China September 1-14, 2012 Day 9

Canon 5D MK III, Canon EF24-105mm f/4L IS @ 105mm, 1/160, f/4.5, ISO 200, Lexar Digital Film, BlackRapid Sport, Clik Elite Pro Express

Today we wandered Shanghai.  Shanghai is the youthful playground of China.  Many Chinese will tell you that ‘If Beijing is a school then Shanghai is a playground.’  The youthful vibrance and the cleaner, metropolitan vibe of Shanghai is a great way to end any journey through China.  Roads are not as congested as Beijing and the streets are cleaner.  The people of Shanghai are also more open than most in Beijing.  I am sure it has something to do with the history of the city.

The above image is just one example of the youth of Shanghai.  This couple was just off The Bund taking their engagement pictures when we strolled by.  Of course, Ron Wyatt was all pumped as he shoots many corporate/celebrity portraits and knows how to work a scene.  It took a bit but the group joined in and we fired off several frames while they posed for their photographer who was kneeling just below me.  No worries, the local photographer was happy to be working with other pros and was extremely grateful, as was the couple, that we gave them our cards and showed them our images on the LCD.  As requested, they E-mailed me and I sent them copies of all the images I took.  This has never happened with anyone in Beijing.

On our trips it is encounters like this that help us connect with locals.  Our motto at M&M is “You don’t just take a photography, you experience it.”  Connecting with locals, sharing with them, getting them to open up and show us their homes, work, and person are all key to bringing home awesome, relaxed images of people.  Photography is one of the best ways to bridge cultures and communication gaps.  At M&M we do not avoid interacting with locals.  We encourage our guests to ask questions, smile, hand out cards, show their LCD after capturing an image, and most importantly capturing locals in a natural setting and pose.

We spent about 2 hours walking through Old Town Shanghai.  This is a great area to get a feel for what people in this area live like in Shanghai.  The homes are small and crammed into a small area that has been preserved to keep the classic heritage of Shanghai from disappearing.  As we wandered a side street this old man was sitting outside his door and watched intently as we fired away at something else on the street.  When I playfully pointed my lens at him he smiled and struck this pose:

Canon 5D MK III, Canon EF24-105mm f/4L IS @ 105mm, 1/100, f/5.6, ISO 800, Lexar Digital Film, BlackRapid Sport, Clik Elite Pro Express

As I showed him the LCD of the above shot he stood and waved me over to his door and showed me his kitchen.  Our local guide told me the man was born in and has lived in this same house more than 75 years and was happy that he and his wife have running water in their kitchen.  It was further explained to me that locals are very protective of their water and spigots.  I guess water theft is an issue here.  His kitchen:

Canon 5D MK III, Canon EF24-105mm f/4L IS @ 24mm, 1/40 (handheld no flash), f/4, ISO 2500, Lexar Digital Film, BlackRapid Sport, Clik Elite Pro Express

As we walked a little further we came upon another home and the woman of the house was washing dishes and started “talking” to us.  She told us she was happy to see us again and that her family had lived in the area for over 100 years.  She has lived in the same house since birth and would not want to live anywhere else.  All while doing her dishes.  I captured this shot of her:

Canon 5D MK III, Canon EF24-105mm f/4L IS @ 45mm, 1/80 (handheld no flash), f/4, ISO 2500, Lexar Digital Film, BlackRapid Sport, Clik Elite Pro Express

We spent our evening at an acrobatic show.  Was able to get a few shots during the show.  I put the Mark III through more low light high ISO tests.  Once again I was happy.

Canon 5D MK III, Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 OS @ 70mm, 1/400, f/4, ISO 2000, Lexar Digital Film, BlackRapid Sport, Clik Elite Pro Express

Hope you are enjoying the Blog.  Shortly, you’ll be reading posts about our Indochina trip which departs in less than 36 hours.  The entire region – China, Indochina, and all the surrounding countries are photographically rich and I can’t wait to see what I’ll shot the next time out.  Hope to have you join us.  If you have questions about any of our trips shoot us a note at info@mmphototours,com, mikeg@mmphototours.com, or kenw@mmphototours.com and we’ll get right back to you with an answer and details.

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2 Responses to “China September 1-14, 2012 Day 9”

  1. Joe Parisi Says:

    I have enjoyed your China blog, feel like I was right there with you and Ron. Your style & philosophy of photography & travel are perfect. I hope to join one f your trips , until then I have to content to just travel along.
    Looking forward to your Indochina trip.
    Joe Parisi ,

    • mmphototours Says:

      Joe:
      Thank you so much for following us and the kind words. We hope to provide a great trip through Indochina as well. Talk with you soon.
      Best Regards,
      Mike Gulbraa

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