Being in Taipei as the pandemic hit

Being in Taipei as the pandemic hit


4 min read

Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.S. and closed down international borders, I visited Taipei. It feels like it was so long ago. We initially centered the trip around one of my best friend’s weddings, but they postponed the wedding. We all decided to visit anyway.

It was a weird time to be traveling. As I left, people at home asked me if I wanted to take the risk of going to Asia, where the pandemic was strongest. When I finally returned, the roles had switched, and the U.S. was suffering. It was late February, and the prevailing news at the time was still linking the virus to Wuhan. There was this feeling that the problem was worst in China, and there was very little being written about how it would soon take over the whole globe.

Given that, it was astonishing to see how seriously Taiwan was taking COVID-19, an approach no doubt heavily influenced by previous pandemics that have hit Asia. The strong precautions combined with the still relatively normal day-to-day life we saw in Taiwan is a stark contrast to life here in the U.S. eight months later.

We did a lot of walking around Taipei, giving me a chance to take the Leica Q out for a spin. Unfortunately, it developed a misalignment between the lens and the sensor. So, some photos have a tilt-shift-like blur on the edges.

I’ve tried weaving a narrative purely through sequencing the photographs. I hope you enjoy it.

L1090019
Leica Q · 28mm · f/10 · 1/80 · ISO 100

L1080722
Leica Q · 28mm · f/6.3 · 1/200 · ISO 100

L1080712
Leica Q · 28mm · f/6.3 · 1/2000 · ISO 2500

L1080805
Leica Q · 28mm · f/3.2 · 1/1000 · ISO 100

L1090013
Leica Q · 28mm · f/10 · 1/60 · ISO 125

L1080780
Leica Q · 28mm · f/3.5 · 1/640 · ISO 100

L1080802
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/1250 · ISO 100

L1080792
Leica Q · 28mm · f/5 · 1/400 · ISO 100

L1080861
Leica Q · 28mm · f/13 · 1/30 · ISO 1250

L1090009
Leica Q · 28mm · f/8 · 1/60 · ISO 200

L1080774
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/5000 · ISO 100

L1090025
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/400 · ISO 100

L1090043
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.8 · 1/320 · ISO 100

L1080824
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/400 · ISO 100

L1080969
Leica Q · 28mm · f/2.5 · 1/60 · ISO 500

L1080877
Leica Q · 28mm · f/5 · 1/60 · ISO 800

L1080884
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 1000

L1080961
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 200

L1080888
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 100

L1080919
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 400

L1080921
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 1250

L1080916
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 320

L1080926
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 400

L1080932
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 200

L1080935
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 320

L1090044
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.8 · 1/125 · ISO 100

L1090046
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.8 · 1/200 · ISO 100

L1090072
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/125 · ISO 100

L1090079
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/160 · ISO 100

L1090096
Leica Q · 28mm · f/2.8 · 1/60 · ISO 640

L1090087
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/250 · ISO 100

L1090021
Leica Q · 28mm · f/10 · 1/60 · ISO 1250

L1090126
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 400

L1090147
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/15 · ISO 100

L1090165
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 1250

L1090157
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/15 · ISO 500

L1090167
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 1000

L1090190
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/15 · ISO 200

L1090197
Leica Q · 28mm · f/1.7 · 1/60 · ISO 2000

MIMG 9396
iPhone 11 Pro · 52mm · f/2 · 1/120 · ISO 32

MIMG 9386
iPhone 11 Pro · 26mm · f/1.8 · 1/30 · ISO 1000


Thanks to Q for reading drafts of this.

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