Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Outdoor Photography Accessories

I got myself these accessories from the 'Army Market' at Beach Road, for outdoor photography trips. On the left include 2 large karabina hooks (non-rock climbing grade), 1 medium karabina with compass key ring attached, plastic buckle (male and female), plastic loop, weaved nylon strap. On the right, is a chemical defense gas mask pouch by D&G.

Chemical Defense Gas Mask Pouch
Left: Front left perspective; Right: Rear right perspective

Left: Rear velcro straps. There is one main top-to-down strap with an extension also velcro with a plastic hook. Across is one thick velcro strap with plastic clip for fastening to webbing or thigh; Right: Top opened

The size is nice for a water bottle.

The intended use was to attached to the side of my Crumpler 7 Million Dollar Home and for quick access/storage of lens or filters etc.

My original intention was to look for those generic sling pouches (aka Chalk Pouch) with cushion inside, to use for lenses or bottles, but most of them are intended for hooking using karabina to belt loop or for slipping across belt. Most of them are not able to be mounted top-down, which was what I required. Furthermore, they are mainly drawstrings and though quick access, but contents are not completely sealed and not to mention water-resistant. Then, I came across a Lens Pouch by Tatanka which are the right type of mounting using buttons instead of velcro. I passed on that since it is not versatile and expensive ($25-28), though water-resistant guaranteed. There are other pouches that seem like a fusion of the Tatanka lens pouch and chalk pouch, they are slightly cheaper (~$18) but a tad too small. Hence, I decided to settle for the D&G (not to be confused with the designer brand) CD Gas Mask Pouch which is reasonably-priced for the versatility and size, I just hope that it is water-resistant, but nonetheless, I will always have ziploc bags ready.

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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Other Side of Punggol: 25th March Shoot Part II: Seventeenth Avenue

Following the earlier post on the visit to Matilda House LINK, I decided to move on towards exploring Seventeenth Avenue and Punggol Marina Country Club area (location 29). Click on the map below, one which I took almost 2 hours creating so that I do not infringe copyrights, to have a clearer picture.

©mybearbrick 2007
Usage of this map is limited and please link back here.

By the time I was done at Matilda House, I already had my right shoe and socks wet from stepping into a puddle of water. Who would have expected a puddle of water on a hot sunny day!? I took a short toilet and water break at Punggol MRT station. The station is so dead empty that they decided not to turn on the airconditioning, but at least they had a functional toilet. I released some water and filled some up, disgustingly baked my wet socks under the hadn dryer. I need not worry about getting caught doing this digusting act as hardly anyone uses this toilet, as most commuters transit to the LRT lines without exiting the gantry.

I followed under the LRT line from Punggol MRT station towards PW2 Teck Lee LRT station. All the PW stations PW1 to PW7 are yet functional as of today. The only functional stations with LRT service are PE1 to PE5 as highlighted in the map as yellow circles instead of empty circles. PE5 is the nearest station to the drain (location 12). I walked on trimmed grass patches, pebbled grounds and crossed drains until I reach Seventeenth Avenue.

Tracks diverging towards Punggol East
An open field on my right while heading north
Abruptly ended track

An abandoned pair of Nike


At Seventeenth Avenue, I heard sounds of cars drifting. I thought that there were some people playing R/C cars, but it doesn't sound like it. Moving on along Seventeenth Avenue, I came to a junction where there is a big plot of lalang field. There was an SUV, a photographer and a wedding couple. There are definitely some great shots available here.

At the diversion, I headed north and came to a coastal region, which I named the 17th Ave Fishing Point, where there were lots of people doing casual fishing and even setting up a drive-in BBQ. When taking photographs here, I had to exercise caution not to get hooked by amateur or even veteran fishermen casting their lines.

In the horizon, there seemed to be bustling with some commercial nautical-related activities
can you spot the bait and line in this image?


I headed back to the main road along Seventeenth Avenue and followed the hanging light bulbs that lined the both sides of the road, leading to Punggol Marina Country Club. By now, the screeching sound of tyres got louder and I was certain that there is some extreme motoring action going on here. A tent was set up and alongside some fast-paced music, drifting enthusiasts burn their rubbers in a small track, which happened to be the open carpark outside the country club, lined using cones. The cars would engage drifing turns and dashing through water puddles. At the end of every few rounds, the cars would stop and get their tires and exhaust cooled with a water hose. The whole atmosphere was exciting but not extremely intense, while the air stinked of burnt rubber.

I would be glad to photoshop away car plates numbers, should there be any request.


I stopped at Punggol Marina Country Club to get a pao and Coke Light, to replenish my exhaust body. It was almost sunset at 6.30pm. I could see the sun setting behind the trees in the distant, however, the sight at the pier was not fantastic. So after my break, I headed outside the country club and along the break water, I took some sunset shots.

The sun sets out of sight behind the trees overlooking the pier at the country club
A tow-loading trailer anchored to the shore on my left

The sunset shots were not too fantastic for me at Punggol Marina and so I decided to walk back to the 17th Avenue fishing point. With my new Manfrotto tripod and IR remote setup, I took some sunset shots properly (finally!) and incidently, nexus who happened to be resting on the rails, became a rather interesting subject for the sunset shots.

While swatting away the endless swarms of mosquitoes, nexus managed to sit still for quite a while, unstaged, for me to snap a few shot
Un-staged, nexus became an interesting subject
Playing with the colours in Photoshop generated various effects. Decide your favourite!

More colour tweaking of the same picture. Decide your favourite!


And so the sunset shots marked the end of the 25th of March shoot. The sky on that day was fantastic and never better, thus allowing me to really enjoy my shots. Sadly, my shots still suffered from vigenetting due to the Tian-Ya Circular Polarizer. I cannot do with a CPL.
Hope you enjoyed the pictures!


Monday, March 26, 2007

Other Side of Punggol: 25th March Shoot Part I: Matilda House

After the earlier visits to Punggol East 1,2, I have decided to return on a clear and sunny Sunday afternoon to Punggol, but this time, the western part of Punggol. I was honoured to have nexus accompany me on this shoot. This whole day till evening shoot is split into a 2-part series, where I first visited Matilda House and then a short walk under the Punggol LRT line towards 17th Avenue and then Punggol Marina. Matilda House is located beside Punggol NEL MRT station or Punggol Bus Interchange, across Punggol Walk.

Matilda House is an old abandoned bungalow (marked as Locations 23-26 by Eikin) which is protected as State Property. This house stands on stilts with a huge courtyard, typical of one built during the early days. A google search revealed that this bungalow was built by a Cashin family during 1902 and has been declared a conserved estate in 2000 URA. Another interesting find is Singapore Paranomal Investigators SPI actually found Mr Howard Cashin and gave an in-depth history to the once a lively getaway bungalow and now, a conserved landmark of Punggol.

Here are the pictures to the Matilda House.
Click on thumbnails to enlarge or Click here to view MORE PICTURES in the complete gallery.

Punggol Walk

Coming Up....
a sneak peek at the next update, 25th March Shoot Part II.
along the Punggol LRT lines
17th Avenue