Great travel photography: A picture really is worth a thousand words
For me, one reason I love to travel is to capture the destination and its people in photographs. I can relive vivid moments just by looking at a photo I made. Yes, made! There is a difference between “taking” and “making” a photograph. Making a photo involves attention to lighting, subject matter and composition (how the subject fits into the background).
The most interesting photos are usually not planned. I personally like to venture off the normal path to discover unusual opportunities. Portraits of people in their everyday lives can also help convey what the destination is all about. I always ask permission before I photograph someone and usually offer them a small tip or token for their time. You can create magical images by getting up close to the subject. I try to get as near as possible (without offending) or use a telephoto lens to shoot from a distance.
Don’t be afraid to explore. Look for unusual sights. Get into the culture of a destination. You never can tell what might end up in your viewfinder! Here are a few more tips that will help you make your vacation photos really “worth a thousand words”:
- Subdued lighting is almost always best. Bright sunshine can give you harsh shadows. Shade or cloudy days are preferable.
- When composing the photo, think in “thirds.” You should be able to divide what you see in your viewfinder in three parts for the most pleasing composition.
- There are many opportunities to help get into the heart of a destination. Often times local tourist boards can set up “meet the people” type excursions. In addition, photography tours for all different experience levels are readily available.
Here is one of my favorite photos, taken in Italy, of a local woman standing in her window. And, another of a local artist in Dubrovnik, Croatia.