20th November – Remembrance + Other Updates

Today on the 20th November 2017, it’s a day of significance and rememberance for me.

Remembrance Day

Exactly 1 year ago on 20th November 2016, my paternal grandmother passed away at a ripe old age of 99 years. My matriarch had always been the pillar and foundation of the extended family, someone that I had the utmost respect and admiration. Her sharpness, observations, along with her meticulous nature, were some of the life skills set that she had passed on down to her future generations, I am one of those that inherited those traits of my grandmother!

While her anniversary will be based on the Chinese Lunar Calendar (early December for year 2017), I used both calendars to remember her and what she did for the entire family under leadership and guidance. While it had been a year, we all missed her.

Other Updates

Collaboration project – Love At Second Sight

For the past few weeks, I was involved in a collaboration shoot with my friends Tiffany and Peps, for their Love At Second Sight short films project. I was shooting behind the scenes and another segment on lifestyle product shoot. Shot over a 4 days period in a two weeks time frame, I had a great time, tiring at the end of the day, managed to capture some really nice photos, for the short films, on behind the scenes, for marketing and publicity. Keep a look out for Love At Second Sight short film on Tiffany and Peps FB page, as well as my FB page for more updates!

Editorial Coverage

Editorial coverage for some of the events that I attended, in technology, lifestyle and musuems events, my coverage had been slower than I would like it to be. I promise to get my backlogged editorial coverage published and shared in the coming 2 weeks. Thank you to all for your understanding.

95th Dinner Anniversary Celebrations

95 years is not a small milestone and I am very happy to be part of this celebrations and this special family, the Gan Eng Seng Dragon Scout Group, along with my old boys and girls club a.k.a Dragon Chapter. I hope to share more photographs and stories soon, it’s just a small shout out first! 95 not out, next monumental milestone, 100! Onward Dragon Scouts!

Marketing, branding, publicity, partnerships and collaborations

An era of disruptions, more to come in the years ahead, running a business has changed, my personal opinion and view is the traditional ways of running a business may not be that applicable, adapt, change, disrupt or get left behind in this fast and furious pace. Redefining, reorganising and restructuring my business, building up more partnerships and collaborations with different groups of friends.

Some inner most private thoughts

It had been a very tough two years for me, if you had been reading my stories and updates from 2016 till today in 2017. All these life experiences shaped my in many different ways and aspects. Losing 6 people from your life within a 1 year time frame from 2016 to 2017 had quite a big impact on me. At times, when friends were celebrating their happy milestones, big travel holidays, delicious expensive restaurant food on a weekly basis, I just kept quiet and hide away.

Running a small business in this year, are more long long stories to share, some of my stories on running a small business, you might have read in my updates/stories along the way. I leave this segment for my future story telling and sharing.

As a photographer, I faced quite a number of times of unpleasant comments, remarks, sometimes dislike, sometimes asking u along the line of “when are u going to fail”. To receive credits and acknowledgement from friends, partners and supporters for the photography works that I do is a blessing.

There are times when not everything is about $$, it’s about giving thanks, gratitude, giving back and pay it forward! Giving back to my alma mater Dragon Scout Group is one of them.

Tough times never last, tough people do. A constant reminder to myself, be thankful and grateful for everything that I have at this point in time, stay humble and grounded. Keep learning and improving.

MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017

Lifelong learning is a personal philosophy and mantra that I adopt, advocate and share whenever I am able to. Regardless of the qualifications that I have, the amount of life and professional experiences that I currently possess, I always tell and remind myself that I do not know everything in the world, there is always something to learn, a new skill/knowledge and/or upgrading my current skills/knowledge.

Most recently, I was kindly invited to a seminar, MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017 organised by Management Development and Consultancy (MDC), the corporate training arm of Management Development Institute of Singapore (MDIS). The title of the seminar was “From the Present to the Future: Getting Ready for Digital Transformation”, the speakers were highly experienced professionals in their field of their respective specialisation expertise. One of my friends Walter was one of the speakers for the MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017 and it was great to catch up with him during the event!

The speakers and their topics were as follow:

Andrew Chow (Speaker and Facilitator)

Digital Marketing Strategy Overview for 2018

Search Marketing – How to be seen and searched at the right places

Social Media Marketing – Rediscover the Lost Art of being Social in Marketing

Walter Lim (Speaker)

Content Markting: Choosing the Right Content and Channels

Nick Tan (Speaker)

How to use Virtual Reality Solutions to create immersive marketing experiences?

Alvin Lim (Speaker)

How to use blogging as an effective marketing tool

Xi Wei (Speaker)

Gamification – Don’t be a noob: Raising your game in the digital world

After the introduction, welcome and opening address by June Lim, Assistant Director of MDC, Andrew took over, he had dual roles of both a speaker and facilitaor for the MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017. Andrew’s experience in conducting seminars can be seen when he employed an ice breaker game for participants to mingle around, meet, introduce and chat with different people.

Thereafter, the seminar started with tea and lunch breaks in between the entire Digital Marketing Day seminar. I have been hands-on inside the digital marketing / social media / blogging fields since April 2006, I have personally seen the huge changes in internet marketing, SEO, digital marketing and social media over the past decade. Although I am being “trained On-The-Job”, the topics shared by the various speakers were always a good refresher for me and there is always something new to learn because I don’t know every thing/knowledge/skills in life. It is always good to keep myself updated, upgraded and learn new knowledge and skills in life, on both personal and professional level.

Some topics such as “Rediscover the Lost Art of being Social in Marketing” by Andrew and “How to use Virtual Reality Solutions to create immersive marketing experiences?” by Nick, got me thinking ahead for the future, how I am able to make the changes, adapt and adopt new technology, as well as rediscovering myself in the commercial world of digital media marketing / social media marketing.

At the end of the MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017, it had been a fruitful and eventful learning day, networking , learning, upgrading and a refresher for me too. Do keep a look out for the various types of programmes and courses by MDC, highly suitable for working professionals to upgrade and learn new skills/knowledge.

I would like to thank MDC for the invitation to their MDC Digital Marketing Day 2017!

* Pictures courtesy of MDC *

Updates, Reflection and Thinking Ahead

This personal website/blog of mine hit a bit of a mind block recently, since the two articles published on 1st and 2nd October 2017. I had a few technology news and business articles to share for the past week, it slowed down for 1+ week, it will come back again soon!

I was reflecting upon, thinking ahead and adding to what I wrote in my 1st October 2017 article, titled “Start of Q4 2017, Final Sprint“. During the past 1+ week, it’s a bit of a consolidation, realignments, readjustments and also changes for the final quarter of 2017. All this things going on inside my brain and mind, contributed to this additional article today, a key reason why there wasn’t much news/articles published on my website/blog here during the past 1+ week.

Upgrading / Learning new skills and knowledge

Learning is life-long and never-ending, that’s my philosophy for both personal and professional aspects of it. I am looking to improve on my skills and knowledge segment, for improving my current skills set and knowledge, as well as learning new skills and knowledge.

  • Drone flying – Planning to add this skill, for my travel photography in the future.
  • Travel and Tourism Public Relations – I wanted to add this knowledge, theory and skill, not just to complement my travel photography projects/assignments, I am thinking and strategising new business ideas.
  • Workshops/Courses – Finding courses and utilising Skills Future Credit to improve myself, first course is Lightroom organised by Canon Imaging Academy.
  • Digital Marketing and Social Media Marketing – I recently attended #MDCDigitalMarketingDay at Management Development & Consultancy (MDC) by MDIS. For somebody who had been hands-on inside this segment for the past 10 years, I still have knowledge and skills to learn, keep a lookout for my upcoming article!

Thinking and Strategising Ahead

I need to brainstorm a business plan / model for travel and tourism public relations + photography + social media/digital marketing coverage.

Still very tough economic times and difficult + slow market

I have a few real life stories of business owners facing huge challenges in this very tough economic times, it’s still a difficult and slow market. I shared their pain, their difficulties and challenges, I might write more about this if my time allows.

When the economy and market returns to better levels and stabilises in the near future, we are no longer looking at big GDP growth numbers, we are probably looking at slow and small GDP growth, maybe 1-3% per year (that’s my personal humble view).

I will be back writing and publishing articles soon! Thank you for reading, following and supporting!

Start of Q4 2017, Final Sprint

The final quarter of year 2017 starts today on 1st October 2017, for some of you folks out there, this is also the final sprint to the end of year 2017, on 31st December 2017. Everyone of us had our own unique and special journeys during the first three quarters of year 2017, yet we might have something in common with the tough and difficult economy and market sentiments.

I am taking this time to write on a number of different topics in one article, I might expand on them that I wrote here today, if my time and research planning permits.

Updates: Running my own photography business

How was your first three quarters of year 2017 been? It had been nothing less than a very tough and challenging journey for the past nine months. Running a photography business, time was spent on building the foundations, networks, systems, marketing, branding, collaborations, partnerships and last but not least, finding the business. We are looking at 80% of time spent on the above and 20% spent on actual photography shoot and post photography shoot.

I never really talked or revealed too much into this area, not just that it is private, most of the time, many people around you don’t understand, don’t want to listen, learn and understand. There are also a handful of people around you that don’t want you to succeed, they want you to fail, sad but true (or they might change their stance and words and said they don’t mean it after they spilled the “wrong words” out from their mouth”)

There are a small group of photographer friends that can and will understand what I am going through. Listening to their own photography business journeys over the years, there is a similarity in my own personal journey. Therefore, I still have to grind my way through and make a breakthrough.

Micro influencers – a bit more differentiation into Mini and Micro influencers groupings?

Recently, there has been quite a lot of debates and discussions on the topic of influencers, from both sides of the equation, the brands/companies, public relations agencies, digital agencies etc on one side and a diverse group of influencers on the other side.

I came across this infographic article on LinkedIN written by Preeti Kumar – 7 Influencer types & How to work with them. Reading and analysing this infographic, I was looking at where I fit into – Key Opinion Leaders: Creatives, partly Micro influencers and product seeders.

On the role of micro influencers, it is probably a bigger area of growth and investment for both sides, let’s put it as demand and supply sides of things. While the quantitative part of micro influencers have been debated, some put 20,000, some put 10,000. Personally, I reckon that it is totally and suitably possible, to differentiate them into Mini and Micro influencers.

Why use Mini and Micro? What are the differences?

I am using the two words from a Forex trading lingo, mini and micro lot.

Standard Lot = 100,000 units

Mini Lot = 10,000 units

Micro Lot = 1,000 units

Translating it into digital marketing side of things

Influencer – Above 100,000 followers

Mini Influencer – Above 10,000 followers

Micro Influencer – 3,000 to 5,000 followers?

This is just something that crossed my mind and got me thinking, I have yet to analyse and put into greater details. It’s still a preliminary stage for me, if the opportunity arises to work with other digital marketers on this, that would be nice. Nevertheless, I hope to continue working on this topic in the future if my timing and commitment allows.

We must go beyond ROI with numbers and statistics, while quantitative is important, influencer marketing has a lot of qualitative, intrinsic and psychological aspects that cannot be measured by numers, revenue, statistics and numbers.

Planning to expand with/in the following areas/collaborations

Although the list above doesn’t directly translate into business for my photography business, they reinforce my networkings, contacts and collaborations on my digital marketing, technology writing and social media.

Over the past three quarters of 2017, I unlocked small achivements for myself when organisations approach me, to have a chat and see where I work together with them from there. All these are small testimonials for myself and everything that I put in for the past 10 years at least through writing, social media and photography.

Of mental health, physical health, emotions, mind and soul

A friend whom I look up upon, a very creative and talanted person in writing, photography and music, Fernando Gros, recently wrote an article titled “Creative Health Part 2 – Your Mind and Your Path”. I saw his tweet, read his article and I am kind of like being “shaken up”. In my reply to his tweet, I posted “After reading your article, it dawned upon me that I am stressed out, not taking care of my mind, body and soul.”

The truth and harsh reality is that it can be really brutally hard at times, we just have to take care of ourselves, going through regular maintenance. Not to mention, even the best engineering devices also wear and break down even with regular maintenance.

In case you missed it, Fernando published this book title “No Missing Tools”, do check out my article and have a read and you would be enlightened and know why I respect his works and views a lot.

Where do I go from here?

The seeds had been planted, watered and being taken care of. While not everyday is sunshine, there were rain, storm, bad weather that hit the growth of the plants. Hopefully, the changes and corrections were in place to make the seedlings grow better and faster, allowing me to harvest the fruits of my labour.

Being thankful and grateful

In this short time frame period of a year, there were those that have happy news while I am fighting pain, hurt and loss. Losing 6 people, 4 were relatives of which 2 of them were very close to me, the others were 1 mentor and 1 uni junior.

I may not have the most happy and joyful time during the past 1 year time frame, one of the toughest time that I went through. It made me reflect a lot and be thankful and grateful for everything that I have, the family, relatives and friends support.

Final thoughts

Technology and disruptions are not going to destroy us, ignorance and complacency are going to destroy us.

We MUST start to make the changes, no matter how painful and difficult it will be or else, we might be in a spiral downfall for the next 1-2 generations.

In the midst of re-strategising and making changes to my flow, workflow, daily flow, well-being, growth and rest, while embarking on my Final Sprint Q4 2017.

1000th Post: In memory of my Big Auntie

This is my 1,000th post on my personal website/blog, a milestone for me, in my writing journey here, mainly in the topics of technology news and reviews, personal stories, personal development, business topics and areas of personal interest. Initially, I wasn’t sure what topic or theme would suit my milestone 1,000th post because for the past 4-5 months, I was hiding a lot of emotions, hurt and despair behind my normal looking face.

My milestone 1,000th post is dedicated to the memory of my Big Auntie (da jiu mu), my mother’s eldest sister-in-law. Today marks the 35th day since her passing, who lost her fight to cancer. My Big Auntie was a family member that I am very close to, she took care of me when I was just a 1+ months old toddler until I finished secondary 4. She was just like another mother to me, who loved me, nagged at me and of course, the occasional quarrels due to differences in opinions, views and what I wanted to do.

My Big Auntie will definitely have an influence on me over the years that she took care of me, I do pick up some of her traits and style. While I may not cook as skilful and delicious cuisines like my Big Auntie, her cooking skills and knowledge helped me in my cooking when I was studying in Australia.

She also like her things and home to be neat and tidy, I am probably a big culprit, messy and full of things at home. Her nagging and scolding of my home and room will now only be a distant memory in my heart and soul. Over time, my room did change and it’s much better in terms of tidy and neatness, I am speaking the truth here!

When I heard the shocking news from my cousin a few months back that she was diagnosed with Stage 4 Cancer, I was totally devastated and totally shell-shocked. Deep inside me, I know it’s going to be a very very difficult stage with probably of 6 months time left, maybe shorter than 6 months, maybe a chance of a longer period than 6 months.

During the past 4 months, I was going through a very very difficult time, the emotions, hurt, despair and I wasn’t able to do much more for her. This period was also very very difficult for my uncle, cousins and nieces. No words can describe this journey, no words, enough said.

Very few friends, only a very select few know about what was happening, I just looked normal like always, maybe just more moody and bad tempered. I was hiding a lot of emotions, sadness and hurt behind my face. That was also a period whereby there were not many articles being published here on my website/blog.

My Big Auntie lost her fight to cancer, about 4 months after her diagnosis. It was so painful to watch her suffer and while I am very sad and hurt that she is no longer around, it’s also a relief for her that she doesn’t have to suffer pain anymore.

35 days have passed since her passing. I finally managed to pen down my thoughts and feelings, without going into too much details of the past 4 months. This was also a kind of relief for me, while I am still hurting inside my heart., writing and sharing it out here, helps to relieve some of the pain, hurt and sadness.

I lost my paternal grandmother to old age in November 2016, the matriarch of my family, I also lost another senior relative, my grand-auntie in July 2017 and also a cousin in May 2017. This had been a very tough and emotionally draining period since November 2016 while I was building/starting up a small photography business.

To my da jiu mu, my Big Auntie, you will never be forgotten, for everything that you did for me since I was born. I hereby promise you that I am going to make my room and home (along with my parents taking action to clean up the home also) even more clean, neat and tidy, on top of getting my business stable and on track, then you do not to worry about me from the heavens above.

For this special 1,000th milestone on my personal website/blog, I dedicate this post to you, my Big Auntie, in your memory and legacy that you leave behind for us.

Singtel launched an integrated multimedia campaign to inspire Singaporeans

National Day 2017 is just round the corner, it’s arriving soon, 9th August 2017. The celebrations are starting to get into full swing, building up towards National Day 2017, when we celebrate Singapore’s 52nd birthday.

In conjunction with National Day celebrations, Singtel launched an integrated multimedia campaign to inspire Singaporeans to continue and keep up the Singaporean spirit, the Majulah spirit to unite and propel Singaporeans together towards being bigger and better.

What is this integrated campaign all about? Let me share the news and information:

This is going to be a month long campaign, paying tribute to Singaporeans from all walks of life, who have, in their own ways, contributed to the making of the nation. It features Singaporeans from different backgrounds coming together as one nation to seize opportunities, overcome challenges and keep on striving.

“National Day is a celebration of our progress as one people every 9 August when Singaporeans fill up with national pride and patriotism,” says Ms Lian Pek, Vice President of Group Strategic Communications and Brand. “But often times, the spirit of National Day tends to fizzle out shortly after. We hope our campaign will serve as an awareness ribbon of sorts to gently remind ourselves to keep flying the Singapore flag even after the birthday party.”

Jointly developed with BBH, the Singtel campaign will roll out 12 print ads in the run up to 9 August, featuring portraits of Singaporeans and their aspirations on banners and posters at bus stops across the island and on social media. Well-known photographer and instagrammer Chia Aik Beng was enlisted to capture a representative spectrum of society and their different hopes for the country. A customized National Day frame (https://www.facebook.com/profilepicframes) will be made available on Facebook for users to download and partake in the celebratory greetings. Singtel will also release a video, dedicated to Singaporeans’ go-getting spirit.

Powering On Sports

The second part of this month-long campaign will feature Singapore’s athletes heading to the SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur from August 19 to 30 in their quest for sporting glory for the nation.

“There’s nothing like having our athletes represent Singapore at regional or international sporting meets to bring Singaporeans together,” says Ms Pek. “We see the Games as a natural extension of our National Day campaign as ultimately, it’s a very tangible reminder that we all have to raise our game to keep Singapore ahead of the pack.”

Supporting Team Singapore at the upcoming SEA Games is part of Singtel’s ongoing partnership with the Singapore National Olympic Council to develop the local sporting scene. Under this recently renewed partnership that started as far back as 2012, Singtel will help fund the training of the nation’s athletes to promote and develop sports in Singapore.

The ‘Power On’ campaign will feature six partner athletes in content that aims to promote a sporting culture and inspire Singaporeans during major athletic events. They are: Joseph Schooling (Swimming), Loh Zhi (Water Polo), Mark Leong (Water Ski), Nur Alfian (Silat), Shanti Pereira (Track and Field) and Shayna Ng (Bowling).

* Information courtesy of Singtel Corporate Communications *

I personally know Aik Beng and I am looking forward to view his wonderful and powerful photographs that he would be sharing for this integrated campaign by Singtel.

Counting down to Singapore’s 52nd birthday party celebration on 9th August 2017. Let’s also continue and keep up the Majulah spirit!

Dell Explores Next Era of Human-Machine Partnerships

One of the information technological topics/advancements that companies and brands are talking about right now and in the near coming future, is Internet of Things (IoT). I took a strong interest in this area ever since my overseas trip to Canon EXPO Shanghai conference in 2016 and learning first hand on IoT from a company’s perspective, as well as visiting Greenwave Systems during CommunicAsia 2016 and CommunicAsia 2017.

Most recently in 2017, I also attended The Future Workplace with Dell and a seminar on F1 Technology and The Impact on Healthcare, adding on to my reading and understanding on the subject matter IoT. Although I am not a subject expert, I do have a keen interest on how IoT is going to impact and affect how we humans use and consume technology in the future. The future of IoT can help us live and work better, it can also affect us with the possibility of replacing our jobs.

What is the next era of Human-Machine partnerships? How is it going to be like? Are you afraid or are you excited? Will your job still be there in the next 5 to 10 years or will it be replaced by technology and machines? Last but not least, are you ready for IoT to be even more integrated in your work and home in the coming near future (IMHO, it might be as early as 5-10 years away) ?

Dell has partnered with the Institute for the Future (IFTF) and 20 global experts to study the changing relationship between people and technology and how the relationship will manifest itself in society, business and work over the next decade. Dell is sharing the results today from the report titled ‘The next era of human machine partnerships.’

While I am reading up on the reports, their views and analysis, I am also sharing key information and links here for the readers, from the press release below:

Dell Technologies commissioned the study to help companies navigate an uncertain world and prepare for the future. Today, digital disruption is ruthlessly redrawing industries. For the first time in modern history, global leaders can’t predict how their industry will fare further down the line. According to Dell’s Digital Transformation Index,61% of APJ business leaders have experienced significant disruption to their industries as a result of digital technologies. And more than half of businesses believe there’s a possibility their company will become obsolete within the next three to five years.

The report forecasts that emerging technologies, supported by massive advancements in software, big data and processing power, will reshape lives. Society will enter a new phase in its relationship with machines, which will be characterized by:

  • Even greater efficiency and possibility than ever before, helping humans transcend our limitations
  • Humans as “digital conductors” in which technology will work as an extension of people, helping to better direct and manage daily activities
  • Work chasing people, in which by using advanced data-driven matchmaking technologies, organizations can find and employ talent from across the world
  • People learning “in the moment,” as the pace of change will be so rapid that new industries will be created and new skills will be required to survive

Other report highlights include:

  • In 2030 humans’ reliance on technology will evolve into a true partnership with humans, bringing skills such as creativity, passion and an entrepreneurial mindset. This will align with the machines’ ability to bring speed, automation and efficiencies, and the resulting productivity will allow for new opportunities within industries and roles.
  • By 2030 personalized, integrated artificial intelligence (AI) assistants will go well beyond what assistants can do now. They’ll take care of us in predictive and automated ways.
  • Technology won’t necessarily replace workers, but the process of finding work will change. Work will cease to be a place but a series of tasks. Machine learning technologies will make individuals’ skills and competencies searchable, and organizations will pursue the best talent for discrete tasks.
  • An estimated 85 percent of jobs in 2030 haven’t been invented yet. The pace of change will be so rapid that people will learn “in-the-moment” using new technologies such as augmented reality and virtual reality. The ability to gain new knowledge will be more valuable than the knowledge itself.

Additional and useful links for further reading

Personal Thoughts and Views

No matter how we want to look at IoT, we cannot avoid it, even if some of you don’t want to look at it or ignore it. The future of IoT is going to impact us in both good and bad ways. Like the Scout’s motto, “Be Prepared”, we have to be prepared, for the upcoming changes, to change, adapt, innovate, learn and re-learn, adopt, move on and grow together with IoT. If not, you might become obsolete and be left behind.

* Information courtesy of Dell Technologies and Cohn & Wolfe Singapore *

Double Rainbow spotted on 8th July 2017

A rainbow, a beautiful sight on Earth, one of the many wonders by our Mother Nature. I was able to spot rainbow a number of times over the years at different locations in Singapore, it’s always a blessing to be able to see a rainbow.

A double rainbow, is much harder to spot and I haven’t personally spot a double rainbow since the year 2012, check out my previous post here when I shared about my double rainbow story!

On 8th July 2017, I was at the Marina Bay area, on the Esplanade side, photographing National Day Parade (NDP) 2017 rehearsal, this was the National Education 2 (NE2) show. While photographing the pre-parade performances around the Marina Bay, a rainbow appeared above and behind the skyline of Marina Bay Sands! The sight was really gorgeous! A lot of the visitors present around Marina Bay were probably photographing away the view of the rainbow!

As the time quickly progressed, a faint second rainbow appeared at the side of the main rainbow! Finally, I managed to spot a double rainbow again! I quickly turned my attention to the double rainbow, photographing and capturing this wonderful image down on my cameras and my memories. This photograph, was a perfect theme for my number 5,000th post on Instagram, a personal milestone for me, a perfect fit with this double rainbow!

It’s not easy at all to spot a double rainbow and this is a blessing for me, considering the difficult and tough times for my photography business. I am glad that I managed to capture this with the Huawei P10 Plus, a smartphone that I am reviewing currently!

This article titled “Journey with me along with Huawei P10 Plus“, is a prelude to my review articles and photographs that I would be sharing at the end of the Huawei P10 Plus review. For the next few weeks, walk with me, through my eyes, thoughts, views and journeys with the Huawei P10 Plus.

I am also taking this opportunity to constantly remind myself again and again, in this post that I wrote … it’s time to return back to creating quality content with my photographs and stories, through my own vision and direction.

Concentrating and focusing on this area, I can let the toxic and bad wolfs stay away from my brain, heart and soul. I must and I need to let go of the toxic and nasty people around me.

The Huawei P10 Plus smartphone review set is like a lucky star for me, spotting the double rainbow and re-igniting the photography and creative spark inside me again.

You’ll Never Walk Alone! Onward!

Looking back at H1 2017

Time flies so fast sometimes, today marks the start of the second half of year 2017. Exactly a year ago, I also wrote something similar, with the title “Looking back at H1 2016” and there were so much anguish, hurt and disappointment at that point in time. I was down and stuck in the bottom of a rut, recovering and slowly getting myself out of all the things that happened to me.

It had not been easy at all, it was a very difficult period for me, I learnt a lot of life lessons and lessons taught by the society and economy. Thus, my route to recovery wasn’t as fast as I would like it to be. Taking small steps at a time to get myself back on track, I met with the loss of extended family members and close friends. I got a little bit shaken and deviated off slightly on my recovery journey.

Today, as I looked back on the first half of 2017, there wasn’t so much of anguish, hurt and disappointment. Instead, it’s a physically and emotionally tiring journey since I decided to start my own small business in photography services, a journey that maybe 80% or 90% of the friends/people around you that will not step in, whether to start a small business or enter into the photography business industry.

Being a one person business owner / photographer / story teller/ accountant/ administrative / marketing / social media / public relations, there are times whereby no words can further describe everything that you have to carry on the shoulders. Basically, I have to do everything myself until the business is stable.

Moreover, with the amount of disruptions and technological changes to our living and economy, things are constantly changing, sometimes too fast and too furious. On the other hand, changes and disruptions are incoming in the months and years ahead. Marketing directions change, styles and engagements change.

Over the past 6 months of year 2017, it had been a journey of building up the foundations and processes. Thus these affect earning revenue, not to mention how tough and challenging the current economic climate is and in the near future. Even though, the business is still in its infancy stage, I am trying my best to get it up and flying high.

Partnerships and collaborations, are two areas that I am looking at for the future, in this modern world of disruptions and changes, businesses need to help out each other more than ever before. Although not all businesses may see it this way, due to competition or products/services similarity, this would be helpful and ideal for different businesses to collaborate and partnership together in handling projects, business deals. This is the real Win-Win situation for all, helping each other to grow and expand their businesses and networks.

During the past 6 months, while there weren’t anger, anguish or disappointment that clouded me in H1 of 2016, this period had been at times very exhausting and stressful because I am running a one person small business. I am grateful for the help and support some of my friends gave me, from accounting/book keeping advice, business operations to networking.

I am also more appreciative of the surroundings, from family, partnerships, collaborations and friendships. I may not have the wealth and money, I always tell myself and remind myself to be down to earth, be humble and appreciative of the family, relatives and friends (only those that deserve your love, friendship and appreciation) around you. The loss of two relatives from my extended family in the past 8 months shaped me up most recently.

Life is precious, time is limited, treasure your loved ones. As the saying goes, YOLO ~ You Only Live Once, therefore, giving it all out and striving ahead. Whether I succeed or fail, the very least is that I have taken the first step since January 2017 where many many are afraid and will not even take the first step.

The first half of 2017 is now over, the second half of 2017 starts now. My journey is still a very very steep mountain to climb. Taking step by step, even if the future remains uncertain on all fronts, I must still continue moving forward, learning new knowledge and skills, gaining more experiences.

During a recent chat with my friend, she gave me this quote:

“Keep Calm and Keep Shooting”

Indeed very true and this brought me back to where I started off this year, why and what I wanted to start this journey.

Now to continue adding more photography works to photography business portfolio website at Tan Geng Hui Photography.

Took 3 days break

I took a 3 days break, from Saturday 10th to Monday 12th June. No, I didn’t travel overseas for a holiday, although I wish to go for a short trip out of Singapore and get away from this rat race + high pressure cooker + too much rubbish at times happening. I just stayed at home and didn’t go out anywhere over the weekend and today Monday, except to buy food, went to my auntie’s home and fetch my mum from the airport.

Things hit me in both physically and emotionally, I was just recently physically drained and emotionally drained, probably due to both happening concurrently. A number of factors, finding and strategising ways in this challenging and difficult economic climate. Emotionally because there are some things that I cannot say out here, only very very few people know what is happening.

I need to reorganise myself in many ways, to plan and utilise my time, for personal photography, marketing, collaboration and partnerships for my photography business, to build side businesses to ensure additional sources of income in lieu of changing and disrupting world economy.

My tech and business articles writing on this site has slowed down, don’t worry, I am slowly writing and publishing them as many as I am able to handle. There are some priority articles to publish first e.g. tech review articles, B2B articles etc etc.

3 days of doing nothing, it does help, to rest and recharge. This allows me to plan and carry on forward ahead, as the Chinese saying goes, “taking a rest, is for taking a longer journey ahead”.

I need and I want to commit to less things/events/commitments, sometimes I wish friends can understand why I want to do less things/events/commitments, yet they do not want and do not wish to understand. I only want to commit to those things that I want to do within my time, my means and my commitments.

These are the spaces whereby I express and write down a lot of my thoughts, feelings and emotions. It’s different from people who rants on Facebook wall everyday. Probably Twitter and Instagram are my two other spaces whereby I share more updates.

I do need a short travel break overseas, to get away from Singapore for a few days to recharge and rejuvenate. It might be start to restart my travel photography projects.

Back to managing my time, priorities, photography and business well. The past few months had been some good learning life lessons, on how much I am able to handle and prioritising the areas that I should focus on. One step at a time, to learn, improve from mistakes, new knowledge, skills and experiences.

Onward!