Sunday, April 1, 2012

Hong Kong Friends

This piece gets a long story. I lived in Hong Kong for six years during the eighties. I loved wandering the backstreets with my camera--there was so much to take in. I encountered these two men at the end of a day, and at the end of a roll of film (you'll have to explain to the youngsters here what a roll of film was). They were such a pair, and obviously old friends. The light was fading and I only had two shots left. The man on the left was reluctant and grumpy and the one on the right was friendly and cheerful. They were such a delightful contrast to each other, and neither spoke English.

I had the photos developed and did an oil painting, but never finished it. The developers had cut off the man's feet and I could never get them right in the painting. I still loved the painting, though.

We had a hurricane some years back and lost most of our possessions. Half of my photos were completely destroyed, and half survived. The original photos of most of my Hong Kong shots had soaked in brine and had to be tossed out. Before we demolished the house, I found some negatives in the attic--many of which were of the lost photos. It's been great, because I lost most of my kids' baby pictures, but found their negatives. I've been scanning like a fiend, and lo and behold, I found my Chinese men. The negatives were damaged from the heat of the attic, and I had to splice the two photos together, but here they are. I'm sure you'll be seeing more of them. The stuff on the right is from a photo of a store, which was typical of the little Mom & Pop stores there. I photographed my fish vase and added it just for fun.

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