Created with flickr slideshow from softsea.

About the Photographer

Borned in Penampang Sabah and currently residing in Sandakan Sabah, he started his photography as a hobby back then in 2007. That hobby quickly turn into passion as he ventures more into the world full of artistic where only limited by one's mind and imagination. Born under the sign of Gemini, he simply love to add different elements and ideas to create a different world with his lenses.

Working with Malaysia Airlines added extra advantages to be in different part of the world and captures the beautiful architectural and cultures and instill them in his trusted lense. It also added another big advantages as capturing once in a lifetime moments in different part of the world would be possible and less charged..

Happily married, his wife also shares the beautiful art of photography and has since became his sidekicks in events or even simply any outing. Together they became a great partner in crime and added more colourful touches with her faminine touch and his artistic eyes.

To sum up it all, they simply put life in their photography and hope you became a part of it too.

God bless ...

".. Thank you for believing. Photography is about what the eyes captures, the emotions that the heart felt and finally embedding all of it in a photograph. Now thats what photography is all about..."

Aldrian Willon

Your's Truly... Aldrian Willon

Your's Truly... Aldrian Willon

A new year, a new resolution.. as a photographer, what will it be?

A year 2010 is coming to an end. I'm pretty sure that most of you guys are already calculating what will the year of the rabbit 2011 will bring. And as a photographer, what would you have in your mind the 2011 resolution will be?

Okay, forget about the "loosing weight", be less "procrastinate" and so on. Lets focus on one thing that could make our life better in photography point of view. A budding photographer would definitely wanted to be better and sharper and well equip both in knowledge and gears. Then of course to reach a certain level where they get respect equal if not better than their piers or guru. So, now you have set that target, whats next? Buy more equipments? Open a studio? We all know that in this line money plays a very important role. it can make you or it can break you. And using all your savings to buy expensive gears may give you a better photo but it doesn't guarantee you clients. So, it goes back to a basic question, how do you get a client? How can you get your name on high list of other photographers?  

There are two things that separate a pro photographers and a newbies, and surprisingly it is not the picture quality. Everyone knows that you can always get every single tutorial from the net like YouTube, so it's no surprising a young lad can do a perfect panning technique in less than a day. So, why are the pro's still getting more client eventhough they sky rocket their charges? Opportunity ..

You see fellow readers, Opportunity is what they have a lot, and with a lot of it coming they can show off their photo in their blog more than others. It automatically put in the mind of other people that you must be full of experience making you the best choices. You may be well versed with all the photography technique but if you don't have any opportunity to captures one special moment e.q wedding or events, than how does one compares you to others? you might have the best sillahoute photo or a beautiful macro pictures of a bug, but unless you want to be a naturalist then you have to find opportunity to captures some beautiful moments and show it off for others to compare.

Then the next question will be, How can i create that opportunity if i'm not given any chance at the first place? Good question. Opportunity won't be flying across the room and into your lap unless you go and find them. Unless you are really lucky that some wedding photographer went missing in the last minute and the bride don't have a choice but to choose you straight away,  then basically you don't stand a chance. Putting more and more pictures of a rainbow or birds in your blogs will also not works. So?

Find a mentor! Find someone who have already into the world of events or wedding photography for few years and have already put his or her name on top of the well known and beg them to let you tag along. I did for free the first few outing with my sifu and even fork out some cash of my own but it is all worth it. Being a second shooter does give you very much experience as well as the preparation and the do's and don'ts in certain events. And finally when you have enough experience and weapons to show off to the world, i bet you don't even have to go out and find clients, you will be very busy choosing which one you want to shoot first!

Happy New Year 2011 from us,
Aldrian Willon and family


Merry Christmas 2010 and a blessed new year 2011!!

KK at night

Met a great friend and fellow photographer Kenny and we decided to go up to the flag hill to capture the night scene of Kota Kinabalu. It was rather spoilt however with the heavy wind blowing and rain started to pour. We decided to cut short the outing and headed to an eatery nearby and have ourself some food while remembering our old stories. Had a great fun and hoping for a next outing together. Cheers...

Some pics that I manage to capture.

Took this Christmas Tree at padang bandaran. It was really "blue" so being rather a sucker for the colour blue, we decided to stop for a while and try to get some great shots. But then again, the rain starts to pour so we have to cut short the session.

In case you guys are wondering, the " X " on top of the Christmas tree is because this tree is sponsored by Celcom X pax ... Great marketing strategy ... 

Majestic London buildings

Besides taking portraiture and landscape pictures, I also love to take pictures of beautiful architecture in a buildings especially those that was build few decades ago using nothing but a hammer and a chisel. With a bit of imagination, those people back then can carve artistic images out of a rocks or woods. London is one of those places that have a lot of beautiful ancient buildings that have designs that can take your breath away. Indeed it is one of a photographers heaven and i'm just so blessed to be able to visit them. With my lovely wife, we together embark on a journey to uncover the beautiful London buildings.

Appologise with the angle as i took this photo on top of a moving bus, really fast indeed. I only have one shot to take all the time so no mistake is acceptable.

The famous Harrods building, deem to be the most classy shopping centre in London Central, own by Dodi Al-Fayed

 Big Ben, the main London trademark building

The famous London Tower, or we usually calls it London Bridge..

Subway train, no.1 main transportation here.

Capturing the sunset along the London bridge

 St. Paul Cathedral where the late Lady Diana Spencer got married to Prince Charles.

 St. Paul Cathedral taken from the front

Buckingham Palace

Except for Buckingham Palace, all the pictures above are taken on top of a moving double decker bus, so i appologise for any missaligned of the pictures. We had an enjoyable time and we will re-visit London again. God bless ..


When in crossroads...

Ahhh it's so great to be back on track in the world of photography and in my photo blogging. You see I have been shy'ing away from my camera's and laptop as my time was occupied to prepare for an exam that i have to take which is very tough actually. My actual work requires me to upgrade all the time so courses and examinations are things that i have to go through for the rest of my aviation career. Well i'm glad that i went through it with flying colours, but in doing so i have to turn down one great photography project which really do made me wonder, why can't life be much easier ? Why do we have to make choices which is more important, what we really WANT to do or what we reall NEED to do? Why are we always in a crossroads?

I bet every single aspiring photographers started taking picture as a hobby, then it became a part time job and finally when the business have bloom they quit their day time job and became a full time profesional photographers. During the first year of the photography as a part time job, things are much easier because photography would be the last thing a person would think off when work requires attention. However thigs would start getting a little bit tough but still under control  when few photography outing have to be cancelled when late minute postings or meeting came clashing with the outing date. Then after few years came what i usually term as the "crossroads" where one have to make choices either to hang on to that job that have given financial freedom to start the photography part time career or to venture to full time profesional photographer, whose life are very much full of drama, where project and job doesn't come on regular basis (of course the money would also not come in on regular basis) . Some of our internationally known photographer must have in between their lifes come into this crossroad and decided to take the risk and do what they love the most and succeed in their life. But there are also some who couldn't take the pressure and decided to revert back to their day to day job and put photography second to their life. Why some have succeed and why have some failed?

I guess it comes back to what you really want in life. Most of us live a life to fullfill what others or public deem as normal life like having a steady job, get a car, get a house and raise a good family and what ever goes against that belief will be deem as dumb. I know one really good singer who have wow not only me but other people with his golden angelic voice but still stuck doing 9 to 5 job eventhough he have a shot at wonderfull singing career. When i ask him why he didn't want to further his talent, his answer was simply " my family thinks its not a good career, what if i could't sell any records or fail to get any singing records? How am i suppose to feed my family? " .. That answer have always been deem as the motivation killer to any aspiring not only photographers but also to other talent as well. In return, many talent went to waste, gone just  like that.

But what happen to those who have succeded ? Did they have special charisma? Were they blessed with special powers that enable them to overcome the risk and take the challenge? Were they borned on aspecial day that have given them a super insight of the future? Were their blood thicker than us? .. The answer is NO . They are just like us, simple human being who simply love to take pictures and share it with others their natural talent. So what makes them want to take the risk, go against what people deem as wrong and venture to a life full of surprises and topsy turvy ? Well i bet their answer were " We only have one shot in this life... either we waste it or we make full use of it.. We might succeed or we might fall.. but at least when we are in our final hour, we can look at our grandchildrens and say we have live life to the fullest...."        

Learn as if we were to live forever,
Live as if we were to die tommorow ..      


Etiques guidelines for meeting fellow photographer

General photographer etiques (or etika in Malay ) have never actually been highlighted in any programes or workshop that i have ever attended. Most of the etiques are the one we learn through times and sometimes it can be harsh or even embarrasement for a photographer just because he/she are lack of etiques knowledge. Now, I am not an etiques specialist  but through experience I actually learn a few things that might not be that important for you but nevertheless it might save you from total embarassement. Please take some time to read through and you just might thank me one day :) ....

 When meeting another fellow photographer NEVER EVER

a) Criticized his/her gears :- Never say "Alaaaa why you buy this camera.. this camera not good baa.. you should have bought this type "... There is no "wrong" camera out there ... all of the camera are build to meet certain individuals likings. Just because it is small or less powerful than yours doesn't mean they cannot take better picture than you.

b) Criticized his/her pictures :- Never condemned other pictures just because the picture looks odd or over expose or simply dark. When they make mistake, tell them nicely what you think should have been proper and not just simply thrash talk the picture. Respect the time and effort that they have taken. We all came from that stage before.

c) Use their gears without asking their permission :- Some photographers took ages just to bought certain high end equipment so to just simply get excited and take their gears and start shooting without asking properly could be well consider as rude. I've seen a fellow photographer almost choke when a newcomer simply grab his kit worth more than 15k and started to shoot it without properly asking under the rain! I can see his teeth grinding at that time...

d) Ask their opinions over and over and over again :- Photographers are there on a reason, that is to take pictures. So by keep on asking them to evaluate your pictures or your setting all the time, you are actually distracting them thus making them feel really irritated.

e) Follow them where ever they go ;- We call this Tagging.  Now it's not wrong to follow your mentor, but by being a TAG and taking picture on every thing he/she pointing at will actually make you look as if you are not creative enough to find your own object to shoot. Give them some space, just like you need yours too.

f) Ask to show every picture that they have just took :- Don't keep on asking to view the photo unless he/she wants to show you themself.

g) Bragging :- Never Brag! yep, you might have L lense, you might have taken a supermodel pictures, you might have been paid highly for a function, but keep that to yourself unless you were ask to share of your experiences. Human are judge by their words, photographers are judge by their photo's and not words alone. Besides you never know who you are talking to, they might be a Grandmaster photographers who just wanted to test you.

h) Try to show off :- Ok this once happen to a friend of mine who covered a wedding function that i attended not long ago. He was paid to cover up the whole day wedding function and the brother of the bride happen to own a semi pro DSLR too. To my astonishment, the brother started to take a picture one after another with his heavy flash gun and he will go way to the front overshadowing the actual paid photographer itself. My friend started to fuss that he himself unable to get a good position because the brother keep on blocking his way and the strobe from the flash gun effected his shot every time. I pity my friend and eventhough so far i haven't encounter such situation (maybe my size does gives me an advantage!) but to those who happens to be in a function and happen to bring your gears, it's okay to actually take some shots but please do respect the actual paid photographer because his/her reputation is on the line. Be courteous and don't try to overshadow them because you never know, it might happen to you one day.

i) Control every conversation :- Sometimes when people get over excited, they tend to talk and talk and talk till it became obvious that you just want the others listen to your oppinion and not to listen to theirs. Please remember that every photographers have their own point of view so please take some time to pause and let the other photographers says whats in their mind. You never know, you just might learn something new.

j) Get emotional when being criticized :- Okay, maybe there are time certain photographers come and share their point of view which is against your own belief or they started to criticized your photos eventhough you don' totally agree with them. Please my friend, do not try and attack them back because sometimes the critics are just pointing out your weaknesses or they truly just wanted to help you in making you a better photographer. Have an open mind all the time. But what happen when the critics just wanted to attack you due to personal reason? Simply smile, say thank you and walk away. It's simply not worth the fight. Your pictures are your artwork and remember " lies in the hand of the beholder..".   

Will be bringing you more etiques  guidelines for photographers in the future. Till then, stay smart stay healthy and keep those shutters cracking! Cheers ...

Does editting takes away the purity of a photo?

In my life i have met so many photographers who have different point of view in these art that they have devoted to. They have been so long in the industry that they have instill in their soul certain belief and ideas of what a perfect photo should be. One type of belief is that the purity of one photo must be the one seen by the eyes and captured by the lense. Usually the loyal users of film processing photography believe that a picture should be left as what it is and any editting or touch up would take away the purity of it.

Now being the so called "new age" photographer I have to admit that I do depend on my loyal Photoshop to tweek or touch up here and there. But in making a picture more perfect, am i actually making it more imperfect?. I'm pretty sure that there are fellow photographers out there who are just like me, just wanted a better prettier and nicer photograph.

A conversation with one film photographer not so long ago does struck some point inside my head when he admit the digital revolutionary of digital single lense reflect (DSLR) means more and more new age photographers take the things lightly when it comes to understand the technic and skills required to take one photo because they can just simply tweek it with photoshop or just simply delete it if it's not good enough. They wouldn't even care less if they have no idea what is the connection between iso, shutter speed or focal length or focal point, focus point because all they need to do is put the selector to P or AV and they can snap a photo equavalent to a pro ..

I do admit however that there is some truth in what he was saying. There was only a handful photographers out there during those film or LOMO time but when the new age DSLR arrived, the photography industry suddenly started booming and it has somehow put the photography industry to a new era. Eventhough the quality pictures produced have also increase, the ideas and skills to become a pure genuine photographers have decreased.

So, what does a true genuine photographers are? When i ask him this question, his answers were simply " genuine photographers are those who have put in their heart respect and wanting to learn every aspect of photography, and to see photography as an art that can captures one mind and soul and can create a emotion base on the photo taken. It's not simply just point and shoot to any object but to look at every object from the heart, and to capture it and to share it to others to appreciate. To respect and to appreciate is the key words here..."

So, does adding some elements or touch up makes us not a genuine photographer?. Not really he said.. If the object captured was tweek to make it more vibrant and interesting then the whole idea of photography is still there. But if the object captured and then modified because we simply don't want to take our time to understand the reason it didn't work at the first place than that is not a genuine photographer. Editted to the least can be forgiven, editted to the max than that is digital artwork not photography.

It gave me some points to think about. Maybe it's true we became too dependant on digital revolutionary that we forget why we were into photography at the first place. It's time to understand more what photography is all about and not jsut simply to show off who have the better gears or who can edit a picture better. It's about appreciating and to respect the time and skills from others who have master the art of taking a photograph. Like my mentor use to say  " see one object with the eyes, to feel it with the heart and to capture with the lense and finally to share it with others to feel.." .

It's time to respect and appreciate our mentor.....        

Little Pinoy Boy

Just want to share to you guys a short story. During my flight to Clark Philipine, i was trying to catch as much sleep as possible. Both me and my wife are extremely exhausted due to our last minute change of plan to fly to Manila via Clark instead of Langkawi due to a photography project. When i about to doze off however came a little cute Pinoy (Philipine) boy i guess about the age of two or three years old that keep on staring at us. Trying my best to ignore him, I decided to turn my attention to the aircraft window and slowly pushing myself to dreamland. Next thing however i noticed that he is actually standing right by the side of our seat staring and giving that innocent look. Being a photographer, I just can't let that boy expression goes to waste. Next came the gears and as i started to lock on his face, he just stood there looking. My wife did the same, start snapping his "expression"less face. Then my wife showed him his pictures which to his delight, he made some scream and the parents came and took him away.

His moment captured....

*sigh* i miss my boys ... 

When lights is not on your side

The picture above taken in St. Augustine church Manila, in one of the chambers where they store all the old relic and priceless paintings. However due to poor lighting and time constraint, i am left with few choices of photography. Instead of however trying to focus on making the hall looks brighter (which would have taken me some strobs light and high setting of speedlight) i decided to use the sun shades and uses the reflection of the sun lights on the wall to make this photo much alive.

In real life of an event photographer or wedding photographer, we do not have the benefit of time and proper lighting to get the perfect shot, because  there is no time to do proper set up and proper lighting every time. The bride and groom might be walking around to dark areas or bright areas and you just have to do with what the environment give. The solution?.. make use of the natural lighting and be creative. You never know just how much it will make your picture looks much much better.

To be a photographer, one must ....

Sometimes some couples wonder why some photographers charges their services to the roof and very ridiculous prices. Is it really hard to take one shot? Is it really hard to learn the shooting techniques? Is the equipment really expensive that they have to charge to the max just to get their investment back? Some even wonder that with the booming of budding photographers out there, can't i just buy one DSLR and became an instant photographers myself since the charges are equivalent to one set of DSLR unit? Well, here's why my friend ..

To be one good Photographers, one must posses the the following criteria .... 

1) To have a mind of a Math expert 
With focal length of 18mm , so the shutter speed setting must be 1/18 or higher, which with iso 100 required apperature close to F1.8 ! Need i say more?

2) To be a computer genius
All photographers know at least 70% on how the computer works, how to install the editting software, how to convert their raw material to easier smaller readable photos .

3) To be a painter
Able to edit a pictures is almost like painting one, only in a digital way. A perfect picture for a photographers sometimes is not so perfect in a real world, so to manipulate this, we use a bit of touch up using touch pen or mouse to add some extra shading .

4) To be a makeup artist
You'll be surprise that a photographer must somehow posses or develop a bit of makeup skill
regardless the gender because a person makeup will effect the photo quality. For instance, a makeup for a black and white portraiture is much stronger and uses a lot of glossy color compare to a normal portraiture which requires more matte color.

5) To be extra fit like a jungle trekker
C'mon now, you don't expect all those beautiful scenery shots comes from the back of the house do you.. To get that extra edge pictures, one must hike far away places and camp outside to capture that great dawn or sunset moment.  

6) To be a weather expert
One needs to know when the rain will fall, or when the sun will rise at precise moment or when the clouds will come and give you that dramatic moment.

7) To be a wedding planner
One must know how a precession of a wedding is, how long is the duration, when is the moment the couples will walk in , when is the toast , who is the family members, when is the couples wedding dance ... 

8) To be a great communicator
Why great communicator? well, a shy and silent photographer won't be able to direct a couple or people to do some pose that will give that great moment in photograph. 

9) To have and architecture mind
Able to see which buildings or places that can give that twisting edge in their photo

10) To have an artistic mind
A photographer must be able to imagine in his/her mind a picture perfect scenery or moment way before it happen and are able to simulate it. 

There are more other criteria and skill that one must posses like patient, observant, vigilant, discipline and creative before one can be called a Photographer. So the next time a good photographer charges you a certain price that you thing is ridiculous, check back his or her work in the net or the hard copy and then decide, wether you just want a picture or you want a memory of a moment captures.  

The colour blue ...

I've always been fascinated by the colour blue... in fact my eyes are easily attracted to any blueish effect like the sea or the sky .. here are some of my favourite "blue" ..... hope you guys are not feeling blue though...

Taken at a shell station along Clark - Manila highway. We stop by for some food and i spot this beautiful Christmas tree design with the colourful building behind. Didn't waste my time and quickly pull out my gears.

The half sunk wooden house with the man made lake that appears due to construction work along Sandakan highway. Picture perfect place.

The Taal volcano at Tagaltay Philipine .. Taken in one of the restaurant that overlook the smallest volcano in the world. Yep, it's still active, alive and kicking...

The beautifull Pink Sisters Chapel at Calabarzon Tagaytay Philipine

Beautiful Place to visit in Penampang Sabah

I was born in Penampang, one district in Sabah that is full of natural wonders. What makes it a beautiful place is that it is located at the side of the busy city Kota Kinabalu Sabah yet still treasures some of the most heart gasping flora and fauna. For nature lovers, please give yourself some treat to this one part of the river Lutung Lutung (a part of the Babagon river) with cool river flow and peaceful waterfall uniquely situated just by the roadside and accesible to vehicles.... defiitely a must try if you are nearby . I shall return again to this place but for now i just leave you guys with some teasers....

Imagine dipping yourself inside the flowing river... i did....

More pics to be uploaded soon ...

Incorporating the word "simple" in photography..

Taken at Sandakan Pasir Putih beach.

Few years back when i've just started getting myself around photography, i've joined a DSLR workshop around my town area.  Being enthusiast and first timer, i packed all my brand new gears and went to the workshop located in one of the leading hotel. Along with other first timer who i noticed strutting around with their "weapons", we've started to chat a bit while proudly showing off our machines. Some went to the extend of putting on their machine to the ultimate test with multiple "trat tat tat tat" shoot while other just simply grin while caressing their weapon, maybe preserving their energy.

Now when the workshop about to start, we were surprised to be told to put down our heavy machine and put the pack away. I said What??!! i thought this is a photography workshop?? Isn't this is where they showed us how to manhandle our machine and make it a beast??.. and just when things becomes worse, we were given a small disposable handheld camera which doesn't have any focus, and with only 5 takes. Go, said our speaker and bring me some photos. If u can capture the picture that is worth to be shown then you can call yourself a photographer! ..

We were stun. We don't even know how to use it, left alone to snap a photo... The guy that proudly "shoot" the entire ceiling with the "rat tat tat tat" were simply struggling to even focus a lamp! Finally after a struggle and some "embarassing" photos, the speaker started to give some beautiful word that stucked to my head forever.

"..Photography is not about who have the meanest machine, or who has the most powerful equipment... photography is about a person who is capable of producing vivid and breath taking photograph that can generate feeling of warmth and tender, or sadness or madness with even the most simplest tool there is. Sometimes the most simplest object can become the most beautiful picture a person can ever produce. And that my friend is what a true genuine photographer is..."

Sandakan Mas and Maswings Long Service Award 20th November 2010

On 20th November 2010, me and my wife were given the pleasure of being the official photographer for the Malaysia Airlines and Maswings long service awards for Sandakan station, honoring the staffs who have given their services to the company of more than 25 years. The reception were simply emotional to some staff who were overwhelm with the appreciation given to them after a whole decade of rendering their services and still am proud of wearing the uniform to the very day. Thank you very much Mas and Maswings for giving us the chance to be part of this special ceremony. To all the recipients, congratulation once again!

The crystal award that was given to the long service staff.

The proud recipient with their award and certificate of appreciation

One of the recipients daughter proudly showing the certificate of appreciation of her dad ..

Portraiture work ...

When it comes to portraiture work, there are only 3 things that i always take account of before i snap the person. Firstly, it must contain emotion, secondly it must be natural and thirdly it must be half candid. That's why i prefer to snap the persons in their most unexpected expression rather than awaiting from them to act one. With my trustable 50mm fix lense , the whole drama comes alive with a click of a button...


Seeing it from my eyes..

It's always fascinate me how the world of photography have evolve through the years. Some people might travel far and wide hoping to capture the so called "perfect" shot. Well sometimes that so call "perfect" shot could be just right behind your backyard...

I took this picture just behind my office. The gardener was just about to start trimming it when i ask him to give me two minutes to capture. He thinks i'm crazy trying to shoot some grasses and going down to the ground on my knees. But i think it's worth the time and effort. Now i'm just waiting for the new grass to grow.. 

Renold and Nelly 25th October 2010

A previllage to be part of this beautifull couple ... Fun and crazy night .. Congratulation from us once again!

The happy bride......

About to embark on a wonderfull journey together

Grand Putra Ballroom .. it's party time!

Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaammmm Seeeeeeeeeeeeennnnnnnnnggggggggg!!!!!

Beautifull night with beautifull ladies!

Everyone is having a blast..

It family picture time...

Thank you and congratulation once again ....