Saturday, July 19, 2008

Mga Kabayan, Meet Binh Ly aka bly2k, our "Photographer of the Week" and Winner of Contest #23!

Admin's foreword:

"I recall bly2k's hesitance when I first invited him to join KABAYAN, saying he's not a Filipino nor a Fil-American. He only agreed to join after I assured him that we have other nationalities in our group. I am glad he's with us; and happy for him that he's won this contest." :D


"nyc st. patrick's cathedral"

nyc st. patrick's cathedral spring 2008 2337

About The Winning Photo:

I've been to the St. Patrick's Cathedral in NYC many times and I got bored of the usual rectilinear perspectives. So one day I decided to bring my fisheye lens just to see what I can do inside the church. When I got in, I got disappointed that tripods were not allowed so I had to handhold this shot at f/2.8. To compose, I kneeled down on the floor and pointed my camera slightly upwards because I knew I wanted to capture the grand beauty and architecture of this church from a "fisheye" perspective.


contest 23 winner

Binh Ly aka bly2k,
entirely in his own words (no editing necessary - pinoyphotog):

I was born in the Philippines to Vietnamese parents. I always get asked why I'm not a Filipino citizen - that's because the Philippines does not give citizenship by birth! I came here to the U.S. right after college (UPLB) and have been living in NJ since. I love to go out and explore nature's beauty and capture what I see through my lens. Too bad I have motion sickness and I hate getting in the plane just like I hate my dentist. I also love playing the acoustic guitar as much as I love photography.

I was born digital and started taking photographs only very recently with no prior experience. There was no why or how, I just happened to stumble upon the concept of bokeh and wide aperture on the internet and I had to give it a try. The rest is history.

Whenever I go out, in my bag you'll find a Canon 1DS Mark II, a 24-105 lens, a Gitzo tripod, a couple of GND filters, and a circular polarizer. The tripod by the way is for self defense since I tend to take pictures only at dawn and at dusk and it can get scary out there sometimes.

There is no specific person who is my main influence in photography. I do love landscape photography the most so I can appreciate some good landscape photographers out there. Most of them are simply my friends and contacts on flickr and (specifically people from the Landscape Photographer forum).

I love taking pictures of landscape, nature, people, and architecture. I do have a little interest in studio photography too but I just don't have the charm to attract beautiful ladies who are willing to model for me. So I have a couple of loving alien bees strobes at home looking for pretty models, if you're interested. :)

Five years from now, I will probably have visited at least a couple of U.S. national parks and have taken thousands of pictures and met hundreds more friends. If the studio photography works out well, I can try to do that for close friends and family on special occasions. I love it so much when I take pictures for friends at birthdays, outings, events and they are always happy to have their photos taken as a keepsake for their memories. I believe that when time has passed, all we have left are nothing but photographs and memories (yes I'm a fan of Jim Croce).


The following are some pictures that make me happy:

- Broken pier in Ocean City, NJ:

I thought New Jersey was such a boring state until I discovered this gem on
flickr. Just goes to show, there is always beauty nearby if you look hard

new jersey shore broken pier spring 2008


- Eagle cliff falls in Watkins glen, NY:

This photo was taken on my first photo outing date with Nel (skylove on
flickr). It just brings back some memories of how much fun we had waking up
very early everyday to get good light on our subjects.

havana glen eagle cliff falls spring 2008<br />2681


- Headless figures at Princeton University, NJ:

This photo again was taken just literally in my backyard. It also taught me
the importance of good light in making great photographs.

princeton spring 2008 1934

As you can see, I crave good light and I love to wake up early in the
morning (or stay out late at dusk) for 2 reasons: there are less people
around and most landscape subjects look very good only during this time.


bly2k's Footnote:
("romance is in the air? :p - pinoyphotog)

I know you didn't ask but I just wanted to add one more thing: I accidentally met
a beautiful person on flickr last year and we're now very happy together.

It's so funny how sometimes a simple hobby like photography can bring people
together no matter how much distance there is among us. I know sometimes
we get caught up in the daily grind but think about how many people you've met
on flickr that grew up in the same hometown/country as you and eventually became
your very good friends.

So keep making more friends, keep pressing that shutter, keep exploring the world,
and do it now while you're still young.

* * *

No comments: