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Week Ender 90

Here’s something fun to start off the week.

Just the Two of Us (and Ken Jeong)

When you and your bodacious girlfriend (who, if you’re lucky, looks like Kate Upton) jet off for a summer romp, pack a bag full of slimmed-down cords—and not much else. You’ll look sexy, and she’ll keep those starry eyes locked on you—even if you get photo-bombed by funnyman Ken Jeong

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Photographs by Peggy Sirota

August 2011
Read More at GQ

Week-Ender #79

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Ramen (ラーメン, rāmen?, IPA [ɽa̠ː.me̞ɴ]) is a Japanese noodle dish. It consists of Chinese-style wheat noodles served in a meat- or fish-based broth, often flavored with soy sauce or miso, and uses toppings such as sliced pork (チャーシュー, chāshū?), dried seaweed (海苔, nori?), kamaboko, green onions, and occasionally corn. Almost every locality in Japan has its own variation of ramen, from the tonkotsu (pork bone broth) ramen of Kyushu to the miso ramen of Hokkaido.

Macdy_RmnTpe_007Ramen is of Chinese origin, however it is unclear when ramen was introduced to Japan. Even the etymology of the word ramen is a topic of debate. One theory is that ramen is the Japanese pronunciation of the Chinese 拉麺 (la mian), meaning “hand-pulled noodles.” A second theory proposes 老麺 (laomian, “old noodles”) as the original form, while another states that ramen was initially 鹵麺 (lǔmiàn), noodles cooked in a thick, starchy sauce. A fourth theory is that the word derives from 撈麵 (lāomiàn, “lo mein”), which in Cantonese 撈 means to “stir”, and the name refers to the method of preparation by stirring the noodles with a sauce.

Tonkotsu (豚骨, “pork bone”; not to be confused with tonkatsu) ramen usually has a cloudy white colored broth. It is similar to the Chinese baitang (白湯) and has a thick broth made from boiling pork bones, fat, and collagen over high heat for many hours, which suffuses the broth with a hearty pork flavor and a creamy consistency that rivals milk or melted butter or gravy (depending on the shop). Most shops, but not all, blend this pork broth with a small amount of chicken and vegetable stock and/or soy sauce. The noodles are thin and straight, and it is often served with beni shoga (pickled ginger). Currently the latest trend in tonkotsu toppings is māyu (マー油/麻油), a blackish, aromatic oil made from either charred crushed garlic or Sesame seeds. It is a specialty of Kyūshū, particularly Hakata-ku, Fukuoka (hence sometimes called “Hakata ramen”).

Source- Thank you Wikipedia!

This bowl of ramen was devoured at The Mall in Taipei at the basement food court but don’t let food court turn you off this chasyu ramen was NTD250 (approx. PHP375 or USD8.50) The Mall is at the Shangri-La Hotel on Dun Hua South Road, Section 1, Lane 236, #26 (106台北市大安區敦化南路一段236巷26號).

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Week-Ender #78 April 2011

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Independent cafe's are tucked away in small street everywhere in Taipei and mostly have much better brew than the big chains. EOS 7D+24-70 f/2.8

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The buildings of Taipei goes well together with all the plants and trees and makes the city more welcoming. EOS 7D+EF 24-70 f/2.8

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One thing noticeable are all the street signs everywhere but it does add quite a flavor to the city. EOS 7D+EF 24-70 f/2.8

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A quiet city on Sunday. EOS 7D+EF 24-70 f/2.8

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A view of density at sunset-the Xin Yi District, Taipei, Taiwan. EOS 7D+EF 70-200 f/2.8

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A view of the top of Taipei 101 at night. Captured with EOS 7D+EF 70-200 f/2.8

Next up- Canon Imagefest 2011 Taipei

 

IMAGES OF THE UNIVERSE

Flying Across the Moon, Image Credit: Photo courtesy of Fernando Echeverria

I was photo blog surfing yesterday and after a few hours it seemed like many were starting to look-alike. Then I stumbled upon a little site called NASA. Before yesterday it never crossed my mind to check out. These guys have some of the best gear to shoot with and if it weren’t for NASA’s reputation the photos would appear to be from a science fiction movie conjured up by very creative effects people.

How many photographers can boast about shooting the universe? I easily spent an hour just looking through the photos. If you have a few hours to spare, check out the site. The photos, to say the least, are beautiful.

Click to view large.

DANICA CELEBRATING 18

I haven’t been around much the past 2 weeks from all the thousands of photos needing my attention.

After a few hair raising, eye popping incidents the post processing cycle is fin. Oh, wait, wasn’t there just an event a few days ago? Well, there it is, a photographers work never ends and I truly love it.

For Week-Ender #43, this little party got off to a slow start but finished on the fun end. It was great to be part of a tender little celebration for such a significant time in ones life. DF, be good but always have fun while you are at it!

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SEEING STARS AFTER 40 MINUTES

Going on vacation is a good thing. It gives the daily bump and grind a little break and lets your inner photographer do what it wants.

Doing star trails is an easy task so long as the necessary elements cooperate. And a few of those are controlled by mother nature. A clear night sky without too much light from the moon is as important as having a dslr remote for bulb. What’s a night sky without too much moon light? Well, a simple gauge is total blackness when you look through the dslr’s viewfinder. It would be a great plus without clouds as they reflect the light from the moon.

Mac_star_trails_001FPxComposing, obviously will be difficult. So it’s either do a guesstimate or shoot test shots on bulb setting til you get it right. Opting for the latter an initial 2 minute exposure told me to adjust composition to include framing elements such as the trees.

Turn off AF and IS and manually focus to infinity. Plug in your choice of remote and use a steady tripod with a ball head.

Now that the dslr set up is raring to go make sure a dark colored cloth is handy to cover up the viewfinder so no ambient light will spill onto the sensor. And make sure to time the exposure (duh…).

Shoot in RAW when possible and adjust white balance in post processing. That way the white balance can be set to auto and keeping the settings as simple as possible. All you will have to worry about is the aperture. Start at f/5.6 and adjust accordingly.

This exposure was at 20 minutes (not bad considering this was a first try). The 50D then took another 20 minutes to process the exposure as the long exposure noise reduction was turned on. The camera produces a black background to counter the noise in that extra time. In total this single exposure lasted 40 minutes.

If you have any questions or comments don’t hesitate to use the comment box. Thanks for reading.

A380 SKY KITCHEN (A380空中廚房): EATING ON THE GROUND

The service staff dressed as flight attendants serve in a replica of the A380 interior complete with first class.

Located in an upscale department store in uptown Taipei, just a stones throw away from the Taipei 101, this restaurant serves a western menu from pastas to steaks. Kiddie meals and rice entree’s are served in familiar airline plastic trays with other first class meals like steaks and chops served in porcelain tableware.

It was a fun one time experience with overall food and service nothing to rave about but an excellent photo op for all.

All photographs were shot on the Canon G7: 35mm, TV mode, 1/15-1/40 sec., iso 200, no flash, processed in Photoshop.

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LOST THEN FOUND

I’m going to swamped in the coming week with post processing chores after this weekend’s events. I will just post this Week-Ender one day early.

On relax mode now after finishing prep work for an event tonight with 400 plus people attending. My biggest in terms of people thus far in my career as photographer. Wish me luck and I’ll be a few kilos lighter come Monday morning.

Without further ado, I’d like to share with you a gracious night of conversation and good food. Thank you to Tito Mel & Tita Heidi. Until the next round…

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