Tag Archives: Singapore

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Peace~

I visited Singapore for work last month but unfortunately only had part of a day off, so didn`t have much time to explore. ¬†ūüôĀ
I ended up visiting the Gardens By the Bay, a pleasant (and more importantly, COOL) place to spend a few hours admiring the gardens and do some people-watching.

Got a few shots that I liked that day, but I thought this was the most fun ūüôā

#Streetphotography   #blackandwhite   #Singapore  ?

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Just a quick update to the #creative366project  album Рthis is July 8-21

Just a quick update to the #creative366project  album Рthis is July 8-21.  

The first few photos are from when I was in Singapore (perhaps some #singapore ¬†viewers will recognize the locations ūüėČ ¬†while the rest are back in Tokyo.

Will keep on working to catch up!

Have a good day all!

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I'd planned to continue updating my #creative366project ¬†album last week, but…

I'd planned to continue updating my #creative366project  album last week, but craziness at work put paid to that.  Luckily we had Monday (yesterday) off and I was able to work on a few pictures.  

These are from July 1 РJuly 7, and all feature #singapore  as I had gone there for a business trip for two weeks (the next batch will also be photos from SG).

Well, it's back to work this fine Tuesday morning, so have a good day all ūüôā

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Experiences Photography

Thaipusam Festival in SG

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I’ve finally uploaded pictures of the Thaipusam festival I visited last year while in Singapore. ¬†Pictures are uploaded to the usual place, but this time I’m putting the link at the bottom of this post since viewers may find some of the pictures a little upsetting if you don’t know what to expect.

One of the guys in the SG office is a shutterbug as well, and when he learned that a group of his photography friends were planning a visit to the temple where preparations for the festival were taking place, he asked if I wanted to come along. ¬†I’m always up for any kind of photo walk, so I happily agreed.

Preparations for the festivities start EARLY – so I had to wake up around 4AM to grab a taxi to the Little India area. ¬†There I met up with my colleague and we headed to the temple. ¬†Once there, you have to take off your shoes (luckily I was wearing sandals) before you’re allowed to go in. ¬†I’m used to taking off shoes when going in Japanese shrines/temples, but always within buildings. ¬†This temple was more or less “open-air” though, and it took me a while to get used to walking on dirt and grass barefoot (I’ve grown pretty spoiled since I’ve come to Japan). ūüėõ

I also hadn’t expected so much leeway in taking pictures, but there were tons of photographers and tourists already at the temple snapping away, some really up close and personal – I was rather surprised at how easygoing the devotees were and how well they took things.

The preparations for the event were fascinating to observe, if a little…unorthodox (at least for me). ¬†More information can be found at the Wikipedia link for Thaipusam here, but the gist of it is that it’s a festival celebrating commemorating the defeat of an evil demon by one of the Hindu deities. ¬†Devotees prepare several days in advance with fasting and prayer, and on the actual day of the festival, take on various burdens which they will present to the Hindu deity Murugan.

The types of “burdens” vary greatly as you can see in the pictures. ¬†Some only carry pots of milk on their heads, while others pierce their bodies while carrying a portable canopy called a “Kavadi” (example shown in the picture at the beginning of this post). ¬†Even the degrees of piercing vary – from thin rods that barely pierce the skin, to skewers that jut through one cheek and out the other, rods that punch through the skin of the belly, and nasty looking hooks that snag the flesh on the back.

Some devotees handle the pain fairly stoically, even appearing nonchalant, while others (notably the younger ones) were in obvious pain.

There were other preparations as well, such as the manufacture of incense (the place positively reeked of incense which lingered on my clothes throughout the day), offerings of food and drink, prayers, and more.  While watching one of the men get fitted with his kavadi, one woman appeared to get possessed, and started throwing herself first against him, and later rolling around the dirt.  I actually got a video clip of this which I may later upload, but sufficed to say it was a little disconcerting.

My colleague and I stayed until about 8AM, after which we packed our cameras away, washed our feet under a convenient nearby faucet, and headed to work (we had brought a change of clothes).

It was an intriguing experience, and despite the early hours and the somewhat disturbing displays of self-mortification, I’m glad I went. ¬†For a look at all the pictures I took, and if you’re not averse to piercings, head on over to the gallery section.

 

Photography

HDR Image – Art Sculpture in Singapore

I’ve added another HDR image to the photo section. ¬† This was taken late one night on my way back to the hotel, but unfortunately, I don’t quite remember what the name of the station/building was!

It appears to be sculpture of figures either in the performing arts (dancing, ballet), or athletes. ¬†I took this picture from the side instead of the front since I didn’t have a tripod and needed a wall to rest the camera on. ¬†It’s a bit bizarre, but interesting.

Link: Art sculpture in SG

Experiences Food & drinks Photography

Travel pictures

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As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’ve been traveling for work-related duties to Singapore and Hong Kong for the last two and a half weeks in October. ¬†It was an extremely busy period of time (typically 12 hour work days and no weekends off) and I ended up getting hit by a particularly tenacious bug that’s still keeping me coughing over a week later.

Given the long hours I worked, I didn’t take any daytime pictures, but when I could I went out for some night shots. ¬†Both Singapore and Hong Kong are very different culturally compared to Japan, and initially it took some getting used to, but in the end I felt quite comfortable getting around. ¬†I have better memories of Singapore since Hong Kong was where I got sick. ūüėõ

I’ll be posting pictures I took over time, starting with this series of shots taken of Little India, in Singapore.

Since it was late I didn’t get a chance to wander around too much that neighborhood, but my initial reaction when exiting the MRT (Singapore’s equivalent to the Tokyo Metro) was surprise – the place was *crowded* with people, and 99% of them were all men. ¬†I don’t know if there aren’t that many Indian women in Singapore, or if they simply don’t venture out much at night, but it was just a little odd to see crowds of men and no women at all (save in some restaurants).

Little India had some pretty street illuminations going, in preparation for the Deepavali festival. ¬†I also tried some very good fish head curry at a restaurant called Apollo’s (it looks really spicy in the pictures but it’s actually not that hot).

The image above is one that has been adjusted, but all the untouched pictures (including the original of the one above, which exhibited some bad lens distortion) are at the usual shashin.njmatsuya.com .