From North Carolina to Shanghai, every build is different, foundations change, tactics differ and people’s ideas get thrown around. If you stand on the street in North Carolina, not in the city of Raighley, but on the outskirts in the suburbs. Things you take for granted like shops and restaurants are built quick and for maximum capacity’s. They are basically practical places to get done what you need to get done, they do what they say on the title. No messing about.
If you travel to some where like Kensington in London, that little part of the UK where a flat will set you back £1M or will all of a sudden be standing in a building that’s meant to not only stand the test of time but built to look like something from Mary poppins. Red brick the works.
Then you travel 12,000 miles to China and end up in Shanghai and all of a sudden you starring up at an upside town temple that looks like it’s been carefully put together out of 100 meter look match sticks. It’s literally like something that a baddest budist has dreamt up.
What I like about that all these buildings is that they all serve the same purpose really and that’s for people to use to eat a task done. It doesn’t matter if that task is to pray, live in or some where to wash there clothes. A lot of the time, I’ll just get from city to city and not really look up, even in London a place I’ve lived my whole life, I just walk around and don’t really take it all in. but if you actually just stop for a second and look around, everything is actually pretty cool in its own weird way.
Here are some photos that I’ve taken from the places I’m talking about. It’s a bit of a rushed post today, but we all have days like this right?
Yesterday Amy and me had the family come round for some food and for a little catch up, I haven’t really seen any of them since my birthday which was like two months ago, so it was good to see them all, even Esme.
It wasn’t all straight forward, amy and me had a lot of pressure planning today, from what everyone was going to eat ( I cooked a banging curry) to the most important thing the orange cushion that WE (Amy) had to get.
Yesterday was the first time we played host to my family and I think I was a success, apart from being a bit short of cutlery and plates but who’s counting anyway.
I’ve normally always been the guy sat in the sofa drinking beers and watching TV so never really worried about what’s going on in the kitchen, I’ve just worried about what time it’s been served. My hat goes off to anyone that’s ever cooked a large meal I’ve eaten, it’s 100% pure stress.
The cooking isn’t the stressful part, it’s the washing up that’s the stinger, you fill your face and then all of a sudden you’ve got a million plates and hundreds of glasses to wash up, and I don’t even have a dish washer, proper 1950s stuff.
Anyway, it’s now 5am on Sunday and I’m up and out the door off to work, so I’m going to keep this one short and sweet. Here’s some shots from yesterday.
Sunday. The plan was to have a proper chilled Sunday and do nothing, just watch TV and eat food. and thats exactly what we did, only this time I decided to test my cooking skills and see what I could make. After searching the app Yummly we came across a spinach and chick pea curry. It has turned out to be one of my favourite dishes, Ive even got left overs for today and trust me I will be eating them!
I really want to learn how to cook more dishes, its something I actually really enjoy and as some one who lives in London, cooking at home saves you a ton of money, we brought all the ingredients but now we have them if we want to make this dish again, we literally only need to buy chick peas and some potatoes, thats literally dinner for under £2 and trust me it is so worth it.
Heres a list of the ingredients I used and the instructions, trust me give this one a cook and let me know what you think.
Oh my top tip is give the potatoes a little boil before you put them in the pan.
1tablespoon ghee (or sunflower oil)
1onions (large, finely chopped)
3large garlic cloves (finely chopped)
1piece fresh ginger (peeled and finely chopped)
3teaspoons curry powder
2teaspoons Garam Masala
1teaspoon ground cumin
1/2teaspoon chili powder
380grams chickpeas (drained)
390grams chopped tomatoes
4potatoes (medium sized, 300g, peeled and cut into 1cm cubes)
500milliliters vegetable stock
100grams fresh spinach
Heat the ghee/oil in a large pan. Add the onion, garlic and ginger and cook until softened.
Add all the spices and cook for a further 1 minute.
Add the chopped tomatoes, chickpeas, potatoes, salt and about half of the vegetable stock. Stir well and simmer gently for about 20 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked adding more stock as needed.
Add the spinach and cook for a further couple of minutes or until the spinach has wilted.
It literally took about 30 minutes to make. easy.
I got all this information from the Yummly App, it linked me to a different website called http://www.mygoldenpair.com check out that place for even more recipes.
Todays post is a bit late and thats just because i’m attacking the two months worth of washing I have in my wash bin, i’m quickly running out of clothes and today is solely dedicated to getting the washing done and hunting down some clean socks. Welcome to adult life josh…
Yesterday day time was spent on the sofa getting through emails and doing all that accounts stuff, but in the evening Amy and me met up for some chicken wings and a drink, it was just nice to get out and have a bit of fun. even though after my first beer I was nearly falling asleep, Sorry about that Amy.
While I was waiting for Amy I decided to spend sometime taking photos of shop windows and the people inside them, so much effort goes into how a shop looks from the outside which basically means that each shop is kind of perfect for taking photos. the windows are kind of pieces of art that are made to draw people into them, if that makes any sense. people are employed to make a shop window stand out, thats literally a job and those people who design shop windows probably also do set design for video or fashion shoots, so they all have the same guidelines. make something individual and to that company / artist style. well that was my kind of thinking to taking photos through the windows last night and I kind of think it worked.
I really wanted to focus on the typography or lighting of each shop and use those two things to take the photo and explain the photo I took. each photo that has typography explains whats happening or what they stand for.
The tattoo photo shows a man laying topless on a bench, the neon lighting above the window show that he is getting a tattoo, otherwise it might just look like he was drunk or something.
the “we sell liberation” basically speaks for its self. theres a guy wearing make up and someone with crazy hair. what more is there to say about that photo.
the reason behind the third photo is all todo with “eat beautiful” and also the lighting, which is pretty cool and the mirrors in the background create this funky look.
I’m back in the swing of things now and cant wait for the next 131 days of the photography project, lets grab some fireworks add some crazy ideas and take some cool photos!!!!!!!
Today I leave shang hai and head back to london, im looking forward to getting home and looking back at all these photos Ive taken and getting the posts online, I hope you all are still reading these and wont abandon me.
this place is pretty cool and completely different to anywhere Ive been before, its a completely new culture that ive kind of seen, I wish I had more time to see this city. im now on the coach to the airport and looking out the window at the Bullet train tracks. the bullet train is chinas answer to high speed rail way travel. this thing goes like like 200 mph and travels along these futuristic train tracks which use like 1 mile long bends. its literally a thing of the future, I love the idea of the future and people creating inventions to make life easier and more exciting. the next few years I genuinely think china will over take the west and lead the technology race, if you have over 6 billion people in one country how can they not.
this country is a place I still cant work out if I would like to come back and visit on holiday or if I would only come here for work, I just cant decide. china is a massive place and I like to think ill be back to explore but truthfully Im just not sure. I think ill only know a few weeks down the line when I think back to what its been like and what Ive experienced. right now im pretty hungover from an amazing wrap party 87 stories up at the top of the hotel and all I want todo is eat a mcdonalds and fall asleep on the plane home.
for now heres some photos from my past week in this amazing city!
It’s weird not posting these each day, I’m not really enjoying it. I love following the stats and getting to see what people think of my photos, it’s one of those things if I post each day I really try and set my self a brief for each day, ie something to concentrate on, but at the moment I’m just snapping shots when I can.
Not really sure if that’s a good idea, but at the moment it’s the best I can do.
Today is show day and I can now say that I’m working on Victoria Secrets Fashion show in Shanghai!!!! The rule of posting photos still stands, so if your expecting to see Back stage photos of Super modes wearing underwear and wings. This is the wrong place, instead I can offer a shot of a dog wearing shoes.
One thing has really surprised me is that amount of bikes that are in the city and the comparison to London. A few months back someone introduced this public bike scheme where you can pick up these yellow bikes via an App and then drop it off where ever you want, two days later the bikes had been destroyed, seats stollen and wheels buckled. Not in China, they literally have exactly the same bikes but times a thousand, there are hundreds on every street and not a buckled wheel in sight. China is this country where people stick to rules and one of the coolest things is everyone has a job (apparently). From what I saw which to be fair is very little, the streets are cleanish and there’s this proper hustle and bustle about this place, it feels like a super power city and I suppose that’s exactly what this place is. 10 years time and Shanghai will be this place with hovercrafts and jet packs, I promise you!
I never seen Chinese buffet for breakfast and don’t think its something I have much of an appetite for, but you cant knock it till you tried it right. so this morning was all about me digging in for a proper orientatal breakfast with chop sticks the lot. I decided to go for the cold noodles, rice and some other things which im not too sure what they were, my mistake involved soy sauce, I over did it a bit meaning it was all a bit too salty. but I dont think that was my main mistake, if I played it safe and stuck with rice, rolls and weird green thing I would have been ok. it was all the other stuff that put me over the edge.
A few hours later and its lunch time, thats when I really regretted my breakfast, it was more rice, noodles and other Chinese food. I definitely think a ham and cheese croissant for breakfast goes down a lot better with a coffee. rice and coffee isn’t really a good mix. I was a bit suprised at the cold chow main noddles as well, I thought that it was a global tradition to eat noddles hot, cold noddles are bit to weird.
most of the time when i’m eating Chinese its at 3am and I’m in the middle of London somewhere trying to book at taxi home and struggling to remember my address, so eating one from breakfast felt unnatural, but who am I to judge. it they like it then thats there choice, i just hope one day they try and full english breakfast and understand what makes a great breakfast.
I know this is a bit of a weird breakfast review, but I hope it makes sense and doesn’t make me look naive.
i don’t like the fact I cant post everyday, feels weird not sitting down in the evening or morning and posting a blog, or even having a coffee and thinking about what i can post each day, its a good reason it get up each morning and not just do what everyone else does. its kind of my reason for doing something extra.
Im kind of looking forward to my plane journey home and being able to sit on the plane for 12 hours with no distractions and just getting these posts up today and posted. today is when the work really ramps up and Im looking forward to getting that feeling of a live event. I think everyone who works in TV gets that feeling when a live event is about to start.
Its so fun being out here and just experiencing Shang hai, the people are really nice and if you don’t laugh at the Language barrier then it could be a problem, got a taxi to a bar last night bit of a problem the taxi driver just drove us around the block for 45 minutes before just dropping us back at the hotel reception.
One thing that is on my list of things to buy is a portable power pack to charge my phone, I need to have a look into them and see what is the best one of buy. its so annoying when your phone dies and you have to plug it into a wall and leave it for 45 minutes. does this mean ive fallen todo the trap of being addicted to my phone?
The other thing that is worrying me is I don’t want to lose motivation to post these photos each day, I really don’t want to lose motivation and stop. Its hard not posting each day because then I fall further and further behind! Stick with it josh! only 130 something days to go!! Bust I suppose if I fly half way around the world to a location like this one below I shouldn’t be able to lose motivation!
I need some help, basically today I gave this homeless man £20 so he could get two weeks in a hostel for the Homeless put together by the Crisis charity, Ive had a look online and trying to work out if I’ve been hustled or not? my biggest mistake was not getting his name or taking his picture, he seemed genuine but I just want to find out if he actually spent the money on a bed, im thinking was two weeks is a good amount of time to get your stuff in order, I just hope he didn’t spend it on crack or alcohol. does anyone know how I can find out if he did get shelter? Its nice to be nice right?
In other news, today amy and myself set out on a mission which involved going to this fabrics store and also picking up some paint. I’m talking about mission up cycle our dinning table, I can that is was a complete success and I will share a photo of the table once its completely finished but I have to say we are both really happy with how its turned out. at first it was a bit touch and go with the varnish but once we realised it got darker as it dried the problem was solved. I think we have both got a bit of a bug for this kind of thing now and definitly think we should up cycle some more stuff, I, also now the proud owner of a proper staple gun and really want to see what this thing can do.
so its been a bit of a busy afternoon and its now pretty late, tomorrow I have an early start and need to be up and with my a game for a short film I’m working on tomorrow. its definitely time to get some sleep.
its here, that time I never thought would come. I put it to the back of my head and tried not to think about it, im talking about the time of year when it gets dark at 4 in the afternoon. today I spent the whole day in an office, I know I said I would try and get out of my lunch hour and some cool kind of project but I wasn’t expecting 6pm to come around so quick. and then I left work and it was pitch dark and I hadnt taken a single photo. lucky I had a quick thought and decided to run with it so here I am.
Positive thoughts josh Positive thoughts.
This time of year is pretty good for taking photos late at night, for one reason everyone looks like a character from some 1940’s black and white film. its a mixuter between the winter clothing like a long jacket, hat or dark clothing together with the lighting or really lack of light which creates these cool silhouettes as people walk or cycle along the road. I think its because all of a sudden a random office communter on their way home to sit on the sofa and eat a packed of chocolate digestives now looks like some under cover detective casing out a suspect or they look like the suspect and move around in the dark to go unnoticed. taking all this in mind when walking home my goal was to try and get a photo of what I thought the detective, the suspect and then “the guy caught up in the middle of all this” would look like.
I have no idea if this makes sense to anyone readings this but it makes sense in my head and thats kind of all that matters right. I know it helps if I get my point across but as long as you like my photos thats all that really matters.