Ishigaki Shincho was born on Ishigaki Island in 1915. After graduating from the Advanced Course of Ishigaki Primary School (Ishigaki kōtō shōgakkō), he went to Taiwan for the first time in 1929. All of his elder sisters and brothers had already been to Taiwan. Arriving in Taipei, he stayed with his older brother of twelve years, who worked as a shop assistant.
While he worked at a printing factory for five years, he went to an evening school in Taipei City. After completing school, he moved to Kaohsiung and became an apprentice in a photographic school for another few years. He finally opened his own photographic shop in Kaohsiung, but soon joined the military service. After the war, he tried to reopen the business, but had to leave Taiwan under the KMT government.