After going to Marfa with fellow photographer Diana Lott to second shoot a wedding with her we had PLENTY of time to talk! 6 hours EACH WAY! Good thing we had an awesome conversation and I was able to stay awake to help keep her awake. In the conversation I talked with her a little bit about me going to China to photograph a wedding (which she also encouraged me to put more photos of the wedding up too, which I will get to this week!). She didn’t realize I had even gone to China last year and I realized that I hadn’t put up a lot of photos on my blog. Soooo then she proceeded to tell me that I needed to change that asap! So I wanted to share with you all the photos that I took on the streets of Beijing China. Also if you see any photos that you would like prints or canvases of to hang in your home/office/business then you can go here… Beijing China print gallery
The sign “Having fun prohibited” was a tongue in cheek plaque that I took at a gallery in the art district “798″. I thought it would be a little funny under the old school Chinese soldier playing a game with a modern dressed guy on the wall of China. The cat was a stray that was roaming around the wall. It looked like one paw was bigger than the other, poor thing!
They had Chinese military stationed on the wall selling drinks and snacks. The wall is CRAZY long! We were at a part of it that was actually still pretty much intact. They even had a gondola that you could take to the top instead of walking all the steps (um yeah we took the gondola!) then you could take this go cart type thing DOWN the hill, yeah it was AWESOME!
This was Tiananmen Square we went to see it and it was surreal! I had forgotten what had happened there so I turned to my friend to ask and he said in a hushed voice. I will tell you as we are walking up the stairs but as soon as we get to the top we have to stop talking about it or i will be arrested! Found out that even if you google Tiananmen Square while staying in China you are flagged and they will watch you! Also it was crazy the large painting of Mao that I am “holding” in the bottom corner is HUGE and Mao is rumored to have driven around the square several times as it was being painted to ensure he looked good from afar. Also the other crazy thing was they have a GIANT LCD movie screen projecting the beauty of China. Right in the middle of a location where TONS of Chinese students trying to rebel were massacred! Propaganda anyone?
The gentleman in the right corner owns an AMAZING resturant near the square! Outside of his restaurant he has this amazing 8×10 camera! Next door to his restaurant he had a gallery of his photography that was STUNNING! Below his photo is a gate near the square. So much detail in EVERYTHING!
Lions and Tigers! Just need the bears! LOL
The man on the left was playing a flute, it was sooooo beautiful! The ladies on the top were posing for a picture that they were organizing. We didn’t stop to ask them what they were up to but to me it looks like a Bob haircut convention?? Then one of the coolest things is EVERY night everyone goes out into their own town square and dance! WOW we might be in a different place healthwise here in America if we did this a little more often!
Transportation in Beijing was pretty much a Rickshaw or a taxi cab. So my crazy taxi story: I decided one day to take on the silk market by myself armed with locations where I was staying printed in Chinese. So of course I thought I could handle myself, I had been in Poland before and was totally fine. Beijing had the Olympics 2 years previously from when I went in 2010 so a lot of people picked up conversational english. Anyway I got into a cab and accidentally went to the wrong side of town (I pointed to the wrong location). I told the cab driver that I was so sorry that I was in the wrong spot and asked him if we could go to the other location that I was pointing to. He looked back and put his hand on my thigh and said “I can for an extra charge” I almost threw the money at him and got out of the cab as quickly as I could. I then noticed that he was dressed in street clothes and his ticker wasn’t working! I was sooooo scared and realized that he could have VERY easily done ANYTHING with me as he had no accountability to a boss. I would have paid him extra to go back to the other location but the fact that he put his hand on me was a little too uncomfortable to me as well as later finding out that he highly overcharged me for the one trip! Note to self: don’t go out on your own in a country you don’t know the language the first week you are there!
On the streets of beijing: So the kids in China don’t wear diapers, they just go whenever and wherever they need to go. So a lot of the little boys wear these aprons to hid their boy parts. So this lady was holding this ADORABLE chubby little guy and I couldn’t resist! The mother happily let me take a photo of her sweet son! The first day I got there I was sooo pumped after my 16 hour plane ride! (I took benadryl and some vodka to sleep the whole way there!) So the bride that I was shooting took me into town to meet up with everyone to have dinner. On our way there we saw a TON of brides all huddled together. I asked her what was going on and she explained to me that they go to these portrait studios and book their bridals and the studios will shoot several brides at one time and they can even rent dresses. It was crazy awesome!!
So this sweetie on the left was trying to get into this bag that contained CANDY. Her mom quickly came over when she saw that I was taking a photo of her and then started laughing when she saw what her daughter was doing!
This sweet lady was hand sewing these BEAUTIFUL baby booties! Man if I would have had more spending money with me!
the food was AMAZING! I am gluten intolerant so the bride I was with asked each resturant to not put soy sauce on their dishes. They all looked at me like I was crazy, but even without it the food was still AMAZING!
More high fashion type art in the 798 district, so unique!
The art above is from the groom! It is STUNNING! He took these photos of a people group in the mountains of China and then did a process similar to polaroid transfer the images onto the paper then did the same process with the flowers that he laid over the images. Here is a link to more of his work… http://stephengleadow.com/painting/paint-2-root/
I thought putting these two images together would be interesting. The left is a carving done by a friend of the grooms showing a man reading a Bible about to be taken over by the government. Then a statue honoring the book of Mao.
There are a few floors missing here people!
Love the translation of this poster!