want to buy stuff cheaply.  Nevertheless, I try to avoid that place.  And I guess I shouldn't have gone there again.

       MSI center was also on a three-day vacation just like me.  It's a Korean custom to have 3 days holiday during summer.  It's just a question of when.  But since it is also the last day of my vacation,

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Stupid ignorance.

So I got my laptop.  I researched and asked around as much as I could and ended up a choice between an MSI or a local brand.  I trust local brands when it comes to technology here in Korea.  There are lots of gadgets that are marketed specifically for the locals, and doesn't reach global.  So I guess it's the lack of awareness with this particular brand of laptop (Hansung or HA computers).  The price is attractively low (and my guess is because of lack of popularity and not the quality) compared to a pricier yet lower tech MSI. But I happen to bump to a second-hand sold for lower the price of the HA one.  Receipts when purchased were shown so I was pretty much convinced taking it.  Spec wise, everyone who didn't know the brand recommended HA.  But because a second-hand already has upgrades and other stuff I actually need


Inspration by phoenix_jackson2002
Inspration, a photo by phoenix_jackson2002 on Flickr.
You made me go through this tough day. I really hope we meet again.

It only takes one person

       I've heard about a cosplay held in SETEC, Gyodae, Gangnam.  I've heard about these events happen in other places but I never knew I could have the chance of seeing one.  So I got a bit more info about the place and time, prepared my gear and asked around how to do picture taking in such occasions.

       Now I have been a fan of some anime and comics when I was a kid.  I never had the resources nor the funds to delve much into it though.  So with regards to what's happening in these types of gathering, I really have no clue but some youtube videos of vloggers talking about these stuff.  I'm pretty excited, despite not knowing what's out there.

       Saturday, it just so happened that I'm to buy a laptop that afternoon.  So I really was on a tight budget.  Starting with the "buyer's remorse" I can't afford to spend much for anything.  So yeah, I get to brave the heat this day and just hope me going to the cosplay is worth it...