Best of 2007 December 28, 2007

Filed under: Photos — saifulrizan @ 2:13 am
For the last post of 2007, I picked some of the best pictures that I took during 2007 with Sony DSC H5 and BenQ DC C510. A bit warning though; this post is super long. Get used to it.

Sunset at Pancur Hitam

Portrait | Manual Exposure | ISO200 | Aperture Value 3.50 | 13.80 mm | EV -1.00 | 1/100 Second

This picture was taken a couple of days after I got the H5. I purposely was waiting for the right time, from 5.00 pm to 6.30 pm (approximately) to get the right (I think) shot. During that interval period, I took about 100 images – and only one is the best.

Sungai Labu, Labuan

Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO320 | F Number=3.20 | Focal Length=7.50 mm | Exposure bias=1.00 | Exposure Time=1/8 Second

Too bad I got this image in 640 x 480. Too bad…


Standard | Auto Exposure | 1/30 Second | Aperture Value=3.30 | ISO100 | F =3.30
Focal Length=7.30 mm | Exposure bias=-0.70 | Maximum lens aperture=2.97

This was taken from my office, back then when I used to work from morning to late at night. This was taken with my BenQ DC C510, a P&S camera.

Time Traveler

Night Scene | Manual Exposure | Flash=On | ISO Speed Rating=ISO125 | F Number=2.80 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | Light Source=Auto | Exposure bias=1.00 | Exposure Time=1 Second | Maximum lens aperture=3.00 Metering mode=Spot

If only the A pillar was not visible because of the flash. To determine a correct composition in a moving car is like running and carrying a basket of eggs at the same time. Anyway, I like how it turns out, because this picture taken during the day I got the H5.


ISO320 | F Number=3.20 | Focal Length=12.40 mm | 1/250 Second | Maximum lens aperture=3.00

This was taken during the opening ceremony of Labuan International Sea Challenge 2007. I ran away from the crowd and have to use the superzoom feature to take this shot. Plus, there were plenty of photogs with dSLR there, so I was kinda shy. 🙂 I like their lighting setup, because for some 2 seconds, it will dim, giving some dramatic scene to the dance – and those 2 seconds was forever to wait!


Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO Speed Rating=ISO125 | F Number=4.50 | Focal Length=63.80 mm | 1/1000 Second

Taken at Labuan Bird Park, when I started taking pictures of the birds there.

An Old Man

Standard | ISO125 | F Number=4.50 | Focal Length=72.00 mm | 1/500 | Maximum lens aperture=3.00

This old man was on the boat that participated in the ROLEX IGFA Qualifying Round, a deep sea fishing tournament organized as part of the Labuan International Sea Challenge 2007. Was trying to take a black & white image of this one, but it wasn’t a shiny day at that time.

Don’t dump me here

Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO160 | F Number=4.50 | Focal Length=72.00 mm | Exposure bias=-0.30 | 1/1000 Second

Taken at Labuan Sea Sport Complex, this girl was in the water with her partner (in this picture, her partner was diving) while a boat passing through. While the girl looking at the boat, I decided that was the opportunity!


Standard | Exposure Mode=Manual Exposure | ISO320 | F Number=3.70 | Focal Length=72.00 mm | Exposure bias=-0.30 | 1/80 Second

He participated in the Battle Of The Band, a side-event for Labuan International Sea Challenge. I guess he was the bassist with a style and cool expression among others musician. Anyhow, this guy reminded me of Jimmy Chamberlain from Smashing Pumpkins; though Jimmy was the band guitarist.


Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO320 | F Number=3.50 | Focal Length=19.20 mm | Exposure bias=-0.30 | 1/125 Second

The band leader sang aggressively, energetic and compelling. The stage lighting was the last thing I need for taking pictures with the H5, so I have to cope with plenty of blown images.


Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO320 | F Number=3.20 | Focal Length=10.00 mm | Exposure bias=-2.00 | Exposure Time=1/20 Second | Maximum lens aperture=3.00

After reading a post on the Internet about a simple DIY studio, I decided to give it a try. With a black cardboard, and portable light, I did a set of photos of the miniature Ferrari F430 and Enzo.
Little boy

Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO320 | F Number=3.50 | Focal Length=36.90 mm | Exposure bias=1.00 | Exposure Time=1/8 Second

While wasting times in the ferry to Menumbok (it’s half an hour trip on the ferry alone), I saw this boy looking at me; while I was cleaning the lens filter. While he’s peeking at me, I took his photo secretly.
Signal Hill

Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=3.20 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | 1/13 Second

I love the composition, but somehow I got noisy all over the image. Though I set the Aperture high a bit, but still I got a dark image. I still need to work on this when I come back to Signal Hill, Kota Kinabalu sometimes next year.

Alaf Baru

Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=5.60 | Focal Length=72.00 mm | Exposure bias=0.00 | 1/500 Second

While sitting in the car, waiting for the ferry to Labuan arrive, I saw this scene. From the other side of the wire fence, I use the super zoom. If this is what they called Depth Of Field, I must have been zooming extremely to the sign board (Alaf Baru – Computer Centre) and abandoned the old man image to make a statement – generation collision. And that was a failure.

Staring at the sky
Location: Sungai Lada, Labuan

Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO320 | F Number=2.80 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | Exposure bias=0.00 | Exposure Time=1/8 Second

Power of Life
Location: Morningside, Queensland

Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=5.60 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | Exposure bias=0.30 | Exposure Time=1/640 Second

Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=2.80 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | Exposure Time=1/40 Second

Nothing. Just to say I did fly this plane.


Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=4.00 | Focal Length=12.40 mm | Exposure bias=0.00 | Exposure Time=1/250 Second

This was taken during the trip to Sandakan Crocodile Farm recently. How I wish the sunlight would shine directly to the crocodile to make it more obvious.

Long boat

ISO125 | F Number=4.00 | Focal Length=9.60 mm | Exposure bias=0.00 | 1/80 Second

I used Auto Enhance mode to bring out the contrast of this image.


ISO125 | F Number=4.00 | Focal Length=71.70 mm | Exposure bias=0.70 | Exposure Time=1/400 Second

This is my first Depth Of Field image taken during the Labuan International Sea Challenge 2007.


Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO320 | F Number=2.80 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | Exposure bias=1.00 | Exposure Time=1/30 Second
Tree Bark

Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=4.00 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | Exposure bias=0.00 | Exposure Time=1/160 Second | Metering mode=Center-weighted Average

Taken at Sandakan Park recently.

Lady In Red

Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=2.80 | Focal Length=6.10 mm | 1/40 Second

This was my first time taking pictures inside a shopping complex, where yellow lights are dominant. When I decided to quit taking photos and reset the setting and started to looking for white paper to adjust the white balance, I saw this lady in red.

Mini Morris

Standard | Auto Exposure | ISO125 | F Number=4.00 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | 1/125 Second

This image resulted from my first attempt on unusual angle. You can read the original post here

Happy Family

Standard | Manual Exposure | ISO400 | F Number=2.80 | Focal Length=6.00 mm | Exposure bias=-0.70 | 1/200 Second + 58mm Hoya Yellow Filter

In 2008, I really hope I can buy myself a dSLR. I got some reviews of the camera saved in my hard disk, but still I can’t make decision. Some people said a Nikon D40 is good for a beginner like me. But still there are plenty of choices out there, and I have to match it with what I need – easy to use while easy to learn, multiple choices of lenses during my learning process, cheap (not that cheap, but still affordable).

So, can you help me with what should I pick?

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Looking back 2007 December 26, 2007

Filed under: Personal Opinion — saifulrizan @ 2:19 am
Note : Spend this New Year celebration with your family at home. Have a backyard BBQ, invite friends to come over, and celebrate the night with a nice outdoor lighting to make it remarkable.

It’s always the best thing to look back at what we’ve been through. December is always the best time to look back to value the experience.

January – There’s not much happening around January. Apart from hectic work schedule, I spent weekends at home or out there on the beach, having a BBQ or just feel the sea breeze. Life was pretty much occupied with job, so there’s nothing much interesting to talk about.

I tried to documenting Labuan into a set of pictures, by using my first digital camera, a Point & Shoot camera, BenQ DC C510. It was bought from Plaza Low Yatt during my trip to KL with family. I drive around Labuan, going to historical places, monuments, interesting places, and anything that would give credit to Labuan in general. Till today, I haven’t finish taking pictures and documenting the places I’ve visited (or yet to be visited). However, I’ve created a blog for it, an initial platform before it go to [dot]com. Feel free to visit My Labuan Island. There’s still a problem with the template, because I don’t have Internet at home for now. The project will be continued on January 2008.

February – I guess this was the time I put myself into NXG Solution clan. I remember helping Adam moving to the new office, located above the Restoran Sofia at Jalan Tun Mustapha. With only basics stuff needed to be in the office (most of it are not important, since Adam prefer to do the job at home), it only took two of us doing the job. Hey, Syahrul was there too.

March – I spent a couple of days in Labuan Bird Park, taking pictures of birds there. It’s for the Labuan Bird Park. When the picture editing and other materials completed, it will go to [dot]com. Another community project to promote Labuan tourism and public knowledge about bird in Labuan Bird Park, by me.

April – I joined Labuan Rugby Club, after the Treasurer at that time, Zulkarnain read my post when I attended the UMS-KAL Rugby 7s Tournament held at Labuan Square sometimes around February or March (Can’t remember). This club consists of professionals in different industry in Labuan, and I’m glad to know each of them. I helped Mike, to create a Labuan Rugby Club blog.

May – I got Sony DSC H5 for my birthday (although it’s couple of weeks before the actual birthday). I guess it was the peak of my intuition towards getting a dSLR. Unfortunately, it is a ProSumer camera (half Point & Shoot, half digital SLR), anyway, I go with the flow. Only a poor workman would blame his tools.
The camera first assignment (self decision) was to take photos during the Labuan International Sea Challenge 2007. Labuan Corporation asked if I would like to sell the photos, and I come up with the cheapest price in Malaysia (including giving away the copyright). Unfortunately, they didn’t agree. So, I’ve posted all photos in another blog, LISC 2007. Spend some time to visit the blog, will you?

June – With the new camera, I revisit Labuan Bird Park to retake pictures. Though most of the previous one is still in the vault, waiting to be edited, I insist taking another set. And till today, I still can’t manage to take time to get it done.

In another thing, I joined the rugby club member holding a rugby clinic to school children from different schools in Labuan. I don’t know if I taught them well. What can we expect from playful children?
July – I’m on vacation! Went to Kota Kinabalu and decided to spend a week there. Went to Lok Kawi Wildlife Park, Poring Hotspring Ranau, enjoy the panoramic view all the way from Kota Kinabalu to Ranau, enjoy taking pictures around scenic areas in KK. What a joy!

August – Labuan Rugby Club organized the 6th EC Trust Co Labuan 10s 2007. This tournament attracted clubs from Brunei and Sabah. You can check all the pictures at 6th ECTrustCo Labuan 10s Rugby Tournament 2007

And this month also, I flew to Australia. With plenty of works waiting for me there, there’s not much to expect about holiday. It’s all just work and work. Hell!!!!

September – Went back to Labuan. I decided to quit, though the job is an opening to another opportunity, but I know there’s limitation to what I can do. And no, I can’t do everything I want to. I’m just a human.

October, November & December – Duress and epiphany of s**c**e.

Have a good 2008 everyone.

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A wise old man December 20, 2007

Filed under: Miscellanuous — saifulrizan @ 11:39 am
I met an old friend in Brunei yesterday. He is a taxi driver, and I am his regular customer. It’s been like that ever since I work with my Australian boss (which I’ve quit the company couple of months back). He’s still the same old same old nice guy. To make it easy, he speaks in Malay fluently. I guess it’s not a big problem for Chinese people in Brunei to speak in Kedayan or Malay or English; fluently.

He asked me how my life has been going. Being a gentle old man with his humble appearance, he spoke slowly. Not because of his age, but that is his way of communicating. I respect him for that, although on some occasion, we both went beyond proper etiquette of conversation.

I guess there’s not much to talk about. Since I returned to Labuan and decided to live a simple life, the only thing I consider about is my life insurance license and to make the office more functional. What else is better to talk to an old man, other than spinning the question back to him? Older guy loves attention, so to reverse his question about my life back to him was a victory of dodging intermediate invasion of my personal life (Of course to share something with someone you know is not an invasion, but I prefer to keep it low).

He burst his breath. It’s a sign of something has been bothering him and there has never been anyone to spoke with. I guess.

Adjusting his gold chain slinging on his left wrist, he put his hand on the dashboard.

“The taxi is getting older, I need a new one” followed by a soft sigh.

This man dedicated to his job. I think he likes it so much. The Japan made car still working well. Perhaps the car interior and exterior that look a bit obsolete made him think to get another car; for him and his customers comfort. He says, “I’m going to get a Toyota Avanza soon”, and this time, he smiled. I thought that was his intention 6 months ago, and it’s still unrealized till these days. I hope he will get what he wanted soon.

Then he talk about his daughter whom studying in Australia now. He’s been planning to visit her sometimes early next year. He wanted to go to Gold Coast; of course with a big grin on his face. Then we talk about Brunei in general. This guys carries a lot of Brunei information in his mind that most of his foreign customers stays loyal to him. Good for him!

That guy demonstrates the importance of communication. He’s cautious, but yet the topic of conversation never been boring. He tried to retain the fun content, so the long journey with him will never be boring. Sometimes, he realized the gap between our ages, but still he manages to share something without crossing the boundary. He’s really good in conversing. 45 minutes drive from Muara to Bandar Seri Begawan has never been boring with him, my friend, Mr Lim.

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HobbyCon 2007 – Day 2 KKCC

Filed under: HobbyCon 2007 — saifulrizan @ 11:30 am
I didn’t take many photos of them on Day 1, but on Day 2, the Kota Kinabalu Cosplay Club member attracted a lot of attention. I wonder why there’s not much attention on Day 1. The club members consist of ClickStartPlay member. I think I remember the first time IRTea was discovered by Julian at Gaya Street; where everything about cosplay started in ClickStartPlay.

Some would think it’s a waste of time, but I know the KKCC members gave a lot of commitment to their hobby / personal interest. It’s not something that easily available; some of them made their own costume themselves. There you go, another useful pastime activities rather than doing nothing, go loose and end up in drug treatment centers

Here you go, some of the KKCC members for that day. Enjoy!

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HobbyCon 2007 – Day 2 December 19, 2007

Filed under: HobbyCon 2007 — saifulrizan @ 2:05 am
Note : Dad bought a unit of apartment in Kota Kinabalu, that comes with the mortgage life insurance, which means, it will pay your home mortgage if you were to die, unexpectedly. I kid you not, this is for real. I’m talking about the Cyber City Apartment.

After struggling from the camera setting on Day 1, I came back next day with hopes that everything will come up pretty good this time. Anyway, some people from CSP already knew who am I, and greeted me. My apology, I didn’t manage to get to know each of them on both day. I will, next year.

Let’s move on to the event and the booths.

The Magic Tournament

Giving some explanation about the game itself, with DJ Selina being the MC for that day.

Dungeon & Dragon

KC, serious guy I tell you….

Warhammer 40K

Team DayDreamer & Gempak

Team DayDreamers (CSP members as well)

Ah Kwan from Gempak team.

Smile for the camera.
Not from TDD or Gempak.

Admiring the artwork.

That’s all for now.

p/s : I didn’t come back to know who’s the winner for The Magic Tournament.

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HobbyCon 2007 – Day 1 Pump It Up Tournament

Filed under: HobbyCon 2007 — saifulrizan @ 1:43 am
Note : I saw the Amazing Race Asia Season 2 teams went to Rotorua, New Zealand. I recognized all the places they’ve been to. Too bad I was lying on my back at that time, and the TV set was low. I need a tv mount for sure!

We continue to the pictures from the main event for Day 1 of HobbyCon 2007 – Pump It Up Tournament!

More pictures coming up (when I get my own broadband connection at home, soon!) but for now I’ll let you guys know what it was like to be there.

It took me a while to adjust with the environment. Crowded place, low key lighting, etc. I don’t want to use the flash, because I was afraid that could distract the PIU contestants. But if I didn’t use, this is the result.

Blur image of fast moving action. Note the subject to the right look pretty intact with the focus.

Tired of taking pictures of peoples back, I moved to the front. But this time, with the ‘fence’ in between me and the contestant, I guess the focus would be distracted by the ‘fence’ existence. So I put my camera to the floor, and started ‘chimping’ (Taking pictures without looking from the viewfinder or the LCD screen).

And so the judges for that day are

That’s Mir on the far… err.. left or right?

Actually, there’s another judges for the semi final, but didn’t manage to get their picture.

And so the day ended with the price giving ceremony. These are the winners.


1. Daniel Lee
2. Rahmat @ Snake
3. Zulfaris @ Jhun
4. Kevin @ Ren
5. Cubex
6. Sabrina @ Meow
7. Mark
8. Junaidi

Newbie Speeder
1. Lee
2. Nurul
3. Mark
4. Ruby
5. Ah Fei @ Yoel
6. Mizan

Female Speeder

1. Nadya @ Miki
2. Angguli
3. Sabrina @ Meow
4. Melissa

These are the random images of the winners. More pictures coming up soon, since still under maintenance.

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Thoughts in transition December 17, 2007

Filed under: Personal Opinion — saifulrizan @ 1:47 am
2008 is around the corner. Another year passing by, and yet we still think there’s nothing much happened over the past 12 months. Do you? I hope not. 12 months is a long period, and it does creates personal development in many ways, depend on what you’ve been through.

If you asked me, I dare to say there are a lot of changes for 2007. Be it from bad to good, good to bad, or bad to worse. I’ve tasted it all, and most of the time it never sweet. Every second I feel great for the positive changes. Too bad, I can’t shave off the negative one, perhaps being haunted by own mistake would make me more cautious in the future.

Enough of what happened in 2007 (with few more days to go). Let’s see what we can do for 2008.

Next year, I’m planning to get a job. I know this might be surprising for some peoples I know. I guess no one would expect I will find a 9 to 5 job, and more, working under other people order. So I will have a boss or superior to report to next year. I won’t expect much from the workplace. A simple one cube will be nice. I would be thankful if they have espresso machines available. I guess that will be a good idea, since I will look for a job that relates to accounting. This time, I won’t go or put so much confidence in placing myself in a top shot position. An account clerk job would be fine.

I just want a normal and simple life. Besides, I got my life insurance license back. So, 2008 will be a year that would generate much income in my life.

Wish me luck.


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