Turning 23 + How I Started Photography

I can't believe that I'm turning 23 today! 


Time has flown by since graduating from USC. Who knew that things would move even faster after college. I'm so excited that being done with school has given me a chance to work more on weddings, and now I have time to start blogging more photography tips


Every year has given me some time to reflect on where my life is today, so I thought I'd take this opportunity to share how I got started with photography. 


For those of you who don't know, James was the one who got me started on photography. I had never even considered picking up a DLSR because it seemed so complicated to learn how to use. Photography seemed like something that only tech savvy people could learn, and I didn't know where to get started. 


We started dating in 2011, and at our 1 year anniversary, I decided to schedule a couple's session with Nadine from Sachiko Studio. Our session was at the LA Arboretum, and was unlike any professional photography session I've done before. My only prior experience were the stuffy studio shoots where they have you sit on a chair for 3 hours. This session was actually fun like a date! I had also was amazed by the beautiful blurry backgrounds, and beautiful lighting. 

Look at James' crazy long hair! 


I still remember that day in 2013 when I was complaining to him about never finding my passion. James is on the medical school track, and would get so fired up when talking about his science classes. While I knew that I always wanted to pursue business, I never found anything in particular that I loved. My career goal was hopefully to work a stable job in marketing at a reputable company.


James asked, "Why not try photography? You love taking photos on your phone all the time." 


I told him my thoughts on how complicated I felt it was. I had absolutely no idea where to get started. He suggested contacting Nadine, and little did I know that would change my career path.


Nadine had lent me her Canon T2i, and Tamron 28-75 2.8 to try out during a family session she brought me to. She let me shoot in auto, so I can focus on learning composition while observing how she posed them. Later, she would teach me how to shoot in Aperture Priority and Manual mode as I continued to join her on more shoots. 


Above, is Christine, my suite mate who graciously let me use her as a model for a practice photo shoot. The session was at 12pm at Angel's Landing in DTLA. I remember telling her to "uh... stand there and smile." I didn't know what I was doing technically or posing wise, but I continued to practice on my own as well as with Nadine. 


Photography became something I thought about 24/7. I constantly wanted to learn, and decided to start charging for sessions in order to invest in more gear. I launched T.Wu Photography in 2013 (I later made the switch to Tiffany Wu Photography in 2016). I'm so thankful to those who gave me an opportunity in the beginning of my career! 


We all have to start somewhere, and it's humbling to look back on my old photos to see how much I've improved since then. Here's a look at some of the shots I took in my first year of shooting!












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