#842. Monday Post (08 April 2019) – The Ch’i-Ki challenge

By philberphoto | Monday Post

Apr 08

The results are in, and the Haiku challenge has turned up amazing shots by DS contributors. Previous challenges, the same. Not wanting to let Pascal have all the fun, I thought I should try my hand at this. So here goes:

In China, the concept of ch’i matters. It is the ch’i of tai ch’i, or ch’ikong. It is also spelled chi, or qi (thus qikong). To keep it simple, it means (not the only meaning, but the principal one) life force, vital force, vital energy. Not unlike the Hebrew “rouah” that God blew into the dust that was Adam to instill life.

In Japan, the concept of Ki matters. It is written with the same character as the Chinese ch’i. And it means pretty much the same: vital energy, spirit of life.

During the course of a discussion with Pascal, I discussed the fact that many pics are “lifeless”. He asked/tasked me to find some that aren’t lifeless, that are “alive”.

How can a picture, also called a “still”, be “alive”?

Hence my thoughts of ki. Or chi. Or ch’i if you must. No, no thoughts of Kai, for he requires a capital K…

And my challenge to you: post pictures that embody, that exhibit, that display, that emphasize, that flaunt life force, vital energy. More Kai than Hugh, if you see what I mean… nah, just kidding…

’cause challenging you is sooo much easier than doing it myself, says Philippe the Lazy, and it brings up much finer pics, too… So, who is up for it, who wants to play?

2 footnotes: one, that my pics for this post are not ones that I would post on such a theme. That would have made it too easy for you people…. The second, that I didn’t use special characters for Chinese, Japanese and Hebrew. I know, just plain lazy, what can I say…

Oh, and before some of you complain that there is no bicycle shot, here is one that is… different. Apologies for the shot, which is as bad as they come, not that I could do much about it. But that bike is something else (dated 1861), and I just couldn’t resist.

PS : You can send your entries to pascal dot jappy at gmail dot com.


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  • jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

    ROTFLMHAO – well, Philippe, the !!! – and I thought you were going to leave that thought with a motorised Japanese substitute for a bicycle, because of the asian them of the article!!! There is a lesson in that – never form judgments until the final piece of the jigsaw is examined, too!!!

    Well moving the challenge across the East China Sea makes it even more of a puzzle. At least I am using Japanese cameras, even if most of the money was spent on German lenses.

    So the game’s afoot – a new game, but a game by any other name etc. And the objective is to produce photos that breath life – photos that display life force, vital force, vital energy.

    And since this is DS, I presume they must also have an undestination travel theme?

    At least the rules you’ve set don’t require us to write three short lines of poetry. That should free everyone up so they have tons more time to curate their stock of photos, or jump on their and go out to take some suitable shots. Who knows where this could lead!!!

    • philberphoto says:

      Ha ha ha, Pete! You got me, -almost-! Trying to coax/finesse tips as to what you should designate as a ch’i-ki shot. No way, José! You are all on your own, including you, Pete!

  • jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

    Ooops – I pasted something in, there, and it’s vanished. first line was meant to read “well, Philippe, the vélocipède à pédales!!!” And the second last line was supposed to suggest that everyone should ” . . . jump on their vélocipède à pédales . . .”in order to go out and take more photos.

    I hope this correction suffers a better fate than my posting did.

  • Nancee Rostad says:

    Sounds like a fun challenge! Where should we email our contributions?

  • Kristian Wannebo says:

    so you don’t consider the second photo from the bottom, the single yellow flower, alive enough?
    ( – as you said “.. my pics for this post are not ones that I would post on such a theme.”)
    Strange … I certainly do!

    Nice bike, and I mean the last one!
    And the phon.. I mean, of course, the telephone!
    – – –

    Good you didn’t spell your challenge out also with Swedish spelling: “Tji” !
    Very good!

    Here one can say: “Tji fick du!”
    “fick” is passed tense of “få” = “get, receive”,
    “du” = “you”
    So, “You received ‘tji’.” ?
    ( Now don’t try Google translate, oh no, because that gives “You got it!”.
    All wrong!)

    It means approximately: “Ha, that’s what you received, nothing!”
    We wouldn’t want that, oh no!
    – – –

    Great idea for a Challenge!
    I’m already thinking about if I might find …

    • Kristian Wannebo says:

      So, .. let’s do it!

      … and let Eartha Kitt inspire us…

      … for the mood … or subject choice…

    • jean pierre (pete) guaron says:

      I have a suggestion, Kristian.

      We’ve been told we’re on our own, and need to make our own designations as to what our ch’i-ki shots are.

      So you feed each of us some Swedish sayings, that we can use as bylines for our photographs.

      We’ll then be able to confuse and confound the judges of this competition!

      • Kristian Wannebo says:

        Aah, Jean Pierre,
        suppose I tried to…
        No, I don’t think so, interfering usually hurts the source in the end.
        But it was a nice try;
        🙂 .
        And truth wins with time, have a go at

        But is this really a competition?
        Hopefully not!

        On the other hand, I’m a bad source of sayings, they only come to me when needed – which casts heavy doubt on my reasons above… 🙂

  • Dallas says:

    Philippe, what a great post. I’m up for the challenge. A few of your photos really speak to me, the Honda 750/4 takes me back to my teenage years this was bike I drooled after but never owned. The boat shot is absolute magic

  • Brian Nicol says:

    Hi, I love the challenge but I do not see a deadline. thanks Brian

  • Brian Nicol says:

    Hi, a great idea for the challenge but I do not seem to find a deadline for submission.

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