Whether you’re on a trip of a lifetime, or revisiting that much loved destination, photography can add an extra special dimension to any holiday! Travel photography gets you to really take in the sights and appreciate the small details of a different culture, whilst allowing you to preserve fabulous holiday memories, and share your adventures with friends and family!
If you want to take holiday snaps that are a cut above the rest, follow our top tips for travel photography below…and make your Facebook friends and Instagram followers even more jealous than usual! #holidayenvy #sorrynotsorry
1. The Human Element
If you want to produce a fantastic set of travel pics, mastering people photography is vital. Photographing people abroad can be tricky- you’ve got to consider the local customs, you might be unsure whether to ask permission, and it can be a challenge to capture a natural expression when photographing a stranger.
When it comes to travel people photography, the most important rule is to make a connection with the person you’re photographing. If they don’t really want their photograph taken, or are indifferent, this will not produce a stand out portrait shot and may cause offense. The best people images are when the subject is relaxed, excited about being photographed and feels a rapport with the photographer. The best ways to make this connection are by simply asking if you can take a picture, striking up a friendly conversation, having fun when taking the shot (don’t be too serious!), and showing your model the image afterwards. By doing this you’ll get a great snap, and have a lovely memory to go along with it!
Another top tip for people photography, is to pay extra attention to the background. You really want your subject (or subjects) to be the star of the show, so avoid including too many people in the shot or people unrelated to the scene you are capturing (the ‘photobomb’ look). The background should enhance your portrait, so look out for interesting and colourful backdrops, and objects that can frame your subject and/or add to the story of the image.
2. Night & Low Light Photography
As soon as the sun goes down, or you’re in a museum or restaurant that is not well lit, you may think there’s no point trying to get some great travel shots: you’re unsure how your camera will cope, or simply feel in the dark about which settings to go for. The technique for both low light and night photography are very similar, so check our tips below and make sure you never miss out on an awesome holiday snap again!
The important technical point to remember is that you need to keep your ISO low as possible: this will give you the best colours and a super sharp pic! To avoid camera shake, always use a tripod in low light conditions- we know carrying one around can be a bit of a pain, but it’ll all be worth it when you upload those dazzling low light shots!
If you’re feeling confident with low light and night photography, it’s time to get creative! To produce dramatic light trials or blurred city shots, use a super slow shutter speed to create this effect. If you are looking to include some really atmospheric low light shots in your travel photography collection, have a go at taking a low-key image: an image that is predominately made up of dark tones and colours. To produce this effect, you need your subject to be illuminated by a key light source-if you are creating this effect artificially (that is by using a torch for example) put some thought into the strength and direction of the light. Whether a low-key image is successful or not is a lot to do with composition, so don’t be afraid to experiment!
3. Capture the little things
Travel photography doesn’t have to be all about the tourist hotspots, in fact photographing the little things allows you to capture an arguably more authentic snapshot of your holiday destination. So, look out for simple and ordinary details that reflect the local spirit of the place, and celebrate them through photography- for example, when holidaying in Cornwall, get some artistic snaps of seafood at a market or a rusty boat, when in India photograph a street sign or beautiful traditional fabric; you get the gist!
The key to this style of photography is composition, colour and getting up close – you’ve really got to put on your creative hat on for this one. If you’re hooked on Instagram, why not try the flat lay technique: taking snaps of anything and everything from an elevated view. Make the most of that holiday feeling by taking funky flat lay shots of your luggage and other holiday items, before you even go away!