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A big hi and hello to all of you out there! Thank you for stopping by Jenny Sun Photography's blog! This is my brand new blog space! So please make yourself at home, and have a good browse around. There is plenty more to come so check back often :) Just in case any of you are wondering who on earth I am, my name is Jenny Sun. I own a photography company that spans across Australia and Malaysia, particularly in the Sydney and Kuala Lumpur regions respectively. Though I'm not restricted to those areas! :) I love photographing just about anything under the sun, but my particular passion is for weddings and portraits - I seriously LOVE people, their stories, the beautiful relationships formed, and the tales that are told when that shutter goes off!

This blog is my personal and visual journey along this path of photography. Please hop on board the ride, comment along the way (I shamelessly love comments!), and lets see where the wind takes us :)




Tuesday, March 31, 2009

In the Pipeline


Post coming tomorrow! :)

Stay tuned :)
(and no, this picture has nothing to do with the post tomorrow! haha, it was just a happy snap from our recent time on the road! Sorry I can't write now, I'm up to my neck dealing with laundry, suitcases, multiple uploads and downloads of files, hard drive back ups, and all that other boring stuff which none of you want to know about, trust me! )



5 comments:

Friday, March 27, 2009

FAQ: Lights, Camera, Action!


I'm still on the road and/or running around shooting in between it all!! I know, I miss my own bed, the regularity of being able to see the clock chime past the same numbers as I open my eyes each morning, and in essence be a homebody. I want to get my hands all grubby in that domestic goodness, and soak in all its peaceful glory for a good long week or two!

Anyhow...since I can't, and because I love you and my blog way too much to starve it, here's an entry for the component that won the largest number of votes in our recent poll (which you can still vote in!!) And WOW, have we had an influx of FAQs come into our inbox this past week or two! Thank you SOOOO much to all of you who have written in. Our inbox has been so nice and fat because of all your lovely messages :) So please don't stop sending in those questions every time one pops into your head! Not only will you be helping yourself, but probably alot of other photographers out there who may be thinking or wanting to know the same things! Whenever you do have the urge to raise a hand and ask something, just drop us a line at info@jennysunphotography.com with 'FAQ' as the subject line and we'll add it to the FAQ vault for our next post!  :) We'd love to hear from you! Otherwise, we'd have nothing to answer and that would just be sad because then I would have to stop writing these type of entries!! :)

So, without further ado, here goes! 3 Random questions we picked out of the bunch this week:


(1) LIGHT:
Do you use strobes or reflectors when shooting? Especially when shooting against the sun. 
If not, how do you manage to get the exposure just right?

No, I don't use a single strobe or reflector at all when I shoot outdoors. I am what I like to call a 'light and fast' shooter, meaning the less I have on me, the happier I am when I am snapping away. At very most, I will work with just 2 lenses during a session and nothing else. The more I have to carry, the more it burdens me and which restricts how I think and what angles I can put myself in. And when shooting against the sun, with those backlit photos, I will usually meter for the face, and then adjust accordingly. I shoot entirely in manual mode and completely wide open, and then do some minor curves adjustment in post production. When I am shooting backlit, I often don't care or don't mind if SOME of the sky is completely burnt out because my focus is on the couple's face and interactions in my photos anyway. I am more interested in how the light falls on them, than how 'pretty' the background is. The most important thing about backlit photos is choosing the quality of light. Obviously you are not going to get pretty backlit photos if you are shooting in the middle of the day without a single shade component (eg: trees, building, etc) in a place like a dessert or an open field because the light is not directional... its high above and you will have no shadow. Best to wait a little for a time when the sun is a little lower. I know we don't always get the choice of time to shoot, so in another FAQ or when I decide to run my workshop, I can show you how to shoot in yucky light :)

Just a tip: when shooting outdoors backlit, it is often hard to tell on the LCD screen whether you have the exposure correct. What APPEARS to be a well exposed photo, is often almost always overexposed once you come back and download the photo to your computer. I often find that the ones that are properly exposed are the ones that look slightly underexposed on the LCD screen. Best to read your histogram to really tell for sure and be totally accurate, but I can talk about that in another FAQ if anyone is interested. 


(2) CAMERA:
I have noticed that you said you generally use your 1.2 and shoot wide open. I dont have a 1.2, but I do have a 1.8 and everytime I try to shoot at 1.8 i get the focus point in focus, but everything else is out of focus (ie - the eye is in focus, but the ear is foggy, or 1 person in focus, one not). I know the 1.2 is a much better piece of glass than the 1.8, but I dont understand how lowering the f-stop would fix my problem.
 Is there a trick I'm just not getting?

Shooting wide open can be tricky when you are first starting to try it, huh? :) But don't worry it isn't as hard as alot of photographers like to think. I know alot of photographers freak out because shooting wide open means less sharp images (not true! Calibrating your lens and/or investing in a good lens helps in this regard!). Before I had a 1.2 lens, I was shooting at 1.8, 2.0, and 2.8 for most of my photos and even at those apertures, I was experiencing the same dilemma as mentioned above! Until I learnt a term called 'same plane of field', and distance.

To get your subjects in focus and tack sharp, they need to be both/all equally distant from your camera. If one person is a little further back or forward, you will notice the person that is further/closer to your camera will be out of focus. HOWEVER, you will also notice that the further and further you move from your subjects, the distance between your subjects (ie. the subject that is closer/further away from you, and the subject which you have locked focus on) won't be so noticeable, or noticeable at all! :) You can try it at home out in the garden/backyard. Put two chairs on the grass. One a little further back than the other. Start your first couple of shots close up to the chair. You'll notice that the chair further back is very out of focus (this is if you are shooting wide open). Then take several steps back. You'll then notice that the chair behind is still out of focus, but not as blurry as before. Take several more steps back and keep repeating the steps. You'll notice that the further back you are, the more in focus the chair behind looks :) Until both kinda look sharp! :)

Same goes if you are shooting people :) Oh and for the eyes thing, I gather thats when you are shooting up close for makeup and head shots, shot from the side. I find the best angles to do that are when you are shooting straight in front of the subject, or completely 90 degrees from the subject so you don't see the blurry eye. Otherwise, move a little further back :)

Eg: With the below shot from Loren and Josh's wedding, I shot it at a slight angle and slightly elevated. I kept moving my camera back until both lashes were somewhat in focus. 




(3) ACTION:
I know alot of you are asking about post production and what I do. I'd love to give a single response and say that is the magic black and white rule to get all your images looking like that, but post production is sooooo much like cooking. Its a delicate process, and requires adding or subtracting to taste as each photo is different. You'll need to add different ingredients in different amounts depending on light, or colour, and so on. So, I guess the best way I can think of to help in this regard is just to share with you my own recipes I've made for certain images in the hopes that it might inspire you to try your own recipes, or help you create the finished look you are after :)

Today's image was created by using Kubota's awesome set of actions. There are several volumes of actions you can choose from but I'll let your wandering and curious eyes do the shopping and picking, not me :)

(a) Shoot a photo with some kick-ass light!
(b) Inject it with some curves adjustments
(c) Kubota actions: Daily multivitamin + Punch lite + 81K warming


Alright peeps! That's all from me for today! Remember to keep sending in those questions (or at least check one of the reaction boxes below otherwise I'll have to stop writing these entries because I'll start to think I'm boring and that I totally suck in your eyes, and that would make me sad :) Have a beautiful weekend!!


10 comments:

Thursday, March 26, 2009

My Current Musical Obsession


I'm really sorry! I HAVE to write about it. The urge has been itching all the way through my thumbs right down to my pinky fingers... and any other phalange I employ to create words on the keyboard.

I do PROMISE that the FAQ will go up tomorrow sometime, but the last few days have been filled with sessions of feeding my hungry ears and I've been SO happy with what I have found.

Now, if you have been following me on facebook, you might have already grabbed a hint of the positive frenzy which I've been so pleasantly experiencing of late. If not, here's where I'm going to keep you up to speed with my rambling :)

Those that read my blog and know me well, know that I have been absolutely positively addicted to this season of American Idol, and believe me its GOOD this year. I watch it every year and most of the time its disappointing because of all the gimmicks this show tends to bring to surface in order to snare higher ratings. This year, the talent is incredible, and that just makes me beam with joy because every wednesday it means that my ears are not disappointed. My favourites this year are Danny Gokey and Adam Lambert!! I predict one of these two will win :) 

Aside from that, is my respect for the amazing Kings of Leon. For some reason, I can't quite swallow their earlier albums, but their latest offering 'Only By The Night' is a slice of rock heaven. Well, to me anyway :) 

Anyhow, for those who have NO idea why I am hyperventilating over these audio bites, here you go. See for yourself, and tell me if I am still crazy. And if you don't click below, well you are just missing out so soooo badly! Don't say I didn't warn you! LOL :p

(1) Adam Lambert: Tracks of My Tears
You have to know how the orginal sounds like to really appreciate why this rendition is so beautiful. Its subtle all the way. Never over the top, yet totally totally unique. I love it!! :D




(2) Kings Of Leon: Use Somebody
This one is a little softer than their other more well known tracks, buts its great and understated. Its as great as their best known pieces out there. I'm raving? yes!!


ps: As a little reward for putting up with my non-photography posts and to see who ACTUALLY pays attention to them, I'm giving away brand new copies of Kings of Leon's albums Youth and Young Manhood, and Aha Shake Heartbreak. With the lyric books and all. None of that cheapo 'malaysian version' CDs!! :D  First one to email me (info@jennysunphotography.com) with their name, postal address, and the name of the song which they performed at the recent Brit Music Awards 2009 will get it! :D

Okay, normal broadcasting of photography related channels will resume now :)



1 comments:

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Keith and Joyce: Engagement


I'm often asked, why do I do what I do....what fuels the passion? And its so generic and cliched to say just 'well, because I love it'. While it rings true in every fibre and sense of the phrase, so many ingredients make up that love. It never is just a singular component. Nor is it one big umbrella with nothing inside it.

If I had to point my finger at one of the main reasons I get out of bed to do this everyday, why I make the sacrifices that I do, and why we work so hard for this, I would zealously hold down my finger on the fact that every couple I meet reminds me love is so good. Amidst all the moments where your better half will drive you completely mad, do all the things that grind up the irritation wall, make you sad....at the end of the day, you can't help but be pointed back to all the good and beautiful things that makes love so grand. From a look that says 'there's no one else but you', to the clasping of hands to assure 'you're safe', to the simplest of kisses for no reason at all but just because.

I know for me, each couple I cross paths with flips a page in my appreciation book for my own husband and I often (even though its usually shrouded by an enormous blanket of fatigue) after a shoot really look forward to going home to see him because of what two people in front of my lens, have reminded me about my husband or our relationship that makes me smile.

For Keith and Joyce, it's in the way he makes her laugh.

In those goofy, childlike, snippets of time where he makes a face, or a silly noise which causes that endearing smile to blossom on Joyce's face, it reminds me of all the peter pan moments that I so fondly remember about Ju. He has the uncanny ability to sometimes quell my most sour shades of blue and make me laugh. My favourite are the surprise bear hugs from behind :) And that makes me happy.

So, that's why I do what I do.

Here are my favourite snaps from our engagement session together! Joyce and Keith did another session with me prior to this and I will share it a little bit later because the feel is so different :) For now, enjoy these!








Gimme graffiti and dilapidated buildings anyday!! :D



I have said time and time again, I dont really know what the big fuss is about getting fancy complicated photos that require lots of posing, or light setups, or unorthdox composition. I really truly believe that if you couple great light, with the simplest of interactions between a couple, it can always result in something pretty. Gimme great light over great background anyday!






Mmmm... yummo light!! :D




This was probably one of my fave shots of the day.










Keith and Joyce are great and so trusting. They were totally not hesitant with any instruction or place I took them to. They even were willing to sit in this dusty shack of a mess for me! :D








Random paddocks of grass are my favourite.. :D




Keith is also a photographer and Joyce plays the flute... here is them doing their silly THANG! I did not ask them to do this! They were just mucking around and I like it lots! :D


Thank you both so much for being so trusting and so willing!!! See you this saturday! :D

And for the rest of you, another FAQ post is next in answer to the overwhelming number of emails and messages we've received!! :D



7 comments:

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Intermission


Things are a little crazy at the moment. Living in between guest homes, hotel beds, and so on can be extremely tiring, taxing emotionally, and especially physically. It's been fun... definitely don't get me wrong, but try doing all that, plus shoots in between, and running your office and business virtually while on the move. Its INSANE! :p I feel like I need an extra 8 arms and 5 heads. But that would make me extremely ugly. And I fear I'd then freak out every single client or person I cross paths with. So perhaps not :p

As I am sitting here at 30 minutes past 1, for some abnormal reason, I am somewhat stuck on what to write. Perhaps it is the fact that I am just exhausted. Or maybe there is just so much clockwork happening in the rusty chambers of my brain that I just can't think straight at present. So when these enigmatic moments happen, the best thing to do is to sprinkle some highlights and wait for clarity to present itself to divulge the full story :)

Here are a couple of places our feet met with:

The 12 apostles, Great Ocean Road. 
The weather was absolutely AWFUL pretty much the entire time we were in VIC. In particular while we were galavanting around the beautiful Apollo Bay, the storms reached such a ferocious intensity in wave after wave of torrential rain and hurricane like winds, we were worried that the windows would shatter from the force. Thankfully, there were brief glimmers of sun, and when they came, they were glorious like below :) The 12 Apostles was definitely a HUGE highlight on this incredible drive on the edge of the Australian continent. 



Remnants of the VIC fires, Yarra Valley
The news of the vicious fires that ate up so much of the VIC landscape, was worldwide knowledge. But to know what is happening, and to SEE the aftermath in person is a totally different story. My heart literally crumbled as I saw the following scene.

It was common to have the above as the 'typical' backyard for alot of homes around the Yarra Valley. Ju and I travelled to this region to taste the wines, and we were warned not to go because of the recent fires. But I am glad we did. I think people need to know the kind of horrific damage that amassed from the disaster... so many homes were claimed, lives were lost, businesses burnt to the ground, and so much of the aussie wildlife have lost their homes. I saw the following image in the media, and it really is heart breaking.


My hope is that people keep supporting the pledge to raise money for the recovery of the region, but more importantly - go and visit the place. These people's lives revolve around the visitors and tourists that come to these places, so its so imperative to provide support in this manner too.


Random bits of nature, Cape Otway
Renting a car, and having a GPS is the best. You really get to stop wherever you like and soak in whatever peaks your interest. Here is something that made my eyes happy at Cape Otway.



And for those who are looking for images from shoots, here is a sneak peak! I know!! I hate sneak peaks, but like I always say, some images are better than none, right?? Enjoy!



Back soon with more postcards :) Please tell me if I should stop posting these!! I'd hate to be boring the living daylights out of all of you :)


7 comments:

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Out of Office: Extended


Hello everyone!

If you have been wondering, where on EARTH has Jenny Sun disappeared to, and why she has left her blog so unloved, it's okay :) Normality WILL resume soon :)

I am just doing some extended travel for the next couple of weeks, with ALOT of shoots in between. It's gonna be craaaaaaaaaazy I tell you!! After looking in my calendar while I am away, I realized that I have something happening pretty much EVERY day.

Anyhow, because the husband and I are currently in the middle of a road trip, and have been in the outback, then on the coast (literally on the edge of the Australian continent), braced the craziest storm ever (we thought the windows were going to explode!!), we really haven't had a chance on the internet at all sadly enough :(

So I thought while I am using the last 20 minutes that this $2.50 will buy me on this computer, I thought I'd let you know that blog posts will resume in the next week or so. I just wrapped up some awesome sessions, with more along the way, more weddings, and some neato surprises that I hope to update you all on when I get back :) I promise you it will be worth it!

For now, while I am away, I am doing a survey to help make this blog a more kick-ass interesting place for all of you to visit :) Please vote!!!! What you put down will literally shape what I will do with this blog space in the near future! :D


3 comments:

Thursday, March 12, 2009

FAQ: Posing and Post Processing


Hello thursday! I always love thursdays because its the day before Friday. And we all know that Friday is the REAL day that the weekend starts right?? :)

Anyhow, I thought it would be such a nice idea to start answering the hoard of questions I normally get emails about, in the hopes that it helps any one of you out there. I am not attempting to be a know-it-all-guru AT ALL, but if these posts do help you in anyway, I'll be really happy :)

So, lets get on with business right? I've basically copied the latest question I've been emailed in that particular subject (since it answers all previous questions along the same lines) below :)

Posing

Q: How do you normally pose or guide your clients during a shoot? We love how you seem to know how to draw out a couple's personality and their natural smiles in the frame? What is your technique?

A: You know, funny enough, I don't really have a technique when I shoot my couples. If I had to describe the way I shoot, I would probably term it as 'casual'. I like my shoots to remain very laid back, easy going, and breezy, and liken our sessions to us hanging out together with some shooting in between :) More often than not, I give fairly general instructions to my couples and let them interpret it as they like. If it doesn't look quite right, I'll correct it, but usually I go with the flow and keep my shoots very quick, fluid and work with whatever I have. I actually enjoy and like it when my clients make mistakes in their own quirky way because...well, its THEM :) I tend to draw alot on the client's energy and their chemistry with each other, being sensitive to their personalities. I wont ever make them do anything that is uncomfortable, or that they wouldn't do normally as a couple! And on top of all that, alot of the times I get fabulous couples to shoot, who are just beautiful, fun, and themselves in the frame. I know, I am very lucky - I don't take that for granted! :)


Post Processing: Actions

Q: I just love how your photos seem to pop. How do you get your photos looking the way they do in post production?

A: I think I get at least one email a day about this :) I was going to post this video that took you step by step through one way that I get my images edited. But it ended up being about 100mb large, and whenever I uploaded it to a video site, the compression was awful and made my photos look dull and soft :( So here is the next best thing. Anyhow, I love using photoshop actions in my photos. There are some that I have created on my own, and then there are others which some seriously awesome people have created for our lovely photo creation purposes. I'll talk about the TOTALLY RAD ACTIONS today. These are by far one of the most versatile, yet simple to use photoshop actions I've had the pleasure of using in my workflow. I tend to use a combination of actions in the set together, to create my final image. Here are a few examples of mixes (and the actions I used in the TRA set) below:

Clairefy + Oh Snap! + Warm it up Kris (+ sharpening)


Clairefy + Yin/Yang + Contrast! + Warm it up Kris (+ sharpening)


And since I don't always play around with punchy colours, here is an example of the new kind of post processing that I have been playing with:

Curves adjustment + yin/yang + clairefy + cool as a cucumber (lowered opacity) + pool party
(+ sharpening)


The most important thing though (especially as you can see in the first two images) is that you have to get some kick-ass light to begin with (you can't photoshop in great light!!), which helps to make sure your SOOC (straight out of camera) shots are as close to perfect as possible.

Okay, so that wraps up FAQ #1! Let me know if you found that helpful or if you would like more of these posts! :) And remember, if you have any questions you would like answered, just drop an email to info@jennysunphotography.com with the subject line 'FAQ' with your question, and I'll be sure to add it for future posts :) It can be anything about shooting, post production/work flow, marketing/business, clients, if you are curious as to whether I find coriander offensive or not :)

Til next time! :D


13 comments:

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Small Random Purchases make me happy


Okay, I am totally not allowed to, or supposed to be blogging with this INSANE schedule I have for march and april, but rules are meant to be broken. And I love that blogger allows you to write the entry whenever you do have time no matter what time of day it is, on the road (if you have 3G!!), and then it will automatically publish it at a later date + time which you choose! This post (and the next one coming) is one such example of technology servicing the people, and not people servicing the technology! :D

Anyhow, Ju and I recently headed out to the malls, with my very practical list of items to buy:
(1) new hair dryer (after we so conveniently fried ours :p)
(2) garbage bags (this was utmost top priority! the 911 kind)

Well, I'm proud to say that I was well behaved and bought the garbage bags. All 50 of them! But if you knew it was out of dire necessity (and also knowing what else was in my bag at the end of the evening), you probably wouldn't be so proud of my spending restraint. You see, a couple of weeks back, when I was emptying the trash, I got really really mad at the bag company!! Boo to them, because as I was putting trash in the NEW bags which I had just fitted our steel can bin with, I realized there was a leak! Low and behold when I pulled the bag out, there was a shiny new hole.... and coming out of it in accelerating speed was all the oil, water (which was scented of fish), crumbs, and food scraps from the day's meals we had.

Bad huh? Wait.

So being the diligent wife (hah :p), I composed myself after nearly shrieking at the sight and mess, and moved the trash to a new bag. Only to find.... the trash was falling out of ANOTHER hole in this NEW bag. Double whammy. This cycle kept going until I realized by the fourth bag, that the entire set of bags I had bought was probably corrupt. I was utterly distressed, and annoyed of having to clean the same mess about 4 times. So you see, our 911 garbage dilemma was serious. We HAD to get new bags. No. Matter. What. And so we did :) Plus I am proud to announce that these latest bags are MUCH MUCH better than its predecessor.

Anyhow, because planned purchases are so NOT fun, here is what kept my new garbage bags company as we went home from the malls that night.

These purchases made me smile :)

I love toned arms (Anna Rina!! You have grown seeds of envy in me! LOL!!), but despite my job, I've been growing in areas that I do not like! So Ju was nice enough to buy me some light weights while he bought some heavier ones. We are on a mission to look and BE fitter.
*sigh* Its such a hard road, I tell ya!



I'm telling you, I LOVE LOVE LOVE my flats. While I adore the look of heels, my feet would initiate world war 3 with me, if I ever placed them inside anything that is higher than 5mm. So, with that, my love affair with finding the coolest flats to add to my shelf continues all the time :) And if they are comfortable, even better. So far, my yellow flats from paris have been queen in my cupboards. Until I saw these. They are so OTT, but I love that about them. I still believe they can look cool in a casual AND dressy outfit. Challenge my shoe theory, and you'll be sorry! :p *kids*


Alright, next post is going to be all about your FAQs!! SOOOO many of you have asked questions about posing, light, post processing, style, gear, locations, and so on....I figured it is about time to address these topics bit by bit on this blog space to stop me from typing the same things a thousand times :) I would LOVE to be able to answer all of you individually and personally, but with my time, schedule, and travel commitments, its hard to reply to every single message that comes into my inbox. So if you would love your questions answered, please send them to info@jennysunphotography.com with the subject 'FAQ' and I'll add it to the FAQs-to-be-answered-on-my-blog vault.

For now, I have to run. There are planes to catch, shoots to shoot, and another war to fight with this crazy inbox of mine amidst all the other things that have to get done! It's so busy I can't breathe!! :) Sayonara for now!!!


7 comments:

Friday, March 6, 2009

Chloe and CK: Engagement


As the end of the week is drawing to a close, I just couldn't leave this corner of the web as it is without a post with photos from a shoot, right?? :)

So here is another fabulous couple who flew in all the way from the states to let me take their photos! I'm always SO honored when clients take such incredible lengths in terms of time and distance so that we can spend some time together with the camera. And needless to say, even though it was a short couple of hours, Chloe and CK were beautiful and awesome in front of the lens! They were sweet, romantic, and so classy, and they didn't hesitate at all to extend these parts of their personality to the frame!

Here are a few of my favourites from their session with me in KL:


Love love love the pretty light here. We were so lucky this morning!!






I sometimes wonder what the big deal is about getting fancy poses, or really out of the box composition. Sometimes, pictures can look beautiful just by playing with the idea of simplicity. In a look. An emotion. A single touch. Sometimes, just pretty light alone can make a lovely images. Less can be more.




There's that pretty light again, with the simplest of interactions between any couple. You may think I'm weird, but I really love it. I'd rather hang something like this on my wall, than an image where I can barely make out my face :)

I'm not sure why I shot this wide, since I rarely ever take wide shots, but for some reason I thought it looked really pretty as a 'scene' :)










This was one of my favourite ever portraits of a bride. Chloe is really chic and modern, and I felt it really showed off her sass and glamour!




I love the sultriness in the following two images. They have a really hollywood glamour feel to them. Well, to me anyway :)










Then it was out to play in the back alleys. Now, if you know me REALLY well, you will know that I LOVE shooting in the most dirty and ghetto of spots. No kidding. The more run down and dilapidated it is, the more I will love it :D














Thank you so much for an awesome session Chloe and CK! I hope you are having a fabulous time there in the states! I hope to make it to your part of the world really really soon! :D

17 comments: