I have a particular fondness for the straw brooms used here in China. I don’t quite know why, but it brings me back to an older time, maybe…
One of the things that strikes you the minute you start walking the streets of China is how people (mostly men, it must be said) can be found asleep absolutely anywhere. In Europe, you’d think this was the photo of a homeless man. In China, this is just the photo of a man.
You see a lot of such handcarts in Hong Kong, but even more in Guangzhou where a lot of garbage collection is still very manual. I’m always on the lookout for these, and the added bonus here is that the woman saw me, and probably wondered why the hell I found this interesting enough to photograph. The title is a little ironic by the way, recycling is not very high on the agenda in this part of the world…
One thing that I find fascinating with religion in Asia is how much a part of everyday life it is. People will stop by on their way home for a quick prayer. In Europe, it’s so much more ceremonial and occasional. Anyway, it was interesting to capture how small one feels when standing in front of the huge lantern at Sensoji.
Shooting the lanterns in long exposure at Senso-ji after dusk was comparatively easy (although I hadn’t realised that despite their size the lanterns would sway with the wind) but finding a way to shoot the pagoda was trickier. Thankfully I had my Platypod with me and was able to strap it to a tree. Shooting it through the branches, I thought would give it a different feel, and I’m really pleased with how it came out.
The Fushimi Inari shrine is an impressive place literally covered with massive orange shrines (and covered with tourists as well). When we went there, we half deliberately took a wrong turn and ended up walking a narrow dirt path into the woods for a couple of hours. In several places along the path were fantastic shrines to the fox protectors or Fushimi Inari. A multitude of small Torii with these male and female fox statues wearing red aprons. This is my best approximation of what these felt like.