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Hola! Barcelona 2013

My first love has always been travel. I love creating images as I wander the streets, looking at life through my lens. When I travel, I like the idea of going off the beaten track, looking into the side lanes, hoping to glimpse something different. Honestly, I don’t really enjoy taking photos of buildings, but I get really excited when people are added to the equation. It makes me wonder… what are they thinking of at this moment? What are they doing, where are they going?

I came to Barcelona with my family to celebrate my brother’s 50th birthday. It was really wonderful being with family and his friends, just spending 2 weeks away from work for a while. I hope to rejuvenate and get some new inspiration as I travel. Currently, I am in Morocco, which is an amazing country, full of surprises every corner. More on that later… but for now, here are some shots from my travel in Barcelona.





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Destination Weddings: Bali

Some time back, I blogged about Destination Weddings, a TV program that I worked on for the Travel Channel with Deborah Henry as the host. I finally got my act together and managed to sort through some photos that I took during the shoot. This episode is my favourite out of all the episodes I directed, so I’d like to share some images from 2 very different weddings that we covered in Bali.

Firstly, a traditional Balinese Hindu wedding that was held in a small village about 1.5 hours away from Kuta. One of the sights that greeted us when we arrived was this man walking his giant pig! It was seriously huge and apparently a gigolo pig! I got so excited, I ran across the road to photograph it. Ok, I digress…back to the wedding…

The local wedding was held at this home which was a dedicated space for community events, and even for tourists to come and learn cooking from Pak Wayan. The couple dressed up in elaborate costumes with ornate headgear. I heard that some foreigners actually go through a traditional Balinese ceremony like this for their wedding. Personally, I still prefer my groom to be in a suit… (more of this wedding in a bit).

The second wedding was a western beach ceremony held at the Westin, Nusa Dua and dinner reception at the Melia, Nusa Dua. The weather was perfect, and it was a really breezy day… I wish all my Langkawi beach wedding shoots would be as cool (temperature wise!) as this! Here’s Deborah posing for a promo shot.

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Greetings from Taiwan!

It’s the final leg of my Destination Weddings TV program shoot and I just completed the last episode in Taiwan. It’s been a stressful journey the past few months sourcing for the right weddings, writing the script and directing the episodes itself, but definitely a memorable journey. It was really great working with Deborah Henry for the first time too. The program will air on Travel Channel internationally sometime end of this year and I’ll definitely inform everyone once it’s out. In Malaysia, you can watch it through Unifi’s HyppTV.

Though the shoots have ended, the post production is still ongoing.

I’ll be back in Malaysia tomorrow. Unfortunately for me, it’s my last trip overseas before the baby makes her appearance. (My doctor wouldn’t allow me to travel anymore!) All in all, I am really thankful that I’ve been strong enough to last through 6-12 hour shoot days and not feel sick (considering I am now at my 27th week of pregnancy). The downside is that my legs are killing me and my varicose veins are looking rather hideous. Time to slow down all my shoots for the time being…

Glad to be coming home soon!

The crew for the Taiwan shoot

Feature your wedding on an International Travel Channel

Hi everyone! We’re involved in a really cool, upcoming project and we’d love to get you involved too! It combines 2 of my favourite topics: Travel and Weddings.

For those who have been reading this blog for sometime, you might know that I started out my career in the local film and television line. For many years, I edited TV programs, dramas, films, documentaries… and also directed some episodes of various television programs. Then in 2007, I began to explore the world of weddings through my camera lens. You can read more about my history here.

So how is this relevant to what I am about to say?

Well, basically, we will be involved in a new project involving an international travel channel that broadcasts to 120 countries worldwide. No, this doesn’t mean that we are no longer photographing weddings. Every now and then, I believe in doing new things that will help fuel creativity, and though it’s been a while since I directed a TV program, this is something I’m excited to do.

So… this is where you come in.

We are looking to feature weddings in Malaysia, Indonesia (Bali), Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines and Singapore. For each episode, we will feature one local couple and one couple who are traveling to that destination for their wedding. If you are getting married in these locations within the months of May-August 2012 and would love to have your wedding featured internationally on television, do contact us!

Please email grace.tan [at] stories.my with these details:

1. Your name & your fiance’s name

2. The location and date of your wedding

3. Why you think your wedding should be featured (or perhaps some unique details about your wedding plans)

4. Include a photo of the both of you

And that’s it! This is not a contest. We will select the couple based on the best story that fits our requirements. We are excited to hear from you, so do email us soon!

Of travels and holidays

I have to admit. Since the Chinese New Year celebrations in January this year, I’ve been slacking off a bit. Just a bit. The end of 2011 was so hectic that my back was beginning to ache from all those shoots, and on top of that I twisted my ankle the day before a wedding in January. That week, I had to shoot 2 weddings with a twisted ankle. At that stage, it became clear to me that somehow I needed to rest. God’s message to me was crystal clear: If you don’t learn to rest, more of you will soon start to break down.

So Chinese New Year was a welcome break for me, and then came February with some other Malaysian holidays (did you know that Malaysia has one of the highest number of public holidays in the world? So yeah, if you love your holidays, do work in Malaysia).

So we kick started February with a celebration dinner with the team – to remember and give thanks for the success of 2011. Since it was Weiming and Mark’s birthday, we also had a cake!

Standing (L-R): Myself, Mun Tzin (Mark’s wife, who recently started her wedding planning business, Milestones), Felicia (our Digital Artist), Diane, Johan, Alex
Seated (L-R):  Zhi Ming (Intern), Weiming and Mark

In February I went to Jakarta to photograph the wedding of Eric and Jennie. That was the first Indonesian wedding I’ve ever photographed. I loved it! But that’s for another blog post (speaking of blog posts, I am absolutely delayed with many of them!).

After Jakarta, Alex and I flew to Jogjakarta for a short holiday. We didn’t really do too much there but one of the must-dos was visit Borobudur temple, of course!

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