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Chinese New Year
— February 15, 2014
Chinese New Year– San Francisco, Ca
(http://www.bourdagesphotography.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/DSC_0279.jpg)San Francisco is home to a large cultural
mecca, and in particular for a Chinese population. The Chinese settled in the area because the hills and mountainous terrain
reminded them so much of their homeland. Certain customs, such as the new year, have also been carefully kept and followed for
The Chinese New Year is one of the most important events in the year. Steeped in rich history, twinged with myth and enjoyed by
many, the Chinese New Year marks a 15 day long festival and this year runs from the last day of the last month in the calendar to the
15 day of the new year.
It is this festival I had the opportunity to photograph in the streets of San Francisco. The parade and festival is the largest of its kind
outside of Asia, and each year the parade is filled with color, sound and entertainment that rivals even the best parades anywhere in
Of course, several of the traditional Chinese elements are banned because of hazards, so there are few if any fireworks within the
city. Instead, they make up for the lack of fireworks with huge float displays, fantastic makeup and the like that is appealing to the eye.
One of the most fun and attractive elements of the parade are the great dragons that fill the streets. These dragons, men who choreograph movements to mimic the fine, snakelike movements associated with Chinese dragons, twist and wind their way through the
streets. Each dragon face is unique and painted with the most vibrant colors to match the New Year.
Overall, an incredible experience for a humble photobug like me from Roseville, California, and it was an honor to work on behalf of
those who asked me to come, I hope to return next year.
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