History

Look What You've Done in Cuetzalan, Mexico - Los Angeles Travel Photographer

From time to time, I feel that some images are calling me, like this one of the tea ceremony that I made in Japan.  So I had to stop the stream of the work that I had been doing and processed it for you.

Lately, it's Cuetzalan,
 a small town high up in the hills of the north of the state of Puebla in Mexico.  It's truly a place where the past lives on and the best time to appreciate it is its Weekend markets where indigenous people (Nahuatl) from surrounding villages gather in the small town center, selling goods that they carried on their back here. 

I was in photography/culture heaven and having a blast maneuvering the narrow lanes and steep steps, so much so that I did not notice the "stink eyes", twice, until later.  Hahaha!

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Parma is Not Only Prosciutto - Los Angeles Travel Photographer

To be honest, I first tasted prosciutto (prosciutto crudo di Parma in Italian) before the name Parma even hit my ears.  My love for food, combined with curiosity on anything, led me to the realization that the dry-cured ham is one of the two famous types of Italian prosciutto crudo and earned itself the D.O.P. designation (Denominazione di Origine Protetta), which literally means Protected Designations of Origin in English.

I followed my nose and taste buds to the Emilia-Romagna area.  While the food (more than) satisfied my quest for authentic gourmet food that's prepared in ways that show respect to the food itself, its history and art amazed me.  Had you followed me around, you'd hear me "wowing" me way through the region, one of the locations being the Palazzo della Pilotta in Parma.     

The complex of edifices was originally built for the family of then Duke Ottavio Farnese between 1583 and 1622, including the breath-taking Teatro Farnese (Farnese Theater).  Sharing the same fate with many Italian historical sites, the complex was heavily bombed in WWII and the Theater was almost completely destroyed.  

Today, when I stand in the corridor of this repaired/restructured complex, I do not see the pain and damage brought about by the war.  I see elegance, age, and then, I see a child, in all his well-deserved fun-seeking manner, swishing right by in front of us.

Child-on-Scooter-Swishing-through-Arches-of-War-Damaged-Palazzo-della-Pilotta-Parma-Italy-Copyright-Jean-Huang-Photography

Child-on-Scooter-Swishing-through-Arches-of-War-Damaged-Palazzo-della-Pilotta-Parma-Italy-Copyright-Jean-Huang-Photography

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Beauty in the Grooves of Wrinkles - Los Angeles Life-Style Photographer

For the most part, words "young" and "old" are relative terms.  Remember the days when you were in your teens, anybody in their 20s are "old".  If you are 20, middle-aged people seem "old".  Now, when 50 and 60 sound like ages for mature look, modern time makes people feel and look young.  Nonetheless, no matter what your age group, people in their 90s have had quite a lot of years behind their back and on their faces.  I happen to be related to one such lady.

The other day, as she was  going back in time, reminiscing of the life in the early 20th century,  I knew my imaginative ability was being stretched and the only things that I could hold on to were her words, the wrinkles on her face and the back that gave in to the weight in her life a long time ago.  The invasion of a foreign force, then the civil war, and the escapes...  It's a life that women in modern-time developed countries can not comprehend.  And yet, I did not see sorrow, depression, pain of losses or even hunger that once bothered her.  As I was sifting through the smooth curves in her face, I saw beauty, the beauty that would only arise out of all the unimaginable obstacles and the wisdom that we would hopefully obtain when we reach her age.

What a life, a beautiful life!  Here's my tribute to an unbelievable century:

A Beautiful Life - © Jean Huang Photography
A Beautiful Life - © Jean Huang Photography

Now, I know she'd like the colored version, I thought it looks really good in black & white as well.

A Beautiful Life (B+W) - © Jean Huang Photography
A Beautiful Life (B+W) - © Jean Huang Photography

What do you think?

** To see how this picture looks  being displayed on standout mounts, please click here.