Monday, January 29, 2007

Let Me Tell Your Story.

Photography has always been (for me) a medium to tell my stories, convey a message, capture temporary (or immortal) beauty or even express my feelings. The thought of telling other people's stories from another's point of view or even seeing things the way they see it has never even dash across my mind before. Honestly, this was what I thought : My photographs, my way. I get agitated and annoyed when people (whom most of the time has no idea what it feels like to be behind the camera) when I have people telling me and pointing to me to take pictures of certain things from different angles and etc.. With all due respect, but I need to be creative myself. But I guess it's safe to say that I know what I'm doing I'm just being hard-headed and sometimes taking in more pride than I really should. Though, one thing's for sure, I don't stand up and retaliate, mind you. I take them all in and it's really up to me to adhere or not.

Well, yesterday was something new as I discovered I was able to gain more when I just listen and give in. I'm not sure if it was involuntary or not but I was more than happy to let the man hold my camera and experiment with it.
Still, I'm not striking out the possibility of me listening to him because he was a photographer himself too, when he was a tad bit younger (I discovered he had a film SLR stashed in his cupboard with Leica lens, if I'm not mistaken!). Strange as it may seem, but I enjoyed the photoshoot with Uncle Rao down at one of Ipoh's tourist attraction Gunung Lang (Lang Mountain) while we were down at Kuala Kangsar to visit my poor Danushya who recently had a fall and had one of her ankle bones cracked for the weekend. Despite the fact that all of us had school on Saturday, mom still managed to arrange the trip just for that one day to visit Danushya. It was an impromptu kinda thing and things weren't very well planned as we only spent about an hour at that breathtakingly hidden gem of Ipoh.

Which is kind of a waste, if you ask me. Gunung Lang is one of those places where you'll require a local to introduce you to. It's almost impossible to find it listed anywhere on tourist books or magazines. Well, Gunung Lang as what I understand is actually a park of some sort complete with facilities and a children's playground hidden by the multiple rock mountains of Ipoh that is only available with a 5 minutes boat ride from the pier, made a recreational park by the local authorities of Ipoh. I've never heard of the place before but from my observation, it's a favorite spot among locals and tourists alike. Suffice to say, the only thing to marvel at at the place were the humongous rock mountains. The condition of the place is still much to be desired for. The park facility and arches have surrendered to the endearing rain and shine and has fallen into a state of disrepute. It felt more like entering into a cemetery than a handsomely-built park where butterflies fleet freely and bougainvilleas creeps the walls while the air is filled with the songs sung by birds. Nah!

Nevertheless, our aimless stroll (Uncle Rao and I) brought us to some interesting find - a diamond in the rough, if you like. Strolling with him with my camera made me feel like a kid walking with a wiser man sucking on his lollipop, listening to every word he said. Only, he isn't really much of a talker and all he did was suggest different angles or subject of matter while I just listened and followed. Something new to me, to be getting nods of approval from another person when he squinted his eyes and covered the viewfinder with his hands to get a clearer picture of the shots when it's what he sees in his mind. Oh, I do get the pleasure when he gives an, "Ahhh, yes, yes, yes" after having what seemed like a blurred vision of the shot through the viewfinder. Pretty satisfying to the soul actually, to be some kind of a medium between the man and the camera. Of course, I'm not saying I acted like some kind of puppet with a camera. I still did and got the shots I had in mind.

Well, the shots are still in the process of getting selected by me. I'm still not revealing what it was that we found but it was definitely something new (the subject as well as the experience!). All I can say is that we headed down to the heart of Ipoh to have some of that famous 'bean sprout chicken rice' that everyone was lining up for. Seriously. People were practically eating with foldable table in the middle of the road! I don't really understand what the craze was all about. Frankly, it tasted pretty ordinary to me. Still, there's nothing to regret about this trip. Hard to think that I initially didn't want to go on with the family, still having loads of homework to clear up and studies to catch up with, but I went with it in the last minute. This trip definitely showed me a different and better side of Ipoh - a place
with small shopping complexes and fair food that I previously frown upon ( which is still true!) - and I can't wait to go back there and do more exploring!

Oh, and before I forget, hope Danushya gets well soon!

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