Monday, July 28, 2008

Kids, trees and seagulls.

That was a tiring day. Had to deal with two kids with ADHD. It was really challenging! Guy one was completely bouncing-off-the-wall out of control. I ended up having to be really patient but firm with him, which worked thankfully. He's got really bad anger management issues too. I thought I was bad, but this guy takes the cake. He talked non-stop about beating up people and getting into fights and yelling at everyone. Heck, he even yelled at me for no good reason other than he 'felt like it'.

Other guy was pretty doped up. It was really hard to talk to him because he was so out of it. Difference is in the medication; one's popping pills and the other isn't. Pretty clear which is which, eh? Makes you wonder whether getting a kid to pop ritalin is really any help at all.

Anyway, more photos!

That coin machine's evil

Random shot of people walking. I love that yellow-gold colour that comes through when it's late afternoon. Absolutely beautiful. Other than that... Yeah I know it's a blah shot. :p Maybe I should have used a warming filter during editing to bring out those shades more. Hmm...

Sunlight through the trees... again!

Shot more sunlight through the trees again. I think this really is my signature shot. Notice how many sunlight/trees shots I have... Heck, even the blog banner (right now) is a sunlight/tree shot. I really love this shot though! Especially that lens flare and the building that's framed by the trees. It's so nicely balanced. (Okay, horn tooting time over!)


... and a seagull! I like how the water reflects him so beautifully. I know there's quite a bit of dirt on this picture. It was a muddy puddle after all. What do you think? Should I clean the picture up a little bit? Took quite a few shots to get this right though. Need to work on my closeups more.


Damnit, it's four in the morning and I still can't sleep. I hate days like these. Come to think of it, I hate those Sunday nights when it's hard to completely relax because you've got work the next day. I enjoy the work, but I don't like the fact that I have less time to do random things.

Then again, do I really want to have all that extra free time? Not like I was doing anything important or significant when I had the time.

Since starting the job, I feel like I've spent more time on the phone with Char than I did when I was working part-time. I don't think I've given her any space recently, and I'm kicking myself for that. You could say that I'm still adapting to the job and new time commitments, but that's a poor excuse. I should know better.

I don't like making mistakes, but I seem to make big ones. Worse is that some mistakes can be avoided if I think before I act. I have a bad habit of going with my heart. Thinking can be tiring when you have to analyse and deconstruct a situation, consider past information, plot probable outcomes and impact on persons, be aware of the environment, and come to a decision within a second or two.

But if some people can do it, I don't see why I can't. I'll just have to try harder.

I've given up on trying to sleep tonight; brain doesn't want to rest. It's good to have a good think about the important things in life and where you might be lacking or where you might have gone wrong; but it's stupid to do it at this time of the night. Unfortunately, I can't rest despite my best efforts to just zone out and not think.

On a side note, my computer is mucking up and had some problems restarting earlier. It's barely a month old too. Trust a PC, eh?

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Afternoon in the park.

Went to Freo briefly to do a little shooting. Thank god for fine weather! That said, I did get there as the sun was setting, so this batch of shots aren't very well lit. It's a shame because the colours could more vibrant.

Looking at the pictures that I've done recently, I don't think I have improved at all since picking up the camera again. I certainly don't make people sit up and go 'wow'; more like 'oh, that's nice'. Need to work on my angles too. I know some shots would be more dynamic if I shot it lower or higher or at an angle. Need to internalise that.


My grandma used to bring me to the little playground next to our block in Ang Mo Kio when I was four or five. I remember quite clearly one afternoon she picked me up from kindergarten, let me play around the playground for a bit before going home to a lunch of fried egg and rice. It's the little things like that which stick in your head: innocence and idyllic days.

I miss you grandma.


I love how us church boys used to play football every weekend. Sometimes the oldies (meaning our dads) would come in, and we'd have a fathers versus sons game. We always lost; guess experience does count for a lot, eh? Oh, those were the days.

Come to mummy

This was one of those completely random pictures that just randomly happen. I pointed my camera in their general direction, and there it was. I like this picture, it gives me a sense of familial security between mother and child. Family is important to me, even though my current one practically drives me up the proverbial wall every other day.

More photos to come soon!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

More photos!

As promised, more random photos! I took these around Subiaco after work on Monday. I wish the weather would let up on the weekend so that I can get some nice shots in. All this rain is rather dreary. I want to go do more night shots again, there's something about the night that really captivates me. That and I haven't shot in Fremantle at all. Anyone want to come with me this weekend (if weather permits)?


Random flower close-up near the Subiaco Town Council building. It's really pretty with all the flowers and plants growing around the area. Subiaco really is quite picturesque. It almost doesn't feel like Perth at all.


Shot this from my car while waiting for the lights to change. I'm actually kinda surprised it turned out as well as it did. I really love the colours in this picture. Plus I really like that kind of 'stretching forward' effect that you get with shots like these.

Boreal Shadow

I took this in a carpark, if you can believe it. I pulled my car into the lot, looked right, and there it was. As you can probably see, I do have this thing for lights and shadow. Of everything I shot on Monday, this is my favourite shot. Strangely enough, it's also my first shot. That's life!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

First school.

Had my first school visit today. Went to Lynwood Senior High to register some students for the CHILL programme (group sessions; don't ask me, I didn't name it). Must say it's really interesting to actually be 'on the job' as opposed to all the training and induction I've been doing so far.

I've realised how quickly an hour can zip by when you're just trying to build bonds and fish for useful information. I felt like there was barely enough time to start talking, and then time's up. All I really got was a sketchy personal history and the fellow's name. Not too impressive, eh?

One of the kids I talked to comes from a broken home where he got abused frequently, and now he takes his aggression out on everyone around him. Another kid has got a alcohol and marijuana problem (and is disturbingly proud of it), and yet another's been trying to cope with his father's death for the past 3 years. It's sad and difficult. I hope that what little I can do will help them.

On a complete side note, Mingyang is going to go and apply for pilot school just for the hell of it. Dude, I love you like a brother, but you don't have a driving license and you want to fly?! (I admit I cracked up when he told me, and everyone started looking at me funny)

Snapped some pictures on the way home from work yesterday. Will upload when I get around to it.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Another update.

I know I've been MIA for a bit on this blog. Things have been getting busy, so I haven't really had the time to sit down and blog. Haven't taken any nice pictures in a while too. I'm looking to shoot tomorrow if weather permits, so fingers crossed there!

I've started a new job at Jobs West. We're contracted to run Youth Pathways, which is a state programme aimed at helping 'at risk' kids in schools. We aim to either (1) keep the kids in school; (2) assist in transitioning the kids to either apprenticeships, jobs or higher education; (3) deal with kids' social/behavioural and self-esteem problems. Been at it for the past week, and it's been really good.

I'm quite excited about this job, and I think it's fantastic that I'll be applying the practical skills I've learned in Uni. Plus it might just put me in a higher standing when I apply for Masters this year!

Got a new computer. The Mac has finally been put to rest after 4.5 years of faithful service. I'm currently running on a PC (I know! Sacrilege right?). Specs are dualcore 2.1Ghz, 3 GB RAM, 250GB HDD, 256MB graphics card. I'm running on Vista, which is seriously annoying. The computer occasionally restarts itself with no warning after installing updates. Plus there's so much going on in the background that the computer can randomly slow down. Other than that, no complaints though.

Guitar lessons have been going good, I'm slowly getting better (although I still suck monumentally). I've still got serious difficulty in doing any licks or riffs that involve my pinky. I swear there's no strength in that finger. Yet anyway. I'm working on it.

Weight loss hasn't really been happening. I haven't gained anything, but I do feel quite a bit fatter for some weird reason. Admittedly, my exercise has been limited to stretching, weights, and 5BX every morning before I head off to work. I need to control my diet more. Maybe cut down on lunch and try really hard to curb the snacking.

Bought myself a few new clothes for work. I actually have a semi-decent stable of workwear now. Scary eh?

Other than that, nothing really much has happened. Things are generally looking up, although full-time working life needs a little getting used to. There's so many things I want to do, but simply don't have the time for anymore. I am worried about Char because she's going through a rough patch right now, and it's really affecting her. I'll appreciate it if you keep her in your prayers, thanks.

One little whinge before I stop rambling: I can't understand how I'm supposed to do things like go to the bank or to Centrelink when I simply have no time to do said things on weekdays, and they close on weekends! I'd hate to think that I'll have to take half a day off just to sort out my own personal admin.

Eventide Lauch Party

Played at the Eventide Launch Party with Joe today, did okay for myself. Came in 5th, although I know I could have done better, given more time! (I drew my fourth round, although I would have won it if we didn't run out of time). Lost my last game to the fellow who came in first, so I'm not complaining!

Ran a mono-white deck with lots of hybrids, which ironically is the complete colour opposite of my Shadowmoor pre-release deck. Joe calls it a very timid deck. Admittedly, it is quite brainless. Love the little combat tricks I can do with it though!


The Deck

1 x Last Breath
1 x Kithkin Zealot
1 x Safehold Sentry
1 x Ballnock Trapper
1 x Loyal Gryfalcon
1 x Kithkin Rabble
1 x Recumbent Bliss
1 x Prison Term
1 x Archon of Justice
1 x Ballynock Cohort

1 x Oracle of Nectars
1 x Oversoul of Dusk
1 x Safehold Duo
1 x Kitchen Finks
1 x Barkshell Blessing
1 x Zealous Guardian
1 x Thistledown Duo
2 x Fire at Will
1 x Duergar Assailant
1 x Double Cleave
1 x Voracious Hatchling
1 x Beckon Apparition

18 x Plains

My favourite play of the tournament has to be my third round. My opponent played a Doomgape, I went 'oh holy crap!', then I topdecked and cast Recumbent Bliss on his Doomgape. With the massive maw of doom unable to attack or block, it cleared his board over the next couple of turns, leaving me free to attack with my happy weenie army. I didn't even draw or cast my big guns.