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Showing posts from March 14, 2010

Echoes of the Rainbow

This shot was taken in an old area in Hong Kong where the buildings are in bad repair as the signboard "Ming Hing Steelworks" and the smudged wall suggest.One of the way for a photographer to improve his photographer's eye is to learn from the masters.  One can get a lot from the photography masters, especially those who film movies.Movies are more interactive than still photography.  The audience follow the scenes from one moving shot to the next which, as compared with still shots,  is more relevant to a photographer who judges a shot by walking around and gauging the lighting conditions.  The photographer can see a movie as a series of continuous still shots with the benefit of instantly comparing which shot from what angle can give what kind of effects.  Which is not possible by learning from the non-related individual still images.I go to the movies around three times a month.  The best of this month is the locally produced Echoes of the Rainbow which is set in the …

Street Humourism

In the harm's wayhe certainly is.Bear with me for coining the word "humourism" for there is no better choice to describe the topic of today.Street humourism refers to the quality of those street shots which gives off a sense of humour. To me, the most valuable aspect of street shots is spontaneity. The photographer stumbles across a scene which can make a good photo and take it. There should not be any premeditation in the shot except for the final image the photographer visualises in his mind.


The Kungfu fanatics are giving the passer-by a physical knock on the head and a kick in the back.This valuable aspect also applies to street humourism. In operation, the photographer takes a creative interpretation of a common scene which the viewers come across so very often that they don't even think of seeing it in such a novel angle. So, the secret is to do the shot "as is". The photographer is not supposed to add, say, a prop or arrange someone doing the trick in…

The Making of

A large proportion of the local Chinese community is atheistic. You may have seen pictures of the Chinese people holding joss sticks and bowing to the deities in temples of various sorts. At the core, they are worshipping whatever deities they think can protect them. It is probably a Confuscian influence here: "Pay tribute to the spiritual world but distant oneself from it" is a his famous teaching deeply-rooted in the Chinese community.So, in the first photo, notice the shiny plank behind and to the right of the octagonal plate. In front of the doors to most homes and shops in Hong Kong the same planks stand. On it the words "Deity of the Earth at the Door" are written.Usually this plank is fronted by a pot-like shrine in which tiny joss sticks are burnt. The pot-like shrine is exactly like the one placed to the right of it in the photo.The making of this home for the master of the earth in front of the door is like this: use a piece of whatever wood as long…

Two Photo Contests

The winner in FoE's 2009 Photo Contest (Biodiversity Lost)Photo contests are good way to sharpen our photographic skills.  Here are two photo contests which are open until April.The first one is Friends of the Earth's fifth photo contest.  The theme this year is Acting in Solidarity and Building Moments for Change. FoE says on its website:"This international photo competition will gather photos from around the world on the theme of 'Acting in Solidarity and Building Movements for Change'. The best shots will be featured in materials produced by these organizations and social movements, including a 2011 calendar and an international photo exhibition."The winner in FoE's 2009 Photo Contest (Biodiversity Preserved)More about the competition, which is to be closed on 1 April, can be learned here.  There are cash prizes for the winners: 400 euros for each first place photo; 200 euros for each second place photo; and 100 euros for each third place photo. The ot…

If a Photographer Knows the History

If that's the case, the photographer is more able to bestow his feelings on the the final images. That brings us back to the comment that photographers should first feel the scene which I wrote in yesterday's post. This post is a footnote to it.Today's two photos are nothing spectacular, not if you know nothing about the history of the Hong Kong.To put the statement in perspective, let's learn something cultural about Hong Kong. Before the order of English sentences made a stronger influence on the local Chinese community, most Chinese printed materials were read from right to left horizontally -- the horizontal order was already influenced by the English. The reason is that the traditional order of Chinese sentences is from right to left vertically, which is still the case in the Chinese community in Taiwan.With the passage of time, the Chinese in Hong Kong adopted the horizontal left-to-right writing order for the sake of convenience. Imagine the clumsiness in puttin…

Winners of HKPPA's Photos Competition 2009

HKPPA stands for Hong Kong Press Photographers Association.  It holds an annual photos competition for its members.  The results of the 2009 Competition has been announced.The above photo is the First Runner Up of the Spot News section.  Its caption says, "Pro-democracy protesters carrying a mock coffin try to cross a police line during a demonstration demanding China improve its human rights record, outside the Chinese liaison office in Hong Kong October 1, 2009."The winner of the Sports section is by a press photographers from Reuters MC Siu, who wrote about the photo that  "China's Qi Xihui waits to compete during the clean and jerk session of the women's +75kg competition at the East Asian Games in Hong Kong."This honourable mention in the Sports section is quite likeable too. "Robert Ebersohn (C) of South Africa flipping over during their match against Uruguay in the Day two of the IRB Hong Kong Sevens on March 28, 2009 in Hong Kong."  It was…

The Most Hilarious Floral Basket

Someone stuck in the rubbish bin a placard originally used for a floral basket to congratulate the opening of a cellar, making it the most hilarious floral basket ever!  One thing funny about the placard is the names of the givers, namely and literally, second uncle, third uncle, forth uncle, fifth uncle and sixth aunt.This is Sunday.  Have a day full of laughter!