How To Get the Most Out of a Photography Trip

Photography trips can be a really exciting time and a fantastic way to build your portfolio and come home with once-in-a-lifetime images. But with the time constraints imposed by a vacation, it can be difficult to get everything you want. This helpful video discusses how to get the most out of a photography trip.

Coming to you from aows, this great video discusses how to get more out of a photography trip. You can definitely feel pressured when you are on a trip simply because of the time constraints inherent to them. Personally, I have found that it is important to not cling too tightly to any preconceived ideas you have about the trip. Of course, that does not mean you should not plan ahead at all or at least have some ideas of what you would like to photograph one you are there. But that being said, you will not be able to control things like the weather, or you may encounter unexpected circumstances that throw a wrench in things. It is a good idea to be willing to be flexible with your plans and embrace spontaneous opportunities as they arise. Check out the video above for the full rundown. 

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5 Comments

Tom Reichner's picture

The topic of this article really hits home!

I'm all about photography trips. Photo trips are what matter to me more than anything else in the world. They are, quite literally, what I live for.

I have found that the best way to get the most out of a photo trip is to extend the time of the trip as much as possible. When I photograph the Deer rut each fall, I go for a full month. I am in the deer woods every day before sunrise, and I stay out there until after the sun goes down. Every day. For 30 or 31 days straight.

On other wildlife photography trips, I don't usually have a full month to spend with my subjects, but I do try to stretch my time out as much as possible. Two to four days is never enough to really learn the habits of the animals in a new area. It often takes four or five days just to start to figure things out ..... then once I figure it out, it takes another week to get the kinds of image-making opportunities that I want.

I have sacrificed a lot to be able to spend sufficient time on photography trips. This means no wife, no kids, and no commitment to a full time job, as well as no commitment to a significant mortgage payment. If you want to truly have enough time to get the images you really want, then you'll have to give up most of the other things in life. Photography is far more important than any of those other things, so I have made it a priority over everything else.

Cool Cat's picture

I admire your commitment to photography, but if it's more important than your wife, kids and your job, wow that is mind blowing.

Tom Reichner's picture

But I don't have a wife or kids, or a full time job/career. I don't even have those things in my life, so it's not like I am ignoring a family so that I can go off photographing wildlife. I intentionally avoided making commitments that would hold me back from doing what I want and need to do.

W Mitty's picture

I hope you get the opportunity to return to RMNP-and that you can get to see the west side of the park, especially the wildlife. It is my favorite place in the world. I spend several weeks there nearly every year, and I never tire of it, nor lose my sense of awe about it. It is special. I am glad that you got to see it when you did. As beautiful as it is in good weather, when you get all of the classic mountain and valley views, it transforms when the weather turns into a ghostly wonderland that humbles you, but at the same time makes you feel wholly one with it. One of my favorite memories from 15 years ago is hiking in an early September snowstorm in Little Yellowstone Canyon. It became totally quiet except for the sound of the snowflakes landing on the trees and turned the canyon into a heartbreakingly beautiful scene.

Bear, Dream and Emerald Lakes are spectacular when the weather is nice, but overbearingly crowded. A little challenging weather and you can have it nearly to yourself. As disappointed as you may have been to not have good weather when you were there, I think you got much more unique and original photos. The classic photos are beautiful but eventually all look the same. For me, RMNP is good for hiking when it is nice, and good for photography when there is weather, especially at the high point of Trail Ridge Road.

My wish for you is that you find yourself inexorably drawn back to the park again and again. Once RMNP gets inside you, it is a lifelong love.

Kelly Edwards's picture

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