We have been fervently attending the yearly iLights @ Marina Bay, a smorgasbord of new-age and tech-savvy light installations / performances that comes to life at night! This year also commemorates the Bicentennial anniversary of Singapore, when Sir Stamford Raffles first landed on Singapore, and so the iLights edition for 2019 was launched under that theme.
Our camera of choice was the Mamiya RB67 with a modified Polaroid back (Impossible Project i-1). This back is pretty unique as it is made using the Impossible Project i-1 Instant Camera! Furthermore, the modifier provided us the tools and instructions to dismantle it and modify it ourselves, so that was pretty cool to be involved in the modification process and his instructions were easy to follow.
At the iLights event, we often visited the CBD area and Marina Bay first; this time, we decided to venture around Fort Canning Park, a hill situated in the middle of the CBD overlooking the Singapore city.
With a tripod, we captured the night sky with surrounding trees! Due to imperfect alignment, the frame exposure for the modified i-1 back is smaller, resulting in the black bar as seen on the top of the film.
A collection of fluorescent structures as birds greeted us as we climbed up the stairs toward the peak of Fort Canning Hill (“Land-pass Bird”)
With the sharpness of the RB67 lens, we snapped a tree with various lighting at the back, creating this dreamy bokeh effect!
Perched atop Fort Canning Hill is a lighthouse built in the early 1800s. It was an important beacon for ships passing by. Sadly, this is a replica, but it is a good reminder of Singapore’s roots as a port city.
Rows of neon lights are depicted as “crystals” which was intended to simulate the flow of thoughts and ideas, and aptly named “Crystallisation of Thoughts”.
Oil-like transparent foils shaped into balloon-like structures were hung from the walls, as they moved up and down like moving bubbles (“Reflecting Holons”).
A series of neon lightsticks were crafted into windows, as if we were peering into one another’s soul… ? (“Constructive Interference”)
We made our way to the Old Supreme Court at Padang, where we tried to take the bright facade of the building, it having being converted to a giant screen! The feature film was the history of Singapore over the past 200 years.
We spotted a couple standing by, watching the gigantic screen play out the feature film.
We also passed by Clarke Quay, where the moving lighted sampans created light streaks on our long-exposed photo.
At the Helix Bridge, where we shot a “selfie” with the timer function on the Fujifilm GFX 50R! One of the rare photos with both of us in it.
A longer time-lapse to capture the movement of the crowd on the bridge.
Aptly named the Time Vortex, the moving lights along the Helix Bridge looked like a school of fish!
One of many hanging jars, decoratively painted by contributors all over Singapore (“Rainbow Connection”).
Overall, we had loads of fun exploring the various installations and learning about their meaning and intent. Coupled with the Bicentennial anniversary, we certainly learnt (and re-learnt) much about Singapore’s history as well. We were also pleasantly surprised with the modified i-1 back, given that we had actually attempted this modification ourselves (with help from our instructor, of course). Perhaps this is the way forward for people to be more involved in modifying cameras!
Till next time,