NEW PHOTO EVERY WEEKDAY
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I don’t think I could have planned this scene better myself. I love all the layers of yellow that the taxis in Taipei created. There’s even yellow in the signage in the background that makes me even happier. But this was not planned at all. I was actually just following people with umbrellas to see if I could create an interesting image. As soon as I saw this woman stop at the corner, I knew I had to just wait for that right moment for something to happen. I noticed one taxi drive-by and saw all the yellow in the frame, so I patiently just waited for another one. Luckily, when you’re in a busy city like Taipei, it doesn’t take very long.

I think that’s what’s so exciting about street photography to me. It’s that feeling of a chase that you’re always on the hunt. An unexpected composition that you’ve never imagined but turned out way better than you could have come up within your head. I know I haven’t gone through all my images from Taiwan yet, I’ve really only looked at the first few days, but I’m so excited to see how the rest have turned out!

My camera settings for this image are F7.1 at 1/400th sec and ISO 800 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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Prior to leaving for Taiwan, I would keep on checking the weather because it literally said rain every single day that I was going to be there. Even though it was forecasted, luckily it did not rain every day. We somehow managed to arrive at the island at the very beginning of a typhoon. Which is crazy because I thought they only happened in the summer months but this one was coming in the middle of November. We were lucky because it wasn’t going to hit Taipei. It was forecasted to hit some other part of the country and Taipei was only going to get a little of the residual.

But that didn’t stop me from taking my camera everywhere I went. This image was captured while I was wandering around in the streets one day around lunchtime. I was trying to capture all the scooters lined up at the red light when a woman and her umbrella walked passed my camera. I love the way that it turned out and the accident framing. One thing that I loved about this forecasted weather was that even if there was a slight drop of rain from the sky, everyone had an umbrella out. It made for AMAZING street photography!

My camera settings for this image are F7.1 at 1/1250th sec and ISO 800 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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Right before I left for Taiwan, I purchased my very first prime lens. If you have noticed on my gear page, I only have zoom lenses. But recently, I’ve been watching a lot of youtube videos who have been saying all these great things about prime, that I had to give one a try.

The hype is real! I loved it! I probably walked around Taiwan with my new 35mm prime lens about 70% of the time. I didn’t think I would like it as much as I did. One main reason was that I already have a 16-35mm and I wasn’t sure if it would be that much of a difference. The second reason was that I thought I would have to get used to not being able to zoom. OMG, I loved it just because it made shooting so much easier and the lens itself is so tiny. I felt like I could shoot all day without getting tired.

This image was taken with my new 35mm one afternoon in Jiufen. More about Jiufen later but I love how colorful this portrait turned out. This vendor was taking money from her customer when she looked up very quickly. I’m glad I was already in position to capture this portrait because this look only lasted a second. Probably would have been hard to take with any other lens but a prime.

My camera settings for this image are F4 at 1/250th sec and ISO 1000 with my Sony A7II and 35mm prime.

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Most of my time in Taiwan was actually spent in a suburb of Taipei called Tamsui. It’s about a 45 minute MRT (metro) ride from the capital city but it still gives you the big city feelings. It’s bustling with people at all hours of the day which was good for me because I usually woke up every morning around 4 am. It was so nice because I really enjoyed photographing Tamsui as the city was waking up. I never really had a real plan during my morning walks, I would just wander the streets and see where each corner would take me. Some of the streets would be so small that I’d get so lost. Luckily, I had internet service on my phone or else, I’d probably still be wandering the streets not knowing where I was going right now.

This image was captured on the main road close to our hotel. I loved it because it was one of the only sunny mornings we had while we were there and I just love seeing those palm trees glow in the sun. Scooters and pedestrians were everywhere, on their way to work and school. Looking at this image, I can still hear all the scooters racing by. At some points, it seriously was like a game of chance because they would pop out of nowhere. LOL.

My camera settings for this image are F4.5 at 1/3200th sec and ISO 2500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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I got home from Taiwan the night before Thanksgiving. After 10 days in Taipei, I had mixed feelings about coming home. I was there visiting family, but when I wasn’t with them, I was free to roam the city alone with my camera. I don’t think I’ve ever felt such freedom in a foreign country and I really got to appreciate all the things that make Taipei such a great city.

I’ve visited many times when I was younger. I want to say at least once a year while I was in elementary school. As I got older, the visits became less frequent and the last time I was there was 2014. However walking through some of the same streets during this visit, I was still able to remember some of the places I used to shop or eat at. It brought back so many wonderful memories but also made me want to create new ones. I know in my heart that this will not be the last time I visit.

This image was taken just a few blocks from our hotel. I’m in a big group chat with a bunch of my girlfriends and one of them asked me for a picture of me in Taiwan. After a few days of being there, I realized I hadn’t taken any with myself in it, so when I walked passed this mirror, I thought it was the perfect opportunity for the self-portrait. I love how you can only see my camera, but also gives the context of where I am.

My camera settings for this image are F9 at 1/160th sec and ISO 250 with my Sony A7II and 35mm lens.