Day 5: The Blight of Photography and the Joy of Writing

by cedhausen

Scaffoldings… that’s what. And this one didn’t even cover simply a side of the building, it wrapped around it completely. Voila:


… though I suppose it adds to the picture. But anyway, today was the day I visited the Chinese Gardens, which was two MRT stations away from Boon Lay (the closest one to Nanyang Technological University where I’m staying). Don’t be fooled by the bright background. I was there barely for an hour before the area turned gloomy enough for me to take this shot, which happens to be the Photo of the Day:

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Ugh… if I spend another day drenched in the rain I’ll have a fever, and I already have a slight cough and a runny nose. I’m glad I took the above shot though. It was the last one I could take before running back to the MRT station on the other side of the gardens. My original plan to visit the National University of Singapore’s library had to be pushed to tomorrow morning because of the rain, but at least I got a few decent shots of the area:

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I always find it difficult to edit shots like these. I love the clouds at the back but the pagoda is a little too dimly lit for my liking. Adjust the lighting too much, and I lose the clouds’ texture. The limitations of working with an iPhone I suppose, but it’s still a damn good device.

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This was the other contender for Photo of the Day, but I’ve seen far more beautiful shots of spiral staircases and I didn’t think this could compare. Alas, the search for the perfect spiral staircase continues.

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Same issue with the pagoda above, though this was taken with my GoPro. I can’t keep myself away from reflections, they’re just too pretty not to capture. This reminds me of the time I visited the Huntington Library’s Chinese Garden, which remains to this day one of my favourite places to visit (not just the Chinese Garden but everything in it). Maybe I’ll talk about it someday.


And now you get a perspective of the bridge.

I’m beginning to think that a lot of people are responding to my posts mainly because of the photography, which is great because I love sharing my photographs and “putting it out there” for criticism I guess, but I also want to use blogging as an avenue to improve my writing skills. Would this mean that I intend for Pilgrim of Beauty to be a strictly professional blog where every word has its place and every image curated? Is objectivity the ultimate goal here, or should I allow myself to just type whatever the heck I want. These are questions I always ask myself when I post something. How honest should I be? Must I reveal everything? My day’s complete itinerary perhaps? I wouldn’t exactly call it a daily struggle, but overthinking these do tend to restrict my writing somewhat.

So I try for something in-between. There will be good days, and there will be bad days, I’ll just have to live with it. I can’t stay true to my “voice” if I’m writing only to please others, without consideration of my own experiences, passions, and emotions. As such, the posts are inherently subjective as they’re depicted from my point-of-view. Though isn’t that what most people are looking for in a blog? A new perspective, a new angle, something to rile up their senses a little. It’s the same with any of the reviews we seek on Tripadvisor, we’d like an opinion. An advice, suggestion, recommendation, warning, etc.

What can I offer? What can I offer? How am I different from so many others? What do I seek to achieve from this?

At times like these, I just tell myself to shut up and just stick to my passions. I have no answers to some of these questions nor do I have the time to torture myself over them (it’s 3:45AM now!!!). Why spend so much time thinking about how I’m going to do something? I simply do, because it’s what I like to do, and the least I can ask of myself is to do it with a religious zeal. After all, human beings are incredibly bored creatures who are in desperate need of hobbies to fill their lifespans. Writing and photography just happen to be mine.

Well, as long as there aren’t any scaffoldings to annoy me.