I’ve been in Beijing just over two months. The jury is still out on how I feel here. Some days I am planning all I want to do and see in my time in China. Others I’m planning the fastest possible escape. The job itself, definitely not one of my favourite experiences. The city? I’m too busy with the job to see much of it if I’m honest. I never put a time line on any part of my journey. I just try to stay happy and if the place I am isn’t part of that happy, I have no qualms about moving on. I know I’ll settle down some day, but I don’t think it will be in Beijing.
That’s not to say it doesn’t hand you some incredible sights occasionally. I know the CCTV building (Chinese Television) was incredible but it’s not till you’re up close that you understand just how incredible it is. It looks like a modern style architect got given free reign and they just happened to live geometry a little more than the average. It is referred to by the locals as “the big pants”. I didn’t know that till Wikipedia told me. Not speaking Chinese, you don’t learn these things easily.
The best thing about shooting the CCTV building was it’s one of very few buildings you don’t have to shoot from the ground. There was a shopper no centre across the road with a great view across the city to the CCTV Headquarters. There was a balcony with a high Perspex wall that you could sit the camera on top of and shoot away. As the sun went down, the building went through multiple changes in light and lighting. The city below buzzed as it always did but the building put on a snow for me.
Beijing has proven a challenge. I’ve met good people and it certainly has some incredible images. I think the CCTV building is one of those incredibles. I’m sure I’ll find more before the call to head off again becomes a scream.