Regardless of whether you’re a novice photographer that gets to travel a lot or a professional photographer that travels a lot on assignment, getting to see the world and photograph it is an enviable position to be in. But just being able to travel and photograph things doesn’t mean that your travel photos will turn out well or that clients will be clamoring to buy them. Sure, your knowledge, skills, and level of talent will play into the results you get, but there are other factors that can make or break your photos as well.
If you want to see improved results, there are three really simple changes you can make that will maximize your ability to get the best shots.
Don’t Edit on the Road
It might seem counterintuitive, but shying away from editing your photos on the road will actually improve your results. Why? The less time you spend uploading your photos, culling them, and editing those that remain, the more time you will have to actually see the sights, explore the area, and find new and interesting subject matter to photograph. Focus all your efforts on actually taking pictures, and your trip will be more enjoyable, less stressful, and give you the time you need out in the field to take as many photos as possible.
Switching to a mirrorless system can be a totally liberating experience for a travel photographer. After all, mirrorless set ups are much more compact and lightweight than their DSLR counterparts. With less bulk and less weight, you’ll be able to move about more freely. Instead of checking a hard case (or two) full of your DSLR gear, you can probably fit everything you need for your mirrorless system in a single carry-on bag. What’s more, if your desired shoot location requires a trek to get there, not only will you have less weight to carry, but you won’t have to pick and choose what gear to take because you’ll be able to fit it all in your backpack.
Simplify Your Backups
Backing up all the photos you take is obviously a critical step toward your success. In years past, this meant dumping your photos onto your laptop or bulky external hard drive. But today, there are many products that allow you to circumvent your laptop altogether and transfer your photos straight from your SD card to a storage device. These wireless external hard drives are small and feature rich. You can easily find a hard drive with 1-2 TB of storage - plenty for a vacation’s worth of photos and videos - that has a built-in card reader and wireless connectivity with multiple devices. Plus, this kind of setup means you can work on avoiding editing time; just pop your SD card into the hard drive, let it work its magic, and take your clean card and camera back out for more photos.
Remember, these three tricks aren’t the end-all, be-all for incredible travel photography. But, they will certainly help in your pursuit of improved photos and a better travel experience. With less gear to carry, more functional gear, and a commitment to spending your time taking photos rather than editing them, you’re sure to see improved results as you travel and photograph the world.