So, you are ready to embark on an adventure. You have waited all year, or even all your life for this very moment. You get to travel to that dream destination. Congratulations on making it all come together, you deserve it.
However, there is one minor hiccup; you know next to nothing about how to get memorable pictures of your adventure. You want to be able to take “Instagram-worthy” travel photos. Well, if you are reading this guide to travel photography, then you are definitely doing something right. Here, we will give you some tips on how to greatly improve your ability to take amazing travel photographs.
Travel photography is interesting as it is daunting. It encompasses a wide range of different genres of photography. Landscape photography, food photography, street photography, wildlife photography and even portrait photography all come together in travel photography. No worries though, at the end of this travel photography guide, you will be ready to capture those magical moments.
Here’s a list of the tips we will be going over in this guide
- Know your camera.
- Plan your shots.
- Try a different perspective.
- Get a tripod.
- Don’t be afraid to ask people for permission.
- Be Patient.
- Get in your shots.
- Safety tips.
- Back up your photos.
- Learn to edit your photos.
Without further ado, let’s dive in.
Know Your Camera
You have most likely heard the saying, “The best camera is the one you have on you”. If you have a proper DSLR camera, Great! But if your budget doesn’t allow for it and all you have is your mobile phone, that’s plenty! You don’t need the best camera to get amazing shots. Today’s phones are pretty damn good. So, don’t feel intimidated when you see other photographers lug around their chunky rigs.
Whatever camera you have, be it a DSLR or a mobile phone, you have to understand how it works. You have to know how to operate it to get the most out of it. Before you start taking any pictures, spend time studying your camera. Dive into the menus, and become comfortable changing your settings as the occasion demands.
Learn about the exposure triangle (ISO, Aperture, and shutter). Learn about framing and composition. Above all, don’t forget to practice! Before your trip, go out and take some pictures with your camera. Getting comfortable with your gear is important if you want to get those great shots.
Plan Your Shots
This is very key if you want to catch those epic sunlit shots. You ought to plan your shots around the rising and setting of the sun. This will help you know the best time of the day to get the shot you want. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a weather expert to figure out the movement of the sun wherever you are. Running a simple Google search is all the expertise you need.
You can look to the work of other photographers for inspiration, but don’t forget to put your own unique spin on those photos. That brings us to the next point…..
Try a Different Perspective
Recreating the photos of others is cool, but how about taking a picture that is uniquely yours? Here’s a tip to help you take common pictures in a new and fresh way; try a different perspective. A different perspective may simply be trying new angles, laying on the ground, or even climbing a tree (be careful).
Get a Tripod
Tripods are criminally underrated when it comes to travel photography. Yes, I know that you want to travel light and would rather not carry a tripod around. No worries, you can get a very light tripod that will take up very little space.
How else are you to get that clean shot of yourself when there is literally no one else around to help you? A tripod.
Don’t be afraid to ask people for permission
If you see a local doing something interesting and you want to get a picture of them, all you have to do is ask. More often than not, the locals are warm and welcoming to tourists. Even if they say no, at least you tried. That’s way better than not trying at all and missing out on an opportunity to get an awesome shot.
Sometimes all you need to do to get that perfect shot is patience. An area may be too crowded, or the sun may not be in the right position just yet. Just wait a few minutes and voila!
Get in your shots
Getting a picture of a beautiful landscape is great but what if you were in the picture, imagine how much more personal and memorable that picture will be.
Nothing screams “I am a tourist” like someone walking around with a camera in hand and a backpack in tow. Be careful, if possible, move around with a guide, preferably a local. You can also use a discrete camera bag to avoid attracting the wrong crowd. Remember, you are in someone else’s country. Be mindful of how things are done and you will be safe.
Getting insurance for your camera gear is also a great idea. This way, should anything happen to your equipment, you will be covered.
Backup your Photos
At the end of every day, make it a point of duty to back up your photos. You can always replace a stolen or missing camera but your memories in the form of images can’t be replaced. Travel with sufficient storage for the images you want to take. You can also try cloud storage.
Learn to Edit your Photos
Sorry to burst your bubble but most of the great pictures you see online have been edited at least a little bit. You will have to learn how to use photo editing software like Lightroom and Photoshop to help make your pictures more visually interesting.
There you have it guys, those tips are sure to get you from a novice to at least a decent, if not a great travel photographer. Before you go on your way, there is one more thing I will like to tell you guys.
And that is……don’t forget to put down the camera. Yes, you want to get awesome pictures to share with others, but don’t forget why you traveled in the first place. Except you are being paid to take pictures, experiencing the moments for yourself should be your priority. Don’t be so focused on trying to get the perfect shot that you forget to actually enjoy the moment. Cheers.