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How I Got That Shot: Hoang Vien Restaurant, Hue

Hoang Vien Restaurant, Hue.

Photo: Brown W. Cannon III

The Assignment: Shot Hanoi, Saigon, and Hue in 12 days (“Ultimate Food Guide to Vietnam”)

Trip Time: It took 30 hours—including a transpacific leg and layovers in Seoul and Singapore—to get to Hanoi, but I was invigorated upon arrival. Just stepping out to explore the city was energizing.

Hoang Vien Restaurant, Hue

The Scene: A hostess presenting afternoon tea service.

Why It Was Art: There were so many elegant details: her beautiful traditional dress; how delicately she set the teacups down; the way she held the pot.

How I Got That Shot: The room was dark, so I set up lighting about 15 feet from the action, far enough to illuminate both her and the geometric wall, but concentrated enough not to oversaturate.

The Key Here Was... Mystery. It’s good to leave the viewer wondering a bit, wanting to peek around those columns and see what they’re hiding.

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