When I first published my 'travel photography' article online,
back in 1999, we were still using Fujichrome, transparency film. Now travel photographers
carry spare memory cards.
The art of taking photographs hasn't changed since then; although it
seems more people are using telephones to call the shots.
I still use my mobile phone to talk to people, but whatever works for
The worse thing about being a travel photographer on the road used
to be waiting to get the films developed and seeing the results.
I would shoot rolls and rolls of film to increase my chances of
getting something close to what I thought might work; the kind of shots that busy picture
editors were looking for, or didn't realise were even out there.
It would sometimes be months before I could see if the light and
camera angle had played together well with the subject, to create the stunning image I
Travel photography, in the digital age, has become instant. We can
even take pictures on a sailing trip and view (chimp) them, before the yacht ties up in
Smart phones can be used to connect to online services like Twitpic, which in turn tweets a link to
your picture through Twitter.
9:36 PM Jan 15th, 2009 via TwitPic
A famous example being when an US Airways Airbus A320 went down in the
Hudson River and Janis Krums (@jkrums) was on hand
to record the moment - with the presence of mind to tweet it!
It's actually a very good photograph; something most photo-journalists
would have been proud of, with the dirty lens somehow adding to the visual drama. News
editors too, would have liked how fast the picture circulated around the world.
Shame there wasn't a Pulitzer Prize for Citizen
Another service, TweetPhoto,
will even broadcast to more social networks - Facebook, Foursquare, LinkedIn and MySpace.
Gone are the days when a photographer's anticipation quickly turns
The tense feeling in our stomachs...... when our photographic memories
returned from the lab, after a visit to far-off locations, and we discovered that the
elusive, perfect shot, just didn't happen...... has been erased.
This is sometimes replaced, however, by a sense of disappointment when
you click on enthusiastically-shared, Twitpic links.
Whether you're brandishing camera equipment that costs more than
some people earn in a year or waving your telephone around in the air, really concentrate
on what's in the frame - and what shouldn't be.
If you train yourself to look, then you will see better results; no
matter how financially serious a photorapher you are.
When I had a whole bag of camera bodies and lenses
stolen in China, three days
before Christmas (1996), I bought a ten dollar instamatic from
Tian'Men Square, and
continued on to Vietnam
Travel Photography Tips
Get in close - to focus
on something specific.
Fill the frame with the scene -
so that the viewer's eye doesn't wander.
When photographing the tourist sites, try a different angle of something
that has already been photographed a million times, or try for a detail that really makes it
A natural border will lead the
viewer's eye in to the subject. But don't overdo this, unless you want all your pictures
to essentially look the same.
For people photographs, by all means take that picture of someone you
know at wherever in the world it is you are, but try and make the image more stimulating.
Perhaps think about photographing strangers; to give your pictures a more local flavour.
Images of architectural structures often look better in evening
lighting conditions; and if you're looking, you may even see reflections.
Hortobagy, the oldest stone bridge in Hungary.
For sharing your images on the Internet, save photographs as jpeg
files, and try to keep the sizes small. Not only will loading speed improve, but you'll
also have room for more photographs if your storage space is limited.
Think Like an Editor
Digital photographers can throw away the misses and maybe even try
again, on the spot - and should.
Not only does editing 'in camera' save time at the computer screen
later, it also frees up memory space for better pictures.
Even if you're not a professional travel photographer, your social
networking friends will be more impressed if you took the time to select images worth
sharing, rather than rolling out your whole series of phone-snaps.
Sell Your Digital Photography Online:
Serious photographers need serious online solutions with unlimited storage, unlimited
traffic and a built-in web commerce solution with credit card processing to handle sales
of high-quality images.
Phone Tips - By Jim White.
If you want to make money from your travel photography, keep an eye on the body of work
that other feature photographers are selling.
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