Diving with Sharks in Busan

Korea may not be at the top of your list for scuba diving destinations, but you have to learn somewhere! I recently had my first experience scuba diving, and it was a long time coming. Can you believe that I went backpacking around Southeast Asia for 5 months and have never been scuba diving?? Me either. But it’s pretty expensive, and my other half sinks more than he swims.

The Busan aquarium in Haeundae allows Aquatic Frontier, a PADI 5 star dive center located in Osan, to lead dives for the uncertified in the large shark tank. It’s a great chance to experience scuba diving before paying a large sum of money for the PADI certification course. Me and my friend Kate have been talking about doing the shark dive for a year, and the day finally came with a lot of nervous excitement.

Amazing Sunset View in Busan – Hwangnyeong Mountain

One of the things I love about Korea, maybe my favorite thing, is that even after living here for more than 4 years, I can still find amazing places and new adventures in my own backyard. Korean people are very active, and unlike most Americans, they go out almost every weekend to explore their own country. I think this is awesome, and it makes me wish I did more exploring of my own back in the US! There’s still time for that though.

Last time I was in the US, I had to go alone. While I was gone, Evan did a lot of exploring with his new camera, looking for good places to take night pictures of Busan. After some reading online in photography groups, he drove to Hwangnyeongsan (황령산), near Geumyeonsan station in Busan. We’re not avid hikers, so it’s always nice when we find mountains we can drive up to for great views!

Waiting for sunset

Waiting for sunset

별이진다네-A star is falling

오늘, 부산에 가을이 왔다. 높고 새하얀 구름과 새파란 하늘 있다. 지난 몇주와는 달리 날씨가 신선해지고 부산이 다시 숨을 쉬기 시작한 것 같다.

 처음으로 한국에서 보내는 추석이다. 내 남자 친구가  경기도에서 부산으로 내려와서 기분이 더 없이 좋다. 

내 남자친구를 볼 때마다 별이 질 것 같다. 

 볼 때마다 오빠가 내 마음을 아프게 하는가?

볼 때마다 나쁜 일이 생기는가?

아니요… 지는 별을 볼 때마다 소원을 비는 건 프랑스 관습이다.

Life Imitates Fantasy Art

( Source )

A rare perspective of Haeundae in Busan, where photographers usually focus on the often million plus people on the beach rather than all the rapid construction at its Southern end towards Gwanganli.

Is North Korea really a threat?

With activities like this it's hard to believe it could be a threat, possibly a good place to spend the weekend but not a threat!

The Vagina Monologues in Busan: Sunday, April 25th

( Source )

Very surprised to hear that this will be not only be playing in Busan, but just 10 minutes away in my local drinking district of Kyungsung and Pukyong university, I’m glad to finally get a chance to see this.



My friends' band makes its wedding debut, and I was invited to see them play.  Of all the wedding photos I've taken, this one's my favorite, simply for its pure candidness.  Taken June 2008 at a wedding hall in Beomil-dong, Busan.

©2010 Kevin Baylon

Good day. (A Mother's Love)

Good day. (A Mother's Love)

Taken at the 40 Steps Culture and Tourism Theme Street in Jungang-dong, Busan.  "The 40 Steps Culture and Tourism Theme Street is where Japanese visitors can feel traces of their ancestors from more than 100 years ago. Veterans and others interested in the Korean War will find the area an important feature of the Korean War."  (lifeinkorea.com)  Various statues depicting traditional Korean scenes, including this woman breast-feeding her child, can be found throughout the streets near Jungang-dong Station.  All the statues in the area were commisioned by the city for this theme and made by a Korean artist (forget the name).  The statues have been up for public viewing since 2004. 


About the shot: A few techniques were used to create this image.  First, a tonemap, using 3 different exposures and blended, creates the high detail and contrast; then, the picture was divided into colors and greys, their separation meant to evoke both the modern and the traditional; and, the train lights that were originally red were manipulated to become green and red, in order to outline a tension and release.  The "joys and sorrows" of war are manifest even in the most ordinary (my taking the shot), tender (the mother and child) and passing (history, the train tracks) circumstances.   Taken October 2009 in Jungang-dong, Busan.

©2009 Kevin Baylon

What sound?? Dead as leaves.

What sound?? Dead as leaves.

A diptych containing photos of statues taken at 40 Steps Culture and Tourism Theme Street, in Jungang-dong, Busan.  "When the Korean War broke in 1950, many refugees were driven into Busan and most settled temporarily in the hilly section of the Donggwang-dong area. At the time, as communications were not well developed, the area of the 40 steps was used as a reuniting area for separated families. As such, the area is deeply imbedded among Korean War refugees as the spot of severe joy and sorrow."  (lifeinkorea.com)  Here, an old man prepares to make popcorn while two children stand in horror in anticipation of the explosions.  Taken October 2009.


©2009 Kevin Baylon

Around Korea in 5 days- Day 1 Busan 부산 to Samcheok 삼척

I had done twelve day trips by motorcycle in Korea. As the end of the riding season approached I decided to do one last trip. This time I would try to go all the way around Korea. My goal was to do it in five days and for fewer than 400,000 won. I estimated it would be around 1,600 kms. I would budget 80,000 won for each day. I left Monday September 21th. I was headed up the east coast of South Korea. I was crashing on a friends couch during that time. I got up early that morning and headed out on the road. I made a wrong turn in Busan, making me head back into town. I got things straightened out and I hoped that this would not be indicative of the trip. Finally by 10:30am, Busan was fading away behind me.

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