Blurry, out of focus photos. Wonky photos. Wishing we could improve our travel photography. We have all been there. However, with a few easy steps, it is possible to take some great photos when travelling. If you want to take up your skills a notch: read on!
Know your camera
Whether you have a point and shoot, a fancy DSLR or simply using your phone, it’s important to get to know the different settings. There are a lot of great (and free!) resources on the internet where you can learn more about how to use your camera. My favourites are YouTube and Digital Photography School.
Now that you are familiar with your camera settings, it’s time to put that knowledge to use! Often when travelling, it’s a big rush to get the right shot before a random person or car wanders into your frame, the sun goes behind a cloud, or your tour group moves onto the next spot. By practising in a familiar setting without any time pressure, you can feel confident rather than flustered when you’re on the road.
Do you prefer taking pictures of wide open landscapes? Colourful night life? Small details that are different from back home? All of the above? Look at Pinterest/Instagram for inspiration. Go back through your existing photos and find your favourites. Be a tourist in your own town and take photos. Find your style and rock it!
Before you go somewhere new, do a little research into the best photo spots around the area. Think about what time of the day you will be there, and how the Sun will affect your photos. It is also a good idea to check Google so you can avoid the busiest times. You can also use great apps like PhotoPills to plan your shots if you want to go the extra mile!
Find a different perspective
Ever looked up the location tag for the Eiffel tower on Instagram? Chances are, most of the photos are from the same 3-4 angles. While it’s always to have these classic shots to look back on, try to look for interesting ways to frame the object, or simple shoot from a different angle. You might be pleasantly surprised!
If you’re trying to take your picture in 0.03 seconds before you rush back to the tour bus to head to the next spot along with 50 other people, chances are your photo will reflect that. In such cases, it might be worth making a list of your favourite spots to come back to, where you can set your own pace.
Be sure to check out my photo reviews here.
Invest in the equipment
Once you are familiar with what your camera can and cannot do, you might want to think about investing in the right equipment for your needs. Shoot a lot of open landscapes? Consider a wide angle lens. Interested in night photography? Look at the different tripod options available to you.
Know when to put the camera away
As much as taking photos is a lot of fun, and you want to be able to remember this trip later in life; it is also important to savour the moment. Rather than seeing the trip only through your camera lens, get your shot and then put your camera away and actually enjoy your day!