Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Shenzhen Song & Dance Ensemble in Wellington

According to China Culture Org - "The Shenzhen Song and Dance Ensemble was established in October 1987 under the Culture Bureau of Shenzhen. With 110 total staff members, the ensemble is composed of the Dance Troupe, Song Troupe, and Stage Engineering department."

The group from the Shenzhen Song and Dance Ensemble that perform at the last night of CNY in Wellington, New Zealand.

"As a cultural emissary of Shenzhen, the ensemble has paid touring performances to Germany, Britain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Greece, Luxemburg, Austria and Australia, receiving a warm welcome and applause from international friends and overseas Chinese."

Monday, February 25, 2013

Wellington Gangnam Last Day of CNY :)

Every year the Chinese communities of Wellington put on a show for Chinese New Year.

The ‘flagship’ of Wellington’s Chinese New Year Festival is Festival Day, with a programme that reflects all the traditional aspects of a Chinese New Year celebration, and is showcased as the finale of this Wellington event.

Last year we were not in Wellington because we went to Auckland to see their marvelous CNY Lantern Festival, this year since we are here we went to the festival, as usual at the Frank Kitts Park.

Every year, the celebration at the park is "same old, same old"; we went because Wellington is a small city and the festival is a good place to bump into friends you have not seen for a while ;)

As usual I shoot and post some photos of the stage performance at the park, this year I noticed there are three "characters" I have not seen before!

Friday, February 22, 2013

NEW Nikon D7100,The Baby D800E!

Nikon launch the new D7100 to replace it's popular D7000 today!

Put the two model together, without the model numbers; you will be hard press to see the differences ;) They look exactly the same!!

So what is so big deal about this NEW D7100?

According to Nikon...

It is lighter than the D7000 (780 g), the D7100 weighs a mere approx. 675 g or 1 lb 7.8 oz (body only).

The D7100 come with a larger 23.5 x 15.6 mm, 24.71 million DX CMOS sensor, the D7000 only command 16.9 million pixels.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Wein HSHSB for Safe Sync to Old Flash

HSHSB is Hot Shoe to Hot Shoe Safe Sync to Wein Products Inc in L.A., USA.

The range of innovative products from this company will astound you, but we are talking about the HSHSB; which I ordered four days ago from B&H Photo & Video in New York and I received it yesterday!

But first, for those that don't know... HSHSB SAFE SYNCS Safely reduces any electronic flash source with trigger voltage from up to 400 volts to less than 6 volts to the camera sync input. This is absolutely mandatory for all digital cameras, the high voltage will literally fried your chips ;)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Old External Flash for OM-D E-M5!

I dislike using flash in my photography, but most indoor lighting condition are not really bright enough for even illumination.

Direct flash can cause even the most flattering photos to turn out bad, direct flash is harsh and highlight in photos are "burn out" and lack detail.

If you are serious about your photography, the first technique you must learn is how to BOUNCE your flash!

Sadly, virtually all the smaller, so called "point and shoot" cameras came with tiny, fixed flash that you cannot tilt and bounce! Even if it can, the output is just too weak for that purpose.

I can understand cheapo point-and shoot cameras came with tiny flash, what about a NZ$1,600 Best Camera of 2012?  You will be lucky ;)

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 came with a really tiny removable, camera powered flash that plug onto the hot shoe.

The light output from this tiny light is just about useless, not only that; the illumination from this flash is hardly able to cover a e_28mm lens!

And when my favorite lens is the ultra-wide 7-12mm, DISASTER

Monday, February 11, 2013

Mr Ji's Hidden Delights In Petone!

A couple of months ago I discovered this little Chinese restaurant in Petone, it was recommended by Michelle Zhang who is a part-timer at our office; we are glad we took her recommendation seriously!  Thank-you Michelle :)

Petone (Māori: Pito-one) is a major suburb of the city of Lower Hutt in New Zealand. It is located at the southern end of the narrow triangular plain of the Hutt River, on the northern shore of Wellington Harbour. The name, from the Māori Pito-one, means "end of the sand beach".  - Wikipedia

Mr Ji's Kitchen like all restaurants and cafes in Petone is situated along Jackson Street.

So on one Saturday afternoon late last year, Le General and I set off to taste-test this new found shop for lunch.

It took us two drive up and down Jackson Street to locate this "Kitchen", it is right up (if you are coming from town) the other end of Jackson, the shop front is not conspicuous; in some way situated at 285 Jackson have some advantage for diners, in the week-end the lower end of Jackson Street is painful to get a parking space!

Friday, February 8, 2013

My View Point on DxO ViewPoint

Early January this year I was attracted by a special offer at DxO for their ViewPoint software, instead of the regular $79.00 US; I only have to pay $49.00 (NZ 60.00) ! It is a no brainer! I bought a copy!

What is this DxO ViewPoint?

In short, these are what it can do...

Fix key-stoning. Recreate the original shapes of buildings. Converging vertical and horizontal lines once again become parallel.

Restore the natural proportions of the people on the edges of your ultra wide photos in just one click.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Penthouse Cinema & Cafe @ Brooklyn

Sunday... we were informed by our MetService that this will be the last day we are gonna enjoy the hot, sunny summer day!

We can't complain really, it has been TEN DAYS of sunshine; I don't know about you but we NEVER experience that kind of continuous "You Can't Beat Wellington On A Good Day!" for 10 days!

To make full use of this Sunny Sunday, we had a yum-char at a Chinese joint that we have not been for a long time... Le Gen insisted they got themselves a NEW chef, we were disappointed!  I vaguely remember the previous chef was slightly better ;)

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Which Metering Mode Should You Use?

This shot taken yesterday was "over" by 2 stops.
Looking at the RAW images of Karori Park I took yesterday, I noticed a few of them were over  exposed. A quick check of the camera responsible, my OM-D E-M5 confirmed my metering mode is set at "Center Weighted"; just to confirm the metering in my favorite camera is spot on, I decided to do a quick test.

First, for those that are not familiar; according to Wikipedia...

"In photography, the metering mode refers to the way in which a camera determines the exposure.  Cameras generally allow the user to select between spot, center-weighted average, or multi-zone metering modes.
Various metering modes are provided to allow the user to select the most appropriate one for use in a variety of lighting conditions."

Rediscovering Our Karori Park

When we landed in Wellington, 1988; our new found friends took us to Karori and we rented our first home there.

Four years later, because of my new job we moved to Singapore.

When we returned after four years, we ended up in Karori again!

But this post is about the Karori Park!  A beautiful park that all these years we are living here, we went there LESS THAN a dozen time! Shocking!

A rare moment in 1999 when we went walking our beagle at the Karori Park