Present(ing) the Past at Sembawang

7 Mar

Please stay my Sunday, silly weekdays stay away, I still want to play!

Earlier this week, I found something really interesting vis StumbleUpon (my new toy!).  I stumbled upon a site which showed images from the past being synced into present day in the same photo… like this –

And I was amazed!  The photo above was taken from a forum site where someone posted a batch of  such extraordinary pictures.

A search on the internet showed that this “trend” was started by a guy who founded a “Looking into the past” Flickr group.  You can read more about it in the CNN write up linked above.

Now that was an interesting concept!  I was inspired to make one of my own!

It just so happens that we were due to visit Sembawang Park for the Art Association’s group sketching outing.  When the location was announced, my dad was reminded of the time our family was last there and told me the story of my first time there as a child of 4 or 5… We were there, my dad, mum, grandma, cousin, brother and I, for a rare day out at the beach.  I was hysterically happy with sand sea surf and had a ball of a time throwing sand into the wind.  I don’t really remember much of that though, too young I guess!

Anyway, I put two and two together – we were going to go down to Sembawang and I knew I had those photos somewhere in the house.  And so I dug through our old family photo albums to find them.  Luck was on my side and I found it with relative ease.

It was such perfect timing, it had to be fated!

Happily, we went to the beach as was the plan and I started to walk around searching for “familiar” spots.  How much has the Park changed in the last 25 years? (Ok fine, more than 25 but who is counting?).  Changed indeed! But thankfully, some landmarks were still retained and I managed to locate the stretch of beach we played at. My dad was a great help in pointing out the way too!

I sneaked some time before sketching started and proceeded to scan around for the “sweet spot” to photograph with my photograph.  (It gets confusing when I use the same word for both the noun and verb!)

It was a bright sunny day and the soft morning sun rippled off the shimmery waves. Nice.. but not helping with the photo-taking at all!  Argh.  I was having a hard time keeping my hands steady and holding the photo in the right angle to be in sync with the background.  And after a few tries of getting either my background or my photo blurry, I really wanted to give up.  Thankfully, I did managed to catch this –

Looking thru my Past & Present - Sembawang Park

Yippee!  Look at me!! I’m throwing sand!  The bridge is a little crooked and the background still a tad blurry but you can still see it right?

This is truly a fun thing to do, if only I knew how to make both photo and background in focus.  Any ideas?!? I don’t really want to photoshop it because (A) I don’t have photoshop and (B) it looks less “authentic”.  I like how it looks with the hand in the pic.

I will try this again sometime soon for sure!

PS: In case you were wondering, I did complete my sketch too.  It’s still in draft stage but I’ll post it once someone clicks on the “like” button on the bottom. 😉


6 Responses to “Present(ing) the Past at Sembawang”


  1. Too good, Must share~! « Still.Life. by 宇晗 - April 18, 2011

    […] me of the photo on photo images I posted before but this is just fascinating to look […]

  2. Present(ing) the Past again (Part 1 of 7) | Still.Life. - December 30, 2013

    […] had been meaning to take more photographs in the same vein after my last blog post on this topic. Therefore, I jumped on the chance to do so in response to an Open Call from Drama Box for their […]

  3. Posing at the Lim Bo Seng Memorial (Part 2 of 7) | Still.Life. - January 28, 2014

    […] posts on a project which was first born in reaction to Looking into the Past. Read the very first blog post here. And also a related article I wrote for online e-zine Draft (pg […]

  4. Present(ing) the Past: A Date at MacRitchie Reservoir (Part 3 of 7) | Still.Life. - February 14, 2014

    […] series of posts first born in reaction to Looking into the Past. Read the very first blog post here & also Part 1, Part 2 of the series. And also a related article I wrote for online […]

  5. Presenting the Past: The Pelican of Ang Mo Kio (Part 4 of 7) | Still.Life. - May 20, 2014

    […] in a series of posts first born in reaction to Looking into the Past. Read the very first blog post here & also Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 of the series. And also a related article I wrote for online […]

  6. Presenting the Past: Chinese Gardens Playtime (Part 5 of 7) | Still.Life. - June 30, 2015

    […] in a series of posts first born in reaction to Looking into the Past. Read the very first blog post here & also Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4 of the series. And also a related article I wrote for […]

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