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Personal, yet universal


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POSTED: Sunday, April 05, 2009

Chinatown provides a visual diversity that makes it unique among Honolulu's communities, says lifelong resident Gordon Nakata, whose love of the district began as a young boy.

"The Chinatown that I remember ... was very mysterious. During the summer, I loved visiting the small Chinese shops where owners stood silently, as if they were part of the merchandise," he writes on his blog at blogspot.com.

"I love the colorful facades of business entryways. The vibrant red of a Chinatown door, for example, in contrast with a traditional Chinese lion's head gives the area the "yin" and "yang" of visual contrast. I love the interplay of the bizarre with the sublime."

Nakata has been interested in photography for some 40 decades. In his 20s, he worked as a darkroom technician and gradually sharpened his photographic skills. He's recently returned to the craft to "help me further explore and enhance my relationship with the world and other human beings.

"I am not a very verbal person, so rather than writing down or speaking my thoughts, I'm using the medium of photography to express myself," he says. These "photographs may be personal in nature, but ... they may be of interest to others as well."

To see more of Nakata's work, visit photo-journal-photo-journal.blogspot.com.