Solo travelling in the world of independent filmmaking

afiq azman film making penang

by Afiq Azman

Afiq Azman is a freelance writer and aspiring filmmaker. He often travels by bus as it is, according to him, a place of solitude and soul searching.  

I make films on an amateur level; I don’t have access to big budgets or expensive equipment. And it is quite a tough game.

However, that to me doesn’t qualify for an excuse to not make a film. Of course if I ever was to submit a film for a competition, it has a 10% chance of even making the shortlist.

In the day and age of cheaper DSLRs and the advent of Youtube, Viddsee and Vimeo, all great sources of films and videos made on a budget, it create an easier avenue for people like me to share their work online. Don’t expect a huge following at first cause remember, you don’t become a filmmaker because of showing off. You are one because you like to share stories and you want to impact audiences with your message.

Continue reading

Thoughts from the Nullarbor desert


By Jeng Yang

It was on our tenth day, as we drove yet again to the desert, that our social expectations quickly wore thin, and our natural inclination for individualistic hedonism quickly took over. For me, of course, it was sooner than most; my attempts at socialization were after all, always only a farce. I had buried myself in an intriguing book by Doytevesky and Simon had emerged from his backpack with a Spanish-Dutch romance novel. I gazed outside, staring at yet another endless plain of bush forest, or was it grasslands, or temperate desert? It did not matter after all. I was more intrigued by the cloudy skies, the visage of its underbelly concealing the full range of its existence. The hidden behemoth that was the Australia cloud led me to the contemplations of the certainty of dimensional existences. To a God looking down, we must be very flat characters after all.
Continue reading

A Backpacker’s roadtrip in Australia: How & What you need to know

australia road trip nullarbor map desert jeng yang

By Chia Jeng Yang

To get over freezing and almost dying in the Himalayas, I decided to head down to Australia. The land of kangaroos, camels (Turns out, Australia has the largest camel herd in the world.) and vast open deserts seem to be the best place to warm up. I decided to bring beachwear and tank tops. In the south of Australia. In July. Where an Australian winter can reach 5 degrees. I painfully learnt of the need to research local weather temperatures, before happily relearning that lesson in Taiwan, but that’s a story for another time.

After a month in the cities of Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, I was done exploring the pub crawls and the admittedly awesome speakeasies (hidden bars). I wanted an adventure dammit. And so I found myself on a roadtrip from Melbourne to Perth. It was the most amazingly meditative trip. This is how I did it.

australia road trip nullarbor map desert jeng yang
This took 2 weeks. For reference, London to New York is only 3,500 km. Pilots ain’t got nothing on our family wagon.

Continue reading

Climbing Indonesia’s Volcano Mt. Rinjani

Jeng Yang travel mount rinjani indonesia hiking mountains trekking volcanoes volcano

By Chia Jeng Yang

In December 2013, I decided to try climbing mountains for the first time in my life. To begin my foray into what would turn out to be a never-ending wanderlust, I climbed the beautiful Mt. Rinjani, located in Lombok, Indonesia, an island next to Bali. If you’re in the area, you should definitely visit Mt. Rinjani for a few awesome reasons:

  • Trekking through a wide range of different terrains in the course of 3 short days, from wet jungle terrain to dry scrubland, rocky mountainous terrain, slippery volcanic sands, vast endless meadows and countryside grazing fields
  • Being able to swim in the ultimate private pool – An ancient volcanic lake
  • Being able to see the island of Bali located an immense 180km away while climbing Rinjani
  • Due to relatively little light pollution, being able to see the entire constellations and formation of the Milky Way galaxy extremely clearly.

As a friend traveling with me described it, Rinjani is a photographer’s paradise. In fact, the 2010 National Geography Photo Contest was won by a Singaporean with a photo of Rinjani eruption

Continue reading

Coconut Contemplations

travel tag

By Anonymous

Anonymous has serious commitment issues when it comes to blogs and equally serious itches to write, which is why she thinks this is a great idea.

Erin and I were sitting on the floor of my apartment, sipping hot tea to warm ourselves after being drenched in the Manchester rain. It was the first time we’d ever met each other, so we had to first figure out if the other person was a serial killer before finally allowing ourselves to relax completely and settle into the wonderful experience that is Couchsurfing. As we clicked, laughed and shared our stories, we inevitably got to the topic of love. Not just love, love – love on the go.

Continue reading

An understanding of good work

Everest Base Camp trek - The understanding of good work

By Chia Jeng Yang

If you are like me, you have been caught in the gulf of understanding that exist in the schooling years before working life. I find myself in a stage of definition.

I struggle to define identity, philosophy and life. This blog hopes to be a platform for all of us, the casual blogger, to share their detailed thoughts on any subjects that we find most intriguing. And food, because food. Together, as amateur beings, as we stumble haltingly, let us lift torches of insights from wherever we may be.

The first story I would like to share is about the concept of good work.

We go to exams or work and if we work hard enough, we win praise, awards and commendations. These are intangible trinkets that draw their power from the established social structure. We are happy to receive these intangibles simply because society dictates that we should be. One day, I realized this was not sustainable. It did not fulfill me. It was work, successful and respectable work even, but not good work. Fatigued by a short lifetime of chasing for intangible reward, we forget the purity of physical suffering.

What? Physical suffering? That’s some weird shit.

Continue reading