Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

November 24, 2007

If Jeff Wall went to China

Filed under: Art, Photography — Doug Stockdale @ 7:30 pm

Wedding pose Shanghai

In retrospect after the earlier color ‘people image’ that I posted of the wedding couples in the Shanghai park, I realized that this image has a more Jeff Wall look to it.  Again, not that this is what I was trying to do.  And this was taken with one exposure at a decent shutter speed. For those not familiar with Wall’s work, his images are tightly composed, edited and constructed over a lengthy period of time.

But of the three images I made of this scene, the last image caught the groom who had been using a book to shade himself while his wife was being photographed, to then look at the ‘book’.  The ‘book’ was in fact a pictorial of all of the potential photographs that the photographer could take of the couple while they were at this park, and it was for selecting their poses.  How funny, but not unlike wedding photography here in the USA.

So here is the wedding party, the smiling and posing bride, the photographer and his assistants, all working very hard to make the lasting memories of this happy occasion. Very nice.

Now to work my black and white mojo on this image……

Best regards, Doug

Update: I am having a little trouble with this blog management, as I had uploade both the black and white as well as color image. Some computers have the color image, some black and white.  I will try again tonight to have the color image displayed.


  1. Interesting how it is the bride that is your focus. In these sort of situations it is always the photgrapher that fascinates me.

    Comment by Martin Doonan — November 25, 2007 @ 10:43 am

  2. Martin, I think it was the entire scene that was of interest, where the photographer is part of the ‘act’ but not centeral to the action of the ‘act’. I think the bride is the leading actress of this scene and thus warrents the main focus. The groom in white is the supporting actor as well as the photographer on the deck. I guess that is why in retrospect, this had a bit of a ‘Jeff Wall’ feeling to it. Perhaps helps me understand what Wall is trying to accomplish in a round about way.

    Comment by Doug Stockdale — November 25, 2007 @ 4:50 pm

  3. Hi, Doug. I’m Revol from China.

    In my last comment, I said that your view about Chinese wedding photography is a really interesting one for Chinese photographer to read, and I am really happy to see some thoughts on this kind of photography from a western viewpoint. However, the most wedding photographers in China will never read your post, since most of them do this job just because it’s simple in China, all you need is to pressing the shutter.

    When you mentioned access your blog from China, it takes some staff to do. You need to install a Tor software[], a Firefox browser, and a plug-in, Tor button for your Firefox []. Then it works.

    I’m in Wuhan, Hubei, welcome you to China again. If you came to Wuhan, please let me know.

    Greetings, RD

    Comment by Revol Drib — November 27, 2007 @ 1:00 am

  4. RD, XeiXei (thank you) for the post and comment. I have had a number of conversations since my return about my wedding photographs from Shanghai and many are very interested in the similiarities but yet subtle differences. When I return to China again in a couple of months, I will not be near Wuhan, but in the vacinity of JiaXing again for two weeks. I really enjoyed my recent stay adjacent to South Lake and my brief visit to West Lake in Hangzhou. A lot to see, photograph and do.

    As to how to get my blog to work from China, I suspected that there is a way! But I am not a techie and it may be easier for me to have someone coordintate my posts from the USA or wait to update on my return. 谢谢.

    Comment by Doug Stockdale — November 27, 2007 @ 10:28 pm

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