“My life has been a tapestry of rich and royal hue”
This week Cheri challenges us to share photos of color that speak to something about ourselves. An interesting exercise that I’m addressing through some of the colorful sights of China’s capital city, Beijing.
“Like flowers in the fields, that make wonderful views, when we stand side-by-side in our wonderful hues.”
In Chinese culture, red is a happy color, symbolizing joy and good fortune. It is worn by Chinese brides on their wedding day, and is the predominant color during the celebration of Chinese New Year. Yellow is the emperor’s color and in ancient times only he was allowed to wear it. It is also symbolic of the yellow earth as related to farming.
“It’s no fun to be yellow.”
I love both red and yellow, which are the predominant colors in my favorite room at home. I’m drawn to photograph it, and a field of sunflowers is is my idea of heaven. Sadly, I look absolutely awful in either color, which just doesn’t seem fair. I am, however, a generally lucky person so perhaps the Chinese are on to something there
“Red is the great clarifier – bright and revealing.”
I found myself drawn to the many instances of red and yellow in Beijing’s Forbidden City, and in the Imperial and Summer Palaces. All of today’s photographs were taken there, with the exception of the final shot, which is from a different part of the city. I simply couldn’t resist including it as a bit of an ironic element to close out the post. Enjoy then, a few more of Beijing’s reds and yellows.
In ancient China there was a belief that the people were descended from the dragon. Unlike most cultures, they hold the dragon in high esteem for its dignity and power for good. Dragons are seen all over China, especially on the rooftops – as in the photo below.
“Red is good.”
Lanterns, such as those below (and also the more typical round red shades with golden tassels), are ubiquitous in China. Originally developed as an improvement over open flames (protecting the flame from the wind and diffusing the light), they have become quite a status symbol. In ancient times, the emperor would have the empire’s finest artisans working on the palace’s lamp shades. Today, artists from all over China compete in the immensely popular annual Lantern Festival.
“Yellow heightens your awareness and alleviates depression.”
Tae Yun Kim
And last, but never least, a sign that yesterday’s Beijing is moving quickly to embrace some of the elements of a more modern world:
“From even the greatest of horrors irony is seldom absent.”
To see some other “hues” click here.