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Musings on Travel, Fashion & Fun


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Photography – Lantern Bug

Lantern Bug

The lanternbug (fulgoridae) is a tropical insect highly sought after by macro enthusiasts – and poachers – due to its exotic look and colourful exterior. Found in tropical rainforests in Thailand, Malaysia, Mexico and Central/South America, these planthoppers, which are related to cicadas, are typically found on trees whose sap they feed on.

Lantern Bug

Lantern bugs are so named because of its “snout” which was thought to emit light in the past, and local folklore attributed magical powers to the little bugger. The Amazonian Indians in the 19th century even believed that people bitten by the horny-looking creature will die if they didn’t have sex within 24 hours. Hmmm, I wonder if it was more of a popular dating technique to get the girl back then. In reality, the lantern bug’s elongated “Pinocchio” nose is actually an extended mouth to help them suck the sap from plants and trees.

Lantern Bug

Lantern bugs can be quite large, growing up to 3 inches long with a wingspan of 2.5 inches wide depending on the species. The next time you are in a tropical rainforest, look out for fruiting trees with larger trunks (such as Pyrops candelaria and Dimocarpus longan tree) – they are often sighted on the trunks in groups. They can be difficult to spot as they can remain very still unless disturbed, and will keep moving round the tree trunk when they feel threathened – I played “Bollywood” with one I was trying to photograph for 10 sweaty minutes. But when you finally see them, it is worth every exotic minute :)

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Kuala Lumpur – Graffiti Art

Graffiti Art in Kuala Lumpur

Spotted a very interesting stretch of graffiti art along a huge drain next to Pasar Seni station, Kuala Lumpur. Some of the artworks looked really well done, I’m impressed.

Graffiti Art in Kuala Lumpur

Do keep your eyes open for interesting local discoveries like this the next time you travel

Graffiti Art in Kuala Lumpur

Let the creativity flow like the river…erm, drain I mean ;p


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Penang – Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall…why is my reflection most hideous of all?!
Having fun with trickeye photography at Made in Penang Interactive Museum

On our recent trip to Penang, Darren & I checked out one of Penang’s latest attractions, Made in Penang Interactive Museum. Now visitors to Penang can have an additional place, other than its renown street art, to pose for while learning a bit about the city’s history.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

The museum is within the vicinity of the Clan Jetties further up from the Weld Quay Bus Terminal, you can plan to visit these two attractions in a day. You will pass by an open-air car park beside this clock tower as you walk along the road coming from the clan jetties – continue walking straight up and you will reach the museum in about 10 minutes.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

The experience starts right away at the entrance
Along the passageway as you walk in, you will see Malaysia’s longest 3D wall mural (25 metres) depicting Georgetown’s waterfront during the 20th century.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Pretending to be a COOLie

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

“Why you no give this month’s allowance?”
Helping out a squabble aka kaypoh-ing

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Even the cafe is made to look retro

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Entrance fees are divided it into three categories:
– Tourists (non-MyCard holder): RM30
– Malaysian (Adult): RM15
– Malaysian (Kid/ Student): RM10
You get a souvenir pin badge as part of the admission, and I like it that they designed the ticket stub, which is usually thrown away, as a bookmark. There’s another purpose for the ticket too – you will need it for an interesting activity at the last stop of your visit.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

The museum showcases three-dimensional interactive art over two levels depicting Penang’s iconic landmarks as well as famous historic figures. The ground floor houses a Diorama Gallery while the first floor houses the Penang 3D Gallery (trickeye photography).

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Diorama Gallery
The Diorama Gallery showcases seven scenes of life in Penang in miniatures sculptured by Khoo Chooi Hooi.
Left: Durian seller; Right: Nasi Lemak (coconut rice wrapped in banana leaf) seller

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

The biggest diorama – a panoramic view of Georgetown’s waterfront during the early 20th century
The white Behn Meyer building in the background is also the building which now houses the museum.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

A cool squat

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Bullock carts were the main form of transport back in those days

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

AND the cam-whoring begins…DING, DING! :D

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Main highlight of the museum – Penang 3D Gallery
Be prepared to go shutter-happy on the first floor with 30 3D murals featuring various icons of Penang as well as famous personalities such as P. Ramlee (icon of Malaya entertainment) and Sun Yat-Sen (Father of the Nation in the Republic of China).

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Forget about being shy – think of the most creative pose you can have with the murals!
The murals utilise varying contours, forced perspectives and simple props to create a real-life mind trickery – on photographs. It’s quite interesting observing the other visitors too – even the auntys can surprise you with their imaginative poses ;)

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

For the less adventurous, check out the suggested poses on the signages. You can read up on the particular scene/personality featured as well.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

And here’s my interpretation of the scene!

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Dino fight!

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

This will be the closest I’ll ever get to Sun Yat-Sen

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

I ain’t a ‘small person’, don’t hit me!
Villain hitting, or 打小人 (da siu yan) is a popular folk culture especially in Cantonese precincts. Basically, you hit the paper effigy of the person you want to curse with a red clog, and keep scolding them. It’s similar to Western voodoo, just much noiser and dramatic.
Elderly Cantonese aunties excel at the cursing, and made a profession out of it (think professional curser). Such practices are so integrated into their culture that it has been named ‘Intangible Cultural Heritage’ by the Hong Kong Home Affairs’ Bureau.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Rat busting – 1910 bubonic plague in China
I really wonder why they chose to feature such a dark topic at a tourist attraction

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Oopsie!

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Queen Victoria Clock Tower Mural
The only floor mural, visitors lie on the floor to pose as if they were hanging precariously on the tower, with Spiderman on the way to the rescue. You have to take off your shoes, so it’s best if you don’t visit with shoes with a gazillion laces or straps. We were expecting more of such adventurous murals.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Getting caught in the carnivorous plant of Penang Hill. Beware the carbs, poor plant.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Slurping up a bowl of local street delicacy – prawn noodles

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Now’s the time to take out your ticket stub
Point the QR code printed on your ticket at this augmented reality kiosk to see a three-dimensional image of Penang’s tallest bulding Komtar or the Penang ferry. There is another interactive kiosk located at the end of the Diorama Gallery on the Ground Floor where you can see your face being painted with vivid Sichuan opera masks on screen.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

Ta da – Komtar building in my hand!

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊

For those interested to learn more about Penang’s history, catch a video presentation at the mini theatre (available in English and Mandarin).

Overall, it was an enjoyable visit for both of us. Perhaps we were so excited about a new attraction in Penang, we expected a bit more from the exhibits. At RM30, it was one of the more pricey attractions about town. I believe the museum will improve over time as there were still a few areas under renovation when we visited.

If you have a sense of humor and like cam-whoring, do visit. Set aside 1-2 hours for the visit, and it’s best to go with a friend who can help you take photos and have fun together (there’s obliging staff around to help solo visitors too). If you shun the spotlight like vampires to sunlight, think you would be better off spending the money on another bowl of Penang laksa.

Made In Penang Interactive Museum 美因槟廊
Address: No.3 Pengkalan Weld, 10300 George Town, Malaysia
Tel: +604 262 6119
Opening Hours: 9:00AM – 6:00PM
Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/MadeInPenang

Read more about Penang
Penang – An Alternative Guide to George Town’s Street Art