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Positano Umbrellas

Taylor Stephens


Behind the Shot

While on their honeymoon, Taylor and his bride visited several beautiful spots along Italy’s Amalfi Coast, but the cliffside village of Positano, perched above the Mediterranean Sea on the edge of the cliffs of the Lattari Mountains, was by far their favorite. Positano’s history dates back to prehistoric times, when the earliest fishermen and hunters traveled to the area to fish and hunt for wild game. The first permanent structures were built in the first century B.C. by the Roman elite. From the 1600s onward, Positano’s economy was mainly supported by fishing—until the 1950s, when a boom in tourism, attributed largely to a John Steinbeck essay about Positano published in Harper’s Bazaar in May 1953—attracted global visitors in search of Limoncello and Cacio e Pepe.

 “From our hotel in the southern end of the town, we walked along the cliffside path to the center of town. Looking down from the narrow path, I saw these perfect rows of umbrellas along the water,” recalls Taylor.

Taylor was excited about how the scene came together, and it captured his impressions of the historic location. “This is just one of those shots where the colors and the composition came together so perfectly. I took this photo to capture how it felt to me being in Positano. The weather was perfect, the water was clear—everything about this morning was just perfect. It reminds me of living a luxurious and relaxing life, at least for the three days that I was there.”