Awesome Qipao Photoshoot @ Chinese Garden, Putrajaya
It has been a while and I get to kickstart 2023 with a Chinese traditional qipao photoshoot in conjunction with the upcoming Chinese New Year celebration. Whenever the Chinese New Year is just around the corner, there will be a lot of Chinese-themed photoshoots going on in Malaysia. The Chinese-themed photoshoot with Shirley was held at the China-Malaysia Friendship garden in Putrajaya which is about 45 minutes away from KL. It was my third time shooting with Shirley after the moody B&W portrait a year ago. There is nothing to worry about when you’re shooting with her, as she is good at model poses, which helps the photographers to take nice photos too!
If you haven’t been to the China-Malaysia Friendship Garden in Putrajaya, the park is open as early as 6.30 am. If you have no idea where to park your car, rest assured there is ample open-air parking just located right beside the entrance. It was early and only a few cyclists and joggers were around. It starts to get more visitors later during the day.
There are some nice spots to take nice photos around the garden that are surrounded by greenery and Chinese traditional structures. I was testing out my latest Fujicolor Pro 400H film recipe and it turns out amazing.
It's Gloomy Day, Perfect For Qipao Photoshoot
The qipao photoshoot session started at around 8 am and it was a gloomy day. I find the gloomy day is quite good when shooting portraits using my film recipe. It was just a casual photoshoot with traditional Chinese dress which is called qipao or cheongsam.
I was going lightweight without any lighting photography equipment such as a flash, reflector, softbox or stand. I don’t feel like bringing heavy equipment. Most of the photos are shot SOOC JPEG using my Fujifilm X-T4 & Contax G1 Film camera. One thing I noticed was that my film portrait shots were taken wide open at F2 in some scenes and looked slightly blurry on the subject.
For the film, It is my first time shooting with the Yashica 400 35mm film stock. Well, I felt okay with the colour tone but not really into the over saturated tone though. Still, I prefer the 35mm motion picture films from Kodak Eastman. Here are a few Yashica 400 film photo samples. What do you think?
Shooting SOOC JPEGs
I like the photos shot with the Fujifilm X-T4 under available natural light. My Japanese film recipes look great with greenish scenery. Love it so much. With no sunlight and a gloomy day, this allows me to overexpose my shots up to 1-stop using the exposure compensation dial. In the meantime, I’m not sure if I wanted to use the lens FX filter for this shoot, but in the end, I still decided to go with the dreamy film look. FX filters are usually used to create cinematic, creative portraits and dreamy photos.
By applying and following some of the basic photography techniques, I’m sure the photos will look better, right? Not claiming to be an expert in portrait photography, I didn’t use manual mode but Aperture priority mode for most of the shots, if you are one of the Fujifilm users that shoot portraits, you can check out some of the camera settings for portrait shoots that I used all the time.
I don’t mind my photos being slightly overexposed because there are no RULES for me, heh heh. But if it’s extremely overexposed then it’s a no-no but of course, I trust my skills, that is not happening lol. Alright, enough of long storytelling. What do you think of the film recipe and also this qipao photoshoot series? Do you like this colour tone from this shoot?
The photo shoot area at China-Malaysia Friendship Garden is quite small compared to the Japanese-themed garden located in Shah Alam (check out the Japanese Garden photos) and I guess most shoots can be done within one and a half hour time. But rest assured you can get plenty of nice photos at the Chinese-themed garden if the model’s poses are different.
Hopefully this year I would be able to shoot more projects, especially for film photography (expensive film stock, duh) and also cinematic portrait shoots for travellers in Malaysia, who wants nice vacation photos.
Stay tuned for the next post and happy shooting.
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