Karen Tang – Seeing the World Capturing its Essence

by Karen Tang

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Karen Tang

Karen is a freelance portrait and travel photographer from Hong Kong. She graduated from London College of Fashion majoring in Fashion and Photography. She has worn many hats in her media career giving her an interesting perspective on what makes a great image.

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1. Please describe your photography style and why you've chosen this as your specialty.

As a portrait photographer, I consider myself to be a keen observer of life. My portraits are often candid observations of the people I meet and are either shot in their home or place of work. I shoot using natural light, so the portraits are always relatable and natural. Through my journey as a travel show host, my life has been enriched and this experience has helped me see the world with more sensitivity and understanding.

Alpha 7R III | FE 85mm F1.8 | 85 mm | 1/1050 sec | F3.5 | ISO 1250

2. Tell us more about your photographic journey. What got you started? 

Before photography became my passion, I jetted around the world as a travel show host. The opportunity to experience different cultures had a profound impact on me.  I began to look at every scene through a photographer’s eye and try to soak in the emotions.  Every picture had a story to be told and that drove me to make better images. My aim is to evoke an emotion from my audience. Fortunately, many people supported my vison and guided me in the photography industry.

3. The world has been enriched by the diversity of photographers today. What are the key challenges you face at work, and how do you overcome them?

There are many challenges for a working photographer today. Some people think photography is easy. But a good photographer tells a story or an emotion in an engaging way. I am glad I have my Sony Alpha as a shooting partner, as it allows me to convey the visual stories I have in my mind.  

Alpha 7R III | FE 24-105mm F4.0 OSS | 105 mm | 1/5000 sec | F4.0 | ISO 160

4. Tell us about your favourite series of photos. Why do you like it? 

My favourite photo series so far are the images taken in Egypt. My previous experience as a travel host has whetted my appetite for making great travel images. Egypt has always fascinated me with its ancient pyramids, friendly people and culture. It’s always chaotic and things don’t always happen the way you expect them to. Even getting on a train could mean a steep climb down from the platform and walking across the tracks. The colour and tone in Egypt is also special to my eyes. The expansive desert and the piercing sun, makes for amazing landscape shots that are so full of detail and contrast. Here you can see the hieroglyphics and carvings in almost three-dimensional form as it pops out from the stone. In Egypt, my Alpha 7R III was in its element, capturing all the details that were almost as old as time.

Alpha 7R III | FE 85mm F1.8 | 85 mm | 1/100 sec | F1.8 | ISO 1250
Alpha 7R III | FE 24-105mm F4.0 OSS | 105 mm | 1/5000 sec | F4.0 | ISO 160
Alpha 7R III | FE 24-105mm F4.0 OSS | 47 mm | 1/320 sec | F6.3 | ISO 80

5. What advice do you have for aspiring photographers? 

Always be tough and original. Being tough means growing a thick skin to accept criticisms and learning from one mistakes. One must also have the courage to be original and aim to make every single photograph unique. On the other hand, it pays to let your ideas flow and not to over think. Show your vision. 

6. What's in your camera bag? 

I always carry the Alpha 7R IIIFE 24-70mm F2.8 GM, and FE 85mm F1.8 on assignments. The camera and lens combination helps me capture any scene with confidence. With its shallow depth-of-field and creamy bokeh, the FE 85mm F1.8 is perfect for shooting portraits. Coupled with the Alpha 7R III’s Real-time Eye AF, I can concentrate on being creative and be certain that all my portraits will have great eye contact.

Alpha 7R III | FE 85mm F1.8 | 85 mm | 1/2000 sec | F5.0 | ISO 200

7. How has the Sony Alpha system helped in achieving your vision? 

Sony Alpha cameras and lenses deliver the image quality I need in my career. Much of what I shoot appears in print, and the images are always full of detail and accurate in colour. 

I also love the excellent battery life of Sony cameras. With the NP-FZ100 battery, I can confidently stay in the field for long hours.

I have everything I need with Sony Alpha. 

Inspiring Female Alpha Photographers

Sony is proud to present five inspiring female Alpha photographers. These talented individuals are trail blazers in their chosen area of expertise and have shown both grit, and creativity. From urban to rural, people to architectural, their amazing perspectives are seen through the lens of an Alpha camera. Click on and find out what makes them tick.
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