As I have mentioned a couple times in previous posts, one of the biggest perks I was looking forward to experiencing in the Navy was the chance to visit other countries on assignment in addition to thoroughly exploring Japan in my free time. Well, after last week, I now can double the countries I have set foot in!…(yes, that leaves just the U.S. and Japan as the others…)
After a change of command ceremony in Singapore and the days before a joint concert with the ROK Navy in South Korea, I had the opportunity to tool around and get a little slice of the sights, sounds, and—of course—the food from the areas. Despite relatively little free time, I brought my camera with me just about anywhere I went to not miss a shot if I could keep from it.
This post will not be in the photo-story format that I am writing for some posts, though I will keep descriptions to a minimum to stay out of the way of the photos. 🙂 Before we get started, with this being a site update, a lot has happened in April while in Japan. I experienced the amazing Sakura blooming, went out for a windy photo tour of a local park, and posted some photos on my Facebook and G+ pages of a quick bicycle trip around a section of Kanagawa. For photograph sets that don’t warrant an entire website post (or just single snapshots), I will usually just post them on those pages.
In other news, Sony released a nifty-fifty for their full-frame cameras, the affordable 50mm f/1.8, and Zeiss let loose the $1500(!) Batis 18mm f/2.8 in the photography world. Just when I thought the Batis line could be high-performing and affordable (85mm f/1.8), they pull a fast one with that wide prime! The α6300 continues to receive great reviews, notably gaining the gold award from dpreview.com. I am still holding out on picking up that camera though, as the rumor mill keeps buzzing about my dream A9 camera that I’ll undoubtedly have to save up for…
Now, let’s get to some more photos!
First in Singapore, I stayed in a hotel in the Clarke Quay area, popular among tourists for its shopping districts as well as the nightlife on the riverfront. The architecture here maintained a pretty modern and colorful style that fit pretty well with the tropical climate.
Of course, I couldn’t resist chasing down a lizard or two as they ran around from tree to tree.
As with most big cities, Singapore has its own Chinatown. I was surprised to see so much greenery on top of the skyscrapers on the way there, though.
The entrance crossed a main road into a very compact alley filled with street vendors of all kinds!
Oddly enough, the Sri Mariamman Temple—Singapore’s oldest Hindu temple—is located right in the thick of Chinatown, complete with its towering gopuram:
After my brief time in Singapore it was right onwards to South Korea, where we stayed longer for rehearsals with the ROK Navy band. Here I had a bit more chance to walk around freely. The first day we stayed in Daejeon, a compact metropolitan area that contained many small parks right alongside roadways and tall buildings.
Also, gotta love some Korean food!
The next day we departed towards Seoul, and passed the War Memorial of Korea. That night I managed a few pictures wandering around Seoul Station.
Finally, the following day of our concert in downtown Seoul, I took a bit of time during breaks to capture the area, specifically in Gwanghwamun Square.
On the way out of the city and just for fun, I had a little experiment with long exposure. Inside a moving vehicle, while rotating the camera to fix on a subject, you can create interesting lightning-like light trails all around an image.
Well guys and gals, we’ve reached the end of this monthly update, and what a month it was! Now that it actually feels like spring outside, and my knees are slowly but surely getting better, it feels great to be able to go outside and make photos while doing a bit of urban exploration. I do not know yet what May has in store for me, but I am sure it will involve photography to some degree. 🙂 As always, thanks for dropping by, and have a great day!