click photo for larger view
Chang Kaishek memorial park (aka CKS park) located at the center of Taipei city and it is one of main attraction for tourists. Everyday, tour buses and groups from all over the world pave through this place.
This is typical sightseeing for tourist
Everything in here is massive. Because Taipei is not mega size city like Shanghai or LA, road, alley and buildings are tightly squeezed, it make more wider and vast feeling when enter this park at the center of the city. This gate is ‘Arch of liberty square’
Real beauty of the park starts glowing when the last tourist leave the place unfortunately (or fortunately?). When sunset draws crimson sky above the main gate, standing exact west direction from center of the park, most of tourist already has gone to the other places after busy sight-seeing-photo shots, presumably night market which is another attraction of the city.
Then the park return to local people with vast emptiness and sereness. The park provides the stage for dance team or performers from nearby high schools. It offers nice stroll way for visitors to Concert hall ot Theather. National Theather and Concert hall occupy left and right wings in the park respecitvely and vitalize the park with beautiful lighting after sub tropical heat dessipated in the beginning of night.
There are many angle and points to be explored in the park, not only vast & long shots but up-close buildings and structures. It is far more than tourist attraction, especially for photographers.
Time : Golden hour & Blue hour
Depends on weather, mostly on clouds formation, the sunset can be astonishingly impressive as a cityscape. I believe it is because the city is close enough to sea and Yangminshan mountains at north side works as a wall of the city often and flows low altitude clouds in the sky but still high enough not covering the city itself.
Golden hour backdrop with Chinese style gate
Golden hour starts about 30 min before sun hit the horizon but real magical moment come right after sun goes down under west side mountains. About 10-15 min after sun completely disappeared, sky is still glowing but the light direction diminished, then suddenly things around me start glowing softly and magically pink-purple hue, walls, trees, floor, my camera, tripod and even people beside me shine crimson light.
It is amazing but very strange feeling, no direction of the lights. Actually lights come from everywhere & every direction which does not comply our instinct accustomed directional sun light. That’s rather short, strong and final golden hour.
I can not express this moment well with photography, to be honest. Even raw files deeply saturated in colors, looks almost like Photoshop-fake color instead of true color in that magical moment…
When the redish color disappear finally, the buildings, concert hall and theater turn lighting up, to open Blue hours. From then about 30 min, sky changes pale blue to deep blue gradually, illustrating white clouds streaming around sky as if gigantic screen. And eventually turn into pitch black to call the day off. Blue hour is another short but precious moment after glorious Golden hour.
to be continued