Always bring your camera.
Even if it’s just your point and shoot that you throw in your bag – always be prepared because you never know when you’ll come across a person, place, or thing that you will want to remember.
Don’t forget the people.
Often times when traveling, you focus so much on the landscape and tourist attractions, and not enough on the people who
live there. I think the people make the location – and it is always interesting to get portraits of different personalities.
Please be respectful of people’s emotions and cultures. It’s always best to ask them if you could take their picture before shoving a camera in their face and getting all up in their business.
Utilize your different shooting modes.
Take the time to adjust the camera modes for the specific shot you are taking. Especially if you are used to just keeping it on automatic all the time. When shooting a landscape, change it to landscape. For a portrait, change to portrait mode. You get the picture. It could make a big difference in the outcome of your photos, and all it takes is like 2 seconds.
Bring extra batteries.
It’s happened to all of us one time or another. Something great happens, you whip out your camera, the red battery light flashes, and the moment is gone. If you have a rechargable battery, make sure it is fully charged before you go out for the day…plus bring an extra. And if you use disposable batteries – bring lots and lots and lots with you.
Don’t be afraid to ask someone to take a picture.
Instead of being Mr./Mrs. Independent and wanting to do everything for yourself, kindly ask someone around you to take your picture so you can be in it as well. You don’t want every picture of yourself from your trip being at arms length, with half the arm showing in the picture b/c it’s holding the camera, up the nose shot – do you? Didn’t think so…and besides, it’s always fun talking to other people in new places.
Learn to use your self timer.
If there is nobody around, and you still insist on being Mr./Mrs. Independent, set your camera on a tripod, or even a table, pillar, or anything that is flat and sturdy, and bust out the self timer. Resist the in your face picture for hundredth time!
When the lights go out, turn off your flash.
One good way to ruin a potentially beautiful shot is when you use the flash at night when all the city lights/moon light is setting a perfect mood. You’ll probably have to use a longer shutter speed to do this, so be careful it doesn’t get blurry. But trust me, your results will be so much more satisfactory.
It’s also good to know how to turn your flash off for those times where there is a “No Flash Photography” rule.
Savor the flavor.
I like to take pictures of the the food I eat wherever I go. It seems that I can remember the taste better when I see the picture.
The food is all part of the traveling experience anyways.
Live in the moment and create your memories.
I find myself in a conflicting situation when I travel. Part of me wants to lose the camera and be 100% in the moment, and create a memory that I know is genuine. The other part of me knows that 5 years down the road, my memory will most likely fade from those moments, and it is the photographs that can bring me back to every last detail of those memories. Does anyone else feel this way?
My advice would be to find the balance. Don’t waste your time taking thousands of pictures that don’t – or won’t- mean anything to you. Enjoy yourself, and take pictures of those experiences that you do want to remember forever.