Photography helps rural areas achieve prosperity | Updated: 2022-06-15 11:57
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This photo, taken in March of 1994, shows students playing during class break in Shitan village, Shexian county, Anhui province . [Photo by Liu Shibin/]

Around 28 years ago, when photographer Liu Shibin first came to the Shitan village in Shexian county of Anhui province, he was deeply attracted to the scenery there. The 800-year-old village has tranquil lanes, delicate Hui-style architecture, water scenes, beautiful mountains and a profound cultural foundation. After that, Liu came to the village almost every year and started to think about how to use his power to help the village get out of poverty.

Spring is peak season for photography tourism in the village; as how to attract visitors during other seasons, Liu got an idea. As the sunflower scene in Qinghai province is quite famous, Liu advises the local villagers to copy that and plant sunflowers. In April of 2009, the photographer bought some seeds and paid to villagers to try them out. After the successful trial, Liu spread his sunflower photographs online and the local government then encouraged villagers to plant more fields of sunflowers. Thus, more and more photographers and tourists came to the village which brought revenues to the local tourism.

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