How To Take Amazing Photos On Your Next Holiday
What better way is there to remember a trip than taking your own photos? With platforms like Instagram, Snapwire and Snapchat, vacation pics have never been easier, allowing users to instantly share their photos.
Having good photography skills is highly admired and are very handy when you travel. Capturing the stunning views, awe-inspiring architecture and your own memories, in beautiful imagery and sharing those with the world. Of course we want that!
Here are some travel photography tips to keep in mind for your next trip:
Pro photographers have a deep need to get that perfect shot, no matter what it takes. You don’t have to wander off into the wilderness to get that once-in-a-lifetime photo. Just be adventurous, and go on the hunt for different angles.
Image: Carmel by The Sea, California, United States by Giuseppe Milo
Also, be adventurous with the time when you go out, on your photography hunt. For example, while everyone else is asleep, you’re awake picking the perfect spot for the sunrise, waiting and snap! you've got that unbelievable picture.
Bonus Tip: Use Google maps to scout locations before you head out.
Capture The Soul Of The Area/ City
Image: Regent Street, London - Hotel Cafe Royal in the background
Every destination is unique. They all have their distinctive architecture, skyline, and culture. To get stunning images that show off your holiday, there are three basic shots you would want:
Wide shots, showing off the area as a whole. The image will give a 'bigger picture' sense to anyone who sees it after.
Landmarks and architectural photos are important to show the uniqueness of the city. It’s easy to find impressive architecture in beautiful cities, such as Rome.
- Shots of life. If there’s one thing that can capture the heart of an area it's the picture of its people. A photograph of a person skiing in the French Alps, for example! Just make sure you ask if it’s okay for you to take their photo; people can be camera shy.
If you were traveling to an area like Meribel, France, you would definitely want that landscape shot. Some of the best travel photos are of landscapes. Showing unique terrain, beautiful mountains and breath-taking scenes.
When taking landscape photography, it is best to think of the character of the landscapes. Remember, each site has something unique about it. Try to capture that and you'll have your friends going “wow!”.
Photographing Friends and Family
Put all the fancy stuff aside for a moment. When we travel, we’re often with friends and family, and naturally we would want momentos of the trip together.
Many times, people will make the mistake of a close-up shot (and I mean close). Don’t get me wrong, it could be a good portrait photo, but it could also have been taken at home. Remember that you want a photo of them (and yourself) in your travel destination. Also be mindful of the background and surroundings! If a portrait shot is what you're after, show enough of the person to be recognized, but not too close that there is no context!
Image: Title "You coming?" - Alesund, Norway by Giuseppe Milo
Bonus Tip: You want a shot of yourself together with everyone too! After you’ve composed the shot you want, you can set a timer, or better still get a remote trigger. It will come in handy more than once. If you're at a complete loss, you could also use a selfie-stick (if you're using your phone) or get someone else to take the picture.
Rule of Thirds Vs Centering Subject
Anyone who is interested in photography, would know the ‘rule of thirds’: when taking shots of people with a larger background scene, for example, you could make good use of this rule.
The 'rule of thirds' is a composition technique used by photographer. It means to align the subject with the intersections your photography grid.
However, sometimes following the rule just doesn’t give you what you want. Break the rule and try centering the subject. This could make your image stronger, and the symmetry is visually appealing to the human eye. Try it yourself.
Amateur photographers have a habit of taking photos at whatever height they are in at the moment. Play around with the perspectives that you can get. Get down on your knees, or stand on something to give you a height advantage.
Remember the ‘be adventurous’ point. This applies there as well!
Depth Of Field
It is very important to note your aperture (AV) settings. With a landscape shot, you want the image to be sharp, so it’s important to have a larger depth of field. Set your camera to AV mode and you can choose the F-stop. A higher F-stop will give you a larger depth of field.
For close-ups, a shallower depth of field can work great, This means that the background will be blurred. A lower f-stop will give you a shallower depth of field.
However, going back to the ‘photographing friends and family’ point above, you don’t want it to be too shallow that the background becomes a completely blur.
Camera Setting (White Balance)
It is easier to carry a small digital camera, rather than a bigger professional-looking DSLR, but either way, you will be snapping a lot of shots outdoors. So whether you have a DSLR or something smaller, go to the settings and set the white balance right.
Test it out on a shot or see it on the live view scene. The white balance will help in getting the colors right.
If you're using a smartphone, like many of us, be sure to use a filter on your phone or a photography app to get the effect you want.
Image: Left photo is not adjusted, where as the right its color balance adjusted to suite the light.
There's a whole lot more when it comes to photography. The only way to get good, is to practice and have fun!
Watch this space for more travel photography tips.