How to Improve Your Travel Photography
Booked an adventure of a lifetime and want to capture your incredible experience, but your photography skills aren’t up to scratch? No need to worry, because in this blog we’re going to look at how to improve your travel photography, and you’ll be snapping some astonishing pictures in no time! Whether you’re heading off on a solo adventure, on our Danube Delta Romania experience or a gap year, these simple tips will help you master the art of travel photography in no time.
Learn Everything About Your Camera
Whether you’ve invested into a quality professional DSLR or are hoping to snap away on your smartphone, it’s key to learn how to use your camera. Read the manual and play around with settings before you jet away, trialling out all the functions and understanding what each photography term means and how you can incorporate them into your photos.
Know Your Shutter Speed from Your Aperture
If you’re using a camera rather than a smartphone, you’ll have the option to adjust shutter speeds and apertures. Shutter speed is determined by the amount of time your camera shutter is open; on an automatic setting your shutter will be open for fractions of a second, but you can also keep the shutter open for longer to capture motion. Aperture is determined by the amount of light that travels into your camera; this is done by how wide the hole is within a lens. The smaller the hole, the larger depth of field and the larger the hole, the smaller depth of field.
Rule of Thirds
Imagine splitting your image into nine parts, the rule of thirds allows us to identify where best to position certain aspects in a photo to create interest and better composition. It’s been said that if you place certain things in the intersections or along the lines, it creates a more balanced photograph and allows the viewer to interact with the image better. Most cameras will come with a function to turn on the rule of thirds grid to help with positioning; you can use this function on your smartphone too!
Invest in a Travel Tripod
Tripods allow you to capture the perfect shot in any instance; whether you want to shoot a long exposure image or are travelling solo and want to capture yourself in a photo, tripods are a handy piece of equipment. They come in all shapes and sizes, and you can even get your hands on one with bendy legs which allows it to be grasped around another object.
Look for Inspiration
Examine your favourite travel photographers’ images, discover what makes their images strong and take a few notes on how you can incorporate certain techniques into your photos. Also, scroll through Instagram and Pinterest and allow yourself to get fully immersed and inspired by other people’s photographs. Be sure not to copy, but rather allow them to spark your imagination and creativity.
Photographs with people in tell a story, add a point of interest and help to set a mood. Images that include people tend to perform better than those that don’t, as people like to think that the person in the photograph is them. It’s likely you’ve seen the ‘follow me too’ images – the project has become a phenomenal success as it creates the illusion that the viewer is being led around the world by the person shot in the image and the #followmetoo hashtag on Instagram has received over 2 million tags!
Patience is a Virtue
Spontaneous images can be incredible; however, it is more likely that a great photograph has had a lot of planning, thought and preparation behind it. Sometimes the perfect image will take numerous tries; therefore, patience is required when wanting to take better travel photos!
Get up Early, Stay out Late
Good travel photography relies on light – in the morning the light is warm and soft due to the sunrise, and in the evening, you can capture some incredible images in the golden and blue hours. Travel photography experts suggest chasing the sun; whether this is pre-sunrise, sunrise, sunset or post-sunset, just like light, timing is everything for photography!
You’ve got the perfect snap, and now it’s time to enhance. Editing photos allow you to adjust certain aspects of a picture, from the contrast and brightness to the colours and white balance, and even the simplest bit of editing can work wonders on your travel photos. There’s no need to invest in expensive apps; there are many free versions out there which can turn your photos from good to amazing in seconds.
We hope these simple tips will help to improve your travel photography on your next trip, whether you’re heading off on one our experiences, taking a solo adventure or heading off on a gap year. We love seeing your travel photos, so be sure to share them with us via our social channels!