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My photography journey, so far.

My photography journey started because my phone had a poor battery life. After my first year of teaching in South Korea I went backpacking around Asia for a few months. I needed a camera since my phone wouldn’t last a morning, so I picked up a cheap Canon 100D, intending to snap a few personal keepsakes - but things ended up taking off very quickly.

This trip became a crash course in Photography 101, helping me learn and improve rapidly, as all day and every day I was snapping away. Everything was new and novel to me, so I was seeing frames everywhere I looked. 

A blossom tree in front of a lake in Japan
The very first photo I took on my trip.

I was visiting Japan for the first time, and what better place than Tokyo to start street photography, or the following week to explore the ancient shrines of Kyoto? My trip then took me to Hong Kong, another mecca of photography, then on to Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, Poland and finally back home to the UK. 

The Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto
The Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto

In Singapore, the BBC picked up some of my Supertree Grove photos. That was just a month after I started, and it boosted my confidence. It made me think, “I might be alright at this”. 

The Supertree Grove in Singapore
The Supertree Grove in SIngapore

After returning to South Korea I was unsure of what to take photos of. I was still teaching English, so time was tight. Instead, I looked to what I enjoyed about Korea most, its transformation at night. 

With the likes of Blade Runner at the back of my mind for inspiration, I took my camera out on a rainy night in the town of Bupyeong, Incheon to shoot the neon-soaked streets.

I still had my cheap Canon 100D and after getting home I only had two or three decent shots that weren’t too noisy. I edited them, uploaded one to Reddit and went to sleep.

The next morning I woke up to hundreds of new notifications across Instagram and Reddit, as well as a message from The Korean Herald newspaper asking to do a feature - it was wild, and I was hooked. 

Woman holding umbrella in a rainy street at night in South Korea.
The photo that kicked off my neon night photography career.

Any rainy night would have me exploring the streets of Seoul and Incheon with my camera in hand. I upgraded to a Sony A7R2 (RIP - cause of death: believe it or not, rain damage) and soon started gaining the attention of brands. 

I’d like to say it’s been non-stop since then but I did take a good long break from photography due to health reasons and moving back to the UK. Then Covid happened too which, of course, slowed things down.

I moved back to Korea in 2021 and made the decision the following year that I wanted to go full-time with photography. In June 2023 I finished my teaching job and have been self-employed since. I will go into the ins and outs of running a photography business in later posts.

So that’s where we’re at so far, and if all goes well I hope for 2024 to be a fantastic year with the plans I have in place.

This blog is where I will share photography theory, BTS of shoots, photography business tips, and more.

See you in the next one!


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