Monthly Archives: May 2013

Just a salute to the men in blue – Singapore Navy Open House 2013

Visited the Naval Base yesterday for the 2013 Singapore Navy Open House. Every year, the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) will host a public event to keep us civilians abreast of the developments in their mission and to allow us to sleep peacefully during the night knowing that our forces are on 24/7 protecting the nation. While we may not be the strongest eagle in the sky, or the biggest elephant on the land , or the largest whale beneath the ocean, we sure pack one of the meanest hornet sting that promise to make anyone regret they ever threaten our sovereignty. That being said, we are a peaceful group of people because we love photography 🙂

The X20 is a wonderful companion to bring along to the event as it is light-weight and has a zoom of 28-112mm. Hence I could just swing the camera up and start shooting without much consideration for weight or lens changing. I shot the day using two modes – B&W and the Negative-Hi. Loved the latter as it gave a stern blue tone to the images, befitting the well-trained naval forces.

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The even started with a showcase of the naval might. This involved a real-time demonstration of the naval capabilities in their reaction to terrorist attacks at sea. The X20’s fast auto-focus came well in play here.

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There were quite a number of equipment displays available for visitors to try on or explore. Frigates were aplenty too and these were awe-inspiring given its futuristic looking stealth exteriors.

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I could not resist doing colors as the stern colors of the frigates went perfectly with the sky and the emerald sea.

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I loved the submarine best. The X20 rendered the image very well despite the dark colors of the sub.

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Besides the equipment, there were tons of people around. Had to take some shots of the men in blue as a simple tribute to them and their hard work.

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Even the K9 unit came and the kids just loved them.

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One of the sights that melted my heart was the presence of the underprivileged and handicap group. They were invited by the naval forces to join in the show and have a good time. Kudos!

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Kids from other schools were invited as well.

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If you are in Singapore, do drop by the naval open house over the weekend!  I will just leave you with more photos of the equipment, and a preview of what you can expect at the event 🙂 Enjoy!

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Just like a mist

I was driving past Mandai Road, near to the Upper Seletar Reservoir area when I spotted some nice thin mist covering over it. Mist also adds a serene feel to your images and are perfect for re-working into ink painting-like photos. It would even be better if I could use an ND grad filter to smoothen the water surface. But I have learnt to do without it with my X20, and settle for more dramatic compositing instead.

For three of these shots, I kept to my earlier promise to do B&W, and I was glad I did 🙂

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Just another beautiful sunset

This has been a lovely week as it was one of the rare times that I managed to get my wife to approve a few hours for me to take my trusty X20 out for a walk 🙂

I decided to go to the nearby Upper Seletar Reservoir to take some shoots of the sunset. I must say that though I have been there a couple times, it was mostly in realms of the dark nights and mostly long exposures shots. It was kinda embarrassing to say that taking sunset at Upper Seletar Reservoir was a first for me, even though I lived there for more than 4 years.

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Anyway as shown in my previous posts, the X20 was quite capable of taking sunset, in full glorious colors. The sunset at Upper Seletar Reservoir was slightly different as the direction and view was largely blocked by rail tracks and trees. But then, its a reservoir and the water masses made up for it with the beautiful reflections.

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As nightfall, it became a stretch for the X20 again as it struggles to take long exposure. For example in the below image, it has obvious slight grains, but acceptable. (by the way, the streak of light is the train passing by). One thing that got me a bit impatient though was the long processing time when taking long exposures. I managed to play a few rounds of Candy Crush and Injustice while waiting. Perhaps Fujifilm can do something about it as a firmware upgrade.

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Next time, I will take some sunset in B&W – which is where the X20’s true strength lies. Would love to see the results 🙂

Just plain beautiful sunset

I didn’t have the discipline nor opportunity to take sunsets for a long time. Was delighted to get wife’s nod to go out for a short 45 mins in the evening to “walk” my X20. Decided to go to Pierce Reservoir which is nearby and has one of the few nicer view of sunset in the northern region.

The X20 is a marvelous camera that consistently deliver beyond expectations and beyond its pitiful sensor 2/3 size. But taking sunset in all its glory proves to be a challenge for it. With a f/11 limit, no bulb control, and no ND filter, there’s just that much the X20 can do. That being said, the X20’s color controls are fantastic and the images that came out of the camera rivals some of its higher-end and bigger sensor counterparts in the market.

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Did a panaroma using the X20 built-in function. It gives you a choice of 120 degrees, 180 degrees or 360 degrees. I stood by the 120 degrees as it is sufficient to show the horizon beautifully.

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