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Token White Guy: Arty Farty

Jonathan has played the token white guy in more than 60 Chinese films and sitcoms. Not surprisingly, he has more than a few tales to tell about his experiences.

When people say stuff like, “I just need to always be being creative, man! Like I'm, just a creative person! Like when I'm not being, like, you know, creative I'm like just not living man!” I just want to slap them in the mouth and say, "Shut up you pretentious ass."

But my horrible dirty secret is: I feel exactly the same way.

So I obsessively do my acting. I obsessively write this column. I obsessively write my novel and my screenplay. And, as it happens, I also obsessively take pictures.

Now everybody who does stuff like that, however disingenuously modest and self effacing they may be, they all have one thing in common. They all want some glory. If they didn't, they'd write a diary.

So you know I act. You've seen my writing. Now here are some of my pictures:

This is the first sunset of 2011 over the Forbidden City. Of the 500,000 photos uploaded to Flickr on New Year's Day, their algorithm rated this the 80th most interesting.




I just liked this feeling. The actress's name is Wang Like and this was a quiet, unguarded moment between takes.




This is a very famous actor named Li Chengru. He won the Chinese equivalent of an Oscar last year.








I hosted a Baroque concert played on period instruments from the 1600s. And the musicians were real artists, in a way that I don't encounter very often. I took a lot of pictures trying to capture that. This was the one I liked best.




This is a friend of mine named Jiang Jiatong shooting a music video. I introduced her to the director and then tagged along on the shoot to take pictures.




This is 3am, pissing down rain in a tiny village in Yunnan. The producer is freaking out running to the only telephone in the village because our cell phones don't work and we have to finish before sunrise. I squatted under an umbrella for 20 minutes waiting for somebody to run out.


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