Photography Tutorial 101: Taking Better Vacation Photos
It’s no secret that traveling is a bit of a passion of mine. I love seeing new places and traipsing off on unexpected adventures. As a professional photographer, I also love toting my camera around and capturing shots of the sights I may never see again.
Most people yearn to do the same when they are away from home. They want to capture and retain those memories for years to come. But they don’t always know where to start.
Which is where this next segment in our amateur photography tutorial comes in – a few tips on getting the kind of vacation shots you will be proud to show your friends and family when you get home!
We get so accustomed to close-ups, constantly zooming in to get a better shot of our loved ones at any given moment. But when it comes to vacation pictures, zoom out and capture all the beauty around you. Take a step back to catch the length of the bridge in front of you, or attempt to shoot as much of the coastline as possible rather than simply focusing on the pier. You are experiencing new and scenic beauty; do it justice by allowing at least a few of your shots to be all-encompassing.
Depending on where you’re vacationing, the local wildlife may be especially exciting and new. Turtles in Hawaii, kangaroos in Australia, moose in Alaska; they all deserve that extra look through your lens. When taking wildlife photos you have to expect the unexpected, and it is generally a good idea to remain a safe distance away from any wild animal you may encounter. But by remaining calm in your approach and steady with your camera, you just might get a few shots worthy of National Geographic!
Shoot the Signage
Particularly if you are traveling abroad, you may encounter some cool and unique signs while exploring your surroundings. These can often hint at the culture of where you are and provide stories to tell when you return home. Don’t just shoot signs head on though. Instead, pay attention to your angles and use these stationary subjects as photography practice in switching up your own perspective.
Get Plenty of Group Pictures
There are only so many times in life when you will be traveling jointly with the group you are with right now. Even if you are all best friends or close family, those trips remain few and far between. So make sure to get shots of everyone together, particularly when you are in the midst of trying something new as a group or enjoying an exciting excursion together. Don’t be afraid to ask strangers to snap a quick shot for you, many will happily comply and then ask you to return the favor. You can also brush up on your timer settings, so there is never a question of whether or not you can be in the shot as well.
Don’t just post up in front of the various monuments and attractions while imploring your friends and family to say “Cheese!” Instead, find ways to incorporate your subjects in the action. Take shots of them examining the art at a museum you all enjoyed, or reading the sign attached to a particularly interesting statue. Take shots that equally show off where you’re at and whom you’re with. Remember that you don’t want every shot to look the same, and that having fun while you are taking pictures will be so much more memorable than producing a generic smile in front of each and every landmark you encounter.