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"a local shoe store" (my neighbourhood II)

Posted by
hugo poon (hong kong, Hong Kong) on 21 July 2008 in Cityscape & Urban and Portfolio.

It's after nine o'clock as I trudged past this local shoe store on my way home. Queen's Road West isn't a busy shopping street and most shops would be closed after eight except a few small food shops (http://www.pbase.com/hpicckcy/image/93017931). I was surprised to find that this shoe store was still open; questions kept coming to my mind at the same time as I tried to get a shot...

Queen's Road West, Hong Kong

'Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again.' Henri Cartier Bresson

Maybe it's this quote that has impacted me most and given me the strongest drive since I took up photography a few years ago; maybe it's most regrettable when your most "familiar" place and people suddenly went away and you realized that you don't even have a good picture to bring back the memories... This is a little series of my neighbourhoood.

FUJIFILM FinePix S5Pro 1/60 second F/4.0 ISO 640 83 mm (35mm equiv.)

I do not regard myself as a photographer. I'm an ordinary man but extraordinarily obsessed with capturing all the memorable scenes that I encounter in my everyday life. It's like an excited traveller craving to record his memorable journey in a memorable way, but in my case, it's the journey of my life ... If I can record my encounters in such a way that they leave an image on the mind of myself and other viewers, it's a tremendous joy and some accomplishment...
In terms of photography, I'm trying to preserve the moments as my eyes see "something" and my heart feels it too. As such, I seldom feel interested in planned, arranged or manipulated photographs...

dj.tigersprout from San Bruno, United States

real -- and therefore extremely beautiful -- i love the face of the old world that asia presents to the viewer and also to the locals... it speaks of simpler times and possibly a more modest humanity -- at least in some cases. these are the scenes my mother would have been familiar with -- and i too, had i grown up in Saigon instead of coming to live as a young child in America. Wonderful and timeless work, Hugo!

21 Jul 2008 6:53am

Stephen Phillips from San Francisco, United States

Hugo - a wonderful image. The colors are intriguing and the lighting throughout is perfect - despite this being a very complex subject with multiple light sources and surfaces. Well done.

21 Jul 2008 7:10am

Ron from Saint Louis, United States

A beautifully captured photograph, Hugo ... very clearly at the end of a long day after most other shops have closed for the day, and, yet, this merchant is willing to wait for that one last potential customer. Your decision to photograph (and document) your neighborhood is an excellent choice ... I look forward to your next post.

21 Jul 2008 10:48am

Ian Bramham from Manchester, United Kingdom

wonderful delicacy of light and colour Hugo....what a delight this photo is!

21 Jul 2008 12:27pm

IanSmith from London, United Kingdom

Like most living things, we are always drawn towards the light - and I guess shoes are needed just as much as anything else :o)

Great capture Hugo. I love the light on the old woman's face.

21 Jul 2008 12:42pm

Ana Lúcia from Leiria, Portugal

Really great lighting on this shot.

21 Jul 2008 2:01pm

António Pires from Lisbon, Portugal

Wonderful photo. How you could bring about all the detail of the darker parts without blowing up the highlights? The colour rendition with different sources of light is also superb. Last, but not the least, the overall scene is perfect.

21 Jul 2008 4:44pm

Paco Díaz from Palma de Mallorca, Spain

I like this wonderful image of this corner. Very well composed and illuminated. The main subjet is also very expressive and placed in the besti third of the photo.
Congratulations.

21 Jul 2008 5:28pm

Paco Díaz from Palma de Mallorca, Spain

I have been looking at all your posts here: very good.
Congratulations again.

21 Jul 2008 5:31pm

hugo poon from hong kong, Hong Kong

Thank you everyone for viewing and leaving your thoughts... it's wonderfully enjoyable to read your words!

A couple of things to add. First, I have been passing by this shoe store pretty frequently but only decided to get a shot that night... It must be the light on the old woman's face that had drawn me. Regarding the shadows and highlights treatment, I find myself a little obsessive about controlling "blown highlights". So, I'll normally expose for the highlight areas and pull up the underexposed shadows during PPing. Nevertheless, in this particular shot, the exposure seems to be just fine for both, thanks to the good metering and superb dynamic range of the S5 pro.:-) Finally, I did "desaturate" the background details a tad to make them less distracting.

Best regards,
Hugo

22 Jul 2008 3:40pm

FUJIFILM FinePix S5Pro
1/60 second
F/4.0
ISO 640
83 mm (35mm equiv.)