Mengkabong Bridge, Tuaran

Many people, including myself see this bridge as one of the favorite spot for landscape especially to take the sunrise with Mt Kinabalu in the frame. As early as 4:30am, we drove from KK to the bridge at Tuaran, to park the car before reaching the bridge and walked towards the middle point of it and wait for the sunrise.

This round, it’s different, I’m standing at the opposite side, trying to capture the sunset with the bridge in the frame.  The above shot was a result of merging 3 separate shots together (as the bridge is too long, even with my 17mm lens).

Later, we cross the bridge and reach the opposite side of the river.  While the sun is setting below the horizon,  here is the shot,

When it’s getting darker, the street light is switched on and I tried the reflection shot.  Here and below

Just before leaving, I took another closer shot of the bridge.


HDR photography

Using Canon 5D Mk3.

I have upgraded my Canon 5D Mk2 to Mk3 wanting to enjoy shooting the HDR mode in the camera.  However, I have not been able to get a satisfactory shot using the HDR mode. I will need to try out more of the HDR effects to see for other outcome.

Dinawan Island



The above picture is a result of 24 photos stacked and merged together to produce this HDR and Panorama view. How I do if ? Following are steps that I took.

Steps to HDR/Panorama photography

1) Use a good tripod with level metering. Here I also used a  Manfrotto 303Plus Precision QTVR Panoramic Head with Quick Release Bracket Manfrotto 303Plus Precision QTVR Panoramic Head with Quick Release Bracket.

2) Getting there early, to give yourself time to find the desire view and set up your camera.

3) I’m using my Canon 24-105mm lens.  I set the focal length at 35mm vertical view. This allows me to cover large view in each frame.

4) I do some tests, to make sure that each frame will have about 30% overlapping, for my post processing to Panorama view.

5) When the moment is right, I take 3 exposures (using in-camera bracketing, i.e. -1 , 0, + 1 stop) per frame.  I have taken 8 frames at 3 different exposures using RAW file.

6) When reached home, each frame with 3 exposures were processed and stacked using HDR function in Photoshop.  Each HDR is saved under 8-bits.

7) From the 8 HDRs above, I also manually adjust the exposure again to ensure no over-exposure area on each frame.

8) Once I’m happy with the above, I then merge all 8 frames using Panorama function in Photoshop. Use the “Merge Visible” under “Layer” to remove any hairline gap in between each frame.

9) The merged photo is then flatten, sharpen, adjustment on exposures and contrast to give the final look.

The above post processing will take a bit of time.

Happy photographing !!

Sunset at Observation Tower

Combining 3 shots together

At the observation tower, at Signal Hill, Kota Kinabalu. The sky is nice with no dark cloud, the sun can be seen at clear sky.  On the other hand, the buildings are at backlighting. Also, the observation tower will be dark if I meter the sky.  Likewise, if I meter the buildings or the tower, the sky will be over-exposed too.  So I tried taking different shots at different exposures.  The above shot was a result of 3 photos merged together.

Result of 7 photos merged together

Wanted to include the streets as well. As such, I have taken 7 shots of different exposures. Later, processed them at photoshop and merged them together to form the above.  I like the shot as the sky did not go blur too much, believed it was due to less windy today.  However, the cars tail lights are not merged into this pictures.