National Youth Entrepreneurship Convention 2009



I was recently invited to speak during the 2nd National Youth Entrepreneurship Conference which was organised by The Youth Intelligence, Malaysia’s online youth community.

So what was the convention about? I quote an email from Joanne Soo, the programme manager for the convention,
“The Convention, running for the second time after its inaugural launch this year on January, features Malaysia’s youth entrepreneurs under the age of 30 who have successfully made their mark in their various industries. Running in conjunction with Malaysia’s largest youth lifestyle event YOUTH’09, the Convention has and will continue to impact the Malaysian youth community.”

I was flabbergasted and had initially wanted to decline for who was I but a lowly newbie photography, barely 16 months into the industry and knowing nuts about entrepreneurship? But because it involved a free lunch and a chance to rub shoulders with successful entrepreneurs, I said yes lah.

A couple of days after receiving the email, my housemate Ninie excitedly told me that she was invited to speak during the convention too. Haha! What are the chances of housemates getting invited to not only speak during the same convention, but during the same segment (Lifestyle Entrepreneurship) as well?

We received our respective topics about 10 days before the talk and my topic was “The Big Leap of Passion”. I basically had to talk about how I got into photography and how life was like when I was a minion prior to that, yadda yadda yadda. I was also asked to talk about the key points to surviving the photography industry.

Now, to that last point I thought, what do I know about surviving the industry? Nothing, de nada. I’m just going with the flow and doing the best I can at the moment and learning from my mistakes and improving on my weaknesses.

So I skewed it a bit and spoke about what I’ve learnt so far as an entrepreneur. Some points which I brought up include;
- don’t be put off by naysayers
- know your strength and weaknesses
- sell yourself, your ideas, your products
- be business savvy
- be versatile

Frankly speaking, I wasn’t well prepared as I had a mountain of pictures to edit (and also cos I spent time catching up with friends after New Year :p) so I only had time to prepare for the talk the night before. On that day itself, Ninie and I arrived an hour plus before our segment and we managed to catch the Media Entrepreneurship talk by Joel Neoh, Joyce Wong and Aimann Faiz.

During the break before our segment (Lifestyle Entrepreneurship) began, Joel who I’ve known since 4, 5 years ago when he used to climb sat down and chit chatted with me for a bit.

Before he left, he said to me, “Anna, remember don’t swear ok?”. He knew that I’m a bit, no make that extremely, foul mouthed. I don’t do it on purpose, I’m just too used to spicing up my vocabulary with Sailor-esque talk ESPECIALLY when I speak in Chinese or when I’m nervous. I said, “Don’t worry brader” and kept on thinking to myself, dontsweardontsweardontswear.

It didn’t work.

I accidently swore twice (or was it thrice?). It was so bloody unprofessional of me to do so and if I could, I would rewind the clock and made my talk abit more formal and not so delinquent.

Lesson learnt. Big time.

And wanting to end my talk on a light note, I did something which I thought was funny but it bombed big time.

At the end of my talk, I said “And now, exclusively for participants of this convention, let me share with you MY biggest secret of being an entrepreneur…..” then a slide with the following picture came up on the screen behind me.

Instead of laughter, I could see that most of their faces had this “WATAFAK?!?!” or o.0 expression.

I super shy dot com dot my weiiiii that time!! Summore had to sit back on my chair on stage after that. Aaaaaarrrgggghhh, shy shy shy.

Besides that, I think the talk went somewhat well. I think.

I would’ve made it a bit more structured and shared more of what I’ve learnt so far had I spent a bit more time on preparing for it. Good experience, definitely something I wouldn’t mind doing again.

During our segment, we all had to sit on stage. I was wearing a dress, something which I hardly ever do and I was just thinking, “Fark, I hope I don’t flash the kids”

All speakers were given a HUUUUUGEEEE frame picture of themselves as a token of appreciation. Urmmm…I have no comment.

Had the pleasure of meeting some participants of the convention and I must say, I admire the fact that these young people are looking into entrepreneurship even before they finish their studies. My hats off to that. When I was their age, I was satisfied with just having a steady job to help me cover my monthly expenses.

With fellow participants of the convention. L-R: Michael, trannie me :p, Caren and Jackson. My arms look scary under this lighting. Wheeee!! :D

One of these admirable youth was Michael Teoh whom I had the opportunity to speak to for a while. Extremely confident and evidently a go-getter, Michael exuded confidence when I was talking to him. Dammit, if only I was that confident instead of talking cock so much when I was younger -_________- Waitaminute, I still do!

In conjunction with the convention, Malaysian Today also featured the speakers. So I got to appear in last weekend’s edition of Malaysian Today :D You can check out the online version of the article here.

I guess that summarises my first-time as a ‘speaker’. Thanks again to the organiser for giving me this opportunity :D Woot!

Credit: Pictures from the event courtesy of Pictures of me IN the convention magazine were shot by Sherrie and Beatrice. The one in Malaysian Today was shot by Enrick. Thanks!

P/S: I know some are wondering why I was selected and not some other photographer. There are so much more young photographers out there who are way way better than me in terms of photography, business etc. I think in my case, I was lucky enough to know the right people, be at the right place, at the right time. And I also take decent pictures once in awhile la :p

Have a good weekend y’all!

  1. eon says:

    why you cover yourself with that huge photo frame of yours….tak nampak la ur dress….hahahahah….

  2. Sherrie says:

    COOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL :D good going, and don’t worry too much abt the swearing. three times is a record for u! next time you’ll do better =)

    I started laughing hysterically when I read this part:

    “At the end of my talk, I said “And now, exclusively for participants of this convention, let me share with you MY biggest secret of being an entrepreneur…..” then a slide with the following picture came up on the screen behind me.

    Instead of laughter, I could see that most of their faces had this “WATAFAK?!?!” or o.0 expression.

    I super shy dot com dot my weiiiii that time!! Summore had to sit back on my chair on stage after that. Aaaaaarrrgggghhh, shy shy shy.”


    Eh btw, is the picture in the frame/magazine the one we shot in Sg Buloh ahh?? :D Looks bloody familiar lol.

  3. Sean S says:

    Awesome arms!

  4. zachchin says:

    Anna, wow congrats!!! so proud of you!!! great job and i love it when you said, success is enjoying what i do…, yes, so blessed that we are among those that can say that!!! keep up your good work! ;)

  5. ian says:

    If it’ll make you feel better, i would have erupted in laughter, thus triggering a human reaction to laugh along amongst the congregation :P

  6. jengae says:

    Hi Anna!
    are u straightening ur hair for good??

    either way both hairstyles (curl and straight) looks good on ur face.
    but this new hair indees shows a 2009 anna rina!!
    i love it!

  7. annette says:

    hi anna, have been “following” your blog for a while now, just wanna let you know that I feel so motivated each time after visitng your blog. The path that you’ve taken to where you are now is absolutely inspirational to me.. Keep up the good work , and I hope to be able to meet up with you personally someday either in KK or KL.

  8. Michael Teoh says:

    Wow Anna! This is definitely going into my blog! Thanks for the compliments too! I always always look forward to meeting entrepreneurs like yourself! Perhaps we could catch up for some drinks sometime! Share our ideas, vision and dreams! YEAHH!!

  9. JC says:

    Damn proud of you woman!!!
    And thank you for providing me some sort of an “entertainment” that night we went out tengok movie. OK aaa once in a while pakai dress and heels pegi watch movie :D

  10. nong says:

    Hey geng, good job on the convention. No worries about your ending, at least people will definitely remember you..hehehe…dats what you want..long lasting impact my flen. Who knows, people would recommend you as a photographer with the line..”Ala..the photographer with big arms lah..Anna..” hehehe I have to give it to you..YOU GOT GUTS!!!

  11. miss andi says:

    hey anna rina. my friend and i heart u. u were funny lah so no worries la. we do not mind the swearing at all

    keep it up darl

  12. LiCin says:

    anna, that’s soooo funny when you show your pix as “the SECRET of being an entrepreneur”…muahahaa.. but, that make it so “you” **complimenting your uniqueness**

  13. koobz says:

    i agree with Licin… you are the only person i know who behaves the way you do, and it’s actually very refreshing. So 10 points, and I’m sorry your joke bombed. I would have laughed. Fuck it (whoops I swore), i’m laughing now!

  14. Anna-Rina says:

    Whoa! Thanks for all the support and kind words :D Really appreciate it! XO

  15. Grace Tan says:

    Congrats Anna! You are hilarious! Never fail to make me laugh!! It’s your quirky self and personality that makes you stand out amongst other photographers (and your big arms too!). Great new blog and website by the way. Looking fwd to catching up with you soon.

  16. Caren says:

    Hey Anna ! I’m Caren, the one beside you in the picture .
    It was nice listening to your very innovative speech that day,
    and you’re really easy going and hilarious !
    Hope to hear more from you in the future, take care !

  17. youth 09?
    i was there for creative mafia.they hired me to take arouhnd the event.damn tiring

  18. Victor Lo says:

    Like your BACK’s Shape…including ur arms…SEXY….I bet during ur convention…everybody is looking at U most of of the time compare to Joe Flizzow

Review of Smash Pre-Workout


I’ve been meaning to blog about this but I just never found the time to do so. Well, here it is. Better late than never.

On October 30, 2008 I tried out Axis Lab’s Smash Pre-Workout Drink. It’s basically a pre-workout drink (d-uh!) which supposedly gives you more energy and endurance.

I got a sample pack when I bought my protein from…fark. What’s that shop in Aman Suria called again? I’ll update this once I recall the name of that place.

Anyway, being the kiasu person that I am, besides working out at Pushmore (PM) I also wanted to join my climbing friends at Camp 5 after doing the WODs at PM. So, I ventured where I’ve never gone before and took the sample pack to see whether or not it’ll keep me going.

The packaging itself was enticing as it had all the keywords that fitness junkies (yours truly!) found enthralling – pump! strength! endurance! energy!

Wahhhhhhhhh!! Just by reading the packaging made me feel like working out already. Yes, I’m a sucker for marketing gimmicks.

The content itself was white powdery substance and after mixing it with water, it turned blue. I remember thinking to myself that I might turn into a Smurf after drinking it.

The taste? Sucks big time. Tasted of flavoured cough syrup. Yuck!

According to the directions, one is supposed to consume the supplement “30 minutes before workout on a light to empty stomach”. I actually had a snack before consuming the drink so for the first 45 minutes I didn’t feel nuts.

But what came after was a totally different story altogether. I was on fire! I felt like I could tackle Ronnie Coleman and knock him out cold. Okay okay. I might be exaggerating a bit there.

The workout on that day was; in 15 minutes, do as many rounds of the following: 10 SDHP (20kg), 10 Push Ups, 10 Double Unders (in my case, tuck jumps). Managed to do 8 rounds + 10 + 10.

Immediately after that WOD was done I did 100 sit ups, 75 leg raises, 50 windshield wipers and 25 weighted sit ups in 9:12. This was very surprising as previously, it took me slightly below 15 mins to complete it.

Was it the drink or was I just extra gung-ho that day? I have no idea.

By then I could feel the buzz. While I still had it, I quickly drove over to Camp 5 and on the way, for a total of 5 minutes (yes, I timed everything), I felt a buzz which was similar to the buzz felt when one is on speed.

Upon reaching Camp 5, I didn’t bother warming up and immediately lead climbed a 6A route (white) and cleaned it in one shot. Now THAT, was definitely thanks to the drink.

I climbed a few more routes after that and by the end of the night, I was feeling the effects of my gung-ho’ness :p I forgot to check exactly what time the effect started wearing off but my guesstimate is within 3.5 – 4 hours after consuming the drink. Might be less though.

My verdict?

It’s something I would take only if I know for sure that I have a loooooong day of working out ahead of me. Think it’s absolutely unnatural for ones’ body to go on and on and on like that.

The ingredients combination and effects of it could be abit too much for some so don’t say I didn’t warn you ;)

Oh, I also took a similar pre-workout drink (of a different brand) during the Genting Trailblazer event. And that was absolutely crazy! I talked my head off while jogging/hiking/walking throughout the race and still had energy to go climbing after that.

Hmm…will update this post once I recall which brand the second one was.

  1. ShaolinTiger says:

    Legal speed eh? Sounds pretty scary…The place in Aman Suria do you mean Anabolic?

  2. Anna-Rina says:

    The buzz wasn’t THAT long la. Yes, yes. It’s Anabolic :D Haha. Thanks

  3. Lynn says:

    Ego Nutritions you mean?

  4. Anna-Rina says:

    Ohhh yaaaa. Ego Nutritions is the shop and Anabolic is the gym issit?

Alia & Johan: Wedding


Alia and Johan’s solemnisation ceremony was an intimate multi-cultural affair attended by family and close friends at Alia’s parents house.

You know the line ‘they only had eyes for each other’? Well, this applied to Alia and Johan.

Johan’s eyes lit up and he started grinning like a little kid when he first saw Alia walking down the staircase. And Alia? She looked absolutely gorgeous and couldn’t help smiling gleefully too (eh, not exaggerating. got pictorial evidence ;p)

Throughout the whole ceremony Alia and Johan exchanged loving glances and hearty laughter was shared with family and close friends. Alia and Johan, as corny as this may sound, I was moved to be part of your heart warming ceremony. Thank you for sharing your day with me.

Before we move on to the pictures, a special thanks to Olivier and Nadia for recommending me to Alia and Johan, much appreciated :)

Some of my favourite shots from the day.

And here’s a slideshow of pictures from the ceremony. Just click on play and wait for a while for the slideshow to load :)

  1. Zehan says:


    Love the shots babe :) I know I speak for the newlyweds when I say they were so happy you were there for the akad nikah. Your photos truly captured the love and magic on the day, thank you. The photos make me tear everytime I see them (but then again, I am so jiwang :p)!



  2. ShaolinTiger says:

    Good choice on the move, looks great. Nice theme too looks very professional.

  3. nadia says:

    Anna! Absolutely gorgeous pictures! Was fun watching ‘em at Alia’s yesterday.. :)

  4. Alia says:

    Woman!!! Thanks for making me look good…hahaha. Everything and everyone look great actually :) So happy that you were there to capture our spesyel day! Can’t wait to get my hands on the cd…yay!!!!

  5. Woman, your photos never fail to make me WANNA GET MARRIED just for the sake of being photographed to death (beautifully of course)! Not sure if Alia still remembers me but nevertheless, congratulations! You guys look oh-so-lovely-I-wanna-bite-the-two-of-you-and-steal-the-bride’s-shoes!!!

  6. melissa Mohan says:

    such lovely photos made me tear.. sigh so sweet. mel

  7. Farrah-Hani Imran says:

    Beautiful ! Just Beautiful ! Sniff sniff (glazed eyes & huge smile) :-) :-) :-)

  8. Alia Maricar says:

    Anna, you always manage to bring out the emotions thru the pics. The ceremony was simple yet beautiful & intimate! Love the slides – and love the music! ;)

  9. Torie says:

    Real brain power on diyspal. Thanks for that answer!

  10. Roxie says:

    Cheers pal. I do apaecripte the writing.

  11. Giggles says:

    Kewl you should come up with that. Exntellce!

  12. Jenny says:

    This post has helped me think things thugorh