After five years since my last visit to Malaysia I lately went back to my favourite holiday destination. It was a short visit which was mostly spent with the family inside the resorts, by the swimming pool or in the shopping centres. Nevertheless, we managed to get few short photographic escapes in the streets of Penang and Kuala Lumpur.
I brought my Canon 5d MKII for this trip because I knew that most of my street photography will be at night, so the Canon 85mm f/1.2 will be my best friend. The Leica M7 had to stay at home because I don’t have lenses fast enough for it, and because I have a small pile of films waiting to be processed already! I was also looking forward to buy some films and chemicals from there, but unfortunately I didn’t have time to visit the speciality shops I was planning to visit, and most of the high street photography shops I found (and there are a lot of them!) didn’t have film in stock anymore. I did buy a bunch of Lomography films nonetheless for a relatively cheap price, they should be enough for me for the time being.
The photographs in this set were shot in two locations; Batu Ferringhi in Penang and Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC) around Jalan P Ramlee (I think!). Batu Ferringhi is the night market, a street full of small street side shops selling all kind of cheap stuff from art to clothes to knockoff DVDs and watches. It’s loud, crowded and colourful, a street photographer’s heaven. Kuala Lumpur is no less colourful or crowded, it’s just more modern with lots of lights and neon signs.
The problem I faced in both locations (apart from the limited time I had) was that the lights were just too colourful! I had to rely on the camera’s auto white balance, which was not a very good idea with the 5D I have to say. I’m sure that most modern digital cameras can perform better in those conditions, but with mine I ended up with a strange mix to tones. I should have shot in RAW, but I forgot to take my big CF and had to live with no more than 4 GB of JPGs at a time. I tried my best to process the colours in Aperture to get the photos to match each others and just hope that nobody notices 🙂
I will soon upload another set from Malaysia, a bigger one and a bit different. You have to wait for it though… or flip to the next post if you are reading this in the future.