Thinking about improving your travel photography skills but don’t know where to begin? This guide will help you. Travel photographers need to adapt to their surroundings, think on their feet, and develop a variety of photography skills. Travel photography includes portrait photography, street photography, city shots, and landscapes.
The following are ten tips for taking better photos while traveling:
- Know How to Use Your Camera
It may seem obvious, but really, you should learn to use all the functions of your camera. Take a photography class, read a few photography guides, read the manual cover to cover, etc. and practice as much as possible. If you really want to take great travel photos, then it is highly recommended that you stop using the camera’s automatic mode and start shooting in shutter, aperture, or manual mode.
- Choose the Best Time of the Day
Whether you are taking pictures of cities or landscapes, choosing the right time of the day is extremely important. Sunrise and sunset are always the best times to take pictures. Photos captured at noon are usually boring, flat, and lack the rich colors that are found at sunset and/or sunrise.
- Do Your Research
Learning about the place you are going to photograph before you actually travel to it can really help you up your game. Some of the things you will need to look into include weather, tides, scouting the area, photo authorization, etc.
- Use a Travel Tripod
Travel tripods are lightweight and allow you to set your camera position and shoot at much lower speeds without worrying about the camera shake. It is an extremely useful tool that makes a difference for low light travel photography.
- Follow the Rule of Thirds
Follow the Rule of Thirds to keep your subjects evenly arranged and balanced within your frame. The Rule of Thirds is about drawing four imaginary lines across the frame to divide it into nine even sections. Then placing the key elements in your frame within the intersection points. If you follow this rule, you will add more interest and tension in your photos.
- Think Outside the Box
Don’t replicate the same picture everyone else has – find your own angle. Get creative and capture the moment from an angle that you like.
- Don’t Rush, Be Patient
When it comes to photography, you have little control, other than your gear and the destination you have selected. So, when you arrive at your selected destination, don’t rush into things. Take your time and wait for the right conditions and when everything “clicks”, capture the moment.
- Establish Contact
When you are photographing people during your travels, it is highly recommended that you communicate with the person you want to photograph. Making someone comfortable with your presence can make a huge different with the quality of your image.
- Use Grid Lines
If you are new and still learning to align the landscape straight, then don’t hesitate to turn on the grid lines. This will allow you to work better with the Rule of Thirds and also help you with your composition skills.
- Keep Your F-Stop Low
Keep this basic rule of thumb in mind; the lower your f-stop, the more interesting the photo. Most cameras start around f2.8 and staying as low as possible will help you capture the tiniest details leaving unnecessary information out of the frame, hence increasing the quality of your photo.
These are some of the key travel photography tips to make your shots much better. Keep in mind that travel photography incorporates variety of skills that develop with time. So, keep practicing!