Lunar New Year in Seattle

     Hunks of cabbage hung in front of many of the shops and restaurants in Seattle’s Chinatown on February 4th 2023. The area was packed with people. I was struck by the ratio of on-lookers to people who were actively taking part of the Lunar New Year celebration; there were so many groups of performers. I realized that this was not really a performance at all, but instead a shared intention of hope in a part of the city that has seen much better times in the past. 

     Many of the windows in Chinatown are boarded up – graffiti everywhere. Drugs, homelessness and misery are typically on full display out in the open. 
2023 is the year of the rabbit which is seen as a symbol of peace, prosperity, and hope. This event was really a declaration of vibrancy and resiliency in a part of Seattle that greatly needs it. 

     The hanging cabbage is an invitation to the dragon to bless the businesses with good luck by spitting the (not really) chewed up cabbage back into the storefronts.
The dragons danced up and down the streets in front of  the hopeful business owners standing in front of their shops and restaurants. The beating drums kept the rhythm for the dancing dragons as the cabbage flew. 


  • Ryder Collins

    I am a photographer living in Seattle Washington that is in love with photographing those fleeting surprise moments. I have always been a people watcher, and when I picked up a camera for the first time my natural inclination was to go out on the street and photograph people. I've always been attracted to photographing the emotions of people and the oftentimes absurd nature of the human experience. At this point I am becoming most interested in visual storytelling through documentary style photography. My current work involves documenting the people of Seattle - how they live, find excitement and resiliency in this city that feels equal parts anxiety and hope.

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