Travel photography is an art anyone can attempt – but there are certain tricks and techniques in order to help you do it right.
As I work in an industry full of creatives, content creators and influencers, I’m surrounded by those with a passion for both travel and photography. So, with this in mind, I’ve rounded up a selection of advice for all amateur travel photographers out there…
Don’t bring a tripod
One common misconception many amateur photographers make when travelling is bringing a tripod with them. The truth is – it isn’t necessary. A tripod is simply extra baggage you need to carry around, and travel photography requires you to be opportunistic and spontaneous. You can’t be slowed down by setting up a tripod.
If you truly feel you can’t get the right shots without one, a portable, mini tripod is your best bet. But try and go without. It’ll certainly push you to get more interesting shots, whilst keeping your luggage at a minimum.
Use the rule of thirds
Presuming you’re using a DSLR, your camera’s grid feature will come in extremely handy when trying to compose the perfect shot. Use the 9×9 grid to employ the rule of thirds and get your subject into the right part of the frame, no matter what you’re photographing – whether it’s a person, an animal, a building or otherwise, the grid will give you complete accuracy in framing a brilliant photo.
This grid is also available on most smartphones if you’re grabbing a quick shot whilst you haven’t got your camera on you. The quality may not be as good, but you’ll still be able to frame a fantastic picture.
Travel photography requires you to be patient. No matter what you’re photographing, make sure you don’t get frustrated if you can’t quickly get the right shot – it takes composure and time, and you’ll need to work with the lighting, angles and your subject in order to make it work.
This is especially true if you’re photographing animals. Safaris are where patience is an absolute virtue, as you’ll likely have to wait a while to photograph animals when the opportunity strikes. But wherever you are in the world, don’t rush it – go slow, remain patient and you’ll be able to get the right shot
If people will feature in your photograph, ask them if it’s okay and never take pictures of them without their permission. According to 1Cover’s Secret Traveller, it can be offensive to photograph people without their consent in some countries, plus it’s just good manners to ask first.
Take advantage of natural lighting
Natural lighting is your friend when it comes to travel photography. As you won’t be able to carry around a lighting rig whilst you travel, there isn’t much choice but to play with the effects of natural lighting – dawn and dusk are great times to get out there and take some shots, as they often cast a golden glow upon your subject and make for a stunning photo.
If it’s overcast and natural lighting isn’t providing much, be sure to use your editing skills to spruce your photos up once you’re home.
Ensure you’re taking RAW photos
Speaking of editing, make sure you’re taking photos in RAW format. This way, you’ll have the raw images to work with once you’re home – and if things need to be touched up and edited, RAW files will give you an uncompressed and complete image to work with without complications.
Not familiar with editing? Software such as Photoshop has become incredibly easy to use, especially if you don’t have to do many intensive edits. Do a quick online search and look at some tutorials to really get your pictures to shine.