Former French Concession
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/4, 1/60s, ISO 1250
The former French concession is a unique place in Shanghai, but one that I haven’t spent quite enough time in yet. One of its characteristics is that the streets are lined with leafy plane trees which creates a pleasant shade in the sun. Notice the guy driving his scooter with no helmet and texting at the same time…
The Orange Helmet Gang
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/4, 1/60s, ISO 3200
You often cross armies of workers in the streets of Shanghai. They move in packs. But this was the first time I saw said army eat its lunch on the back of a car.
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/5, 1/160s, ISO 200
One of my favorite things to do in Shanghai is walk the old streets. Not old in an architectural sense, but old in the sense that people still live there like they did 20 years ago. With your camera in hand it’s a shot a minute. Here the contrast between the decidedly vintage way of selling meat (though very common here) and the smartphone in the seller’s hand attracted me to it. I couldn’t quite figure out what the turned umbrellas were for, but fending off sunlight is the likeliest explanation, I guess.
When I’m an Old Man
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/5.6, 1/60s, ISO 2500
My friend Steve recently introduced me to a wonderful poem by Jenny Joseph entitled Warning. It’s about a woman describing all the wild things she will do when she is old. I thought about that when I saw this man in his boxer shorts in the middle of Danshui road with a fire in front of him when it was 32°C outside. Oh, and in case you wonder why this was shot at 2500 ISO it’s because I’m stupid: three weeks ago I shot portraits of my daughter in blinding sunlight and I had to switch the in-built ND filter on to cut some of the light out. I forgot to switch it off, and only realised after that whole set of photos on Danshui Lu. You can see the full set here, if you’re interested.
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/2.8, 1/50s, ISO 6400
Once more the x100s pulls through in really tough conditions. Another ISO 6400 shot that isn’t eaten by noise. I love these moments of worship, and unlike in Europe, worship here isn’t private. This was shot in the magnificent Lingyin Temple in Hangzhou.
Dusk on Gotham City
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/8, 1/50s, ISO 6400
Singapore under heavy clouds can look surprisingly like Nolan’s Gotham City at dusk. I shot this from one of the boat buses that cross the city on my way to a work dinner. I am once again stunned at the low-light performance of the Fuji x100s. Can you believe this is 6400 ISO ?
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/8, 1/60s, ISO 250
Reykjavik’s Hallgrímskirkja is a truly impressive modern building overlooking the city. You can’t help feeling dwarfed by the sheer size and greyness of it. I shot this at dawn when there was no one around (unsurprisingly considering how cold and wet it was) and I felt the grimness of it all matched the weather perfectly.
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/8, 30s, ISO 500
There’s a certain amount of Disneyland artificiality to Singapore. It’s not quite Las Vegas levels of it, but still… One of the most famous hotels is the Marina Bay Sands which I managed to shoot one night on my way back. It was a tricky long exposure (without the in-built ND I was getting too short exposure times due to the ambiant light, but with the ND it was too long so I had to up the ISO!) Still, it’s quite representative of some of the architectural madness in Singapore.
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/8, 1/60s, ISO 400
Over the years I have repeatedly tried to do panned shots, with a relative lack of success. But sometimes, just sometimes, it works as intended. This was shot by a big artery in Bangkok one early evening, simply as an expertiment.
Fuji x100s, 35mm, f/2, 1/1000s, ISO 200
A good friend commented on yesterday’s shot that the colors reminded her of Cuba. Clearly the body types are different, but I think this shot proves her right. Maybe all the run down places with once-white walls in the world look like Cuba?