Taking Great Travel Photos!
Photography Tips for Tourists

Leisure Pursuits

senior man carrying cameraTraveling is a favorite pastime for thousands of people all over the world. Whether you’re exploring abroad or taking a road trip with some friends, making memories is a big part of the plan. To preserve those moments travelers take pictures – they take lots and lots of pictures.

The next time you venture away from home, give these tips a try to help you take the best possible pictures and save those experiences for years to come.

1. Practice Nighttime Photography

You’ll want to be ready for anything while traveling, which includes the need to shoot at night. Most photos taken when the sun is down develop too dark to view. Practice with the various functions and settings on your camera/phone beforehand, so that you can quickly take any type of photo necessary. For evening shots, you’ll want to be comfortable with your camera’s exposure settings (for some phones this is as simple as a tap on the screen).

2. The Right Lighting

The middle of the day is generally not a great time to take photos. When the sun is at its peak it causes harsh shadows across people’s faces, which can make for some less-than-ideal images. Try shooting in the shade whenever you need to take a noontime picture, and visit outdoor tourism destinations in the morning and early evening to maximize your photographic potential.

3. Avoid Boring Snapshots

Chances are you’re going to want to share these photos with people, either online or in person later: so make them interesting! People can go online to see photos of landmarks anytime, so make sure your photos are more personal. Capture the moment, not the location, and even include the faces of locals, fellow tourists, and the group you’re traveling with.

4. Rule of Thirds

If you are using your phone as a camera, it may have nine faint boxes across the viewfinder. This is due to the “Rule of Thirds.” For years artists and photographers have used this technique to draw eyes across the image, instead of just the center. If you can place the subjects of your photo on one of the four points where the two horizontal and vertical lines intersect, you’ll have more intriguing images to share!

5. Step Closer…

It can be tempting to use the zoom function of your camera to “be closer” to something you’d like to take a photo of. However, for the highest quality photo, it’s actually better to move closer to the subject when possible. If you have a choice between zooming in and stepping closer, choose the latter to create a more robust image.

6. Don’t Hog the Camera!

Don’t take all of your own photos. Fight the control freak within you and share the camera with friends and family. Not only will you be able to add new and exciting photos to your album, but you may find yourself to be the subject of one or two as well.

7. Keep the Camera Outsenior woman posing for the camera

Most people have their camera ready for snapshots when they’re out and about, or heading to a particular attraction. Try taking some photos between those moments. Capture the waiting, the meals, the time around your hotel, and any other moment that buffers the more touristy times. Those memories may become your most treasured of all.

You deserve to enjoy your vacation and remember the good times as often as you like. These tips will help you preserve the good times with friends, family, or on your own as you explore new and exciting places and cultures anywhere in the world. As always, check with a physician before traveling, and investigate your destination to understand any health risks and travel advisories before you go. Have fun and take some great photos!