Photessay: Thean Hou temple by night

Thean Hou temple is a famous Buddhist location just outside Kuala Lumpur, popular as a place of worship during the new year and various lunar festivals. It’s also home to various martial arts groups. The temple belongs to the Selangor and Federal Territory Hainanese association, and was constructed from 1981 with funds donated by the community.

This set shot with an Olympus E-PM1 Pen Mini.

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  1. As every time: Beautiful Pictures, beautiful colours! Go on!

  2. I agree totally! A “better” or “more advanced” camera gives you more freedom for achieving great results, which might be more difficult with a less sophisticated camera. We all know that from the Leica M, which is a rather purist camera (not too many features) but what you have is just down to what you really need for taking great images – had it only fast AF – sigh ….

    Having said that my take of PP like Photoshop (and others) is to use it only very restrictive, the image should already be perfect as far as possible when pressing the shutter.

    The OMD though is up till today the best incarnation of a flexible but still compact digital camera IMHO.

    • Actually, I can achieve precise focus faster with a well-calibrated Leica M than an SLR – I can never be quite sure what the thing is going to focus on inside the box. The caveat is of course ‘well calibrated’…and yes, the OMD seems to be the best general purpose camera at the moment.

  3. I stumbled upon your site after purchasing an OM-D recently. Wonderful photographs you’ve taken with it and the 45mm prime. Now these great temple shots with the humble Pen compact. My question is: with Photoshop skills like yours, I’m beginning to wonder whether all this expensive gear is necessary! Of course things like fast autofocus and low light capture are what separate good cameras from mediocre ones, but between the Pen compact and OM-D, the great equalizer would be RAW files processed in Photoshop. And you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference most of the time! So do you think an “ordinary” camera with good lens and great Photoshop skills make a great picture? ( Lets leave the compositional skills of the photographer out of it first ).

    • Thanks! Yes, it’s necessary to have a good starting point: all things being equal, I can do more with a good quality file than a bad one – obviously exulting in much better final results. The OM-D has much more adjustment latitude even in good light.

      You can make a great picture with anything, the composition is baked at the time of pushing the shutter. Photoshop can enhance the presentation, but not fix fundamental compositional or lighting issues.

      • Ming: “Photoshop can enhance the presentation, but not fix fundamental compositional or lighting issues.”

        Very well said Ming. And I think you nailed the exposure here, that’s why – or am I wrong?

        • I think this was my first outing with the E-PM1 at night. Overexposed a little to be cautious – the flashing highlights warning helps immensely – and pulled back in ACR.

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