Future: Weekly Photo Challenge

“Photographs open doors into the past but they also allow a look into the future.”

Sally Mann



In Jen’s Future challenge this week she quotes Peter Drucker, who said “The best way to predict the future is to create it“. During our visit to China, our experience in Shanghai made me feel as if the Chinese had done exactly that.  In my opening capture above, some young Chinese tourists are photographing a family member or good friend. I found myself wondering why in heaven’s name they would be shooting with their backs to the glorious future-world behind them, which had been incredibly embellished by a glorious wall of flowers.

Downtown Shanghai


“Your future is only as bright as your mind is open.”

Rich Wilkins

Making our visit even more special, we enjoyed meeting fellow blogger Canadian Travel Bug and her husband. They had been living in Shanghai for several years as ex-pats and were happy to join us for a stroll along Shanghai’s famous Bund. The evening sky at dusk added a touch of gold as we watched day turn to evening across the Yangtze River. We’d heard horror stories about Shanghai’s air pollution problem but were gifted with beautiful clear skies for our entire stay.



“A photograph is a time capsule that extends from the past to the future.”

Henry Jesionka
The night of our arrival the sky was filled with fireworks (sadly I was not quick enough to grab my camera to capture them). I found the evening view of the city even more futuristic than the daytime panorama. As I revisit my photographs I still think the city looks like something you’d see at Disney World rather than a real place where people live and work.


“Photographs allow us to see people before their future weighed them down.”

Kate Morton

On the opposite side of the city, I found myself wondering what this young couple was thinking as they stared across the beautifully lit bridge. Were they planning a future together, thinking about the bridges they would might be crossing together as their lives unfold?



“The future belongs, not to those who have the most, but to those who do the most with what they have.”

Eugene P. Odum

Today, Shanghai is the most populated city in the world. Driving into the city one can see the massive amount of building being done to house the growing number of residents. The capture above helps to explain why some joke that China’s national bird is the crane 😃. Clearly, China is focused on world-leadership as they face the future. Having experienced Shanghai, I have no doubt they will accomplish their goals.





71 thoughts on “Future: Weekly Photo Challenge

  1. well i will tell you what the “young couple was thinking as they stared across the beautifully lit bridge” – he said “that shot of Blue Curacao”was not worth ten dollars” and she said, “I know….”
    just kidding…
    but the colors in the photos were electric Tina – so nice – and the blue bridge reminded me of that Blue Curacao for some reason

  2. It looks like a city inhabited by all the Marvel super heroes Tina ! Night photography that really IS exciting 🙂

  3. Another fabulous post by you Tina. When I saw the photo challenge was Future – I was singularly uninspired by it and decided to give it a miss. The gruelling A to Z Schedule was also partly responsible. I am however bowled over by your fabulous images and honestly, this is the first time photos of Shanghai have actually made me want to visit. Thank you.

  4. Lovely views of the big city Tina. I was surprised to see your opening quote because Sally Mann is from here in Virginia, where I live, and of course, has become very famous for her innovative approach to photography.

  5. Beautiful shots of the Shanghai skyline, Tina. I love the night shot – that one looks like a long exposure? Such diversity in your photography. Absolutely love the one of the couple, leaning together as one. They are probably admiring the views just like you…but for a second you decided to take a sneaky snap of them 😀

    Love the first quote by Sally Mann. So true photographs document the past, but looking at photos we also get to see how far we’ve come and the patterns we see in images, and hence predict the future and what’s to come. Brilliant, insightful and thoughtful post as usual 🙂

    • Thanks so much for the lovely compliment Mabel. Glad you commented on the night shot – it was a challenge but I was happy with the result. Very tough to get shots there with no people in them!!!

  6. Pingback: Future: keys | What's (in) the picture?

  7. I am mesmerized by these photos…what a beautiful place ….it doesn’t look real….thank u for taking me there!!! 😜

  8. Well done, beautifully captured and realised – but a world not for me. I hope the future will not look like this. And in my opinion, the Chinese are taking over far too much of the world today.

    • Hi Leya, I agree that it’s not a world for me either. A fascinating visit, especially when you consider how new it is and how quickly it’s been built. But I’m a bit more old fashioned myself and prefer quiet and simple. But a fun visit to another world entirely!

  9. I’ve not been to Shanghai but have heard more than once that it is a futuristically designed city. Everything new & modern is in. And it’s only recently there are emergent acknowledgements that the old ways have to be preserved.

  10. Some great images – love Shanghai Nightfall. But the whole builds a picture of a cityscape I would prefer not to be part of…as Janet commented

  11. The photos look like something from a sci-fi movie, even the last one, although the two films would be about very different things! I’m so thankful not to have to live in one of the buildings in the last photo. My soul feels a bit destroyed just by viewing them. 😦


  12. Your skills with your camera, your artistry with words and your keen sense of perspective are a powerful combination.

  13. Hi Tina. Your subject for this week’s post is perfect and your photos are marvelous, as always. The change in the China over the past few decades is astounding. Certainly there has been a cultural explosion as well. I keep thinking of the Chinese students I taught in the 1980’s before the capitalist “boom” and the ones I know today. What a dramatic change in lifestyles, culture, wealth.

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