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Gong Hei Fat Choi

Posted by
Stephen Phillips (San Francisco, United States) on 28 January 2009 in Cityscape & Urban and Portfolio.

Chinese New Year in San Francisco's Chinatown - along Grant Avenue

The two week celebration began four days ago and will culminate in San Francisco with a huge parade on Saturday, February 7th.

Welcome to - "The Year of the OX"

"Gong Hei Fat Choi" translates to 'congratulations and be prosperous' - (not 'Happy New Year' as is often thought).

© copyright 2018 by Stephen Phillips Photography / Oakland, California /
please respect these rights - do not copy or use these images without permission.

sherri from Little Rock, Arkansas, United States

What a festive street. Love your capture.

28 Jan 2009 5:02am

Suzanne from Huntington Bch, California, United States

Wow...This image has everything going for it...the colorful banners and balloons, the turquoise light posts, the figure with the umbrella and San Francisco's famous foggy light...simply marvelous!

28 Jan 2009 5:38am

@Suzanne: Thanks, Suzanne - kind words...

Observing from West Cheshire, United Kingdom

With all the lanterns and banners you have captured the atmosphere perfectly, good DOF too.

28 Jan 2009 6:05am

Scott Schilling from San Martin, United States

This is a wonderful photo - I enjoy the reds and the focus point on the banners - wonderful composition. I am looking forward to the year of the ox!

28 Jan 2009 6:08am

Alun Lambert from cheshire, United Kingdom

great shot, hope you had a good time

28 Jan 2009 6:25am

yz from Budapest, Hungary

I love this composition, I just love it. So well organized with colour, framing and control of focus, great work!

28 Jan 2009 7:27am

Mike from Lichfield, United Kingdom

A wonderful photo with great choice of depth of field. The woman with the umbrella couldn't have been any more perfectly placed.

28 Jan 2009 7:54am

@Mike: Thanks very much, Mike. I took about six captures in this series and she was what I was waiting for. I'd gotten a couple of shots with other people silhouetted - but they were either too right or too left - like 'Goldielocks' - this gal was just right - and it had stopped raining so the umbrella was a major bonus!

Marie LC from Voiron, France

J'aime beaucoup !

28 Jan 2009 9:55am

@Marie LC: Merci, Marie - et de bon matin ensoleillé de San Francisco...

k@ from France

This is cool, all those red stuff hanging !

28 Jan 2009 9:59am

@k@: hey k@ - thanks!

Eric Fry from Houston, TX, United States

Congratulations and prosperity, to you, too, Stephen! Beautiful colors and focus here!

28 Jan 2009 11:21am

@Eric Fry: Hey Eric - we need to post your February challenge - I think Friday would be good, with reminders over the weekend. Do you want me to do it - or would you like the honor. It is your challenge - so I think it would be great if you took the helm! (...the ball is in your court, my friend...)

Marcie from United States

WOW! It's so colorful and fun! I can feel the festive air in the photo.

28 Jan 2009 12:45pm

@Marcie: Thanks, Marcie - the banners are up for most of a month until after the big parade. That parade this year is on February 7th and it almost always rains that day (Mother Nature's little tradition). We are in a major drought and it will be interesting to see if the tradition continues.

Chris from South Jersey, United States

what a wonderful shot - the colors and shapes are wonderful, and I like the way the scene stretches out in the distance. I like the lights on the left that are lit - how odd that on the right they are out!

28 Jan 2009 2:18pm

@Chris: I would have preferred all of the lights on. It was early - around 7: 30 AM - when I took this and the lights for each side are on separate controls. A few more minutes and I'd have lost the opportunity as the left side turned off.

zahai from Berlin, Germany

Beautifully captured. Interesting how all the colors and flags make the street look crowded, even though it really isn't :)

28 Jan 2009 2:48pm

@zahai: Ah, Zahai - it gets crowded quickly a little later and I would have had a hard time getting any shot with too much traffic - especially trucks - moving down the narrow street.

Jeff from Pembroke Dock, Wales., United Kingdom

Can't fault it, brilliant shot...But it's got me craving,sweet and sour pork Hong Kong style,and special fried rice..."Thanks Pal" ;>))

28 Jan 2009 4:22pm

@Jeff: " You want egg roll with that ?"

hugo poon from hong kong, Hong Kong

What a lovely capture - the DOF, the perspective, the tone, the colours, the lighting, and the atmosphere are all so beautiful!!
Wish you and yours a great Year of the Ox... Kung Hei Fat Choi!:-)

28 Jan 2009 4:35pm

@hugo poon: Thank you, Hugo. I would guess the celebration in Hong Kong must be spectacular. A very good 'Year of the Ox' to you and to yours as well.

Susan from Pompano Beach, FL, United States

Gong Hei Fat Choi to you!!!! It's a great much going on, just looks like lots of fun!!!

28 Jan 2009 5:20pm

Steve Rice from Olympia, United States

This festive scene is wonderfully presented. Good one.

28 Jan 2009 5:28pm

Paco Díaz from Palma de Mallorca, Spain

The joy of chinese towns in celebrations.
Very colorful image!!

28 Jan 2009 5:47pm

Rui from Leiria, Portugal

Kung Hei Fat Choi for you too Stephen!
This is so engaging. All these banners, the colors, the perspective... and then the cherry on the top: the woman crossing with the umbrella. Awesome!

28 Jan 2009 7:26pm

@Rui: Thank you, Rui - a year of 'Happy Ox Days' to you and to yours as well...

chrissy from uk, United Kingdom

Wow, this is so busy and colourful, love it

28 Jan 2009 9:00pm

Giovanni from Milan, Italy

Absolutely beautiful! Love the colours, the light and the selective focus! A wonderful shot!

28 Jan 2009 10:10pm

Yonatan from Bronx, United States

Great shot! The DOF is perfect.

I'm planning on going to Chinese New Year parade in NYC's Chinatown if the weather isn't too should be a great chance to take some colorful photos!

28 Jan 2009 11:07pm

@Yonatan: I hope we get to see some of your efforts posted here. Best of luck with camera and weather.

Louise from Toronto, Canada

Great capture of the culture and festivities!

29 Jan 2009 5:58am

Magda from Vancouver, Canada

I love the use of selective focus! The colours are just screaming: HAPPY! Love it!

29 Jan 2009 7:12am

Lorraine from Gatineau, Canada

I don't know how I missed this one, it's outstanding, real eye-candy lol

29 Jan 2009 2:31pm

grant from kansas city, United States

an exceptional shot in my opinion

29 Jan 2009 3:01pm

willow from Chelsea, United States

Great point of view in this shot. It feels like I'm standing at the top of the next hill looking down the street.

29 Jan 2009 4:34pm

@willow: You are ! Thanks, willow...

Calusarus from St Sorlin en Valloire, France

With these red and yellow tones, you have succeeded to make a real Chinese shot

29 Jan 2009 5:18pm

Liang from San Francisco, United States

I plan on coming to Chinatown on February 7th for that large parade. Hopefully the weather will be great by then. However, looking at this image, you captured it very nicely even under these weather conditions. Very nice DOF presented here, great colors shown (red is one of the Chinese' favorite colors during the lunar year) and just an amazing street shot in general!

30 Jan 2009 1:48am

@Liang: On this point I am conflicted - Tradition states that it always rains on the San Francisco Chinese New Years Festivities. We desperately need rain. Yet the forecast looks to be dry. So we celebrate and ask the good spirits for rain.

Sugata from Newark, United States

Wonderful composition, colour and DoF!

3 Feb 2009 5:12am

@Sugata: Thank you, Sugata.

Doug from Long Beach, United States

Very well done.

3 Feb 2009 7:28am