Words and photographs by Justin Jin.


China Uproots 100 Million Farmers to create an urban future
For generations, Li Rui’s family picked vegetables on his family’s plot in China. Recently, the 60-year-old farmer has been returning to the same land to harvest scrap metal. Devoid of skill, Li is one of millions of newly landless farmers forced to adapt to a new urban life as China hurtles towards massive new phase of urbanisation…

Gift of Love

Behind a young Chinese woman’s departure for university from her remote mountain village lie the tale of her mother’s sacrifice and fast-disappearing traditions.

On the third attempt, the old iron key cranks open the door and 50-year-old Wu Yuemeng pushes it ajar with her knee. She motions her daughter into the seldom-used second floor bedroom, dominated by a dusty, century-old wooden loom and a metal-banded chest…

A Childhood Sucked Dry

Drought leaves Zimbabweans near starvation at the twilight of Mugabe’s rule
Outside the classrooms of Mutenda Primary School in remote southern Zimbabwe, giant cactus plants stretch toward the scorching sun. Inside the classrooms, children wilt in their chairs, their eyes rolling back in their heads.

Stories from the Yangtze River

The world’s third longest river, the China’s Yangtze River runs 3,900 miles from the Tibetan Plateau to the estuary of the East China Sea near Shanghai. It’s home to some of the highest levels of biodiversity on the planet. But the Yangtze river basin is also under pressure from growing economic and industrial demands. 

Zone of Absolute Discomfort

Inside the claustrophobic confines of a shipping container erected on an icy nowhere, a group of Russians waits out another day of an Arctic storm. The engineers gathered on this desolate patch of Russian tundra were hired by a geo-exploration company to look for oil deep below the permafrost. I am waiting out the battering winds with them, documenting the international race to domineer Arctic resources…

Midnight Blue

In a southern Chinese boomtown, the neon glow of a busy warehouse scars the moonless sky. Workers attack the thousands of pairs of jeans piled on the floor with unweildy, motorised grinders hanging from the ceiling. The scrub shears layers off the denim to create a “vintage” look, and disperses a sticky blue dust that covers the workers’ skin and clogs their lungs. Laborers at this factory compete with the sunrise to scrub as many jeans as possible before morning pickup, when the garments will be packaged and shipped. Every scratch on the fabric is proscribed, the size, shape, and location imitating real-life abrasions…

A Fashionable Quest

New York designer Angel Chang looks for tomorrow’s runway in the mountain villages of Guizhou Province
Angel Cheng, a New York and Paris-based fashion designer, sources her materials from weavers in Dimen, Guizhou, China. Shielded from the rest of Chinese civilization by a cascade of steep mountains, Dimen and its surrounding lush villages in Guizhou province has kept their Dong minority traditions and arts from centuries ago. With a history that goes back to the Tang dynasty, the area is adorned with stunning wooden Flower Bridges, bell towers and cascades of beautiful old houses. The Dong people have no written language, but use fine embroidery to communicate their love. Yet, as highways and tunnels plough through these mountains, the future of the village’s 525 households is at crossroads. There is already a government blueprint to turn Dimen into a satellite town in the coming three years, as China embarks on its latest urbanization drive.