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Phil Douglis | all galleries >> Galleries >> Gallery Twelve: Using color to express ideas > Morning exercise, Guilin, China, 2006
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Morning exercise, Guilin, China, 2006

Our Guilin hotel overlooked Banyan Lake. Every morning, exercisers would go through their routines on its shore just below our windows. The Chinese flags flying in front of our hotel provided vivid counterpoint to their labors. The primary colors of the flag are so strong that the picture is more about national identity than exercise, turning the exercising woman into context.

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Phil Douglis07-Oct-2006 17:51
Thanks, Agher -- this image is strongly symbolic. It suggests the Chinese national passion for public exercise.
Phil Douglis21-Aug-2006 22:35
On a day such as this, Chris, with very help with light, we are left with color to tell the story. I'm glad you find it worth study.
Chris Sofopoulos21-Aug-2006 09:44
One of my favourites! Wonderful use of red colour and framing of the image.
Phil Douglis16-Jul-2006 21:32
Thanks for being first to comment on this image, Ceci. It will be interesting to see how your interpretation compares to those of some of my Chinese friends and students who may eventually get around to discovering this image. A national flag is a powerful symbol. You relate the shape of this one to the face of the dragon, an even older symbol of Chinese authority and power. The woman has turned her back on the fearsome dragon -- It seems to protect, more than threaten, doesn't it? Thanks for bringing a new dimension to this image for both of us, Ceci.
Guest 16-Jul-2006 20:42
This flag is like a dragon's face, powerful and even threatening in its thrust, the wind snapping it out against the overcast of the day and seeming to connect to the person below, presumably doing Tai Chi--a national discipline, one which the increasingly overweight US would do well to mimic. China is like an awakening fire breathing entity, capable of either good or ill, depending upon global balance and intentions. This picture symbolizes so much of its energy and strength for me, filling me with both admiration and respect.
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