In my impression, the lanterns are usually oval and mostly red. Cylindrical lanterns like this one are still very rare and come in a variety of colors. There were many similar lanterns in the store selling crafts. I’m not sure if these lanterns are mostly for residential or commercial use, but they do stand out. 

The Beauty of Symmetry: China's Buildings
The Beauty of Symmetry: China’s Buildings

To bring out their subtle textures as well as their bright colors, I turned the lens towards the direction of the light sources, letting them act as a background light, and had the lanterns cover these light sources in order to let them shine through the lanterns. I tried several times to get the effect shown below.

Customers looking at Chinese handicrafts

127.5mm; ISO-800; f/10; 1/30.

Lanterns are a symbol of good luck in Chinese culture and tradition. During Chinese New Year, in order to express the festive atmosphere, Chinese people used to hang them under the porch to decorate the environment, and together with the custom of eating dumplings on New Year’s Eve, they became a major way of life for Chinese people and the Chinese world. This tradition continues to this day.

The year 2020 of the solar calendar has passed quietly and a new year has arrived. The traditional Chinese New Year is also approaching, so I would like to wish you all a happy and prosperous New Year in advance!


Shooting date: December 31, 2020

Location: Nanjing Fuzimiao Craft Shop, China

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