Buddha and The Sala

I have no idea what the name of this temple complex is called. Most of us just call it Big Buddha which is located in Pratumnak Hill. This day I took my friend up there as he had never seen it even though he lives in Thailand. It’s just in his normal area and we were but a short bike ride away so it seemed like a pleasant way to pass the time before we parted ways for the day.

The Buddha is evident but the sala isn’t something you would know normally but its the building. I have shown a few in various shots but never really explained them. They are areas of worship where you can walk in and make offerings to a Buddha or hear a monk recite the Dharma and make an offering to the monk and receive a blessing. Depends on if a monk is present or not.

Thailand being well; Thailand you will notice the the right the small stand with lettering in Chinese, Korean, Russian, Thai and likely some English is the amulet vendor. You can buy some blessed amulets. I will tell you from personal experience from said vendor, that gold isn’t what you call the highest quality Thai gold. It has a tendency to turn green. You have been warned.

Editing was done while listening to Motorhead and the gravel voiced Lemmy who died on 12/26. He was Lemmy and he played rock n’ roll. Go listen to him.




Buddha And Monk

I found this little alter in a small temple off the Naval Overlook in Pratumnak. While every tourist was busy with the overlook they ignored this cool little temple complex so I had the place to myself. Well, by to myself I meant those Thais that were hanging around the temple but there were no other tourists around me which was really nice. They missed the coolest attraction.

If you ask me who the monk is in this I don’t know but he’s popular in Thailand. My guess is he was one of the more popular Supreme Patriarch’s in Thailand. While I don’t know all the in’s and out’s of Thai Buddhism the Supreme Patriarch is like the Pope for Thai Buddhists. Least thats my guess. If someone else knows otherwise let me know.

I’ll skip how I got the image to where it is. Yes, it’s HDR but subtle. I just wanted the alter area to pop and it did so nicely. I have gotten better about how I handle HDR so I can make it seem less HDR if that makes sense.




Crescent Bay

This is Pattaya Bay shot from the Naval Overlook up in Pratamnak. This Naval Overlook is a major tourist attraction with tour buses vomiting out tourists in hordes. These same tourists then sit there like dogs pissing on their favorite spot to mark their territory by setting up their tripods preventing anyone else to get a shot without a lot weird angles.

Not 100% happy with this image but I seldom am. It has to do with noise in the sky but I found a new technique today that I will try on my next edit. Removing noise out of a blue channel is always a nightmare and some of the weirder halo effects from doing HDR conversions. Curious to see how the new technique will work.



Distant Shores

This was taken off of Wongnamat Beach in Naklua as the sun was starting to set over the Gulf of Thailand with the city in the distance. You can see Pattaya, Pranumnak, and Jomtein in the distance. I also liked how the water and the rocks played off each other.

This was shot with my Olympus EM1 versus the Sony A7R which I use for most of my landscape stuff. Mainly because I am lazy and hate switching lenses and I can use the 24-200 I have for the A7R. Still, I can notice the lack of details between the two cameras if I pixel peep enough. The one thing I haven’t done with the Olympus is use a 2 stop bracket like I do with my Sony. The HDR was done with 7 images shifting 1/3 of a stop each direction. I might try it with 3 images with a 2 stop shift.

Lots of filters after the HDR conversion. Running it through Macphun’s Intensify CK and Nik’s Color Efx. Then masking everything back in at various levels.


Distant Shores

Toy Land

This is Pattaya from the Naval Overlook located up in Pratumnak. If you squint towards the right you can see the building I am staying in. I think? I have a poor sense of direction.

Tried something a bit different with this image. I added a very slight tilt-shift effect. I knew when I took it I was going to do this just because its what I saw in my head. Never really tried it before so I figured why not. Plus Photoshop makes it stupid easy to do just by going to filters and Blur Gallery.

One of the annoying things about the overlook is that its a major tourist dumping ground for tour groups. They literally have buses lined up vomiting tour groups. There were lots of “photographers” who like the soi dogs that roam that place pissed on their territory by setting up tripods in their preferred spots and promptly walking away. Most were complete crap but there were a few that I would have gladly walked away.

I am all for getting your shot but don’t be a total jackwad by just setting your tripod for the sunset shot of your dreams. It’s an asshat move. You want your shot you get there and set for it and wait. Not just set your tripod and go muck about ruining others shots because the entire viewing area was lined with tripods so no one could get to the side for their own shots.

This being Thailand complaining to anyone would have ended in frustration so it was pointless. I think next time I’m just going to round up some soi dogs and just point them in the general direction of the tripods and let them go wild. They can mark their territory just like the asshats marked theirs.

PS – Enjoy!



Lighthouse At Sunset

This is one of the reasons I went to Bali Hai, the lighthouse at the end of the road. Well, not really end, more like before you take a sharp left hand turn and end up in Pratumnak but most people never make it that far down. You gotta weave through the docks with boats being moved about and roving packs of soi dogs. Rather intimidating unless you been down that way before.

There are double bonus points if you can spot where I removed the Honda Click out of the image. You can also see one of my CCTV installers making an appearance and a¬†creepy old guys’s leg if you look close enough.