3 Tips to Improve Your Travel Photography

When traveling, it's often the case that photographers zero in on the iconic sights that everyone else gets: the Eiffel Tower in France, Big Ben in London, etc. But instead of capturing what everyone else gets, there are ways to capture the feel of a place without necessarily getting the "standard" shot.

Travel and lifestyle photographer Patrick Stapleton shares a few tips and tricks that he uses when he's in a different country shooting photographs in this video. While there's nothing wrong with the "Instagram shot" that shows that you're in the location; after all, a location is popular because it offers a reliably good photograph. That's generally what people expect.

To get a little more off the beaten path, Stapleton suggests three things: try to show that you're in a location without showing the obvious tell that you're in the location, add people, and look for details.

For the first suggestion, that often means incorporating key sights into the background of a photo, but not necessarily making it the focus. That could mean finding a different object or person for the foreground or incorporating people or parts of the language of the area in the photos.

That second piece of advice about people is something that photojournalists work to do all the time. Incorporating people in an image, whether it's incidentally or intentionally, makes for a stronger image. Sometimes, it's even just a portrait of a person that can tell the story of a place, Stapleton adds.

Finally, where photographers are often concerned with the wide angles, the big picture shots that are expected from a particular place, sometimes it's showing the little details that can reveal the story of the place, give the viewer something the wide, scene-setting photo doesn't give them.

Do you have travel photography tips of your own to share? Leave them in the comments below.

Wasim Ahmad's picture

Wasim Ahmad is an assistant teaching professor teaching journalism at Quinnipiac University. He's worked at newspapers in Minnesota, Florida and upstate New York, and has previously taught multimedia journalism at Stony Brook University and Syracuse University. He's also worked as a technical specialist at Canon USA for Still/Cinema EOS cameras.

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