In February 2014, work took me to China, my stay there bookended by a weekend each in Beijing and Shanghai — time enough for some long walks with my new go-anywhere camera, the minuscule Panasonic Lumix GM1 with the legendary 20mm F1.7 lens.
Beijing: This was my first time back since I last lived here three years ago, so I wanted to visit all my old haunts, to update my mental map of the place. The pollution reading stood at 500+, so the hazy beige hue to every view became a photographic subject in its own right. On frozen Qianhai lake, meanwhile, everyone was having huge amounts of fun avoiding collisions on the ice:
Skating on Qianhai lake in Beijing, Feb 2014 from Stefan Geens on Vimeo.
Shanghai: Having just read some works by Lu Xun, China’s literary giant of the 20th century, I decided to explore Hongkou, the northern section of town where he lived and where today you can visit the Lu Xun Museum and his home.
This time around I kept noticing Shanghai’s architectural heritage from the 1920s and 30s, so had a go capturing some of it. More and more of these buildings are (finally) being renovated, as opposed to just being demolished.
View of Pudong past an earlier generation of highrises:
Here’s a street vendor deep in Hongkou with whom I was having a pleasant chat until being rudely interrupted by the Chengguang, urban thugs in police uniform:
Here’s the set of all 18 edited photos from the trip.