5 Tips for Taking Great Vacation Photos

Travel can offer people unique experiences to see the world, and for the budding photographer, offers the opportunity to take pictures that wouldn’t otherwise be possible when you’re at home. From photographing majestic mountains to rugged coastlines and everything in between, there are many ways you can document your vacation whilst putting your creative talents to work.

You don’t have to own specialist equipment to achieve these masterpieces; in fact, with a little bit of know-how, you can accomplish great looking photos with the gear you already have. Here’s our top five ways to take great travel photographs.

1. Get to know your destination

Take some time to get to know your destination before you depart for your trip. Arriving unprepared to your travel destination means that you’ll end up with little time to plan and carry out your shots.

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With no time to fully research the area and landmarks, you’ll end up with an itinerary that doesn’t allow for getting the perfect photograph. Knowing what sort of shots you want before you depart can help you to think of creative ways to capture the target, so give your plan some careful attention in order to make the most of your trip.

2. Have the tools at your disposal

We’ve mentioned that you don’t require special equipment to take great travel photos. In fact, you can create great shots with amazing effects using just your smartphone.

The resolution on your smartphone’s camera is often good enough to take highly detailed photos without additional help, but to get that professional feel you should avail yourself of the use of travel photography apps. These apps will help you to edit your images the way that professional photographers do, so that you’ll produce a great looking photograph with flawless detail.

3. Stand out from the crowd

The last thing you want to do is recreate the same old photos that everyone else is taking. In order to stand out from the crowd, you need to get creative about the ways you showcase any given destination. Steer clear of the areas that look crowded, and if you need to line up to get your shot then you’re in the wrong place.

Puerto Seco Beach, Discovery Bay, Jamaica, Caribbean, West Indies. Image shot 2007. Exact date unknown.

Secure your camera and get to those out of the way places to get your shot, even if it means getting off the beaten track. The end result will be the envy of photographers young and old, and it will be well worth your effort.

4. Compose your shots

Haphazardly composed shots can come across like any other point-and-shoot holiday snap. Rather than take any old photo, use design elements to compose inspiring shots.

The use of the rule of thirds, leading lines, natural frames and symmetry can help to create perspective and focus within your shots, and knowing how to compose your photo in line with these principles will help to achieve an eye-catching effect.

5. Tell a story

Taking one-off photos is all well and good, but travelling offers you the opportunity to construct a narrative from a series of images. They say that a picture says a thousand words, and you’ll be able to tell a complete story through a series of related images. Find ways to link one photograph to another, and be subtle in your story telling so your audience can interpret an idea that means something to them. This will draw people to your work and transform your images from holiday snaps into works of art.

By documenting your travel experience photographically so that you can share your feelings and thoughts about a region or landmark with your audience. Your images have the power to inspire people, and you don’t need any fancy equipment to achieve this. Next time you take a trip, be sure to pack your camera or smartphone so that you can capture the spirit of your travel.