Standing At The Center of Six-Four

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Back home a couple of days now. Pretty much no jet lag to speak of. But it’s been nice to, after 14 days on the road, to hang out with my wife and little one. Took Liv to her preschool session today where she showed me all around her classroom. Then me and the Mrs went out to a NJ diner for some breakfast. The work emails were staring to ding more and more and I’ll be in the office on Friday, but it was a nice couple of days to rest up and catch up.

Not to mention put a hand to my wife’s belly to get a gauge on how Baby K 2.0 is coming a long. Very well, it appears. 🙂

Amazing to think that just a few short days ago I was standing at Ground Zero of one of the most serious acts of rebellion in the last 21 years. I was 19 when the Tianamen Square Protests happened (June 4th, 1989, hence Six-four), finishing my freshman year in college. I was two hours from home in a big city and Beijing, China, may as well have been on the moon to me. Still, I remember the news headlines and reading about it.

Now here I was, almost 21 years later, on a bitterly cold Tuesday morning on my last day in China. Heading to Tinanmen was almost an afterthought. We had thought about doing a photo shoot there…and I actually raised the point “Do we really want to? After all the people that lost their lives there, is this really the place we want to exemplify Beijing?” That swayed the team and we decided to not shoot there, and I’m happy for that. Still, wanted to see it, and not just from the back seat of our van.

I like the photo that leads off this post. Chinese Army? Um, no. More like Rent-A-Cops that seemed to be getting “official” photographs in the Square. We saw their coats being worn by store security guards later in the day. If you look closely at the photo above, you can see the discolored sleeve of the last gent on the left side. My thinking is the coat has been passed down. They were all trying to be all focused in line, waiting for their photo. Me and others on my team just stepped in and starting shooting them, reportage style. Again, I like the scene I caught. They were kids, basically.

Professionals? Probably not, as noticed by the details.

It just amazed me that there were SO many people here. I don’t know….Tianamen Square has such connotations…yet whole school trips, groups, families, etc were taking it in. As I was walking around, I saw this developing and saw the shot I wanted materialize right in front of me. Yes, I blew the sky out, but I really like this image and what it signifies.

For all the people taking photos and whatnot, it was still pretty closely monitored. After a while, my goal was to get one of the Chinese soldiers to hold Flo while I made a portrait. I struck out, three times. Though I did get to engage one in conversation as to why I wanted the photo with my “toy” as he called it.

“Because it would be a fun photo. And you look very military. Can you hold it?”

“No. Not at all.”

“Just a quick portrait.”

“NO. On Duty.”

“Can I do a quick portrait of you then? Without the toy?”

Pause.

“Yes.”

Two frames. I liked this one.

Did I get a shot of Flo the Pig in Tiananmen Square?

Is Bruce Springsteen from New Jersey???

Mao and all…

© Mark V. Krajnak 2010 | JerseyStyle Photography | All rights Reserved
Unless otherwise noted, images captured with a Canon 50D, SanDisk digital film, finished with PS2 or PSE6 and Nik Software.

3 thoughts on “Standing At The Center of Six-Four

  1. The shot of Flo is the one that hits me the most from all your China images, I think there is more feeling and story about hope and people in that image than you normally get to see from China. The juxtaposition with the smile and happy young lady helping a stranger with the image of Mao and all that that conjures in a westerner really makes it work for me.
    Good story and great images from both legs of this trip.

  2. Pingback: JSP Visual Week In Review ~ 08.11.18 | JerseyStyle Photography

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