22nd Fujitsu Cup Finals

Due to some odd alignment of the stars, by chance, I was given the opportunity to photograph yet another Go tournament finals. /joy

The Fujitsu Cup was the first international go tournament (in 1988 methinks), and is held jointly by Fujitsu and Yomiuri Shimbun (mega huge newspaper in Japan). The winner's prize money is 15,000,000 yen (roughly US157,000).

The finals was held on the 6th July 2009 at Nihon Ki-in, Tokyo.

I'm extremely in love with the tournament room.

Can't really be compared with Yuugen no Ma (the one excessively featured in Hikaru no Go) because the nature of the design's different, but still, very very beautiful.

Kang Dongyun (姜东润) 9P vs Lee Changho (李昌镐) 9P for champion

Chang Hao (常 昊) 9P vs Park Yeong Hun (朴永训) 9P for 3rd

Kang Dongyun

Lee Changho

Chang Hao

Park Yeong Hun

Across the tournament room

A very empty press room before everyone invaded.

The guy in the far corner is a reporter from Hangame Korea. I was amazed that he actually remembers me from the Ing Cup because most people who'd just met me once or twice can't recognize me with the change of hair. =_=

Takemiya Masaki 9P (famous for his "cosmic style" opening) came in the early afternoon to give commentaries on the games.

Chang and Park's game finished really early, so he came in to speak a little as well.

Accompanied by a gorgeous female pro, 万波佳奈.

Large screen is large.

And... he has a winning smile.

But Eat and I both came to the agreement that Gu Li has the bestest winning smile. So no one beats that. Gu Li FTW~! =D

More Lee Changho
And Kang Dongyun

For some reason he looks perpetually sulky, sleepy, or like he's going to cry. (And I can't resist the urge to want to say "dongyun don't cry" whenever I see this pic. No, seriously.)

End game, counting scores.

And Kang finally smiles with the champion's trophy(?). =D

It was a fun day. I really enjoy the change of atmosphere and mood it brings me whenever I get to cover go events. I also think there aren't enough resources (of all kinds, especially reportage) on go news, so, to those who find this utterly irrelevant, I'm sorry this had to turn up in your readers and alerts, I just want to share a little of what I can experience with the rest of this little community, please pardon my little selfishness. ^^;

See more images on Sina (mineee, all mine!! XD): link 1, link 2

For other go related entries please check the igo tag.

Backlog photos and stuff

Man. Lugging 2 lights+stands+17"MBP+1Ds MIII around in this weather, alone, is no freaking joke.

So tired my whole body aches so bad.

Thus, instead of heading down to Harajuku on a seemingly gorgeous Saturday, I'm gonna stay at home and emo, so I can rest up enough and repeat the above routine for tomorrow's shoot.

Cuz I'd been updating more on twitter than blogging, here's a random a mix of things from the past few months I'd been meaning to blog about. The pile is ever-growing but here's a start nonetheless.

Wacom Intuos4. Brand new from this trip.

This thing's so freaking gorgeous I wanna put it on display. Like, serously.

The one I'd been using for the past years had been a 9x12 which is just waaaaay too huge to carry around for travel. This new one's medium-sized and is so much easier to bring around. Now I can bring it on shoots to do quick demos on the spot for clients and my team. Yayness. Thou I'd still prefer the 9x12 for long-period usage since it's better for my wrist.

Post-shoot snap with Kokusyoku Sumire in their beautifully decorated cafe, stolen from their blog here.

I super love the figurines in the background. They're made by another Japanese artist who doesn't sell them anymore. /emo

This shoot was for Gothic Lolita Bible Aug issue (I think)

Okay, moving on to end Apr/early May photos:

With my lovely assistant Abby in Kyoto

With Kagetsuki at the Ghibli Museum.

Also, if I may, plug her new awesome fashion blog with Dawn - Monoxious.

More from the Ghibli Museum and cafe~

My X Japan concert guest pass. Shiny stuff *_*

Goban used in The Go Master movie filming. The go-kes here weren't inside, they're just in collection of the person I visited, designed personally by Honinbo Shuei.

Shuei

Ninja Jingna making okonomiyaki in awesome Junya coat. Chris looking very very skinny...

And Gullimer's (sp?) Village for Young People, with nary a soul in sight. With Rick, Chris, and Abby who's cropped off because my self-portrait skills aren't awesome enough. ;_;

Birthday dinner

Paris:

From my meetup~ That huge white book is my portfolio. XD

Gorgeous new Givenchy jacket

Awesome old mag store on rue de Temple

Not forgetting the inevitable stuff that break our banks...

There're a lot of other epicness, recorded in my iPhone, and all lost along with it during the Paris trip. T_T Oh well~ at least I have this:

Awesome food on Singapore Airlines. Hahahha.

Last but not least, a polaroid with Ivory Flame after the Lilith shoot. She's really really super stunning to photograph~

Sorry for the seemingly outdated/bland stuff. I'm working on trying to finding something interesting to blog about but being so busy everything seems like they'd just be too boring for a read. I'm so sorry!! T_T

Heading to Jakarta on Monday!!

Summer

Fashion story done for SingaporeBrides.com a while back.

Photography: Zhang Jingna
Styling: Furqan Saini
Hair: Yvonne Lee
Makeup: Joanna Koh
Model: Nathaline/Ave, Diana/Looque
Photography assistants: Octavia S, Tan Yong Kuan, Hoong Wei Long

Kinda in the mood for summer~ so just posting some brighter photos, just for a while. :D

I'm gonna blog about go for the rest of the entry, so feel free to skip. XD

Recent news about Lee Sedol's intended 1.5-year-long break had been spreading like wild fire (well, for the go-lovers, anyway).

I read up a bit on Sina here and here (both Chinese, sorry), so I'm just gonna sum it up a bit in English for those who want to know.

Story began with his refusal to join the Korean league.

Because 4 teams withdrew from the league this year. 3 joined only after much efforts from the Hanguk Kiwon (Korean Baduk Association), one of which was a team from Lee Sedol's hometown. His withdrawal probably meant the withdrawal of major sponsors from the competitions and directly affects other professionals whose main income may come from playing in the league's games.

Hanguk Kiwon then called for a major meeting to discuss his actions, voting was conducted for whether he should be penalized.

86 voted for yes, 37 opposed and 2 forfeited. Online voting conducted by a major Chinese weiqi news websites for the public came up with totally opposite results though.

Lee Sedol's reasons for withdrawal were due to personal timing issues as well as concerns for the rating system.

(Wow, I'd make a horrible news reporter, so heck, I give up my attempt to sound formal because I can't put in my personal opinion~~!)

For someone of Lee Sedol's level, currently Korean #1, he has to win 10 out of 12 games in order to maintain his scores (which is, btw, pretty freaking damn difficult considering the frequency of these games, not counting the ones he has to play for all other major tournaments.).

Heck, he's contracted to play for a Chinese team in the Chinese league and each game he wins in that is equivalent to 10 games he wins in the Korean league, go figure.

Anyway what I'm basically trying to say is that games played in the leagues are just not what the very top pros put their most attention to, ranking drop is definitely a major no-no, so I think his decision to withdraw is pretty valid as a competitor.

This issue about how he should be penalized (I can't be bothered to find the article on what Hanguk Kiwon actually said) eventually ended up pretty unpleasant (come on, voting by all the pros, that's like, public shaming), and I'm sure eventually upset him deeply, so he decided that he'll stop playing go for 1.5 years and will only return in January 2011.

I usually never find myself in much of a position to comment on anything at all, the same goes for this, but I must honestly say that I think this is what makes Lee Sedol Lee Sedol.

Perhaps I'm biased because he is one of the top players, perhaps I'm biased because I didn't leave the national team back in my days when similar situations arose, but I know for sure that I'm biased because of just how rebellious he is.

His character that is piercing and ruthless like his go, that has so much pride, so much fearlessness and bravado, all that he's not afraid of being, that sets him apart from all the other top players of our time, Lee Sedol is someone whose name will be long remembered in the history of go.

And um, wow, that was so so much longer than I intended. I actually just wanted to say that Lee Sedol's my hero. But oh well, hahaha.

Ing Cup Finals - Part III

This is a bit belated, but I still thought I ought to put it up...

Choi Cheol Han vs Lee Changho 2-1 after Game 3.

The last 2 games will be held in Taiwan towards the mid-year.

The 3rd game progressed rather quickly, most people speculated that the players were tired~

Choi Cheol Han thinking

Lee Changho during post-game review.

...with super many Korean reporters.

After reviewing and interviews they went out to the main room and met up with fans. The place was so overcrowded the glass panels were condensing and the room felt like a freaking sauna. And I'm like, so not exaggerating.

Anyway, something super hilarious happened.

Even Lee Changho the "Stone Buddha" who never showed emotions laughed~

What happened was, the team leader of Korean team offered the fans to ask questions, "...anything really. Maybe not go-related? You could ask if Choi Cheol Han has a girlfriend, things like that. Haha."

So someone asked if Choi Cheol Han had any plans for marriage. He said, "I'll wait for Lee Changho to marry first, before considering for myself." (since he's junior to LCH by age)

Lee Changho smiled and answered, "I haven't considered marriage yet."

And unable to contain his happiness, LCH attempted holding in a shy laugh while continuing, "but I am currently in love."

The room roared with laughter.

The team leader had translated all that and added to double check if we all already knew that. =_= Like, duh, it was frontpage on every weiqi news website for days.

Okay, go laugh at my horrible storytelling.

Moving on.

Choi Cheol Han signing a goban, and Lee Changho a fan.

Goban signed by Lee Changho and Choi Cheol Han.

Lee Changho eventually left for the hotel first. Choi Cheol Han stayed behind to sign more stuff and take photos with eager fans.

Some people nudged me to take one with him too, but I didn't want, insisting I'd already had one from Bangkok, despite the fact that it's blur like hell. But after gazillion people were done, Choi Cheol Han still stood at the same spot, so I figured 闲着也是闲着, and took a pic with him at some point.

And I wonder why oh why is every single pic of me with a go player out of focus.

Oh well. That concludes whatever I think I can post from the competition. It's been fun. And in case you're wondering where you can play go online, KGS is a good and popular one.

More on Ing Cup:

Ing Cup Finals - Part II
Ing Cup Finals - Part I
Ing Cup Semi-Finals

Ing Cup Finals - Part II

So far the score's 1-1. 3 to win.

Lee Changho 9P won the first game, Choi Cheol Han 9P won the 2nd.

Just a couple photos.

Choi Cheol Han after winning the game today.

Score counting by Ing rules. Fill the board with all stones...

Go Seigen dropped by Singapore Weiqi Association on both days to comment on the games.

Spectators and reporters.

Go sensei.

More on Ing Cup:

Ing Cup Finals - Part III
Ing Cup Finals - Part II
Ing Cup Finals - Part I
Ing Cup Semi-Finals

Ing Cup Finals - Part I

We're staying at The Fullerton Hotel.
I really love my job sometimes.

Beds are a bit small after they'd been split up, but awesome bathroom is awesome bathroom.

Shameless self portrait moment with the mirror which I have in almost every hotel I stay in. Hehe.

My roommate sleeps early. So for the first night I forced myself as well, and woke up at 1am having a hard time falling back asleep because it's just so different from my usual schedules.

8am a reporter called for Go Seigen's caretaker. (I was roomed next to him, but had swapped with the caretaker and daughter because their rooms were way too far apart) *sighs* There went my jingna-attempts-to-sleep-in and jingna-takes-the-elevator-with-go-seigen-everyday plan.

Oh then I had breakfast a table next to him this morning. Hahaha.

Headed for Singapore Flyer after lunch. We had surprisingly nice clouds today (which never, ever, appear, when I am doing my photoshoots. Why, oh tell me why.)

Marina Barrage from the Singapore Flyer.

Fast-forwarding my afternoon (where I had a shoot with everyone being about 1.5hours late), welcoming dinner was held at Lao Beijing. Go Seigen (I found out most generally address him as 吴老师, Joe and I were wondering a million possibilities...) actually insisted on taking the chartered bus with us instead of being chauffeured to the restaurant. Such a grand honour was something we never expected. He is 95 afterall. And frail like nothing else.

Go Seigen and wife. 吴清源和夫人。

Just seeing them was surreal. And she's really lovely and... cute. Back in the hotel after dinner while waiting for others in the lobby she started talking to me, despite my several attempts of "I cannot understand Japanese", “我不会说日语”, "Nihongo wo wakarimasen..." She continued on fervently. Hahaha.

Back to the dinner. While I was busying myself with taking photos of others someone suggested to take a shot for us. I was like. Oh. I didn't think about that. Lol?

Jingna with the go master and his wife. (Yeah, please pardon my really horrible hair, after a day of running around and all)

I was approached a couple times by teens in a youth weiqi connection group saying they'd seen my coverage on the Ing Cup Semi-finals, which somehow became a motivation for me to do this post tonight.

At the end of the dinner Go-sensei 题字ed for Singapore (the Weiqi Association, rather).

It's so painfully difficult for him to get up I can't believe they put him through this. Oh god, and I think more camera flashes went off than at the finale of Christian Dior Couture runway's finale walk backstage.

Go Seigen and wife, with Choi Chul Han (崔哲澣) 9P (apparently this is the spelling I saw on the roomlist provided by the hotel, but on the official pamphlets it's all Choi Cheol Han?) and Lee Changho (李昌鎬) 9P, the finalists.

Did I mention I don't agree with Choi Chul Han's new hairstyle? D:

A closeup of 吴清源老师's题字:“河山一局棋”

Alright, that's all for this update (oh Wireless@SG, thank you so).

Tomorrow the first game begins.

PS: Please pardon any grammar and vocab misuse, I'm severely lacking in rest and time. >_< More on Ing Cup:
Ing Cup Finals - Part III

Ing Cup Finals - Part II
Ing Cup Finals - Part I
Ing Cup Semi-Finals

Omfgomfgomfg. 吴清源 is coming to Singapore!!! For the Ing Cup Finals!!! Go Seigen is coming to Singapore!!!

Ok. Breathe Jingna, before you hyperventilate.

And --

a super mega huge congratulations to Gu Li for beating Lee Sedol 2-0 winning LG Cup~!

Right. It's a dedicate-an-entry-to-go day. And probably makes no sense to 99.9% of my dearest readers. But this excitement is so hard to contain you won't understand... ._.

I've lost track of whether Joe or I exclaimed more, fretting over just what we can find to have Go Seigen sign on. He's contemplating buying a new goban. And I as for me... I have... a paper fan...