I’m on a sort of extended holiday since graduation. Not that I’m complaining, but it’s not all that it’s cut out to be. I wonder if all new grads go through the same lull before starting their careers. Well, maybe the job market is better for them than it is for me. All I know is the waiting game is a real pain in the ass.
In other news, I’m going to be a presenter at the 2012 Pacific Global Health Conference in Hawaii, so that should be a nice diversion from doing nothing, and a reason to travel. Let me know if any of you guys need anything in Hawaii. No mail-order brides please…I can only have one check-in.
I’ll try to finish a few rolls of film while I’m there! Maybe some E6, because I could probably get it developed there. I’ll keep you cool people updated. Till then~
When it rains, it pours…and when it pours, it floods. That’s what happens when the Universe throws you off balance. The ratios change, and it seems like you’re the only one getting caught in the rain.
It’s cold, lonely, and it’s relentless. The rain could care less about your weathered clothing, the quality of your umbrella, or your rain proof clogs. It doesn’t stop, and it blinds you as you try to walk faster, and faster out of the rain. Your heart races as you try to get out and take shelter under a permitting roof. Until you have to go out again, but this time, it’s harder. Your clothes feel heavy, you’re colder now, and everyone around you is a stranger…a passerby dealing with the same troubles.
Could it be a passing cloud? Time decides that. In the meantime, we’re all just going to have to face the rain. Sometimes, I hate getting caught in it.
I am compelled to write by some virtue of a novel I’ve twice encountered. The first encounter was rather bereft, and I decided to leave this treasure only to return to it exactly one year later. The read itself was ephemeral, but to me, it left a lasting impression. Dai Sijie’s book, Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamtress spoke to me in ways that the reactionary novels of the time spoke to the two main characters in the book. I felt an instant connection — almost as if a past life had permitted me some sense of ownership with regard to the semi-autobiographical work of fiction. Perhaps that was Dai Sijie’s way of saying that the Little Seamstress was not the only one to be re-educated through prominent works of literature. Indeed, a treasure beyond price.
"I was carried away, swept along by the mighty stream of words pouring from the hundreds of pages. To me it was the ultimate book: once you had read it, neither your own life nor the world you lived in would ever look the same." - Dai Sijie (Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress)
the more I think of how close I am to finishing the term, the more I start to feel as if the weeks are going by slower. I have a teaching presentation due on monday, to be presented to a 5th grade class on thursday. Sometimes, on really dismal semestres such as this one, I wish that I had a stunt double. I’d let him do all of the dirty work, while I stay at home and wait for him to tell me how his day went. Completely rested, of course.
I think the stress from the semestre is slowing building up, and that awful queasy feeling of being so full of paperwork, that if I were to vomit, a recycled research paper would probably be regurgitated from from my mind, crumpled and all. There must be something in my unconscious mind that my inner procrastinator is trying to tell me, but he usually waits until the last minute. Bastard. Somehow, I feel that I’m going to exhaust myself even more these next few months.
I had an amasing cajun dinner tonight courtesy of Jean Ann and Rob. I don’t know how Layla and I can ever thank them for being so wonderful. Perhaps more food? Haha, despite my discriminating chinese palate, it’s obvious that I don’t really pay much attention to places that serve american food. I’ve always passed by the place and wondered if I would be better off eating something asian, only to realise that I’ve been missing out. The place is kinda dead, but there was something really comforting about being the only ones in the restaurant for most of the evening. And aside from half of the livestock from the southern united states being served at our table, there was enough room for dessert, and lots of laughs. Thanks once again Jean Ann and Rob~^^
I don’t know how quite to explain it, but I have always had an attraction towards particular traits in people that I meet. They usually convey those traits in ways that catch my attention, and tend to remain at the back of my mind for weeks, if not months at a time. Carl Jung’s concept of the collective unconscious has always stood out to me. How one sees qualities in another that are inherently present in oneself, but are also unbeknownst to oneself.
Unrelenting in my mind is the pursuit to metamorphose those particular traits into something meaningful. The proximity between myself and herself is insignificant, and is measured in glances.
With the senior party behind us, and by us, I mean my class collectively, we can finally rest assured that these next few months will be a fine transition into the final two semestres to come. The summer could not have come at a more opportune time. I was beginning to get worried that for some strange astronomical reason, the days were going by slower the closer we were to term. Maybe that was just me.
Now onto summer, and a few reasons why the timing couldn’t be any better…
I need to lose the many kgs that I’ve gained over the semestre (Fall & Spring). OMG!!
My portfolio needs a good sorting. So does my car, room, kitchen, and wardrobe.
I need time to convalesce after surviving yet another semestre.
I promised my gf that I would take her to the zoo since a year ago. Time to make up.
My cameras are getting dusty.
It’s time to plant my very own herb garden!!
When I told people that I was studying for NCLEX during the semestre, I really meant that I was going to be doing that now. For serious.
I’ve been keeping energy drink stocks high since finals. My time off from school severely limits their per capita gains. That means prices will be lower again when the semestre starts.
I can finally see my mum again, and the rest of the people in my life, besides Hockenberry, Wong, Davidson, London, and Ladewig (If you know who those people are, then you could really use a summer holiday as well).
Hi Adrian! Thanks for the recommendation. I've been wondering what kind of film is good to use... I have a fisheye and with it I use regular kodak max. My shots don't come out how I'd like them to most of the time =/
ps Your work is amazing
Hi Stephanie! No problem. I recommended the ektar because Guam doesn’t have slide processing for professional films (because hardly anyone shoots film around here these days), and the ektar is pretty close to that. Since California has all of the pro labs (and E6 slide film processing), you can probably find yourself Fuji Velvia 50 slide film which is really good for shooting in daylight!
E6 Slide Processing:
Velvia 100 (don’t get the Velvia 100F…it kinda sucks, the colour is very neutral to the non-“F” version)
Fuji Provia 400F (great for mounting slides)
Print Film (c-41)
Fuji Superia Reala 100 (good for people)
Fujicolour Press (these are professional films…I’ve never tried them…maybe you can find them there :D)
Kodak Ektar 100
Hmm, if you happen to live in San Diego, there’s a place called Chrome Digital (http://www.chromedigital.com/) that does a really great job with film processing. I highly recommend them. You can also mail your stuff to them~
I slept for 16hrs since yesterday evening. I think that was my body’s way of telling me I should really stop this nursing school thing. Just kidding. Though, I really should get more sleep, but my circadian rhythm has been all over the place this semestre. The good news is that in less than a week, it’ll all be over. My final exam is on the 16th of May, from 9am ‘til death, and I can only imagine how much sleep I’ll be getting then.
I don’t really like OB ward. Today was my first rotation there, and I felt like I had to jump through a lot of flaming hoops just to provide care to my client. It was very frustrating as one can imagine. I never quite felt that way about the other wards I interned in. There’s just something very dissatisfying about working there and I just can’t place my stethoscope on it…
The semestre is kinda dragging on, which past spring semestres have been notorious for doing, but I’m starting to feel a little burned out (@__@);;;
Photography to me has always been about using the time of a complete stranger in such a way that he or she doesn’t feel that the time has been wasted. Kurt Vonnegut said that about short stories, and I like to think that his words apply to photography as well. I often find it difficult to explain to people what photography means to me. Because to me, there really isn’t anything more to photography than truly deriving pleasure from keeping one’s eyes open.
Here’s a little something to get to know me better. Though, if you live on Guam, there’s so few of us on the island as it is, there’s greater a chance of you actually meeting me.
1. I have drive-through anxiety. I always feel like I’m going to order wrong, so I let other people order for me.
2. Somehow, I’ve never really been good at phone conversations. I rehearse what I’m going to say before I call.
3. I am a picture maker, and I love film.
4. My alarm clock is always set to an odd number.
5. I don’t like celery.
6. I have horrible penmanship
7. I’m better at remembering faces, than names.
8. Jasmine tea is my favourite, followed by green tea.
9. I’m a nursing student.
The major obstacle for amateur film-makers is their own sense of inferiority vis-a-vis professional productions. The very classification “amateur” has an apologetic ring. But that very word - from the Latin “amateur” - “lover” means one who does something for the love of the thing rather than for economic reasons or necessity. And this is the meaning from which the amateur film-maker should take his clue. Instead of envying the script and dialogue writers, the trained actors, the elaborate staffs and sets, the enormous production budgets of the professional film, the amateur should make use of the one great advantage which all professionals envy him, namely, freedom - both artistic and physical.
Artistic freedom means that the amateur film-maker is never forced to sacrifice visual drama and beauty to a stream of words, words, words, words, to the relentless activity and explanations of a plot, or to the display of a star or a sponsor’s product; nor is the amateur production expected to return profit on a huge investment by holding the attention of a massive and motley audience for 90 minutes.
Like the amateur still-photographer, the amateur film-maker can devote himself to capturing the poetry and beauty of places and events and, since he is using a motion picture camera, he can explore the vast world of the beauty of movement. (One of the films winning Honorable Mention in the 1958 Creative Film Awards was ROUND AND SQUARE, a poetic, rhythmic treatment of the dancing lights of cars as they streamed down highways, under bridges, etc.) Instead of trying to invent a plot that moves, use the movement or wind, or water, children, people, elevators, balls, etc. as a poem might celebrate these. And use your freedom to experiment with visual ideas; your mistakes will not get you fired.
Physical freedom includes time freedom - a freedom from budget imposed deadlines. But above all, the amateur film-maker, with his small, light-weight equipment, has an inconspicuousness (for candid shooting) and a physical mobility which is well the envy of most professionals, burdened as they are by their many-ton monsters, cables and crews. Don’t forget that no tripod has yet been built which is as miraculously versatile in movement as the complex system of supports, joints, muscles, and nerves which is the human body, which, with a bit of practice, makes possible the enormous variety of camera angles and visual action. You have all this, and a brain too, in one neat, compact, mobile package. Cameras do not make films; film-makers make films.
Improve your films not by adding more equipment and personnel but by using what you have to its fullest capacity. The most important part of your equipment is yourself: your mobile body, your imaginative mind, and your freedom to use both. Make sure you do use them.
So much of my visual life is spent behind the camera, which is how I suppose most people recognise me, but I’ve always loved taking pictures of photographers in action. Perhaps I just enjoy the experience altogether. My annual trips to Hong Kong are a testament to meeting new people, and having the opportunity to photograph something new. My friend Lincoln, photographed above, says he’s much better traveled than otherwise when it comes to photography, and now that I think of it, I’m starting to agree with him.
I didn’t have much luck my first time eating at the Lighthouse today during lunch hour. No parrot fish worth eating, because after all, size does matter (with fish anyway), and I wasn’t ready to spend USD $21.00 for a fish less than the size of my forearm, and considered large, or ‘largey, ’ as the Korean owner likes to put it. I suppose I can lose my virginity to eating succulent morsels of parrot fish another time. At least, that’s how people describe the experience to me…
The allure of this place, in my opinion, is the service, because it sucks. I like to think of the owner as a one man tag team. He’s the owner, the busboy, cashier, waitstaff, and complaint department, all rolled into a nice sizzling bowl of bibimbap. Somehow, I’m determined to get a ‘largey’ parrot fish for half the price. USD $10.50 is a lot of money in this economy of ours. China hasn’t taken over yet…and even at that, I could at least get it for USD $8.00!!
In my dreams! :)
The picture is not (directly) related. I took it while on holiday this xmas. Happy belated xmas and new year!!
I almost can’t believe how close the holidays are, I guess school has a tendency to tunnel vision everything, including the holidays. My mind can’t rest!! Hmm, and as an aside, I don’t think I’m making good on my attempt to write more. Inspiration these days have been drier than winter time in Beijing. Actually, drier than most times in Beijing. I think I will be importing some entries from my livejournal. I really love that journal, but I hate the new management. I also hate my username there, what was I thinking!?
I’m trying to get myself in the habit of writing more. I find that I’m much more in tune with the rest of the world when I write, because I actually give myself a few moments to sit down and think about life. I don’t read the news, and if Yahoo! no longer gave me updates on my homepage, I don’t know where I would be.
I suppose envy goldfish in a way, because they’re ignorant. Not bothered by cramped living spaces, and ignorant to just how difficult the world could be had someone not invented plastic bags.
In other news, I have finals in two days. Add oil.
“As a lotus flower is born in water, grows in water and rises out of water to stand above it unsoiled, so I, born in the world, raised in the world having overcome the world, live unsoiled by the world”—Siddhārtha Gautama Buddha ( 563-483 B.C.)