Travel photography: some thoughts

What does photography mean to me?

I strongly believe in the emotive power of photography. A silent medium to communicate but a medium with immense potential to bring a pertinent message across. Travel photography does the same.

Personally, I am into landscape and nature photography rather than into street photography and I find nature incredibly powerful and striking.

I try to focus on the story, the emotion and the composition before I take a photography. However more often than not (especially with wildlife) you dont have time to compose and you need to just take a few photos hoping you can capture a great moment.

Where do I learn and try to improve?

There are some really good resources on the Web/YouTube to learn more about photography.

I would highly recommend B&H channel on YouTube. They have professional photographers sharing tips, giving advise and I have learn a lot from them.

This is my favourite lecture on travel photography:

Travel Photography That Creates Lasting Impressions:

A simple yet powerful advise is “Think before you click”.

What should one use?

With the advances of technology especially mobile phones, does one need anything else? I had attended a talk by a blogger who said that besides the iPhone one doesn’t need anything more. While the iPhone or any top end phone is good for different styles, a DSLR or ILC can take photography to a new level especially in low light and creative photography. However the weight of these cameras can hurt over time.

Currently I have a DSLR and a point/shoot camera besides my phone. My recommendation would be to invest in a high end pocket camera to supplement your phone. This has the advantages of keeping the weight down while not compromising on quality. Having said that, I am also interested in buying an ILC. I love the flexibility of using multiple lenses and the opportunity to get closer to the subject, to get that stunning bokeh effect, to capture low light and to capture a city under lights.

A tripod is a must especially if low light and night photography is your passion.

Something to think about: If you don’t make money off photography then there is little need for a full frame camera.  An APS sensor based camera would be just fine.

Final word

From my experiences, here are 10 things to note:

1. Respect the boundaries of your subject
2. Always ask permission if your subject is a person (if you are not photographing a crowd)
3. Take as many photos as possible with different settings
4. Move away from auto mode. I usually use aperture priority or manual mode
5. Light matters – think about how light can enhance or distort a photograph.
6. Don’t forget to soak in the moment – you are probably there once
7. Take photos of sunsets and sun rises – worth the effort
8. Don’t rely on flash – use a tripod for long exposures
9. Take a photograph with minimal post processing in mind

10. Last but not least, don’t get caught up in technicalities. Just enjoy the moment!

Till the next time…

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