There is a certain mystery and flair that is unique to Asia. It inspires and begs investigating. I created this image by merging these 2 photos: a statue from Angkor Wat in Cambodia and a girl in the rain in Shanghai, China. Their frequencies were similar and I was curious to see if they were complimentary.
Day 79 of 365~
Everything moves at various speeds in our world, even the the life we call ‘still’. How we perceive this motion in relation to space and time is key to composition.
Random morning thoughts on photography.
Day 74 of 365~
Image taken in the back alleys of Hongkou, shanghai, China
In Hongkou, part of the old city of Shanghai, was a set of grey narrow alleys that were a maze of tiny streets containing 2 or 3 story homes stacked side by side in a most claustrophobic manner. Hundreds of tangled electric wires dangled between walls that were decorated with phone numbers advertising services for those who needed them. Water flowed down the streets and bikes and colorful laundry colored the otherwise shabby surroundings. In those sad alleys I met some very happy people. Their smiles instantly appeared when we met and stories were told that I only understood partly because of my poor grasp of Shanghainese but laughter was the largest part of the conversation. I just loved that place and I kept going back again and again to photograph until one day the residents announced that their neighborhood is condemned to demolition like so many other old Shanghai alleys. The last time I visited there were metal foundations of giant about to rise from the stories of these lovely people. I had to fight back tears seeing the ghosts of what used to be there and is no longer…
Day 67 of 365~
Image taken in the old alleys of Hongkou, 2014
If we were asked to recall the events of the last 5 minutes, we can play them back in our minds where they are recorded almost perfectly. Then if we were asked that same question a year later, all details become blurry and most of the story is lost. Why is that? Why do memories fade? Is it by design? Or did something go wrong along our line of evolution?
Day 63 of 365~
Image taken back in 2012, in Shanghai, China
We get so busy with life that we ignore death. We celebrate distractions, the things that make us avoid the question of our own mortality on this planet and all the time treating something as natural as death as we would an avoidable inconvenience.
I wonder if this great fear stems from our lack of education, our inability to handle the unknown, not coming to terms with the inevitable, or the way our lives are more and more based in materialism.
Day 43 of 365~
Images taken somewhere on the Shanghai underground
From the mega metropolis of 30 million to a quiet German neighborhood, from the 16th floor of a high-rise building to the lone house and garden, from the green polluted sky of shanghai to the intoxicatingly fresh air of the countryside… we find ourselves in a whole new ecosystem.
We took in a few fish to live in our small pond last week and since then they have been hiding as they get used to the new environment. We are not so different. I feel the urge to settle in and find my way in my new ecosystem.
Despite of all the change, something inside me is dancing in joy and wellbeing. Thank you Germany for the chance to be well and happy as we get ready to call you home.
I grew up in Lebanon, moved to New York City at the age of 20, have lived since in Boston, Miami, Germany, shanghai and now moving to Germany again. Like most expatriates I find myself at a loss of knowing where 'home' really is or if it exists at all…the age of 20, have lived since in Boston, Miami, Germany, shanghai and now moving to Germany again. Like most expatriates I find myself at a loss of knowing where 'home' really is or if it exists at all…
Shanghai never fails to surprise you. As a photographer living in this city, you can never be at a loss for impressions. Even time travel is possible if you are willing to go out of your way to visit the film park in Songjiang. Every time I went there I was able to capture a fantastically surreal film set where time stops and life is reenacted to show a sense of times gone by. And where else in the world can you just walk up to the set and photograph it?
I love Shanghai ❤
Isn’t every moment a step further into the unknown? We think we know where we are going, we have it all planned out, then life reminds us of the futility of our false certainty. I welcome the unknown, I want to live in the joy of discovery, to be surprised by life, to meet the future with an open mind.
I took these images today at the amazing James Turrell exhibit in Shanghai.