The Yuen Po street Bird Garden in Hong Kong was built in the late 1990's after the former "Bird Street" at Hong Lok Street was demolished. It was built to preserve the spirit and popularity of the bird stalls that once were in Mongkok. The Chinese have traditionally liked to keep birds as pets, and this tradition is maintained in this small garden. Men (I've not seen a woman there except those selling birds, birdseed and live crickets) walk around; whistling at the caged birds, from delicate canaries to colorful parrots, admiring their plumage and a few walking their pets in cages.
They are very useful if you call them, they send very detailed emails and do follow ups if you have something on hold in a timely fashion. On one of my trips I had to postpone my fight thanks to visa delays (no longer an issue with my Canadian passport!) and my travel agent with Gala was very helpful in hooking me up with the best alternate flight and while I had to pay a fee it was a painless process overall.
Embarking on such photographic projects make me look for relevant snippets of history, social mores and art (for example, the occupation of Shanghai by the Japanese in the thirties, the  Chinoiserie fad of the 18th century, fictional stories similar to that of Madam Butterfly et al). I also learned the aesthetic of the cheongsam (aka qi pao) in its various forms, and the beauty of Chinese calligraphy. I also scoured the internet for Chinese legends, poetry and songs/music that inspired the 2-3 minutes plots of my photo films; as I call these audio slideshows.
Knowing how to use your camera is essential to success as a travel photographer because more often than not, it’s those spur of the moment shots that generate the goods. If you can quickly adapt to the surroundings and know what settings to change in a split-second in order to capture a moment, you’re in with a pretty good shot of becoming a professional photographer.
Tewfic El-Sawy is a New York based freelance photographer specializing in documenting endangered cultures and traditional life ways of Asia, Latin America and Africa. His images, articles and photo features have been published in various international magazines, and his travel photographs are published in guidebooks and adventure travel catalogs. He also organized and led non-traditional photo expeditions and workshops. He is passionate about documentary-travel photography and produces multimedia stories, merging still photography and ambient sound. He enjoys mixing Asian fashion, culture and history into “photo films”. He recently increased his focus on South East Asia and China. He produced a well received photo book Hau Dong: The Spirit Mediums of Viet Nam; documenting an indigenous religion now recognized by the UNESCO, and is currently working on a voluminous monograph tentatively titled ‘Chinese Opera of The Diaspora’. He is a faculty teaching member at the Foundry Photojournalism Workshop, and a jury member at The Travel Photographer Society’s Photo contests.
Once a black image is created, I clicked on File> Add Layer(s) From File, and used the Quick Mask tool (yellow arrow on left) to "paint" a line around Gui Lian. The Quick Mask tool wasn't sufficiently precise in blacking out all of the targeted areas, so I also used the Masking Brush tool (red arrow) and went over these areas on complete the task....a task that took me no more than 12 minutes; well within my range of tolerance. I then pumped up the saturation using Iridium Developer tools...a task that took under a minute.
Flight Toronto - London (YYZ - LGW) C$ 631+ Flight Montreal - London (YUL - LGW) C$ 665+ Flight Halifax - London (YHZ - LGW) C$ 675+ Flight Toronto - London (YYZ - LHR) C$ 685+ Flight Calgary - London (YYC - LGW) C$ 690+ Flight Vancouver - London (YVR - LGW) C$ 690+ Flight Calgary - London (YYC - LHR) C$ 707+ Flight Toronto - London (YYZ - LCY) C$ 725+ Flight Halifax - London (YHZ - LHR) C$ 739+ Flight Montreal - London (YUL - LTN) C$ 773+ Flight Vancouver - London (YVR - LHR) C$ 773+ Flight Toronto - London (YTZ - LHR) C$ 780+ Flight Vancouver - London (YVR - LTN) C$ 793+ Flight Toronto - London (YYZ - LTN) C$ 797+ Flight Montreal - London (YUL - LHR) C$ 801+ Flight Toronto - London (YYZ - STN) C$ 805+ Flight Calgary - London (YYC - LCY) C$ 830+ Flight Vancouver - London (YVR - LCY) C$ 834+ Flight Ottawa - London (YOW - LHR) C$ 840+ Flight Montreal - London (YUL - LCY) C$ 864+ Flight Ottawa - London (YOW - LGW) C$ 897+ Flight Edmonton - London (YEG - LGW) C$ 909+ 

Once a black image is created, I clicked on File> Add Layer(s) From File, and used the Quick Mask tool (yellow arrow on left) to "paint" a line around Gui Lian. The Quick Mask tool wasn't sufficiently precise in blacking out all of the targeted areas, so I also used the Masking Brush tool (red arrow) and went over these areas on complete the task....a task that took me no more than 12 minutes; well within my range of tolerance. I then pumped up the saturation using Iridium Developer tools...a task that took under a minute.
This was a really informative article Hillary :) Just wish I found it sooner because just a week ago I went to the Grand Canyon to snap some photos. I didn't have this article to help, but I found a similarly useful article that provided some kind of checklist of things to do before traveling. If anyone's interested, here's what helped me out before I went to the canyon: http://www.adoramapix.com/blog/2016/10/16/photography-101-packing/#.WFH9...
Approaching a new client can be a lot easier if you happen to be visiting that region, or if it’s where you are based. Start local and contact businesses who you regularly use or that have less than desirable images on their website…put together a proposal and they’ll more than likely say yes if it benefits them! If they’re just starting out on social media you can offer to create a library of social media images they can use over a 3-6month period to generate interest in their product/region.
Flight Edmonton - Vancouver (YEG - YVR) C$ 99+ Flight Calgary - Vancouver (YYC - YVR) C$ 119+ Flight Kelowna - Vancouver (YLW - YVR) C$ 261+ Flight Winnipeg - Vancouver (YWG - YVR) C$ 266+ Flight Cranbrook - Vancouver (YXC - YVR) C$ 267+ Flight London - Vancouver (YXU - YVR) C$ 277+ Flight Toronto - Vancouver (YHM - YVR) C$ 298+ Flight Prince George - Vancouver (YXS - YVR) C$ 334+ Flight Toronto - Vancouver (YYZ - YVR) C$ 342+ Flight Fort St. John - Vancouver (YXJ - YVR) C$ 350+ Flight Saskatoon - Vancouver (YXE - YVR) C$ 372+ Flight Regina - Vancouver (YQR - YVR) C$ 377+ Flight Fort McMurray - Vancouver (YMM - YVR) C$ 382+ Flight Montreal - Vancouver (YUL - YVR) C$ 441+ Flight Toronto - Vancouver (YKF - YVR) C$ 463+ Flight Ottawa - Vancouver (YOW - YVR) C$ 558+ Flight Windsor - Vancouver (YQG - YVR) C$ 588+ Flight Halifax - Vancouver (YHZ - YVR) C$ 591+ Flight Québec City - Vancouver (YQB - YVR) C$ 612+ Flight Fredericton - Vancouver (YFC - YVR) C$ 679+ Flight Sarnia - Vancouver (YZR - YVR) C$ 701+ Flight Toronto - Vancouver (YTZ - YVR) C$ 715+ Flight Moncton - Vancouver (YQM - YVR) C$ 757+ Flight Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island) - Vancouver (YYG - YVR) C$ 798+
Some of these 'singalong' parlors still exist, faded and tired but otherwise unchanged, offering a taste of popular and cheap entertainment from a past era. How these survive in anyone's guess. The parlors usually have an organist (who can also play a guitar) and a handful of habitual customers who sing Cantonese songs...and occasionally Western oldies such as "Sealed With A Kiss" by the Canton Singing House organist.
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