Studio photography – meet Celine

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A week before Chinese New Year, I went for a studio shooting together with Nick, James and other photonians to the Hananica Studio. It’s a photography studio located in Taman Kota Laksamana and well equipped with lighting equipment. Celine was the model invited and showed her expertise in modelling. She posed well and gave us so much cooperation with her happy smile all the time.

We would have to thank Nick and James, who were teaching us to setup the background and the lighting for the shooting. They are more experience in studio shooting than anyone of us; however they were willing to share their knowledge with us and telling us the importance of communication between the photographer and the model.

Post-processing would be another hard part to work out since most photos were taken in RAW format. Below are some of my shots after processing:

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拜天宫 – 福建人的新年 (Bai Tian Gong celebration – the Hokkiens’ New Year)

By | Juesatta art, Photography | 3 Comments

“传说明朝时一年的农历新年,倭寇在福建沿海一带,杀人放火,抢夺财物,乡民扶老携幼逃命。 乡民在黑夜中逃到一处偏僻郊野时,眼见倭寇就要追上,大家感到万分惊恐,突然前面出现一大片蔗林,乡民便逃入蔗林躲避,避过倭寇,逃过鬼门关。这天正是大年初九,逃出生天的乡民都认为这是天公救命,于是每年的大年初九凌晨便祭拜天公,以谢救命之恩。而拜甘蔗也具有不忘蔗林藏身救命之恩。”

“另一传说是,古时有一名孟将军,他到某个地方,只要喝了当地的水,就会讲当地的话,他就以这门本事辨别汉人。 可是他到了福建,手下竟然拿了外省的水给他喝,结果他一直不懂讲福建话。他便以为福建人不是汉人,就下令大开杀戒,福建人枉死无数。到了大年初九那天,从外省运来的水喝光了,孟将军才喝到福建的水,会讲起福建话,这时他才知道杀错人,马上下令封刀。而福建人认为这是天公所赐,让他们逃过大劫,便在初九凌晨拜天公谢恩。”

前两天是农历正月初八,也福建人的新年。我、Wee-Peng和Jason到访了Jason的两个伯母的家和Murphy的家去见识福建人的拜天公。同时我们也见识到了峇峇福建人为拜天公准备功夫的细腻。

Two days ago (Sunday midnight) was the 8th day of the first month of lunar calendar. On the 9th day, it would be the celebration known to the Hokkiens as ‘Bai Tian Gong’, which literally means ‘praying the Heaven God’.

During a Chinese New year of the Ming Dynasty, there was a bandit raid in the province of Hokkien. These intruders however robbed and burned down villages, attacked and killed the villagers. The people of the villages were in fear and escaped from their burnt villages during the night.

Some of the villagers then hid themselves among the sugarcane fields. Needless to say, those villagers prayed to Heaven God (Tian Gong)  for salvation during their hideout. The pursuing intruders spent many days trying to locate and hunt them but to no avail. On the ninth day of that Chinese New Year, they finally gave up and returned to their region.

The Hokkiens then happily emerged from the sugar cane fields, and praising the blessings of the celestial deities and owing gratitude to the sugarcane plants for saving them from destruction. Thus, in all Hokkien celebrations, the sugarcane plant is given prominence.

Realizing that it was also the 9th Day of the Chinese New Year and coincidentally the birthday of Heaven God, they decided to make votive offerings and prayers to the Jade Emperor for their salvation. There are many version of the Hokkiens’ Bai Tian Gong stories. Whichever it is, the hokkiens believe that our life and prosperity are granted by the Heaven God.

On the eve of the 9th day, a pair of sugarcane plants are used by the Hokkiens usually placed one on each side of the offering table or  the front door of the house. The pair of the sugarcane symbolises unity, cooperation and strength. The sugarcane itself is a symbol of harmony and a token which can bring good and ‘sweet’ results. The very straightness of the sugarcane stem also ensures that the Hokkiens can become a clan of honest and sincere people.

Three family houses I visited together with Jason and Wee-Peng, two of my best friends on the eve of Bai Tian Gong festival. The first two houses we visited were the family of Jason’s aunties, and the last house we went was my best friend, Murphy’s house. Jason comes from a Baba-and-Nyonya family so the prayers of Tian Gong for them is a grant event of the year. The celebration they held for the past few years I visisted were so unique and special. Each of the table setup and the offerings, the preparation were carefully done and also involved a lot of manpower. 

Share the photos I have taken:

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海龟与龙

By | Drawing and artwork, Juesatta art, Wisdom | No Comments
Sea turtle and the dragon by CJ

Sea turtle and the dragon by CJ

一隻小海龟在海中游泳,在海面碰到一个从来没有见过的东西,感觉十分新奇,便向前问:「你是什麽东西啊?」

这个东西回答说:「我是龙!」说完便幽然地漂离开了。

经过了一百年,小海龟已成了大海龟,在海面上,他又碰到了这一百年前的老朋友,让他惊奇的是,自己从小海龟变成了大海龟,可是这龙的形体却一点也没有改变!

海龟自以为是世界最长寿的动物,此刻却碰到了更厉害的角色,很吃味的问道:

「你是什麽龙啊,为何都不会改变,也不会衰老呢?」

只听一个声音隐隐地自对方传出 ………..「喔!我是保丽龙!」

[source: http://farahlew.blogspot.com/2009/09/blog-post_10.html]

备注:保丽龙是由聚苯乙烯(Polystyrene , PS)发泡制成。聚苯乙烯是由石油提炼出来的一种塑料原料,由碳和氢组成,化学式是(C8H8)n,它可以制成蛋盒、养乐多瓶、录像带匣等塑料制品。

保丽龙也是一种致癌物质,它同时破坏保护地球的臭氧层。喝咖啡的保丽龙杯子、 自助餐盘子,几百年后还是垃圾,继续污染环境)。

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Amber Chia Strips Down to Her Stripes for Animals in Zoos

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Amber Chia's hot PETA Asia-Pacific ad

Amber Chia's hot PETA Asia-Pacific ad

Chinese-Malaysian cover model and actor Amber Chia (The 3rd Generation, Trio & a Bed) earned her stripes as a friend to animals who are imprisoned in zoos by starring in an eye-catching PETA anti-captivity ad in which the fresh-faced beauty—who has graced the pages of Harper’s Bazaar, FHM, Playboy, and NuYou—poses wearing only painted tiger stripes to bring in the Year of the Tiger. “Tigers, elephants, and chimpanzees aren’t meant to live fenced in any more than I am,” Chia explains. “The born free should stay free.”


Amber Chia for PETA Asia-Pacific

Animals in zoos are sentenced to a lifetime of boredom, loneliness, and abuse. Even the biggest zoos cannot provide the space, exercise, privacy, or mental stimulation that the animals they imprison need, much less fulfill animals’ other complex needs. As a result of their confinement, animals in zoos frequently exhibit neurotic behavior such as constant pacing, head-swaying, and circling. In response to their never-ending frustration, some even resort to self-mutilation and other abnormal and self-destructive behavior.

Make It a Good Year for Tigers! Help Animals in Zoos

Stay away from zoos and animal displays, and encourage other people to do the same. Take our pledge to boycott zoos, and promise never to support any business that profits from the confinement of animals.

[source: http://www.petaasiapacific.com/feature-AmberChia.asp]
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遭猎杀丧失棲息地‧马来亚虎处境危!

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3只可爱的马来亚小老虎,迫不及待的睁开眼睛看看这个花花世界。

3只可爱的马来亚小老虎,迫不及待的睁开眼睛看看这个花花世界。

全球华人正等待虎啸龙吟、威风鼎鼎的福虎到来人间,可是,大马的特產──马来亚虎却面临绝种的命运,因此野生动物保护专家正努力防止马来亚虎绝种。

近年来,大马的国宝马来亚虎的数量在急剧减少,主要原因是人类大量的砍伐森林,导致老虎棲息地丧失,加上捕杀等活动的影响,马来亚虎数量不断减少,已经成了濒危物种。

老虎交易活动层出不穷

据知在大马,老虎交易的活动仍然层出不穷,並私下售卖老虎的肉、犬齿,爪子或毛皮等。目前在马来半岛仅存500头马来亚虎。

老虎为猫科动物,也是亚洲最强大的食肉动物之一,老虎拥有猫科动物中最长的爪子,集速度力量於一身是最完美的捕食者。

森林之王老虎在自然界中没有天敌,相等於动物界里的“皇帝”。

森林之王老虎在自然界中没有天敌,相等於动物界里的“皇帝”。

[source: SinChew Daily http://mykampung.sinchew.com.my/node/93007]
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