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Hong Kong sketches April

APRIL 19, 2013
Here are some recent sketches from Hong Kong and China:
Rugby fans under the grandstand at the Hong Kong Rugby Sevens tournament in March. This 3-day tournament hosts an audience of 40,000 rugby fans at Hong Kong stadium and has the atmosphere of a rock concert (The Beach Boys performed this year) and a Mardi Gras festival. Fans dress up in outrageous costumes, consume vast amounts of beer, and watch outstanding rugby teams from Wales, Fiji, South Africa, New Zealand, Canada, Samoa, and over 20 other countries. We've become rugby fans, too.

Seen in a Hong Kong subway car, one of many advertisements for luxury and fashion products. I'm struck by how sexually provocative these ads can be. Most people such as the passengers on this train respond to them as just another example of visual noise, and ignore them.

A parallel trader waiting for the train to mainland China. These traders are Hong Kong and mainland Chinese citizens who shuttle across the nearby border with products purchased in Hong Kong such as infant milk formula that are scarce or whose quality is not trusted on the mainland. They sell these products on the mainland for a profit. Such activities have caused a shortage of these products in Hong Kong which has angered local citizens and the government, and resulted in a recent crackdown on parallel trading. To some this man is an object of derision, but to me he looks noble and dignified. I empathize with him. This may not be his chosen profession, but in all likelihood he is just trying to provide for his family as best he can.

Seen at the entrance to the Mong Kok MTR station, Kowloon.

Sketches of people on the MTR subway.

Two o'clock in the morning in the corridor of a hard sleeper train between Changsha and rural Anhui province.


Back in Hong Kong, at my son's soccer practice.

Fisherman repairing net, Sai Kung. I was attracted to the tranquility of this solitary man working diligently on a pier across the harbor from the crowded waterfront restaurants.

Evening fog in Cheung Chao harbor.