Forest Research Institute Malaysia

4 06 2009

Note: This post was kept in draft form since October 2008 and only edited and published today.

After attending a black and white art photography exhibition recently, my friends and I decided to try our hand at a bit of Black and White film photography for ourselves. We had bought some Black and White rolls of film a few months back but had never gotten around to using them. So we had decided to meet up early Sunday morning and head out to the Forest Research Institiut of Malaysia which is situated in the district of Kepong. That night I opened the container in which I had kept my own Nikon FE and an FM2 belonging to my brother in law. I found that the batteries had long died. After changing the batteries I loaded the first roll of film in at least 5 years. All the memories of my solo photography trips came back in a flash. TTL at that! hahaha! (Pun intended) Ok , enough bad photography jokes.

We arrived at around 9 a.m with our camera equipment. Each of us had our own digital SLR cameras, while Guna and I had brought our film SLR cameras loaded with black and white film. 5 cameras and about 10 lenses in all! Not light by a long shot. I have been here before so I decided on the route. Before long we were climbing up the Rover Track towards the highest point in the park. Not 10 minutes into the walk, Guna’s film camera’s film advance lever encountered problems and disconnected itself from the “take up” spool. With his film camera out of action, Guna concentrated on his digital shots. Here they are photographed at the beginning of the trail. It’s been quite a while since I took this picture but it does look as if Guna brought along 3 cameras.

A walk in FRIM_9

Beadon tried a few shots with the FM2 and admitted that he kept glancing at the film back after every shot looking for an LCD screen! Hahaha! Suffer dude. That was how most of us did it pre digital. To quote him, “The hardest thing about film is that you have to wait until it’s processed before you can see if you s@#%*ed up”. Actually, he did quite well when I lent him the FM2 to finish off the roll of film.

A walk in FRIMThis picture of the canopy of trees did not come off well at all. It was already 9 a.m in the morning and I think the sun was too high up by this time.  At the end of the Rover’s Trail I came upon a large crop of Hibuscus trees which were flowering. Yup it’s the Bunga Raya and i have not seen one in a long time here in Petaling Jaya.a walk in FRIM_4

a walk in FRIM_6

A walk in FRIM_2

Then we came by an abandoned house. There are many old but interesting looking houses that house the staff that work here in FRIM. This house seemed to have been abandoned for quite long time. It’s architectural style is something you do not see anymore in modern houses. It has a central courtyard which seperates the living area and the kitchen and toilets. I guess the idea is to keep the “dry” and “wet” areas of the house seperate. I was not very happy with the pictures I took on that day. Not many would look good in bkack and white.

This tree had a an interesting coloured moss growing on it. It was like someone had sprinkled tumeric powder (it’s what the malay’s call kunyit)  on it’s bark. But I thought picture itself was not a good candidate for black and white conversion.

a walk in FRIM_3

Here is tree root that was exposed by soil erosion. I thought it would look good in black and white but after some photoshop and grayscale conversion it did not look so good. A better candidate than the tree bark but not what you call a great black and white picture. What do you think? Does it look better in colour or b & w?

a walk in FRIM_5


Finally after sifting through my pictures I found a great picture which I thought would look even better in black and white. This is it after conversion and applying some vignetting. Anyone care to comment. I have loaded a rather larger picture file than I normally do if anyone wishes to download it.

a walk in FRIM_10

I have not been back to FRIM since that visit back in  September last year. Who is up for a walk this Sunday?




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