Travelling has become much more accessible in recent years, and many travellers are keen to learn more about photography so they can take better travel photos. Whether it’s for keeping the memories, sharing with friends and family (and even online followers), or earning some money, it’s so important that you capture your travel well. You’ve come all the way to visit such beautiful places, so of course, you want to take amazing photos.
You can also turn them into travel keepsakes like postcards or a travel photobook, or decorate your home with wall hanging photo frames that show different places around the globe.
9 Travel Photography Tips:
So here are some practical tips to help you take better travel photos:
- Research your destinations
This goes without saying, but don’t stop at Google. Do you know that Instagram is a great tool for travel research? It’s basically a mini search engine, with the hashtags and geotags as the keywords. With Instagram hashtags and geotags, you can look at photos and videos from the places you’re planning to visit, and you can even see them live. From beautiful beaches in Greece to tropical jungles in Borneo, this app can give you a window to many places in the world.
- Prioritise your photo targets when creating the itinerary
Some photo destinations get really crowded during the day, and you’d want to be there early to get shots without the crowd in your frame. Alternatively, there might be places that you want to capture during a specific time of the day (maybe during the sunrise or sunset), so fill these places first in the itinerary first before adding other places.
- Dress down your photography gear
If you’re planning to go to areas that might not be safe, dress down your camera, lenses, and other things. The worse it looks, the less likely you will get it stolen. This precaution might seem extreme, but it’s necessary when you’re travelling to an unsafe area. Keep aware at all times in these areas, and follow all other usual precautions.
- Chase the light
Without a doubt, natural light is one of the most important elements in photography. You can get stunning photos almost effortlessly, and it also saves you from too much post-processing work later. Using natural light for your travel photography can really bring out the best of your subjects.
Early morning (just after the sunrise) and the moment before sunset – also known as the golden hour – are the times you should make the most of. The light is soft and ethereal, which really helps you to create dreamy images. If your travel involves many outdoor destinations, plan your activities carefully to make sure you use these times to capture the beautiful places on your list.
- Engage with the locals
Travel photography is not only about capturing landscapes and landmarks, but it’s also about listening to and telling the stories. Humans are an important part of that, so you shouldn’t shy away from capturing them as well.
That being said, some people don’t feel comfortable having their pictures taken by a stranger. This is why people say that for street photographers, social skills are almost as important as photography skills. Start with a friendly, genuine chat. This is how you’ll get to hear the amazing stories from the places you visit. If you want to take their photos, always ask for their consent and be respectful. If they say no, then put your camera away.
- Experiment with the shots
When we’re doing the research, we often see images taken at our travel destinations, and our minds automatically remember those images when we take photos. But we can do more than that. Be creative and explore unique perspectives. Try unusual angles (think the bird’s-eye view or ant view), or use a unique object to enrich your shots. Whether it’s a toy, magnifying glass, or maybe a champagne glass, these little things can add a twist that will make your shots unlike any other.
- Use burst mode to capture moments
There’s always something interesting to capture when you travel, and most of the time, it’s not something you have planned. These fleeting moments are often too good to be missed, so keep your camera ready at all times. Use burst mode (also known as continuous shooting mode) which allows you to capture several photos in rapid succession when you keep pressing the shutter button. This way, there will at least be one photo that turns out well.
- Back up your photos regularly
You wouldn’t want to lose your precious travel photos, would you? If you bring a laptop with you, transfer them every day or every other day. If you don’t bring a laptop, it’s worth it to bring several memory cards and use them alternately. That way, if something happens, you won’t lose all your travel photos.
- Display your travel photos
Don’t let your photos gather dust in an unseen corner of your house (or your computer screen). Display them proudly, as keepsakes from your travel, and also as a showcase of your work as a photographer. You can create postcards, prints, travel photobooks, or even wall art. You can take a look at Photojaanic’s website to find inspiration for your travel photos!
We hope these tips can help you to capture amazing travel photos for your next trip! And remember, it’s not about the gear, but it’s about the photographer. It doesn’t matter what your camera is, as long as you know how to take good pictures.