Whether you’re a novice with a phone or a veteran with pro gear, travel photography is an art form. It takes time, practice, and patience to find that perfect style that suits you most. You want to give perspective on the places you visit, and preserve your most memorable moments from your trips. Better travel photography is the best way to commemorate the vivid landscapes and picturesque details of the local scene.
To capture those moments without missing out on the experience, do your best to perfect your photography skills. Some of the best ways to do just that will happen before or after you take each photo. Let’s go over some ways you can keep refining those travel photography sessions.
Do the research for better travel photography
Talk to friends and family who have visited your next destination before you head out there. Ask for suggestions on the best, most incredible spots they’ve seen. See if they will share their photos with you, as a way to inspire your own experiments with photography. Don’t miss out on what the internet has to offer, either. You’ll come across a slew of creative (and not so creative) photo examples online.
Perhaps an ordinary landscape can turn into a work of art if you change the angle or utilize reflective surfaces. Whatever you choose, make sure to be informed!
Talk to the locals
Another way to enrich your travel photo portfolio is to see and take pictures of the local folk. Too many modern photographers don’t ask for permission when they do so. A person living in a crowded city may be photographed every day, but smaller places are not the same. People are aware of your presence, and the least you can do is introduce yourself.
Chat with them, see if they can share any fun anecdotes and ask them for a photo. They may send you to a less touristy location nearby. Some of the most culturally-infused photos are those of people who reside in the destinations you visit.
Keep your photos safe and stored
Your gear, storage options and processing software can make a huge difference in how spectacular your photos turn out. It’s useful to always have access to the internet so you can store your photos online. This helps if you need extra space on your memory card or your camera gets stolen. Start by learning about personal hotspots and how you can use your own devices to back up your photos.
An extra battery and external charger can be handy on long trips where electric outlets may be scarce. Extra memory cards are also great to have. You can swap them out until you can upload your existing photos to safe cloud storage.
Candid photos still reign supreme
When you find yourself in Paris, you’ll inevitably snap a few photos of the Eiffel Tower. In New Zealand, you’ll definitely be tempted to take a few pictures of the famous Hobbiton. These will always be stunning, some even frame-worthy to put up on your wall. But rest assured that nothing can beat the beauty and authenticity of unexpected, unplanned, and unposed images.
To sharpen your photography eye, take pictures of things you normally don’t pay any special attention to. Maybe it’s the flower pot in a café, someone immersed in a newspaper, or a puddle on the cobbled pavement. Practice taking photos of seemingly ordinary people. Play with colors, angles, lighting, and focus. You’ll see how some of the simplest moments turn into instant art.
Ditch the comfort zone
Finally, both in a literal and an abstract sense, it’s key to leave your comfort zone. The already paved ways of touristy travels are not the only thing your lens should see. Ditch the map and get lost outside the scope of tourist-filled streets and events. You’ll have a better chance of discovering the most impeccable photos waiting to be taken.
Sometimes, all it takes is adjusting the focus a bit or swapping one lens for another. However, it’s what you do before the photo is taken that will determine how majestic the photo will be. Use your travels as an inspiration. Keep your learning mindset alive, and you’ll soon have albums filled with dazzling photos from your travels!