MissFortune in Ross Alley

PhotographerFrancesca Balaguer
PrizeHonorable Mention
CompanyFrancesca Balaguer
City/CountryLong Beach, United States
Photo DateApril 16, 2010
Technical InfoDigital Capture
Entry Description

MissFortune in Ross Alley is an image that explores the past and present of San Francisco's first alley. Located in Chinatown, Ross Alley was known for its gambling and brothels in the 19th century. Today, it is home to the Golden Gate Fortune Cookie factory that draws in many visitors and tourists each day. The image features the seductive MissFortune, wrapped in a giant fortune that references the famous cookie lore of adding "in bed" to any fortune to turn it into a sexual innuendo. Young school girls visiting the fortune cookie factory are captured in the background. Many mahjong chips and cookies are scattered on the floor. The juxtaposition of these characters and symbols touch on the alley's dark past to it's present wholesome identity.

About Photographer

I'm a photographer and a dreamer (awake and asleep). I moved to San Francisco from the Philippines with my sidekick Pumpkin the Pug in 2007, to originally pursue a graduate degree in filmmaking, but found my life's passion through Photography in the process. My photography exhibits apparent fantasy. Reality however, provides inspiration through San Francisco's rich cultural tapestry, breeding ground for creativity and individuality. With these elements, I explore my subject's unique qualities and take them to fantastical heights illustrated through color, character, setting and an overall narrative. Once of my favorite parts of my image making is when all the characters and props are in the actual location, when all these elements that usually only exist in my imagination, are physically present in front of the camera. It means a lot to me that these things exist, even for a short moment in time. In those moments, fantasy becomes reality and my images aim to exhibit that.