Monday, July 30, 2007

Wet Shine Detailing

A friend of mine, Kenneth aka fishbonezken (Wet Shine Detailing) detailed a maroon Proton Wira Aeroback SE during this weekend. Joe aka slk and I dropped by his house in the evening to check out his work and took a few shots. The photo shooting was quite a fun session, though it took quite some time to setup the lighting plus got bitten by mosquitos a few times.

If you need detailing service, you can check it out from Wet Shine Detailing and give Kenneth a call.


I got shot when I was shooting! Thanks Joe for the photo!

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Saturday, July 28, 2007

MyAltis Club Detailing Clinic

Monday, July 23, 2007

Detailing Lighting

One of the most wonderful creations from God is light. Light plays an important part in our life, without light, the world might not exist, humans might not survive. Without light, we wouldn't know what is photography, we wouldn't have the luxury to enjoy nicely detailed cars. However, in order to judge your detailing work accurately, you have to know how to spot paint defects with proper lighting.

To make it basic and simple, there are generally two types of light: hard and soft light. Hard light is produced by a small light source (in relative to the subject size) and produces harsh shadows on those areas which the light source can't illuminate directly. Imagine your room is only lit with a small incandescent light bulb hanging high on the ceiling (more distance), what will you see around you? Yes! The darkside of you! Just kidding, I was referring to your shadow. A huge light source which is so far away from the subject, such as the sun, will also produce harsh shadow, HIGH contrast.

On the other hand, a soft light is produced by a large light source (again, in relative to the subject size) and produces very soft or even no shadow on areas which are not illuminated directly. An overcast day with the sun behind a thick blanket of clouds will make the light source huge, hence we get soft light, LOW contrast. Even if there're shadows, the transition between the highlight and shadow is smooth.

OK, enough of the introduction. Now apply it on car detailing. If you observe the paintwork under hard light source such as a halogen worklamp mounted on a tall lightstand, you will be able to observe swirls/scratches easily. Same goes to observing the paintwork under the harsh sun light (without clouds covering the direct sunlight). The HIGH contrast caused by the hard light source shows up more difference between the highlights and shadows. Since the scratched paint is uneven, hence it's not able to reflect light perfectly. The deeper the scratch, the easier we can spot it.

Now, observe the paintwork under an overcast sky. Most probably you won't be seeing much of scratches/swirls as compared to the previous scenario. But you didn't do anything to the paintwork! Where have most of the scratches gone? By knowing that overcast sky will produce soft light, hence LOW contrast. The light is coming in every direction, illuminating every corner, and in this case, the scratches/swirls. The difference between the highlight and shadow level isn't great. Got what I mean?

What if you're observing the paintwork in a car detailing shop with dozens of fluorescent lights? The light does not only come from all over the ceiling, but also the side walls (light bounces and diffused!). Yeah, at that moment you'll think that your car is almost swirl-free, but the moment you switch off all the fluorecent lights and start illuminating your paintwork with just ONE halogen worklamp which is positioned far away, you might be frustrated again. But if you're using a small LED torch light, you can go much nearer as the light source is much smaller compared to the halogen worklamp.

Think about it, it might help you to see/avoid defects better. I'll add-in some photos if I'm able to shoot some good samples. Also, I'll cover more on spotting paint defects on different types of paintwork and colour.


Saturday, July 21, 2007

2-Light Setup

An example of a simple 2-light setup for an outdoor car shot. The harsh sunlight at noon will easily create shadow on certain parts of the car which are not illuminated directly by the sunlight. So the use of flashes in this case will help prevent the shadow area being underexposed, or the highglight area being overexposed. A balance of ambient and flash exposure will do the trick quickly and easily.

Of course there're plenty of areas to be improved in this photo such as:

1) The background
2) The use of more diffused light source
3) A simple detail (The car was quite dirty)
4) A more interesting sky such as an evening sky

Equipment: Canon EOS30D, EF24-105mm F/4L IS USM, ST-E2, 580EX*2


Friday, July 20, 2007

*FREE* Car Photography

Starting from now, I'll be providing *FREE* car photography service. Note that I don't simply take up any assignments and this is a limited time period offer. Here are the terms & conditions:

1) The car must be detailed with no major defects.
2) The car owner must have the patience.
3) Subject to weather condition.
4) Subject to my schedule.

If you're proud of your prestigious ride and wish to capture the beauty of your ride, please feel free to send me an email at with the following information:

1) Name
2) Make/Model
3) Year
4) Paint Color
5) Location Suggestion
6) Photo of your car

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Asian Auto V34 #07 & Top Gear August 2007

Two of my photos were published in Asian Auto Volume 34 Issue 07, page 74 and 75, and also Top Gear August 2007 issue page 169. It's related to the GRA 2007 Round 1 event held on the 3rd June 2007 at Shah Alam Stadium car park.

Here are the two images.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


It was too dusty, thanks to my neighbor who constantly does open burning. Gave it a quick wash and it's refreshed. The rest of the photos are HERE.

Monday, July 16, 2007

GRA 2007 Round 2

Venue: Shah Alam Stadium Car Park
Date: 15th July 2007

p.s. Meguiar's is one of the sponsors of GRA event.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

WAC Detailing Clinic

Venue: Hypercoat Enterprise
Date: 14th July 2007

Friday, July 13, 2007

Tony & Jane

Date: 1st July 2007
Venue: Holiday Inn, Glenmarie


Thursday, July 12, 2007

Water Beading

Most of us have the perception that when our car paintwork beads water, it means there's a layer of substance (whether it's sealant, wax or even cooking oil) on top of the paintwork. This layer creates lower surface tension and causes water to have relatively higher surface tension, and hence water beads. When the paintwork surface tension is low, most of the elements (such as rain water, mud water, etc...) will not be able to stick on it. A gentle flow of pipe water after a car wash will leave the surface extremely dry as majority of the pipe water will be pulled off by the gravity. This makes drying much easier and faster. We love that ain't we?

What if your car is covered with a layer of thick dust and suddenly it drizzles? Yes, lots of small water beads will stay on top of the paintwork before it dries up. These water beads seem to be able to pull the dust and might cause more dirt (after dust being wet by water) per surface area than before. Once the sun comes out, the intense sunlight will further being focused via the water beads which act as micro-lenses. This isn't going to do good to your paintwork for long term especially when you don't wash your car often to remove the previous layer of concentrated dirt.

So what's the conclusion? Is water beading good? Yes, it is easier to wash and dry your car if you do it often (once every two days in our environment) since the surface will hardly hold any dirt, especially the vertical panels. No, it might do more harm than good if you hardly do washing.

The ideal protection I wish for my car is the one which it'll bead water crazily and at the same time protecting it from any damaging elements.

Water beading caused by an instant application of Meguiar's Ultimate Quick Detailer.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

My Vios

I think I haven't really been properly taking any photos of my own ride before. There was a truck which came fogging this evening so this exercise forced me to wash my quite-clean-ride. Washed with Meguiar's Shampoo Plus and tyres shined with Meguiar's Insane Shine, nothing fancy. Wanted to do some simple detailing but it's quite hard for me to sustain the Makita with my injured arm. So here it goes...Click HERE for more pics.

Canon EOS30D, EF24-105mm F/4L IS USM, 580EX (2 units), ST-E2, Manfrotto 052B, Bowens 36" Silver/White Umbrella, Hansa tripod.

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Monday, July 09, 2007

Bike Hit

"Most Malaysian road users have zero road safety knowledge and awareness", said the doctor while I was in his clinic room. We talked about this topic after I told him that my injury on my right arm was due to a direct hit from a motorcyclist while I was crossing the road along Jalan Gereja (near Masjid Jamek LRT station). It was a two-lane one-way road and that blardy motorcyclist came from the other (right side) direction. While I was crossing the road, my attention was paid on my left side as that's the "right" oncoming traffic direction. Suddenly I felt an impact on my right arm and only noticed that it was due to a motorcycle crashing into me. I tried to avoid and lost balance and fell onto middle of the road. Luckily there wasn't any oncoming traffic, else I wouldn't be able to continue this blog. :D The bas3rd fell too with his bike pressing on him.

"Kenapa tak tengok sebelum jalan!? (Why didn't you watch before you cross!?)", said the bas3rd. I was very angry with his accusation as he's wrong in the first place. It seems that most Malaysians love to blame the other party eventhough they know they're wrong. Immediately I took out my handphone wanted to jot down his registration number but my handphone was accidentally shut off when I fell. Luckily my colleague had his pen and paper ready. Remember, it's BGV 5506. I screwed him back and I guess that's the time he only realised that he was wrong. This bas3rd told me that he works with AEON Credit along Jalan Raja Chulan and he gave me his handphone number. He added that I can log a police report if I wish to.

Looking at the hassle which I had to go through, plus I have to reach my customer site ASAP, I only spent about 20 minutes at the clinic nearby. Hey people, if you're walking around that area, you should be able to see motorcyclists riding along walking paths, so be aware. Drive safely, walk safely too.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Mini Studio

I thought this is the only weekend which I'm free from work as there're no events from Meguiar's. However, I got a call from my buddy on Saturday afternoon requesting a last minute product shooting assignment which is very urgent and important for submission on Monday. So on my Sunday which is today, I spent about 4 hours completing this task. Quite satisfied with the result. Hopefully once it's out in the public, I will only post the result in this blog as I'm not allowed to disclose the photo right now.

p.s. No detailing for today, washed the Iswara 2 days ago and took some pictures. Will upload by tomorrow. ;)

Monday, July 02, 2007

Wee Lian & Chia Yee


Date: 2nd June 2007


Sunday, July 01, 2007

TVCM Meguiar's Detailing Clinic

Venue: Hypercoat Enterprise
Date: 30th June 2007
Time: 9AM - 2PM