Sunday, 30 December 2012

Getting Ready for 2013! Bright Ideas style!

So, yeah I shall be writing a blog after this entry on how to get those awesome photos for fireworks; I will give you the setting, what you would need, and post processing to make them even better! I learned this all from Greg Cazillo, Google him my friends! Of course that is saying if I have nothing to do later on so I can actually type an entry for fireworks photography.

Anyways, new year, meaning new logo and watermark. I was going to just change the year on my current logo/watermark, but it was getting too familiar for me. So here is the new logo/watermark, ehr, well watermark technically, the lightbulb splat logo is still the same.

This will be seen in all my projects, mostly photos. As you can see, the project name is no longer Rina and my nickname, it is now a new girl, Haru, and my nickname. LOL

Anyways, cheers to a great 2012 and welcome and even better 2013!

God Bless always!!


Friday, 21 December 2012

Party like its December 21, 2012!

Well, yeah, this is an inevitable post in this day and age; and I am well aware the Mayans didn't particularly say that the world would end on this day, it is just their calendar ending in this particular era to start anew - much like every December 31 is the last day of the year, thus a an era or cycle, to start anew. The Mayans were nowhere to be seen in order to make a new calendar for their new cycle,me thinks.

Now looking at the bright side, then again, there was no dark side to this day at all, is that we can tell our children in the future that we survived the Y2K bug, The Rapture, and December 21, 2012 Doomsday... if you're old enough to have lived past all that. Now that's something you're children will be at awe at. Or think you stupid.

 So, to wrap up December 21, 2012 in this side of the small world, I would like to share a video (not made by me) featuring my favorite band of all time, The Cure, with their acoustic rendition of their own song, appropriately entitled, "The End of the World".


Blasted Printer!

So, my printer clogged up yesterday afternoon, and so there I was using my whatever-know-how and fix it myself. Of course, it wasn't pretty... Ink spilled on my desk, thanks fully, not my main workstation's desk, but pretty darn close!

As the ink is slowly seeping through my bond papers and onto my actual desk, it struck me, "don't waste the ink", and in doing so, I got one 4x6 inch photo paper, had the ink splatter on it, and subsequently let the ink flow to one side and have an artistic effect. I hung it... but did I keep it? Nope. Just long enough to get a photo of it.

Compliment Each Other Like Colors

And oh yeah, surviving December 21, 2012 apparently.


Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Inside My Moonpool With Some Caterpillars

That is, of course, a reference to Moonpools and Caterpillars, a Fil-Am rock band, that were prominent in the 90s.

I was too young to actually own my own records, but thankfully having 2 cool sisters who are really into alternative rock, and rock in general, had 1 of their records, specifically their acclaimed album "Lucky Dumpling".

Remembering how my eldest sister would play "Soon" over and over to the annoyance of our parents, but to my delight, and certainly her own. Other songs in that album were and still are amazing up to this day. Not knowing what title the songs were other than for the song "Soon", I care not as I simply enjoyed the tunes.

My eldest sister, Maggie, then went back to the States and decided to live there, leaving me and my other older sister, Debbie, to be the only kids left at home with our parents. As she left, so did the music... Debbie however did take over control of how music would be played at our house; sure, there were alternative rock in her veins and it is heard in the music she'd play on her CD player, but will soon be taken over by R'n'B, Hip-Hop, and the like. A nemesis to one's ears such as mine, who is a true blue, rocker.

When I finally gotten older enough, I finally got to define my own music, albeit, only in my room and not as dominating the house as my sisters' music once did. Purely rock and it's many diverse subcategories, from blues rock, alternative rock, progressive, and heck, even J-Rock, I've heard them all (Well, of course, I am exaggerating).

Years gone past since my sister left for the states, and the idea of Moonpools faded as time went past; just cleaned my room a week ago, and like the Ring of Power showing up to Smeagle's friend (before inevitably being killed by Smeagle and took it for himself and became Gollum; I didn't kill anyone by the way), I found the cassette tape of Moonpools and Caterpillars' Lucky Dumpling and "Soon" became my precious.

Sadly, I no longer have a cassette player, but was enough to remind me to search for their songs at YouTube.

Memories come rushing back in, and the songs I never knew the title of, finally became known to me. It is like finding a lost treasure, only to find out what they really are, and what they really are, are even more special.

Music, to me, nowadays, are just released because the contract demands it and the money is there. Gone are the days where music were written for... the love of it all.

I will not be those wannabes in YouTube saying "Oh, I wish I was not born on this generation, I wish I was born in the 80s" or the like. Well, I grew up in the 90s (Figuratively grew up in the 90s), and I was in the generation most kids dare hope to be born in. Well I say this, even if I were born in 89, I don't wish to be born early enough to enjoy The Beatles in their prime. No. I am happy to be born at 1989, well past the prime of some great bands in their respective era, and happy enough to reap the joys of the internet, knowing that great bands before I was born I can easily read about in Wikipedia and hear in YouTube or the like.

I just ranted there.

Anyways, I am getting out of line.

Might as well end here for now.


Monday, 17 December 2012


Indeed, in the hectic world... in the hectic unforgiving world, sometimes it is just best to play and forget about reality for a little while.

Head into fantasies of dragons and whatnot. Be a hero wielding a two handed sword, draped in golden armor, saving the world and the damsel in distress.

Saturday, 15 December 2012

I Heart Christmas Lights

Finally! My last Christmas vacation is here! I say last because in the upcoming years I will be having duties in the hospitals during the holidays... ah, medicine surely entails many sacrifices, then again, isn't it the same for any job where they hardly get any vacation, let alone, Christmas vacations?

Here's a little something I've been dying to try for the longest time; I made a paper cut out to fit my lens and in the center, cut a heart shape in order to supersede the lens' aperture (diaphragm) blades. This will make the lights appear as the shape of the cut out, in this case a heart, rather than a circle created by the aperture blades.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Me thinks it is time to upgrade my gear

Well, only the camera body that I owned for 2 years, the D5000, I believe is slated for a good upgrade since I am now feeling the limitations of the camera to my needs. I am looking towards the D7000 since the prices dropped like crazy. Maybe due to the impending release of a so called D7100, but if it is going to priced similarly to the D7000 upon its initial release, then I don't mind getting the D7000 instead of the newer D7100.

I will keep my prime lens, the Sigma 30mm f/1.4, but will save up for a much needed 50-150 f/2.8 (equivalent to 70-200mm since on a crop sensor body).

I am going to sell my beloved D5000 to create a slight revenue and a foundation for purchasing D7000 as I will only need to add just a few more cash to do so.

Hope everything will go according to my plans this coming months before my clerkship...

Monday, 19 November 2012

My How Have the Days Gone by so Quickly

This is my first post in like eons! Anyways, I have been increasingly busy with my studies, building my PC, and ultimately building my team for my media project.

Right now it is hard to find time to actually build a new YouTube channel wherein I will be giving Lightroom lessons and some Photoshop lessons, however the latter, I rather have someone better than me do that.

I am also now on Skype, for those interested in helping me and my friend Roy build a Podcast for photographers, my Skype name is rinax89.

Remember if you have Twitter, follow me @ChanUdarbe; Facebook, search Chan Udarbe.

Hope to have more buddies join us in building the future Bright Ideas YouTube channel and Podcast.

Oh yes! Visit my photostream here:

I have been updating recently...


Saturday, 21 July 2012

Little Bundle of Joy!

Hold up! No, I am not a father per se... I don't have a fiance to impregnate, let alone, a girlfriend!

Anyways, I got me a brand new kitten that is simply sweet. She is normal domestic kitten, no special breed whatsoever, but still the most gorgeous kitten I ever owned. Wished she was a grey kitten though, but orange/white ain't too bad either.

My first kitten way back then was a bit of a problem kitten (urinates and defecates everywhere!), but this kitten was immediately litter trained and is so well behaved; only being noisy when she wants attention... that's gonna be a problem since I am not at home most of the time. LOL

Oh yeah, I named her "Yuuki" which is Japanese for courage, if I am not mistaken.

So most probably the next couple of photos I will be taking in the near future will be about Yuuki-kun!

That's all buddies! Keep shooting and never look back!


Monday, 28 May 2012

As Summer Draws to a Close

Blue Summer
A shot taken during my short stay at Grande Island Resort at Subic

Classes are about to start yet again, thankfully I am now at my third year of medical school. But it comes at a price; halfway done with medical school proper, but from here on out, I wouldn't have a real vacation for three or so years.

As the hot summer days seemed so endless, but like all good things, it has to an end. As it draws closer to the last day of summer, I can only look back at what will be remembered as Summer of '12.

Have I done what I planned for the summer? Well, yes and no. Yes, I have visited my granny at Pangasinan and got to visit my late gramps gravesite; I got to see old friends and relatives; made new friends along the way; got to visit the chruch in Manaoag; and got to raise awareness to my Flickr site and the like. No, because I didn't go the States as I intended; my computer components are not available until early June; my Sigma lens that I sorely wanted to purchase isn't available in the Philippines, yet; and I didn't get to meet up with my old bandmates to recreate our band.

But with such a mixed accomplishments and failures, did I still enjoy myself? Of course I did. These are the kind of days that I took for granted as a child. These are the days when you just want to sleep 12 hours and beg for more. These are the days that if you are lazy to do anything, but all means, don't do anything!

Alas, it is time to get back into reality, time to become an adult again, because let's face it, school is a stepping stone to my future career. This is for me and my future so I can't always slack off forever. It is as my eldest sister, Maggie, tells me, "Do all the hard work now; Have those sleepless nights now; Sacrifice now. Then when the dust clears, that's when you can have all the fun in the world". True enough; when I finally reach my ultimate goal, have a stable paying job, and have my own happy family, that's when I, along with my current family and my future family can just have fun like all those summer days that passed.

So here's to the wonderful summer I will have had courtesy of 2012.

Peace!! Keep shooting!!

Saturday, 26 May 2012

What Do You Expect From a Judge Named Moriarty?

I just read an article from (Click Here for the article) about Diane Tran, a 17 year old honor student in Willis, Texas, who was sent to prison and given a fine for missing "too much school".

In the article written by LittleViking, it was said that Diane's parents just recently had a divorce and they just left her and her siblings (one younger sister and one older brother) alone. Obviously, now since both her parents have gone their own ways, this left her and her siblings with no financial support.

Diane has since been scouring for jobs to just make ends meet at the of the day. With juggling 2 jobs, in order to support her younger sister and support her older brother's college expenses, it is no surprise that she has to miss out on school. But even so! Her grades are high!

So why Judge Moriarty would even try and slap her with a sentence for imprisonment and a $100 fine is just bonkers. Have a heart! It is not like she is totally losing sight in her studies for missing some days thanks to work to support her siblings; just look at her grades! Look at her determination! In the article, her classmate and co-worker, Devin Hill, said that she stay up until 7am just to get her homework done. She is, by no means, losing focus, or disrespecting her studies. Not one bit!

It's as LittleViking said in her article, "She has done what her parents failed to do, she is supporting her family--and she's still maintaining an impressive work load."; indeed she has. And to just put her in jail like that, give her a fine like that, for what she has gone through and what she is doing for her family, missing a couple of days of school seems irrelevant.

Please click the hyperlink to get redirected to the article where you can even find another link to give you some information to Judge Moriarty.

Diane deserves to know that what she is doing is valiant and very much appreciated, not just by her siblings, but all of us else. Once I find a way to digitally contact her, I will give her my praise and respect. She will also be in my prayers. Someone as strong as her... deserves to be trending online! No offense to American Idol or anything, but this deserves to be trending more.

Bright Ideas Expanding... Again?

As I have mentioned before, I will venture into music and video editing later this year. And yes, I will still be doing that. But as I met up with some old buddies of mine yesterday, they heard about my digital art interests and now they want to jump in the action. Apart from simple digital art, they even want to go as far as making graphic novels that we will host ourselves in a website that I will be creating later on.

We are trying to monetize these (yes, it is awful to think that I am trying to sell out, but hey, we need money to pay bills LOL) by way of ads and the alike. I am also trying to raise my service fee for photography and computer repair. These earnings, as humble they may ever be, is still a blessing for us, as a simple private company working mainly as a hobby, to make ends meet.

In time, I hope you, the readers, the followers, in this site and my various other sites/profiles, will spread about my "Bright Ideas Media" website/blog and it's subsidiary website/blog by word of mouth, liking through FB, sharing through Twitter, +1 by way of Google +, etc.

Don't worry, we won't be to corporate about this and become a faceless money grubbing company. We won't ever sell out. Just want us to be a little more "famous" and earn a few won't hurt one bit to make ends meet.

Thanks my buddies!!

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Where Have All The Flowers Gone?

Where Have All The Flowers Gone?
As the flowers fell off my second and last day of my trip to Grande Island Resort in Subic; is this a tad too saturated for your tatse?

It has been another period of absence in updating this site, but I am back... again... for now... again. I have been away because this month of May I have gone to Pangasinan and not too long ago I went to Subic for a vacation of sorts; I have also been on the market for my next desktop build to please my tech side that I have neglected  for quite some time; I have been reading up on new Sigma lenses, one of which, the 50-150mm f/2.8 OS, I am saving up to purchase later this year.

I got some amazing shots and stories to tell about my trip to Pangasinan; that's the area where my mom grew up and she introduced me to her old high school buddies (they had a reunion that time), she re-introduced me to my relatives whose names continue to evade my long term memory, and she was willing enough to show me around, especially at night near the market area, to take street photos. She is simply awesome. I will definitely be sharing my photos and stories here in due time.

My trip to Subic was just as entertaining, but was short lived; it was just a two day trip. I was with my sis and her colleagues from Angeles University Foundation Medical Center (AUFMC) Department of Internal Medicine. I had fun exploring Grande Island Resort and got to bond with my future professors in medicine and probably my future consultants and residents when I become a clerk or intern later in my life. Overall, it was an interesting experience, one where I avoided the water since I don't know how to swim, but it being just a short time, I wouldn't be making a separate, more in depth, blog about it. It stops here.

I have been keeping myself busy finding ways to reach out to my old computer geek buddies and finding great shops to buy components for a price that is considered a steal. Just last year, my custom built (yep, I bought all the components separately and built it at home; apart from photography and music, my other passion is anything computer related) quad core died; I overvolted the whole system because of my lapse in judgement that day when I was overclocking. It did serve it's purpose for four years prior to that unfortunate accident; I built it circa 2007. So I started using this laptop, which at that time, was a formidable gaming grade laptop. But as time went on, it just doesn't seem to cut it anymore; extremely slow, HDD caches like crazy causing my system to halt for at least 3 minutes, no such thing as hyperthreading, and the dual core just won't help me in my multitasking like it used to.

This prompted me to have a resurgence of my old computer geeky self and started reading and speaking in Greek (or that's what my family and friends say when I start talking about PC components). This also made me just save up enough cash to get me an i7 3770 (the locked version of the 3rd gen i7's; I will not get the unlocked version because I won't overclock to avoid my idiotic mistake similar to last year); I will also get higher mid to high end components as opposed to my purely midrange components on my older quad core build. I will still go for dual monitors but I am trying to budget my expenditures so it is either two 20" LED monitors or two 22" monitors. As for the GPU, I was going to buy a midrange Fermi card since I won't be gaming as much as I used to when I was younger, but the new, more expensive, Kepler cards can take advantage of the new PCIe 3.0 that my Z77 motherboard offers when one uses an Ivy Bridge processor. Then maybe some of you will say, "why not and AMD GPU?", I am an Nvidia fanboy... end of story.

I saw a video from Jared Polin A.K.A. "Fro" from, about the Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8 OS which replace the non-OS version of the same focal length. This immediately got my attention as I am a crop sensor user and have no intentions, even when I become a doctor with a stable income, to ever switch a full frame camera. I do plan to buy the successor to the D7000 in the future since that is quite a high quality crop sensor camera (Nikon fanboy here). The 50-150mm focal length on a crop sensor body is equivalent in a way to the versatile 70-200mm focal length in a full frame body. It will work great, side by side, with my 30mm f/1.4 prime from Sigma (equivalent to a 50mm on a full frame), and will be my second lens on my projected "Trinity" of Sigma lenses. But with my crazy expenses on my projected PC build, I am planning to get this lens later this year. Plus, it isn't available yet in the Philippines as far as I know...

School is like 2-3 weeks away if I am not mistaken, so I am nearly going to be twice as busy. I will, however, do my best to keep my Flickr, Facebook, Twitter, and this Blogger, accounts as active as possible; I will also be active in the forums as much as I can in and

So, that's all for now! Keep shooting! Never look back!!



You can add/follow me in Facebook and Twitter (look at the right panel).

You can also join the forums at and where I am active (usually around midnight, that's on +8:00 GMT).

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Always Be Vigilant

Those are the words from my good buddy and mentor, Neil Castro, or how we like to call him, Red (Check his FB and his photos! HERE!). He may be younger than me, but his knowledge in the field of photography is great, thus, without the cameras in both our hands, I am obviously the older one where he must listen to me, but with cameras at hand, I must listen to him for I will learn so much just like that one photowalk we were in together (I will try and make a post about that sometime).

With those words tossing and turning within my head, every event, I try not only to shoot the actual concept of the event, for instance, a concert where the stars are the musicians, I look elsewhere (after taking enough shots of the musicians, of course) and then you will see the security guards sharing a cigarette to sully their nerves; obviously, an interesting shot outside the actual theme of the event, hence, ALWAYS BEING VIGILANT is essential.

I say this because last April 26, 2012, Angeles University Foundation School of Medicine (AUF-SOM) had a medical mission that gave out free circumcisions to any of the boys at Sapangbato, Angeles, Pampanga. Of course not ALL the boys of that town; just a small area of that town and a number of registered boys. Taking shots of the actual event (procedures, etc.) was the obvious thing to do, but there were so much going on outside the medical mission that I had to "be vigilant" enough to notice them. The last two shots in this post will show a bit of those "vigilant" shots I took.

I thought of also circumcising some boys since I want to be a surgeon later on in my med-life but I became lazy, my hands were starting to shake (something's wrong with me!), and had my migraine bothering me thanks to the summer heat!

So I stayed as the photographer of the event.

Amidst the screams of boys and the calming voices of my fellow med students and the boys' respective mothers, I sought my way to take photos of the event.

Here are some shots... With some photos with censors of course!

AUF-SOM AMSMSS Medical Mission: Circumcision
My classmate, Anne, as she calms her patient down before the procedure as our junior watches on from the far right
AUF-SOM AMSMSS Medical Mission: Circumcision
Again, Anne, this time doing the actual procedure; had to censor this shot as to not breach any policy

AUF-SOM AMSMSS Medical Mission: Circumcision
My classmate, Jason, being assisted by our classmate, Pamela, as our juniors watch on from behind

AUF-SOM AMSMSS Medical Mission: Circumcision
My classmates, Justin and Bianca, calming their patient down before the procedure; again censors as to not breach any policies

The Thorn Among The Roses
Not an actual shot of the procedures, but hey! I am in this photo so this has to be put up in here. From left to right, Arcee, Anne, Elaine, Olie, Riz, ME, and Chi. Booyah, I am the only guy in this photo with pretty ladies LOL
Then as you vigilance increases, out of the blue, you'd find people, not really interested in what's going on, but you can feel a certain emotion just looking at them:

Father and Son
Father and Son: not really interested in the things going on around them, but I felt a strong sense of bond between them; almost just like me and my dad when I was younger and up to now (in fact, he was also into photography when he was younger! SO me and my dad has a strong bond as these two)

And if your look hard enough at the area you are shooting, you can let your creativity run wild:

There was a hole in the brick wall where we had our medical mission: after a few shots, I realized how boring it was, so I let my creativity run wild and just thought of taking a long enough exposure to blur what ever vehicle passes by. I wished the moped on the right wasn't there to make it an even better shot.

Last two photos showed that always being vigilant, always being aware of your surroundings, and not always being limited to the theme of an event, can very well be your best shots of the event.

Always keep shooting, buddies!! Never look back!!


Friday, 20 April 2012

Macro with a Reverse Ring

First off, there is a slight delay in making my Wordpress account. LOL I can get lazy trying to learn new sites. In the mean time, I will update some photos that were recently added in my Flickr Photostream (You can view my whole photostream HERE).

Now it isn't the first time that I am shooting macro (link to previous post on my previous attempt at macro below); since I had no events and no real new creative ideas for new shots, I decided to practice more macro photography by using a reverse ring. But it certainly has been awhile and in doing so, what was once another skill in photography that I am progressing in, judging by my latest macro shots, I think I had a set back...

Being a cheap bastard and still only a student, I opted for a reverse ring instead. What you get is an incredible magnification ratio but with the price to pay that everything is in manual apart from the ISO and shutter speed. It is also a good way to keep your kit lens to good use rather than disposing of it.

My 52mm Reverse Ring for Nikon from JJC; a cheapo brand, but it gets the job done! (Shot with my Iphone)

Was planning to sell this to a desperate beginner or someone but decided to have this as a keeper for the purpose of macro! (Shot with my Iphone)
I was asked how to calculate for the magnification of a lens in reverse, there is this great post by Peter Forsell entitled  "Math for macro photographers" where you can find HERE; it has tons of neat information about the calculation of magnification of certain macro techniques from reversed lenses to macro extensions tubes. Great place for more info as I am just going to speak about reversing lenses.

Borrowing words from Peter Forsell, "We cannot directly calculate the zero extension magnification (Zm) of the lens we wish to mount in a reverse position. Instead we have to take a test photograph of a ruler to determine this value or find the information in the lens manual." By visiting his site, you can see an example of the calculation, but I will also post my test and calculation here since he used a Nikkor AF 50 f/1.8D and I will be using the regular 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens.

So here goes! Take a photo of a ruler with your reversed lens and get the width in mm. This is considered Subject Width. Then get your sensor size for your camera, in my case, I shoot with a Nikon D5000 and it has a sensor size of 23.6 mm in width. This is now considered your Image Width.

Next whip out your calculator!


Zm = image width/subject width = X

First Test Shot: 55mm, max aperture, focus ring fully rotated clockwise (in reverse configuration)

Roughly 31-31.5mm; I will go for 31.5mm

Zm = 23.6mm/31.5mm = 0.75X

Second Test Shot: 55mm, max aperture, focus ring fully rotated counterclockwise (in reverse configuration)

23mm Subject Width

Zm = 23.6mm/23mm = 1.03X

Third Test Shot: 18mm, max aperture, focus ring fully rotated clockwise (in the reverse configuration)

Roughly 8mm

Zm = 23.6mm/8mm = 2.95X

Fourth Test Shot = 18mm, max aperture, focus ring fully rotated counterclockwise (in reverse configuration)

Roughly 7mm

Zm = 23.6mm/7mm = 3.37X

So the 18-55mm kit lens in reverse has a magnification ranging from 0.75X to 3.37X. Be wary, the higher magnification may be tempting, but it becomes difficult to minimize camera shake, so a monopod or tripod is essential. Also take note that I had the max aperture while taking these shots causing a paper thin depth of field. And also of note! I am not 100% sure if I have done the tests right, with the knowledge of how to calculate for the magnification of an 18-55mm kit lens in reverse, please correct me if my calculations are wrong! Thanks in advance!

As mentioned above, everything is in full manual (Yes, use Manual Mode otherwise the camera won't function since it cannot detect a lens) and it can get really challenging and annoying to say the least; here you trust your good ol' eyes if it is in focus, but even with a sharp eye, that can be hard because essentially, once you remove your lens, in this case, the kit lens, out of the camera body, the aperture will automatically be at its minimum (if I am not mistaken, the kit lens' minimum aperture is f/38), add to it being reversed therefore using the smaller back lens, little to NO light can enter and you will just see pitch black in the electronic viewfinder.

This can be remedied by simply putting a card in between the aperture arm (or whatever it is called) to force it wide open. This will effectively lower the depth of field and focusing (manually) becomes extra challenging.Like so...

Once out of the body, the aperture resets to its minimum; this has little to no light entering the lens but has a larger depth of field keeping most of the subject well in focus. (Shot with my Iphone)

Maximum aperture after the addition of a makeshift card to force it open; this increases the light going in but reduces the depth of field immensely. (Shot with my Iphone)

Encircled Aperture Arm (Shot with my Iphone)

With a makeshift card inserted to displace the aperture arm in order to have the maximum aperture (shot with my Iphone)
The Makeshift Card! (Ignore the fine looking lady on my desktop; yes, you can't see her face, you just have to believe that she is beyond the word gorgeous... and yeah, shot with my Iphone)

With the reverse ring attached (Shot with my Iphone)
Attached to the D5000 (Shot with my Iphone)
Sorry for it being blurry; shot with my Iphone after all. When the exposure program is set to somewhere other than Manual Mode, in this case, Aperture Priority, the camera will not be able to detect the lens.

As you can UNCLEARLY see (I hate my Iphone), anything other than Manual Mode will give a warning  "Lens Not Attached." or similar.
Properly set at Manual mode (Shot with my Iphone)
Now you can shoot with the reversed lens! (Shot with my Iphone)
Remember, using the max aperture in an un-reversed lens already lowers the depth of field and even more so if reversed. It is simply give and take: max aperture, more light, reduced depth of field; minimum aperture, little light, greater depth of field.

You can however, remove the card once you have focused (enough) of your subject, and adjusting the ISO, Shutter, and Flash Output, to illuminate the subject enough to be seen after taking the shot (with the greater depth of field thanks to the minimum aperture, the subject should more or less be in focus). You can even use a continuous strobe to illuminate the subject while having the minimum aperture to focus. There are certainly a number of ways to remedy that problem, it is just your own creativity that is your limit.

Also note that the reverse ring is only body/manufacturer specific on the side that is going to be attached to the camera body; that is, if you have a Nikon DSLR, get a reverse ring for Nikon, same goes for Canon. However, the side of the reverse ring where the front of the lens is to be placed is filter thread size specific; So if you purchase a reverse ring for a Nikon body that caters to a 52mm filter thread, you can use a lens for Nikon, Canon, or a Sony, so long as they have a 52mm filter thread size.

Phew! Now forget about all that technical stuff! Heck, I can even be wrong with what I just said!

Anyways, on to the actual macro photos. Yes, I decided to practice some more macro with the reverse ring, but sadly, like the ones before the recent macro shots, they are quite soft and not as sharp as I hoped they would be. To fix this problem, I will mostly likely purchase me a monopod because it difficult adjusting a tripod by slowly lifting it closer or away from the subject; definitely easier to go closer/away if you just lean instead of lifting LOL. And maybe a light stand... so I can replace my biological light stand (he makes me laugh so it is especially more difficult to focus!)

Just to show my supposed progress in macro photography using a reverse ring, I will repost photos that I have taken before (you can read my past post on macro: HERE)

The series of photos below are my first ever attempt and my most creative macro to date (what can I say? I was inspired I guess). Being it my first attempt, I was satisfied even if the flower in the dew isn't all that sharp; I have gotten too used to autofocus that I can't trust my eyes anymore... and the fact I had the aperture at max lowering the depth of field and an off shoe flash at the right causing little light for me to see through the viewfinder.

Dew Upon the Flower (Macro)

Dew Upon the Flower (Macro)

Dew Upon the Flower (Macro)

Next series of shots is of a mosquito that is left to die on my bed... I didn't kill it, okay!? It was just there half dead and I decided to take a shot. Somehow improving my manual focusing here, but still not the best. I used what I mentioned above about the continuous strobe and I had the aperture at midpoint.

The Blood Sucker At Large

The Blood Sucker At Large

The Blood Sucker At Large

The following shots are of a house fly that was on my mom's red blouse (no she wasn't wearing the blouse... otherwise she won't let me take a shot of the fly at all. LOL. Plus she was my biological light stand for these shots!). Some soft, some sharp. I thought I was getting better for sure. LOL but I may just be wrong...

Red Eyes (Housefly Macro)

Red Eyes (Housefly Macro)

Red Eyes (Housefly Macro)

Red Eyes (Housefly Macro)

And now, the following are my recent shots, having no insects or better subjects, I opted to shoot my dad's Bougainvilleas in his garden. I added the dew to an otherwise boring subject. I like the lighting on the shots and I might even make a separate post on the lighting set up. But like I mentioned above, I thought I was getting better with reverse ring macro photography, sadly, with these recent photos, apart from the lack of true creativity, I feel that they are very soft. You be the judge:

Shiroi Hana

Shiroi Hana

Shiroi Hana

Thankfully, I will be going to a province this coming April 30th to I have no idea when I will be back in the city LOL and there should be interesting macro subjects to increase my skills in it. In fact, many great subjects not limited to macro!

Photography, much like the study of medicine, is a life long education. I may feel saddened that my macro skills may have had a step backwards or so, but that doesn't mean I will never ever be able to step forward again! In time, and some perseverance, we can become better, if not, greater than we ever were when we first started.

As always! One must give credit where credit is due! First, I will give my very big thanks to fellow #Cazillion (join our forums, by the way, at, Roy Panaguiton, who inspired me to buy a reverse ring and try out macro in the first place; thanks to Greg Cazillo, for making great video tutorials in all aspects of photography (you can find him at YouTube and his own site; to Mr. Chua of where I have most of my online purchases locally; and to Peter Forsell for his informative post in his site ( on calculating the magnification of lenses in macro.

And this caps off my longest post thus far in this site!

So keep shooting, my friends! And never look back!


Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Further Updates in Bright Ideas

I will start a Wordpress account later on. That is not to say I will not update this site; far from it, I love this simple blog site of mine LOL but we do want to expand further.

I have also been very active in my Flickr account; this is where I post most of my recent photos so do visit my photostream HERE.

As for my Facebook account, thanks to a stalker, I had to shut down all my albums for a moment. I will be raising some privacy levels for certain albums, if not all. You can add me HERE.

Finally, an idol of mine in the photography world has had his forums up since December. It is a friendly place to learn, but recently, just recently, traffic has been low for his site, join the forum at Trust me, you'll enjoy it there.

Hope you all can add me up at Flickr, Facebook, follow me at Twitter (@ChanUdarbe) and Wordpress (Link later on...), and join us as a #cazillion. Thanks!

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Portraits and White Balance

Still learning to improve my post process skills in order to have consistently good edits, and I will admit, my last order of photos in a recent event wasn't at all good edits. A bit oversaturated, a bit too hot (overexposed), etc., and honestly, I don't always have that many bad edits in one batch of photos, albeit, I do make errors every now and then, but not that many in one batch.

I was once taught, "leave your WB in auto in cam, and then change it in LR", true enough, it would seem a great choice, he further added "then do not choose the auto or as shot WB, if you had a flash on, choose WB flash, etc., but do mix it up every now and then to see a better balance of colors.". And such, I stayed with that lecture for over a year now.

Sadly the last edits, I followed that lecture, everything was off in certain photos, and I was perplexed. In doing so, I decided to break the rules of his lecture in my next batch of edits; since these were simply photos of me and my two great buddies, AJ and Brian, I had a lot more room to experiment with the tones and whatnot, and more importantly, try to use as shot and/or auto WB presets.

The first photo below is of AJ and the WB simply set to Tungsten as there were a lot of round light bulbs in the coffee house; having experimented with other WB presets, my lecture on choose the WB based on what type of light was on was correct.

Introspective AJ

Next photo, again of AJ, I had my flash on, so simply, I chose the flash WB setting, Again, the lecture was right.


Now this photo of Brian, I tried using tungsten, fluorescent, flash WB settings but it turned quite awful honestly, so I broke my lecturer's rule and chose AUTO WB preset, and it turned out great.

Honest Abe and Brian

Much like everything else in photography, some rules should be broken; rule of thirds, etc. are more of guidelines than actual rules (yes, I borrowed that line from the Pirates of the Caribbean).

Another lesson learned from this amateur and I am very well on the process of improving my skills.

Don't be afraid to bend the rules in photography, you may just find that you have taken the greatest shot there is if you do.


Friday, 13 April 2012

Updated Bright Ideas Logo

The re-redesigned logo; this is the 3rd incarnation of the logo

Yep, just like I said in the edited section of my previous post, I decided to re-redesign the logo; this is the 3rd incarnation and the simplest. But with the simplicity, it is much more clean than the previous versions and there is a real sense of beauty in simplicity anyway. Little can do so much... just like me, I'm short, therefore I'm a little dude, but that doesn't mean I can do much more LOL Proverbs by Christian... Maybe I should add another section to Bright Ideas for proverbs... time will tell.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Bright Ideas Suddenly Expanding!

Simply called Bright Ideas when I started dedicated to photography, it now expanded to other forms of media including music, basic art designs, and videography.

Bright Ideas is just the name of my so called photography venture; it was just to add watermarks to my photos in order to be claimed as my own and would need permission before use in any other form. Even going as far as making a logo for myself. 

As time went on, this "Bright Ideas" would become more than just photography; as I am tweaking my Photoshop skills, I have added simple webpage designs or any designs for that matter; as I am a musician, I have had experience in editing my band's jam sessions, thus adding a music editing portion under the Bright Ideas name. Now Bright Ideas has grown beyond its original intent of being purely photography, but sadly, everything was done by me. I had no colleagues in this "company" of mine. I was a one man company with a lot of... Bright Ideas.

Interesting to note that I am of fond of naming my electronics, toys, etc. after girls that I like or liked, even girls that I never met in real life, or simply girls' names that never truly existed in the first place. As such, I also decided to name the different sections of Bright Ideas after girls. As opposed to the simple yet unoriginal Bright Ideas Photography, I chose "Bright Ideas with Rina x Chan", where Rina is a real girl I've met that I have a big crush on (she is pure Japanese) and Chan is my nickname given to me by my seniors in Medicine. For my basic designing section I branded it as "Bright Ideas with Haru x Chan", where Haru is short for Haruna, though I have yet met a girl named Haruna, it's tribute to Haruna Saotome from Negima as she is quite the artist in the manga; and for my music editing section, it's a tribute to my former bandmate nicknamed Niika (happen to be the name of my Les Paul as well), and in doing so is branded as "Bright Ideas with Niika x Chan".

Being able to have three sections under the parent name isn't quite an expansion especially if you are your own boss and employees... As I was seriously thinking of trying my luck on videography, my best friend, Mike, sent me a simple video that he just did for the laughs. It was a short film, but the quality was great, so was the storyline. Out of nowhere I asked if he wanted to join Bright Ideas where he will take over the video editing portion. He loved the idea. With that, I have now a video editing section. And my first ever colleague under the name of Bright Ideas.

Of course, he'd have his own production name, but it will now be a subsidiary of Bright Ideas. All films I would make, write, or edit will have my newly branded video section, whereas if Mike makes, writes, or edits a video, he would have his production as a subsidairy of my Bright Ideas video section.

Truth be told, this "media corp" would not break through commercially, we'd be a private group hired and paid by those who are close to us such as friends, mentors, families, etc., we won't be like the next film or photography studio that will "change the future of media". Nor would we want to. This is a hobby for us future doctors.

Hope this merger will work for Bright Ideas continued growth as a private media group and hopefully I can increase the number of colleagues. But if anything, not more than ten at once... and hopefully, like Mike, they are my best friends.

That's all for now!



As it turns out, I am now trying to make a better logo for the group; I won't be posting any new photos here, on my FB, or Flickr until then.

I will post a new entry with our brand new logo! Still like the ink blot/splatter design just like my first ever logo for Bright Ideas... so I am sticking with that!

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Water Drops/Splash

I apologize for my recent absence in maintaining my blog site; games, friends, music, events, and every other outside interests have... well... kept me interested. LOL

Typical of any amateur photographer as myself, I get excited with small photo projects to improve and expand my knowledge in the field. And typical of any amateur photographer as myself, found a fun project to do, that is, capturing water drops/splashes. Once again, typical of any amateur photographer, hurriedly tried it out for him or herself.

I will admit, it is summer here, and even the night doesn't change the fact that it is hot. Imagine any hot Victoria's Secret model... without... the model... Okay, I lost myself there. Anyways, the heat wasn't at all helpful in setting this shot up; as the case may be, I am a one man studio, so I had only myself to set everything up for the shot. To top it all off, my room isn't a dedicated photography studio; I have guitars, computers, books, action figures, etc., and in doing so, made it even more difficult to set up in my room and had to be quite creative with the lack of actual props. Yes, I am a modern day MacGyver when I set up my shots. LOL I do want his mullet anyways...

Here are my shots and for more shooting info, just click the photo to get redirected to my Flickr account.

If Time Stood Still

If Time Stood Still

If Time Stood Still

If Time Stood Still

If Time Stood Still

It is important to note however, that these are my first attempt at this type of photography and was unable to stop down the aperture a tad more to make the peak of the splash more sharp. As always, there is always next time to remedy that!

So that's it for now!