13 September 2012

Pictorialising China's Traditions

Pictorialism is the name given to an international style and aesthetic movement that dominated photography during the late 19th and early 20th century. It refers to a style in which the photographer has somehow manipulated what would otherwise be a straightforward photograph as a means of "creating" an artistic image rather than simply recording it.

The distinctive pictorialisation filters of PhotoScape (coloured pencil, watercolour pencil, impressionistic, pastel, pen, water painting, oil painting, pencil, cartoon, colour and monochrome engraving) provide a wide array of choices for somebody who wants to try digital pictorialisation effects on a photo. It requires experimentation and eventually boils down to the photographer’s style and personal preference. As usual, some people will love it, others will hate it…
Below, the street portraits of Chinese people in their traditional costumes have been modified with a combination of PhotoScape's oil-painting and water-painting filters, "best" viewed at zoom level 1:1.

PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese woman, street portrait, China, traditional costume
PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese girl, street portrait, China, traditional costume
PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese woman, street portrait, China, traditional costume
PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese woman, street portrait, China, traditional costume
PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese woman, street portrait, China, traditional costume
PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese man, street portrait, China, traditional costume
PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese woman, street portrait, China, traditional costume
PhotoScape, post production, pictorialisation, water-painting filter, people, Chinese girl, street portrait, China, military-style uniform, V sign



"Photographers are failed painters."

05 September 2012

Praying with Chinese Hui Muslims

Xi’an was the first city in China to be introduced to Islam when emperor Gaozong of the Tang dynasty officially allowed the practice of Islam in 651 CE and since, has made it home to a large Hui Muslim community. Hui people are ethnically and linguistically similar to Han Chinese with the exception that they practice Islam, engendering distinctive cultural characteristics. For example, as Muslims, they follow Islamic dietary laws and reject the consumption of pork, the most common meat consumed in China.


street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim woman, headscarf, yellow hijab
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim woman, headscarf, turquoise hijab
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim woman, lace skullcap
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim man, taqiyah, white skullcap, kufi, Muslim beard
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim man, taqiyah, white skullcap, kufi, Muslim beard
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim woman, headscarf, yellow hijab
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim woman, headscarf, wedding jewellery, bridal headpiece
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim woman, headscarf, yóutiáo, oil-fried breadstick, Chinese cruller
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim man, taqiyah, white skullcap, kufi, Muslim beard, rose apple, liánwù
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Hui Muslims, Hui Muslim man, taqiyah, white skullcap, kufi, Chinese fan

03 September 2012

Studying Xi'an's Toughies and Smarties

Xi'an's subterranean terracotta army is a collection of terracotta sculptures depicting the armies of Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China. It is a form of funerary art buried with the emperor in 210 - 209 BCE and whose purpose was to protect the emperor in his afterlife. The three pits held more than 8,000 life-sized soldiers, mostly infantrymen. No two soldiers are alike but could roughly be classified into seven distinctive (personality) types of superbly sculpted faces: (i) the 国-shaped facial structure which is characterised by a rectangle face with high cheekbones, a wide forehead and cheek, (ii) the 用-shaped facial structure which is marked by an oblong face with flat cheeks and chin; (iii) the 目-shaped facial structure which is basically a narrow and long face with very fine/small features; (iv) the 田-shaped facial structure which consists of a nearly square-shaped face; (v) the 甲-shaped facial structure which has a wide top and narrow bottom, like the shape of a melon seed; (vi) the 由-shaped facial structure which is characterised by a rather long face with a narrow forehead and wide chin and  (vii) the 申-shaped facial structure with wide cheekbones and narrow ends.

portrait, headshot, China, Xian, terracotta army, terracotta soldier, clay warrior, sculpture
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Chinese man, bad teeth
street portrait, headshot, China, Xi'an, Chinese man, bad teeth

street portrait, headshot, China, Xian, Chinese man


























Street portrait photographs of Xi'an's toughies and smarties in Matt Hahnewald's