*The Glitter of the Fake Tower*
I love doing long exposure shots and light trails, so when I saw the fake Eiffel tower glittering at night I knew I had to find a spot to do such an exposure. I had to give it six or seven try outs before I got this one (not matter what they say, a gorillapod on a lamppost is not a very stable setup) but I finally got this one and I was happy. Added bonus: unlike photos of the real Eiffel tower lights, this one is probably not illegal.
*Macau from on High*
At the top of the Studio City hotel there’s a ferris wheel of sorts actually built into the hotel structure. This is the view from the top of the wheel.
There’s a lot of « fake American » in Asia: things (places, objects, foods) that look superficially American, but are in reality what Asian restaurateurs or entertainers think the American thing is when quite often it’s not. Not necessarily a bad thing, and rather fun provided you don’t expect the real thing. This diner though was so over the top that it made us laugh real hard. Only in Macau.
Studio City is one of the massive hotel and casino complexes in Macau, this one themed around movies. I was immediately struck by the gigantic statues at the front which made me think at the same time of retro-futurist designs and of a classic comic metropolis. I hope there’s no copyright on Ultraman, but I felt that was a good name for this guy.
*Paris-Venise à Macao*
A couple of week-ends ago we went to Macau for the first time. I’d been to Vegas (once) so I kind of new what to expect, at least as far as the kitsch side of Macau was concerned. Still, the clash of the Eiffel Tower as the backdrop to Venetian buildings with tropical greens at the forefront is not something you see everyday!
Shooting from the hip is hit and miss. In fact, it’s a lot more miss than hit. But when you hit you get photos from an angle you wouldn’t normally get without kneeling, which would be conspicuous, to say the least.
To me (and probably to most other Europeans) it’s really funny to see, since early October and while it’s still 25-28 degrees outside, these staples of winter appear on the streets: sweet potatoes, chestnuts and what I believe to be quail eggs. I should try all three one day, just to compare with what we get in Europe, but there’s no way I’m eating that in this heat!
Asian Crouch Again
I have often talked and illustrated what I (and many others) call the Asian Crouch, this particular waiting posture that you see everywhere in China and in other parts of Asia also. I don’t know what people did when crouching before mobile phones existed, but I know what they do now… Incidentally, this is when I’m really glad I’ve worked on my hip shooting skills. The shot would be entirely different (and less effective in my opinion) at eye level.
The Lantern Girl
The Tai Hang Fire Dragon festival happens every year around the mid-autumn festival. Locals carry a long and sinuous Dragon body made of rope in which thousands of lit incense sticks have been planted through the streets of Tai Hang. This year I went to the festivities, and despite the massive crowd it was really great to witness it. In the area where the Dragon was getting « refilled » with fresh incense, there was a cordon of lantern carrying volunteers to stop the crowd, and this girl’s expression in the light of the lanterns struck me.
When I saw these two guys wearing the same black trousers and white shirts smoking, I shot from the hip. Only later, while looking at the picture did I see the cigarette stubs all over the place. I think they make the shot (although they although tell us a lot about how little Hong Kongers care about their environment…)