11.23.2007

Shanghai Surprise.

From the 700 photos I took on my trip to China this past summer, I've selected the ones that best evoked the spirit of my vacation in Shanghai and the south (and it's only taken me three months to do it!). Some are fashion-related, while others pertain to culture. But I think the most identifiable thing about what I've captured on film is the idiosyncratic nature of everything I encountered. Voila!

Where the city meets the sky.

I spent about a week in the heart of Shanghai, in Pudong, shopping in the Oriental by day and strolling down Nanjing Road at night. But the most interesting part of city life was people-watching. There are surprising people around every corner, from a gold-digger 20-something in leather stilettos on the arm of a plump American baby boomer smoking a cigar, to young hipsters in skinny jeans with beautiful skin and even more beautiful smiles.

Rich colours dominated fashion in the city.

Stop two: the art scene. Painters trying to "make it" in the art world sold their works in side shops in narrow neighborhoods. I was surprised that many of their styles were influenced by western impressionism and not Chinese calligraphy.

Miniature painters in the Shanghai historical museum.

A whimsical art shop in the middle of Cheng Huang Temple.

A crafts stand on the side of the street. Wonder what she's reading...?
Of course, if it weren't for the food, half of my reason for visiting this country would be lost. There's something to be mentioned about the mindset of the Chinese when they use the phrase "Have you eaten yet?" to say hello.

Delicious dim-sum and dumplings.

City romance.

As I backpacked around the eastern coast and got lost in nature and living spontaneously, there was always something that could catch the corner of my eye. A man fishing on the side of a lake and forgetting about it as he dozed off with his glasses askew; his wife fanning him during his nap. A broken bicycle left in the middle of the road. Romance under canopies of trees.

As great of a city as Shanghai was, I was glad to leave for someplace more quiet and peaceful. I spent the rest of my weeks in southern China, where street style was abundant. The following girl I photographed jumps to mind immediately when I think of the modern young generation of China.

In bloomer-esque jeans, rolled up to show flashy sandals, with a one-of-a-kind leather satchel, she evokes an intriguing type of sentiment.

And so my trip ended. I was disappointed, and nostalgic at first. But dwelling on the past isn't very practical, if comforting. More adventures to come, I'm sure.

11 comments:

Vistiendo a Candela said...

I really like the pictures

Gryphon said...

Did she tell you where she got her sandals? I'm always jealous of people who don't have to paint their toes

discothequechic said...

hoorahh!
post.
damn, typical that I see it just as I need to go.
reading time later, yes yes.

Emma said...

dear god, do you ever have a mediocre post?

molly said...

your pictures are fantastic, especially the first one!

The Clothes Horse said...

That seems like a lovely trip and the photos are beautiful. I really enjoy travel, though I hardly get any of it. Oh well.

discothequechic said...

Well looking forward to you coming back to blogging more regularly, I'm sure you'll get more people reading then!

You should make it a new years resolution (except most people break theirs! But not you, ok?)

molly said...

ooh is pattie in the newest NYLON?
i cant wait to get it!

Tinsley said...

pretty pictures :)
I've just looked through your older posts and I love your style of writing - its very witty

great blog!

Libertygirl said...

beautiful photographs, &a great blog LLG xx

A said...

yay you're back! though it took me a while to figure it out... shanghai looks amazing, and now I'm really craving some dumplings