9 Tips to Help Improve Your Travel Photography

Having the chance to be creative whilst experiencing a new culture is a fantastic way to broaden your horizons. Travel and photography go hand in hand and an image that captures the mood and feeling of a destination can be extremely satisfying knowing that what you have captured is unique to your eyes only. Travel photography allows you the chance to tell a story without words, whilst creating a glimpse into a world that you and others might not have experienced before.

Over time and through trial and error, I have slowly improved my travel photography and learned some valuable lessons along the way that have stood me in good stead whilst enabling me to progress with my photography. So if travel photography is something that you are interested in, then here are my 9 tips to help improve your travel photography- I hope that you find this helpful!

1)Research your destination; before you visit somewhere do a little research and have a look for potential photography locations within the place that you are visiting. Make notes and mark them down on a map or google maps. Research guidebooks, look online and speak to the locals along with the people at your accommodation for that local insight and knowledge of the area.

2)Venture of the beaten track; whilst it is important to do your research, it is also a good idea to get lost within your travel destination. This will help you discover the inner hidden qualities that it has to offer and help you unearth unique photographs that no one has captured before. If you want different images and not the same type of photographs that everyone else gets, then losing yourself and finding new places is a must. Be sure to write down the address of your accommodation so that if you lose your bearings you can find your way back. Also, use your common sense and don’t venture into places that look or feel dangerous. Trust your instincts and keep yourself safe.

3)Master lighting; you can have all the best equipment and editing tools in the world at your disposal, but when all is said and done it is lighting that will be the biggest factor in determining how your photographs turn out. Mastering the art of manipulating and working with the best light available is key to progressing your photography and getting the best photographs possible.

4)Wake up early and stay out late; rising up for sunrise in the early hours of the morning allows you to capture that warm, soft lighting, helping to create those perfect images. It also allows you to beat the crowds and tourists, meaning that you will have your chosen location pretty much to yourself. Whilst at sunset you might not beat the crowds, you will still be able to get that same beautiful lighting as sunrise. The colours and lighting that you get around golden hour and blue hour can help you add those special finishing touches to your photographs.

5)Think about framing and perspective; Take time to consider how you are going to frame your photograph and from what angle. Consider your focal point and how you would like to fill the frame. Do you want to isolate a subject or add layers? Are you looking to add a human element or leading lines to your photograph? Also, try experimenting with finding new angles to shoot from as finding a different perspective can transform a photograph and help add a unique quality.

6)Always have a camera and Travel lightly; this might seem a bit obvious but you should always carry a camera with you everywhere you go. You always regret the photographs that you miss out on so make sure the odds are in your favour by always being ready should that photo opportunity present itself. A lot of photography is about timing and being in the right place at the right time. Also make sure to travel lightly as you don’t need masses of equipment and a lightweight tripod will go a long way to making your journey a lot more comfortable.

7)Have patience; whether you are waiting for that perfect lighting, less crowds or a human element to enter the frame, you will need to be prepared to wait and have patience to capture the image that you want. Waiting those extra 30 minutes could be the difference between a good photograph and a spectacular one.

8)Editing; post processing plays an important role in photography. It allows you the opportunity to make the finer adjustments that your photograph might need. Whilst it’s important to try and get the photograph as close to how you would like it in camera, you will probably still need to make some adjustments in post processing. Learning and having the ability to be able to manipulate the basics like highlights, shadows, exposure, white balance, contrast and tone curve, will help you make the small adjustments needed to add the finishing touches to your photographs.

9)Follow your own creative instincts; the moment that you start creating photographs for what you think people will like is the moment that you lose your own unique creativity. Photography is an art form meaning that it is subjective. What you like might not be what others like and that’s fine. So don’t change your style to please others or hold it up against standards that are perceived to be the correct way as there is no right or wrong. Create how you want to and your own unique style will filter through. Don’t follow the path-find you own!

Did you find these tips helpful? let me know in the comments below.

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