Hello there!

My name is Annie Tao. I am a photographer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. I specialize in lifestyle photography where you get to play, hang out, and be yourself. I capture the moments, real emotions and stories that occur during our time together. Check here often or subscribe to my blog (RSS feed) to see what I am up to or get creative inspiration. Thanks for visiting!

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The Buzz

My Philosophy

I scoured through thousands of my client photos and pondered my philosophy on photographing people.  What I realized was that my philosophy was incredibly simple.

Looking at all these gorgeous faces and families, my heart melts a little.  I hope you’ll enjoy it.   ~annie

Want to see more?  Yippeee… here’s a video on why you should choose Lifestyle Photography.

Standout Mount with Bamboo

I love the line pattern on bamboo…the smooth feel of it…the natural color…and that it’s eco-friendly.

So, why not have bamboo for my best selling product:  Standout Mounts!

I ordered this gorgeous 20×30″ Standout Mount with a bamboo edge and paired it with lustre paper to match the organic feel of the bamboo.  (The rest of my “Happy Wall” is covered in Standout Mounts with a black edge and Metallic Paper for the nifty sheen.)  I also added a lustre coating on top of the print for a more matte look and extra protection against fingerprints.

It just arrived today, and I am so excited about it that I not only added it to my product offerings, but also, had to take photos of it right away!

Bamboo Edge



Lustre Paper with an extra layer of Lustre Coating


Why Standout Mounts with Bamboo?  Why not have prints mounted on solid bamboo?

I put a lot of thought into all the products I offer.  For a long time, I wanted to sell images printed directly on a slab of bamboo!  However, the slab of bamboo, though gorgeous, was way too heavy.  That made it difficult to hang and also not as safe for hanging on a wall in a house with children — and most of my clients (including myself) have young children. 

So what is a light product that is modern-looking and easy-to-hang?  Standout Mounts!

Having these mounts with a bamboo edge instead of the standard black plastic edge was a great idea, but almost too good to be true.  But it really is all that!

Since I now offer two types of edges, when do you choose a Black Edge versus a Bamboo Edge?

Simply put, the black edge goes with pretty much any type of image and any decor home.  You can also choose any paper type (Metallic Paper or Lustre Paper).  With a bamboo edge, I think it looks better with Lustre Paper only and it looks better with an outdoor image to match the organic look of bamboo.

If you have specific questions that I haven’t already answered, you can ask me!  I’d be happy to help.


Autumn in the Park

After photographing Evy and Ethan since they arrived into this World, I can’t help but feel connected to them.  Thus, it was imperative that I spend part of their shoot playing with Evy and holding baby Ethan.  <3  Admittedly, I breathed in Ethan as much as I could.  We’re talking my face was in his hair.  Can you say awkward?  The fresh scent of a baby is like sniffing a bit of Heaven!  Well, Brent called it something else, but I’ll leave it at that.  ;)

There is always a lot of joking around and laughter when I see Heather and Brent.  I love it when clients turn into friends because the shoot feels just like we’re all hanging out.  In any case, we had a lot of fun and the kids were incredibly well-behaved.  The weather in San Francisco was bright and crazy-hot that day, even in the early morning hours, so I had to “find the (good) light”.

Now check out Heather, Brent, Evy and Ethan in the park on this gorgeous Autumn day…




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The Golden Forest

When I started my business, I didn’t know if it would become more than a hobby or if it’d fizzle out after a year.  So with each booking, I’d ooh-and-aah.  At the end of each client shoot, I’d marvel at the fact that I was able to do something I love and someone liked my work enough to pay for it.   It still blows my mind sometimes.  Maybe it’s from the kind of childhood I had (cue violin – haha), but it’s with this kind of attitude that makes me want to improve and continue to grow.  Complacency is a virus I never want to have.

So this brings me to my recent shoot with The L Family.

I’ve been photographing Julie, Chris, Callie and Ian for 8 years.  Each year, I am excited when they book their shoot (and Julie books early too – yay!)  And each year, I can’t wait to see them.  I have watched Callie get braces and get them off!  I’ve watched her become a preteen.  I’ve watched Ian grow into an inquisitive boy who starts most conversations with “You know what?”  ;)

Seeing my clients is seeing old friends.  I am grateful.  <3

Take a look at The L Family in The Golden Forest…


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