吉姆 JIM HOFMAN | Photography Faces & places in China

Food
I found our money…
I found our money...

Yep – it’s all here. At the Wanda Plaza mall in Ningbo. This extremely upscale mall looks like it came straight from any major city in the US. Caution – rant ahead.

Qingxi Streets
Qingxi Streets

Yet another weekend layover in Qingxi gave me some time at the central market for street photos. A very photogenic place if you can handle the smells.

Yangjiang Streets V1
Yangjiang Streets V1

I’m making two passes through Yangjiang on this trip. These are photos from pass number one.

Faces & Places in China – The Video
Faces & Places in China - The Video

I’ve compiled the “Greatest Hits of 2013” into a five minute video along with some pithy commentary.

Photo Dim Sum
Photo Dim Sum

Dim sum refers to a style of Cantonese food prepared as small bite-sized or individual portions of food traditionally served in small steamer baskets or on small plates. This is photo dim sum. The menu today is a handful of semi-unrelated bite-sized portions.

Wholesale Food in Shenzhen
Wholesale Food in Shenzhen

Ordinarily I wouldn’t write a post about wholesale food, but it was actually an interesting adventure. Some friends needed to stock-up on meat and invited me to go to a huge restaurant wholesale market in Shenzhen.

Night Light
Night Light

Photography is all about capturing light. At night most modern cameras struggle because digital sensors don’t perform well in low light conditions. My current Nikon D7000 does a great job during the day and in the studio – where there’s light. Not so much at night.

Shopping in Yangjiang
Shopping in Yangjiang

I arrived in Yangjiang a couple days ago and needed to do some grocery shopping. I decided to take some camera gear to the grocery store to document the local flavor. Some indoor street photography on a hot Sunday afternoon…

Yangjiang Street Photos
Yangjiang Street Photos

Everytime I come to Yangjiang I take a very long walk through the city. The same path each time. Each time I see totally different sites and people. It’s never the same twice.

Creep Photography?
Creep Photography?

There’s probably a very fine line between street photography and creep photography.

Street Photos – Qingxi
Street Photos - Qingxi

Photographers are notorious for being poor judges of their own work. Selecting good from bad can be torture. What constitutes a good image is different for different people.

Selling Stuff in China
Selling Stuff in China

While wandering around the Sunday morning market I realized a couple things…

Hazy Hong Kong
Hazy Hong Kong

Holy crap, there was a ton of smog on this trip. There was a dense cloud hanging over my stops in Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. While I was in China the pollution in Beijing was off the charts.

Art in the Chaos
Art in the Chaos

Street photography is like a scavenger hunt. Sometimes you’re rewarded with the gift of an amazing image. A small slice of the temporal continuum is captured by a few million pixels. Someone’s ordinary life frozen in time for others to see. They may not consider that particular moment precious, but when removed from the context of their everyday existence it can become special. Perhaps art?

The OTHER red meat…
The OTHER red meat...

I’m a pretty adventurous eater, but I have my boundaries. Last night I challenged my boundaries and tested one of China’s seasonal delicacies – dog.

Shanghai I
Shanghai I

Shanghai is huge. REALLY huge (23 million people). It’s ten times the size of Chicago. And this week is was hot. REALLY hot. There were lots of umbrellas on the streets to make-your-own-shade.

Sunday In Qingxi
Sunday In Qingxi

I think I’ve photographed everyone in Qingxi now. Twice.

Nanjing
Nanjing

I just spent a couple days in Nanjing, which is a few hours west of Shanghai. It was my first trip there. I always seem to visit the same manufacturing hubs in China and it was nice to go somewhere new.

Sushi Party
Sushi Party

My friend Mike invited a few people over to his place in Qingxi for a “make-your-own-sushi” party. In reality it was a “drink beer and watch Gary’s girlfriend make sushi” party. That’s OK, I’d rather watch other people make my food.

Market Sights
Market Sights

Sights from a couple market places in China (Qingxi + Yangjiang). I love to photograph these places. Lots of interesting sensory inputs: sights, sounds, smells, people, activities.

Qingxi Night BBQ & Market
Qingxi Night BBQ & Market

One of my favorite places on the planet.  Lots of amazing street food + beer + fun people (often random new friends).  The smells are incredible (good).                                        

Behind the Kitchen Door
Behind the Kitchen Door

I was curious about how a restaurant kitchen looks and operates in China. I tested 3 restaurants that I frequent and was able to get access to the kitchen in all of them.

Urban Micro-Farming
Urban Micro-Farming

Farming in China is like the period after the US civil war, when the excess labor pool created by emancipation proclamation resulted in each ex-slave getting a mule and 40 acres to farm. The only difference is Chinese farmers don’t get the mule (and fewer acres).

Night BBQ
Night BBQ

This is another place in China I love, the night BBQ. It’s just down the street from our factory and next to my favorite alfresco restaurant. It’s a smorgasbord of inexpensive treats-on-a-stick that are barbecued right in front of you. The smoke and smells are part of the experience, but unfortunately they aren’t captured in photographs.