Shanghai Street Photography


I am lucky enough to spend 30 days in Shanghai, exploring and visiting neighbouring cities, together with my Nikon D600 and 50mm and 16mm prime lenses. I look forward to taking as many pictures as possible documenting my experience and hopefully showing what Shanghai has to offer.

This photo blog is probably more for me than for anyone who reads it. I find that when you travel, without documenting the experience, too many elements of the trip are forgotten over the years. I think it is a good idea to not only take photographs, but to also write down a few things about your experiences.

Street Photography

If you followed my work, or knew me in person, you know i don’t really like taking photos of people. My photos usually revolve around rocks and the ocean. Lately I have been trying my hand at street photography and with the lack of rocks and seascapes in Shanghai, I guess this is what will be shown. One thing i suck at in street photography, is the confidence to just take a photo of someone who senses my presence, I don’t think this is a bad trait to have as I’m sure people don’t like to be photographed by strangers. Instead, I photograph them when they aren’t looking and if they see me, I just leg it.

This guy didnt like getting his photo taken, but luckily he was too busy preparing a freshly killed duck and dealing with the Chinese kids playing Ultraman.

First Week – Initial Impressions

I have been in Shanghai for a week and although i have a general feel for the place, I have hardly gotten my feet wet. It is so big and so busy, that at every turn there is something new to document.

Shanghai’s population is over 23 million people, which is around the same as the population of Australia. However, Shanghai is about 0.1% the size of Australia. With this in mind I initially thought Shanghai would be so intense and chaotic, that I would not be able to move or breathe. Although peak hour presents a challenge and everyone seems to get a bit pushy and intense, there is still a large chunk of the day where you can walk, relax and have your own freedom. It is rare that you get hassled on the streets by people, however you do get the odd “Wallets, bags, watches, very nice” in the touristy areas and sometimes the “Marijuana, Hashish, Coke” and a wink at night. But overall shanghai is a very safe and welcoming city.

This is the view from the rooftop of my accommodation in Shanghai, it is quite noisy at night considering it is next dual a dual story highway and the Chinese love to use their horns.

Whats is next

Over the coming days i will roll out some stories and photographs of my trip, I would like to build up a nice portfolio documenting my experience and also go out with my tripod and take some unique fine art photographs that i can print big and hang on my wall and if im lucky, my mum may buy some off me. Fingers crossed….

Possible highlights to come include a trip to the Yellow mountains which should be amazing, hopefully my Tokina 11-16 cropped sensor lens holds out acting as a 16mm prime for this trip, as I hope to get the mother purchasing quality images during this trip. I would also like to get to Beijing for a weekend if time permits and do a few day trips to smaller towns outside Shanghai. Hopefully i can formulate a way of documenting the already 400+ images i have of shanghai in this photo blog. I will try to update more regularly as it gives me time to take in and reflect on the experiences.

The newspaper is put up every morning so the locals can read it.