Hong Kong – Hipstamatic Tour

If you are arriving here from FRESHLY PRESSED – A Huge thank you and Welcome. I would be so grateful if you would follow me as storytelling and travel are my livelihood and if we share this passion you will have a blast here.

Cheers and Thank You!

Hong Kong is easily the most dynamic city I have ever visited. Alive, moving, walking, running, and most of all eating and all of this with great vigor.

This Amazing HK Street Artist Painted These Birds – We bought this

I was charged to do a Hong Kong post by another lovely blogger and so I decided it was long overdue to take my Blissful Adventurers on a tour.

I fell in love with the Hipstamatic iPhone app last year and I enjoy how this $3 investment really forced me to look at Hong Kong under the surface and explore subjects that on my Nikon D90 may have seemed plain and ordinary.

Hipstamatic forces the user to function within parameters assigned to lens and camera type (electronically simulated) and shoots only in square images which are ideal for blog posts.

I hope you enjoy and let me know your thoughts.

LIFE AND FOOD

HK is obsessed with food, and that is OK because so am I. It was on every corner and at every time of day. I could easily stay here 6 months and not tire of the food but perhaps I would get a little sick of the hurried pace and the confining cityscape. Our photos of the traditional Cantonese Dim-Sum simply were not suitable for the post, but know that we ate this every other day till we could not move.

A high-rise apartment.

Notice the window unit air conditioners. There are so many of these in HK that the exhaust from them is said to warm the city by several degrees in the summer nights.

Hot Pots Cooking Along the Sidewalk

This amazing all-in-one meal includes rice, vegetables, and some form of protein served in this steaming hot clay pot. Adding lots of chili sauce and tall beers makes the meal that much more of a party.

Entering the Subway

On the Subway – I was at least a foot taller than everyone

Soup with noodles, rich pork stock, and meatball stuffed pasta – $4 US

On our funicular ride to Lantau Island (that is an apartment building below)

Approaching the island and the Giant Buddha

Monks and Nuns – same hair – same robes

Street Food – Corn and Octopus Balls with Seaweed and Sauce

I wanted to love this. I did not :-(

CHINESE MEDICINE

In all of my travels this was one of the most fascinating sites. Store after store, vendor after vendor hawking every kind of herb, sea creature, shark fins (fucking bullshit) and an array of dead stuff plucked from the planet to keep humans healthy. I want to know more.

Bins and Bins of every possible dried sea creature

What does one do with a dried and splayed lizard on a stick?

In Texas this would be on someone’s wall

THE MARKETS

I was simply blown away by what one could purchase on the streets. Fish, both fresh and freshly butchered. Meat, hopefully fresh, every kind of shellfish possible. Just walking around HK I felt like the oceans would be empty in less than a generation as I cannot imagine how much food we are eating as a planet.

Beautiful Razor Clams –

Pardon me sir, do you have some – THWACK!! – Never Mind

Would someone please explain the bloated sacks in these very bloody fish carcasses? Next time I am getting a guide :-)

STREET SCENES

Juliet and I walked for hours each day to simply immerse ourselves in the life of this city. My head was on a swivel as my camera was clicking non-stop

The Ritz Carlton is Housed at the top of the International Commerce Building – Making it the Tallest Hotel in the World

The Double-Decker Tram – This was our view from the front of our tram to the next tram in line. The open air and sounds of the city make this one of my favorite modes of transport

Great Tools Come in Handy around the World

Yeah, that’s Bruce Lee

“In a room all filled with Chinese Lamps” – who sings this?

I bet this guy is a banker during the week

It’s up to YUE – YUE YORK – YUE YOOOORK!!

Comments

  1. says

    curious – how long does it take to make a post like that? adding all the pics, editing the text, etc. that's gotta take a long time.

    also, my daughter is a travel agent. she's going to costa rica, jamaica, galapagos islands, thailand, and who knows what else – just this year. me? disney. and chicago for the roger ebert film festival. that's about it.

  2. says

    Great photos! I lived in HK for seven years-worked at Hong Kong International School. I loved the experience. Had time to wander the streets and sample the food. Never tried the octopus balls with sauce, but I tried some equally, umm, unusual local foods. One day, I'll do a HK post, too.
    Just saw post from Jeffersonthought.wordpress.com on his trip to HK…with photos.

  3. says

    I was supposed to be in Hong Kong right now, but my trip was postponed until the end of October. Lots of fun to see all your wonderful photos at this very moment, :).

  4. jenjaroch says

    1) I want to go to there. :)
    2) Your photos are amazing.
    3) Why I'd recognize any "Cake" lyrics as Jason *loves* them!

  5. says

    Yeah! Congrats on that… Enjoy those thousands of hits! I could barely sleep for 3 days!! This is a great post and most certainly deserves the attention and recognition.

  6. says

    Your first sentence says it all! We loved Hong Kong when we were there a few years ago. What a fascinating mix of old and new, traditional and ultra modern! We walked the tiny streets lined with the shops selling dried seafood and Chinese herbs and then just a few short blocks away we strolled past exclusive high end shops like Gucci and Georges Armani!

  7. says

    Wow! Pizzeria Locale reposted my little story?! I had no idea. How cool are they? I look forward to your blog and will be checking it out. Thank you so much for your comment and for reading.
    Cheers!

  8. says

    Long overdue and certainly deserved… Congratulations to the hardest working blogger in nation, you are a true inspiration and a testament to dedication and diligence. Cheers MD, and may the adventure stay a bliss!!!

  9. says

    Reading this post I am NOT surprised you were Freshly Pressed. Loved the walk through HK – some very interesting scenes. And like you, I would eat Dim Sum every day :)

  10. says

    Currie,
    This is so great of you and I am very excited to share this. I apologize it is taking me some time to get back to you and properly thank you on your site as this has been an unexpectedly busy week. Stay tuned :-)

  11. says

    Ah, Michael. I am so proud of you! Hard work does pay off. You deserve this. I hope you have many more. We all know how great your blog is. Now, others will know too. Whoopeee! :-) :-) I am smiling like old lady sunshine here!!

    • says

      George,
      I have no idea where to begin other than thank you. You and Cara were really the first to find me and say anything about what I was doing. I now feel like I understand what I need to do to continue to improve and grow this. It is a weird feeling inasmuch as I am thrilled I am also hopeful that my wonderful WP family that has grown so beautifully and organically will only continue to be recognized. This is an honor and I would be lying to know that some luck was not involved. At the same time it sure makes it easier to know that the hours in this chair and that the evenings contemplating and shooting are all a bit more recognized.
      I think there is a good chance I would do this even if I was employed in another way, but certainly not with this same fervor.
      Your encouragement will never be lost of me George Weaver nor your wonderful support.
      A huge hug!
      Michael

  12. says

    Lived in HK 1969-1971, loved it and still miss it. Before I went I knew I might encounter some unfamiliar food but I wanted to be a gracious guest, so I made a rule that stood me in good stead: don't ask what it is, just eat what you're offered; if you like it and would want to eat it again, then ask.

    • says

      That is not far from me. I eat pretty much any food another human will eat. I am not quite Zimmern, but I am not far from him. If someone had prepared the bloated fish guts for me I would have tried them :-) Thanks for the comment and I appreciate you finding my blog

  13. says

    I love Hong Kong, hope I get to go back someday.
    Oh, I believe the bloated sacs are dive bladders probably distented when the fish were pulled rapidly from the depths.

  14. joahnadiyosa says

    Wow! Your photos are so amazing! It makes me get excited million more times for my trip in Hongkong in July. I'll be indulging myself with all those street foods for sure and see if it is as exciting and mouthwatering as the street foods in Bangkok. Great photos! Great and hilarious post! :)

    • says

      No way! How very cool :-) Please tell her I am going to do a Vietnam Hipsta post as well. Small, small world. Thank you for the comment and for checking me out. I am definitely going to dive into your blog

  15. says

    Really nice photo's! I'm in Bali, Indonesia at the moment and there are a lot of chinese restaurants here that sell the noodle soup with meatballs, delicious! Think I will have that for lunch actually…

  16. says

    Thank you for sharing Hong Kong with me. I have recently received my passport and have started a list of "Must Visit" locations and to be honest, Hong Kong was no where near getting on that list. But now…. =) Thanks again for sharing.

  17. says

    I love hong kong! I love it so much I went back annually for the past three years! Your pictures are amazing. I can almost hear and smell the environment around each shot (which just goes to show how much I miss it). The food is the best part! Nothing beats a freshly cooked hot clay pot meal with a cold beer eaten off a card table parked on the street on a warm night :-)

  18. says

    Reblogged this on Live, Love and Laugh and commented:
    Ah.. Hong Kong… The only way is up up UP! It's a really good place for young expats but not so if you are thinking of settling down and having kids. I am not keen in moving to Hong Kong though the partner is. The pollution, fro that matters is a major turn off. The property prices is absurd and as always, they are forever competing with Singapore. I shall stick to living in Singapore for awhile before taking the plunge. I do enjoy Hong Kong especially on the weekend trips… shopping is such a treat.

  19. says

    Thanks for taking me back there. I loved most of what I ate, but only if I could recognize it. One hundred year old egg did not appeal to me, and sea cucumber was revolting. Overall, I rate their cuisine excellent. Great collection of pictures.

  20. says

    I love HK! It's such a great, vibrant city and although it is busy and packed in it seems so orderly. Perhaps that is the fantastic transportation or the underground that makes getting around the city easier for so many people. The food is some of the best in the world. The shopping is fantastic.
    We like it so much we are taking a group of friends there for my 50th b-day next year!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Cheers,
    Laura

  21. says

    Hi BA, I see that you use filter , effect and quirky angle instead of subject, composition and lighting. This technique seems consistent in your snaps. Are we witnessing a new style being born?

    • says

      Hey J West! This is an effect that the application on the camera often creates. I like the look of these kinds of shots in everyday circumstances but I dont think I am fostering any trends :-) If you look at my work on some other posts it is much more traditional. From a creative perspective I enjoy mixing it up a bit. Thank you so much for the comment and I hope you will follow my work

  22. says

    I have never traveled overseas, but I was Toronto back in the 80s, and its Chinatown was something akin to this back in the day. I hope to travel to other countries one of these days.

  23. says

    Loved the grainy, informal nature of the pictures – I can imagine that these same shots taken on a DSLR would look completely different. But most of all, your captions are really funny to read, especially the one about the butcher! Thanks for making me laugh, and congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

    • says

      Thank you Audrey. At the end of the day I write stories and use photos, humor, and sometimes even a bit of good prose to relay the message. I am so excited you enjoyed this post and I hope you will follow me and share in the adventure. All the best!
      M

  24. Marc says

    You might enjoy this little factlet, the colloquial name for the double-decker trams here is 'ding ding'. Say dingding here it means tram. Taxi is 'dixi' and this is coolest, train sounds like 'for tear' and it means fire car. Cool, huh? :)

    I an Aussie, living in HK for almost 10 years. Loved the pictures. You take a lot for granted when you live in a place a while.

    • says

      Marc,
      I love this indeed! Wow, we loved the tram and the name is right on the money. I would enjoy spending about 2-3 years there and may indeed spend some time again in HK doing some writing in 2013. Thank you so very much for your comment and I agree with you about living in a place and not seeing the beauty as it happened to me on several occasions.
      Do you know anything about the puffy bladder fish I shot? Do you know the species and how it is eaten?

  25. says

    Hong Kong just seems like such an exotic place with many photographic opportunities! But then again, it's probably just because I didn't grow up there! My friends who live in Asia say the same thing about Toronto!

  26. says

    It is exotic and it is not at the same time. I found it cleaner and more efficient than almost any city in western Europe and then again there are components (like Chinese medicine) that seem almost medieval. We loved it and cannot wait to get back!
    Cheers and thank you so much for your comment.

  27. says

    Me too, this seemed like the most natural place to enjoy its many features. Believe it or not I had only had the program less than a month when I shot these :-) Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoy future posts of mine!

  28. says

    May we join you on your birthday trip? I cannot wait to get back to HK! It is all of the things you listed plus a certain mystique and attitude towards good living. Thanks for your comment and I hope you will continue to enjoy my blog

  29. says

    Very nice, Michael! I'm in & out of HK so often but I've never looked at it like this! Your photos do some kinda magic to the place really, I'm going to have a good look at it when I go to HK for business again early May. Thanks for sharing – & your Pinterest is cool stuff.

    • says

      This is an enormous compliment RR! I found the whole place so alive and completely fascinating in its small native details. I wish I was on that trip with you in May. I suppose I will have to settle for Italy :-) Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

  30. says

    Makes me feel homesick! Can't help you with what the sacs are unfortunately, my best bet would be fish stomach though.

    Did you get to Kowloon side much? Hk Island is a fairly tame westernized experience in comparison to places such as Mong Kok or Sham Shui Po… Kowloon side is where the real Hong Kong's at!

    • says

      I stayed on Kowloon and spent over 70% of my time there. Yes some of the photos are from HK but most of my meals and day to day were on Kowloon. You didn't see any pubs or GUCCI stores in my photos right? :-) Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

  31. says

    Great post.amazing place so natural.The food was simply amazing and I loved it!Hong Kong just seems like such an exotic place with many photographic opportunities! thanks for sharing.

  32. says

    great post and congratulations for getting featured on freshly pressed! =) it's funny because i just published a post on hong kong too less than 24 hours ago, and while i was working on it, realized that everything i want to talk about the place cannot be compressed in one post! i love hong kong, there's just so much to do there! looking forward to reading more about your travel adventures!

    • says

      I am going to your post right now. I often do 1-5 part posts on a place and I have so much more HK material to share which will likely come a little later. Thank you for saying hello and I look forward to reading your blog. I hope you will follow here as stories are my life :-)

    • says

      HK locals are really making me so happy with your comments. I very much want to get back after hearing from so many of you. I am only glad my work could be at all interesting to a local. Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

    • says

      I think if I had to pick one it would be Old Hong Kong Restaurant on Kowloon. Normally I take much better notes but as this was my first foray I kind of let the experience wash over me. Next time will be an eating extravaganza (even though this was for sure) Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

  33. says

    Nice work =)
    I like The Double-Decker Tram, and butcher one ("Pardon me sir") the most!
    They are so vivid, full of life!
    I am quite new here (wordpress) and your work is the first that i saw! It is very good!
    I hope that others will amaze me as much =)
    Good luck!

  34. says

    It now seems quirky angles define my life! I liked the pictures, thank you for sharing them. Now why didn't I ever think of this on my numerous business visits there? I won't be having any more for a long time.

    The photos that I usually take are from hotel rooms close to the peak – high floors give a good perspective of the ground, and the steep slopes also provide a good backdrop to similar tall buildings. It looks beautiful at dawn.

    Another thing I always like to look at is the IFC tower with its head in the clouds. I find it really funny. It must be interesting to be up there when there's thunder and lightning.

    • says

      I took a ton of shots from the peak with my DSLR and also some with my phone but not Hipsta as I was trying to capture a more standard image in those spots. I agree with you totally on your suggestions and look forward to getting back to HK someday soon :-)
      Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

  35. says

    I can't believe it, "Yue York?"
    That's it. I'm following you for that reason alone.
    Congrats on being FP – you have a great perspective and I'm already looking forward to your future posts. Although, how could you possibly top "Yue York?".

    • says

      William,
      That was my favorite part as well. I am glad to find someone with a kindred sense of humor. I hope you will enjoy the blog and thank you for subscribing. I also write fiction and tell more episodic travel stories rife with humor of the absurd. Cheers to you!

  36. bookindian says

    I'm glad to see someone using Hipstamatic and posting the pics . . . a V-E-R-Y nice bit of work . . .

    rs

    • says

      RS,
      Thank you for your comment and I am glad the Hipsta app worked so well for this trip. We are always experimenting and I am sure it will make its way into our Italy trip coming soon :-) Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

  37. Edda says

    Thank you for sharing your pictures and thoughts. It was so much fun and I realised even after living now for some years in this busy, bustling city, there are still lots and lots of things to learn, see and try.

    • says

      Edda,
      You live in an amazing place with so much to experience. I would love to spend more time in HK exploring and of course eating. Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

    • says

      I am so excited to see so many wonderful comments from HK residents. It makes me feel great that locals enjoy seeing my images. I want to return to HK soon and spend much more time in your wonderful city. Thank you for saying hello and I hope you will continue to follow my blog

  38. paulgoree says

    Interesting photography…nice work I enjoyed it more so than other images of Hong Kong, you seem to have captured rare energy.

  39. Anonymous says

    lovely photos I spent many times working in HK…such a fantastic vibrant dirty chotic city….Is the Hipstamatic a camera? Is it the same processing as a Holga? I have a Holga but its notoriously difficult to get a consistently good image….Nice Blog :)

    • says

      Ciao!
      Hipstamatic is an application for the iPhone Camera which is built into the phone. It simply adds filters and shading to create the unique images we take. I did not find HK to be dirty when compared to many of the places I have been. A Holga is super cool :-) Thank you for commenting and I hope you keep following

  40. says

    that Hipstamatic app really made those pics interesting. Might just pick it up today and try it out., it's only 1.99 lol
    your post really makes one want to visit HK. You can almost hear the hustle and bustle in the streets from the amazing photos that you took.
    Ironically, i don't understand why statues of Bruce Lee never really look like him …. even when it's made in China LOL
    very cool, thanks for sharing

  41. says

    Thank you for sharing with us! One of my sons was born in Hong Kong. We didn't get to see as much of the city as I had hoped when we travelled there last year, but I can't wait to go back and explore some more.

  42. says

    These pictures are great! I just started blogging recently, and sometimes I wish I had an SLR like your D90. But with all these nice pictures taken with your iPhone, I feel that maybe I can do even more with the point-and-shoot camera that I have! :) Hong Kong seems like a fun place!

    • says

      Dana,
      You can so so much with any modern camera. Just play and play with them and you will find a way you enjoy. HK is one of the great cities of the world. The D90 is now much more affordable and you can find them used for a great deal. My only advice is just to shoot and shoot :-)

  43. says

    Excellent post my friend! The photos are great… I'm a little freaked out with the lizard on a stick. I am really happy you go to the freshly pressed wall! I was excited finally see someone I know there :D… congrats!

  44. says

    Very nice! Congrats on the FP – always nice to see someone I was following before get that! I can now sit back and smugly think, "Yeah….but I knew him when…."! Haha! Great pics!

  45. says

    Congrats on FP!

    As a dweller of a combo urban/rural area, it amazes me how many people can live in such cedse proximity to one another and like you mentioned, how much food we all consume.

  46. says

    I was just in HK last weekend… living on mainland China, going to Hong Kong is like getting a civilization break… I love it there. When I was there in January, I stayed at the hourly hostel, just around the corner from Yue York! :)

      • says

        I always, always eat street food when in HK! Those hunks of meat hanging on metal hangers… I get $30 HKD of the pork for lunch… yum! I love the crispy pork fat! LOL
        I also like Dan Ryan's Steak House (there are 2 in Kowloon and one on the island) for a little bit of home feel. And Bubba Gumps up on Victoria's Peak is fun and really good food and service.
        But when I was there for 2 days last week, I strictly ate street food… there is so much variety… especially on the side streets down by Times Square.

          • says

            Mmmmm, Dim Sum… that is heaven… with my strict Dukan diet (only 1 pound to go!!!) I haven't been able to enjoy Dim Sum as most are wrapped in dumplings. When I begin the next phase of my diet, I will have "celebration" meals once a week… dim sum is definitely on the list!

  47. says

    These are such beautiful photos! I've been wanting to go to Hong Kong ever since I was a little girl passing through the airport on the way in and out of Vietnam. Thanks for sharing your experience!

  48. says

    great! thank you! =)

    i absolutely love your pictures! i'm new to the whole travel blogging and i still have to work on getting good photographs. did you go to macau too when you were in hong kong? it's less than an hour away by ferry and the place just has so much character — the modernity of casinos and gorgeous european-inspired architectural structures brought about by being a portuguese colony in the past.

    looking forward to reading more of your blog! cheers!

  49. says

    Thoroughly enjoyed this post! I'm from Singapore, and I head to HK every year just for its food and shopping! It's interesting to see HK through a different perspective

  50. says

    This blog is very impressive and enlarged my knowledge, required information & the things i never imagined. i pay my thanks to be given such kind of valuable details.

  51. shashatwinkle says

    I agree with you completely!! HK is one of my favorite cities, there's always plenty to do and i'm absolutely enamoured with Dim Sum,congee, milk tea and egg tarts! <3

  52. says

    I the good fortune to live just north of Hong Kong for the last 4 years and it really has been a sanctuary from the structure of my life in Shenzhen China. As an American living abroad, you look for small amounts of familiarity and believe it or not, Hong Kong offers that. Your photos are beautiful and show the city from a great angle. I am exited to experiment with hipstamitic, too.

    • says

      This is so cool Sydney!
      What do you do in China? I hope you will have fun with the Hipstamatic. I also use Camera+ which I adore and a Nikon D7000 DSLR.Thank you so much for visiting and I hope you will continue to follow my adventures here :-)

  53. says

    I miss Hong Kong. I went there back in 2010 with my two friends. Sadly, we only stayed for four days. I'm definitely going to go back there. I miss the giant Buddha in Ngong Ping. :) And there are a lot of cheap, tourism board-approved restaurants everywhere! I definitely enjoyed the food.

  54. says

    Reblogged this on iLook China and commented:
    The air conditioning units we see on the outsides of buildings in China are much more energy efficient than the whole house units found mostly in the US. We live in the Bay Area near SF and our house has a whole house unit, which can be very expensive as it cools or heats the entire house while we spend most of our time in one room.
    The units you see in China are ductless and while there may be one unit outside of the building, there will be a different ductless until inside each room of the unit, which allows the residents to run only the one for the room they are in thus saving energy and keeping the electric bill down.

    However, I agree with you that these units probably do warm the city by several degrees in the summer. Imagine, China has more than four times the number of people that the United States has with about the same amount of land to live on. If everyone in China had these ductless air conditioning units, I'm sure it does run up the heat at ground level. In the US, when a heat wave hits, the amount of energy demanded by all the whole house air conditioning units often causes brown outs/power losses as the electric grid crashes from the demand.

    The man that installed the one ductless system we bought (for a separate granny bungalow on our property) said that it would use less than a third of the electricity demanded by our whole-house unit.

    I wonder if that means in China, if everyone was using the ductless heating-cooling unit in one room of their home, the Chinese would be consuming the same among of electricity that Americans would consume under the same circumstances.

    • says

      Thank You Lloyd!
      Interesting point of view. I grew up with window units in small houses and the electric bills far outpace the rates of the central units of our larger homes today. I would be curious now to see the science in all of this. There are variables such as run times (hours in operation), insulation, efficiency of course, and desired internal temps to factor here. The information I have in my post was from our HK guide who said that the units in the photo were antiquated and that the government is imposing new regulations requiring these to be replaced. I am by no means an HVAC expert so I will now look into this more deeply.
      In the meantime, I thank you very much for your comment and especially for reblogging my post. I hope you will continue to follow my adventures here :-)

  55. says

    I'm so happy you got freshly pressed! The bloated sacks on the fish are fish bladders – I think it's a delicacy here but still don't understand . . . ?? maybe it shows how fresh they are? well regardless now you know WHAT they are if not what purpose they keep them in tact for.

  56. says

    nice photos. i lived in asia for 8 years so it was lovely to go through the images you took here. i still use my d90 and sometimes film and manage to get similar effects but, i have to say, the ease at which the iphone/hipstimatic produce somewhat similar photos might come in handy when i'm in a rush!

    • says

      Definitely. I'll be in Puglia as well this coming August with my long time Italian friend….I'm looking forward to a slow, lazy, food and wine filled trip around that area. Pictures, no doubt, in abundance!

  57. Ben says

    Great work Michael! Hong Kong is an incredibly dynamic city that possesses everything you can ask for in a city from the outdoorsy scene, cosmopolitan city life, great street food, shopping, and excellent fine dining too. The local culture is also something that's overlooked, and it's not fair when the naysayers that HK is devoid of that.

    @ Fabricio – Eu tb visitei Rio no dezembro passado mas HK ainda é melhor. No contest there.

    Ainda tenho que visitar outros lugares como Sampa, Curitiba, Salvador, etc.

  58. says

    This is awesome! I live in HK and it being such a small city we hardly get anything that pops out so much on blogs etc. So this is such a fresh and nice surprise.
    I'm glad you were featured on freshly pressed. I hope you have a fantastic visit and come back soon!

  59. says

    Great photos with the Hipstamatic app. I got into it for awhile and now I'm traveling around Thailand and REALLY loving the HDR pro app for the iPhone. I think you've just inspired me to do a blog post using those pics. Currently I just stick them on Facebook and I love some of them. Thank you!

  60. says

    Thanks BA! These are beautiful and so… I don't know, maybe contemplative is the word I want. My fiance and I are thinking about moving to HK this year and he loves it there. Your photos made him a little heartsick, in a good way!

  61. says

    Can you hear me gagging? Lizard on a stick? Octopus balls? Bloody fish? WTF? Ok, call me whatever you want, but those things are f'en gross. Other than that, I really enjoyed your blog :)

    val
    valentinedefrancis.wordpress.com

    • says

      I am pretty sure I am a more adventurous eater than most people here so no worries on being a gagger :-) I hope you will stay with my blog and continue to share in our adventures with your commentary. Cheers!

  62. says

    Nice stuff. The photos are great, but do you ever feel that using programs like Hipstermatic is a cop-out; that they are simply adding a 'cool' washed-out look that panders as warm nostalgia? I just have a feeling that it's not particularly genuine, and wonder if we'll eventually shift back to crisp images, or perhaps their sharp focus is too much for these dark times.
    Anyway, just some thoughts. I'm definitely on the fence but a nice collection none the less.

    • says

      I think art is art. I take about 60% DSLR images which are usually sharp and in need of great light or more steady composition. I take about 40% iPhone stuff that is off the cuff, ill-composed, and poorly lit. I am confident they both have a place. I never really consider the existential arguments for using either as in my writing when I shoot I shoot what I want in the way it comes to me. I believe to overthink it (at least in my case) diminishes the work. I mean, is using a computer a cop-out versus a typewriter? While I realize this is not completely apples to apples I think your query suggests a bit of an antiquarian idea and romance about photos. The nostalgia for me is not my primary reason for using Hipsta, it is simply a mode to translate a feeling to an image that I want which is a bit like painting. I do not have the skills to paint but I do see the world in a way that I want to communicate visually to an audience.
      My shots, my writing, and my posts are engineered to tell a story, to deliver emotion in a compact package. If I get caught up in the debate about whether or not my means are diminishing the face of photography I will become less of an artist and more of a pundit. I could care less for pundits :-) My images feel like me and that makes me happy.
      I am honestly grateful to you for posing a tough question. I want these questions as I sometimes need to consider at least for a moment my path. You have helped me do that today. I hope you will stay with my blog and continue to share in our adventures with your commentary. Cheers!

  63. says

    Beautiful Instagram shots! I lived in Beijing a few years ago and have visited HK a few times. It is definitely an amazing city and you couldn't have described it better! When I've been there, I have also dined on dim sun until almost reaching a food coma but I always end up with a 'happy heart'. :)

    I'd like to find you on Instagram – my name is francheska_marie.

    • says

      Hi Francheska :-)
      Thank you so much for reading my post and for your very kind comments. These are actually not Instagram shots they are all taken with the Hipstamatic App for iPhone; hence the title :-) I do not really use instagram with any frequency but I think you may be able to find me there at blissadventure .
      Thanks again and I hope you will stay with my blog
      Cheers,
      M

    • says

      wow! I wonder what is new now there. I would love to see your photos from then if you have them. I hope you will stay with my blog and continue to share in our adventures with your commentary. Cheers!

  64. says

    wow, really wicked shots. so your saying this app gives some kind of random film-like effect? thats pretty fun. you've certainly used it well, especially those top two with the building side and the pots cooking. its wierd how a corrupted image makes it look more real than a perfect shot sometimes. like that cabin pic at the top also!

    • says

      Thank you so much for your comment :-) Yes, that is what the app does indeed. It takes some trial and error as well as good subjects to make interesting shots :-)
      The Cabin at the top was taken with my Nikon D7000 and is one of my favorite photos. I am glad you like it :-)

  65. says

    Hi there,

    Just stopped by to say that these are lovely pictures of the city I have been calling "home" for the last 6 years. Definitely and for sure, this city is always on the move. I love it how your photos are not the typical tourist shots of the harbor but more so the day to day stuff that is way more interesting for sure. Next time when you're out here, you must visit the north east (Sai Kung) for some off the beaten track natural beauty.

    Btw, the bloated sacks in these very bloody fish carcasses is the swimming bladder (aka fish maw). It's believed that fish maw is high in collagen (women love it for their skin rejuvenation), though people seldom eat fresh fish maw; the dried version is used for soup.

    Fishermen at the wet market display fish with the swimming bladder not removed until you buy that piece of fish, to show how "fresh" the fish is, however, as you've probably experienced yourself, the freshest fish is not what's dead and on display, it's the fish that's still swimming around or flipping sides like crazy.

    Oh and err… the dried lizard… the word is: SOUP hahaha

    • says

      Finally, the expert I have been seeking! Soup, really? Have you enjoyed this soup? I will take your advice for sure on Sai Kung and thank you for your kind words. Yes, I like to dive into a city, where it lives and breathes away from the crowds. I would very much appreciate making the connection with you and perhaps when we return to HK we could meet for dim sum and tea.
      All the best,
      M

      • says

        Hardly a local myself, let alone expert, it's taken me a long time to start rooting down here 😛

        Fish maw soup for sure, just made it yesterday. Lizard soup, no thank you! Same with the deer antlers, I'd rate them better on a wall than in a pan!!

        Sure, give me a shout the next time you're in town! You should definitely make a boat trip out to Macau for the Portuguese cuisine and (more) authentic architecture (you can skip the casinos).

  66. says

    I love the hipstamatic, I have the app on my iTouch and take it with me everywhere. It has this great ability to turn the most spontaneous pictures into to something amazing. HK is an incredible city and you have captured the city well, I can almost remember the smells and sounds through your pictures.

  67. says

    Hong Kong through its food sounds like an adventure in itself. And I'm Asian!!! So that is saying something. haha!

    I wonder if a Hipstamatic tour of Hong Kong's skyline will be as interesting. Free idea? Hehe

    Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed! :)

  68. says

    the book was fantasic! Big fan of the Asia Saga. Started reading Shogun years ago and didnt realise that there where more until last year and have worked my way through them.

  69. says

    No worries – :) I do miss HK for its shopping treats. And oh, it has so much more buzz than SG tho not quite convenient due to the language barrier. Sigh.

  70. says

    Your blogging is outstanding and that iPhone app was worth the $3. Wow, what fun! Look at all the people who have such great things to say too. Fantastic. Now, before I end my comment I had the hair on the back of my neck literally stand up when I saw that crazy gondola photo. OMG!! How fast was that insane gondola driver going? It looked as if it was about to leave the wires! Wow. Great blogging. Keep it up.

    • says

      Ha! Thank you so much for this fun and supportive comment. The gondola was actually very steady and I am not a fan of heights but this was really relaxing and so amazingly quiet. The image looks so fast but indeed the pace was very even. Thank you for this again and I hope you will continue to follow.
      Cheers,
      M

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