- Essential Tips to Fix Your Bad Photography Experiences
- The One Photography Accessory You Must Upgrade in 2019
Travel photography is one of the most exciting types of photography because not only do you get a chance to take a lot of different types of photos, but you also get to do so in fantastic locations around the globe.
Really, what could be better?!
Of course, creating the best travel photos requires a lot more work than what it might seem in famous travel photographers’ Instagram posts.
That is, you can’t just show up at a location and press the shutter button…
Instead, you need to plan and prepare, and with these quick travel photography tips, you can do just that!
Travel Photography Tip: You Don’t Need the Kitchen Sink
I know when I pack for a trip, my first inclination is to cram everything I can into my camera bag.
And though the thoughts of “what if” can be hard to put aside, you need to focus, pare down your kit, and only bring the bare minimum.
This is important because as you travel, the last thing you want to do is lug around a big, heavy bag. The less gear you bring, the less weight you have to carry and the smaller your bag can be.
What’s more, the more gear you bring, the more gear you have to be lost or stolen, so bringing a smaller kit is also a means of minimizing your loss should something happen.
I recommend bringing one camera body (mirrorless, if possible, to save weight), a solid prime like a 35mm, and a couple of zooms like a 24-70mm and a 70-200mm.
Of course, bring along lots of memory cards, a small tripod, spare batteries, and other necessities, too, like a good portable backup device (more on that below).
With that kind of kit, there’s really no subject that you can’t photograph. You’ll have the focal range for everything from landscapes to wildlife, portraits to architecture, and everything in between.
Best Camera Strap for Travel Photography
When planning a travel photography adventure, many people focus a lot of their attention on getting the ideal camera bag.
And while a good bag is a must for travel photography, I think a good camera strap is just as important.
While your bag needs to protect your gear as you travel, your camera strap needs to protect your camera while you’re shooting.
Not only that, your strap should make the act of shooting an easier, more functional, and more comfortable process as well.
A few months ago, I bought a HiiGuy Camera Strap off of Amazon for less than $30. I bought it because I wanted to test an inexpensive camera strap to see how it stood up to my more expensive ones.
I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised!
In fact, the next trip I take, my Nikon D850 will be attached to my HiiGuy strap - it’s that good!
Not only is this strap comfortable thanks to its large shoulder pad, but it’s highly adjustable too. That means I have an easier time fine-tuning how my camera hangs on my body to maximize my comfort level.
Additionally, the strap has an integrated pocket on the shoulder pad, which is perfect for carrying a couple of extra memory cards - something you’ll need quick access to as you travel and take tons of photos.
When you travel, you want a strap that provides the ultimate protection for your gear, and HiiGuy certainly delivers on that front.
The strap attaches to the camera in two different ways - via an anchor screw on the bottom of the camera and then again via a security strap that works as a fail-safe should the anchor become detached.
These components are made of high-quality metal so they’re strong and give you the confidence you need to carry your expensive gear.
I toted my D850 with an L-bracket and a 70-200mm lens around Boston a couple of months ago with my HiiGuy strap and it worked beautifully, even with that big, heavy rig. I simply can’t recommend this thing highly enough for your next photography adventure!
Top Portable Backup Device for Travel Photography
When you're on-the-go, you don't want to drag around a huge NAS to backup all your photos and videos. Instead, you want something small that packs a mighty punch.
The HyperDrive Colorspace UDMA3 fits the bill perfectly.
This portable storage and backup device comes in two sizes - 1TB and 500GB. Since I'm taking more and more videos when I travel, I opted for the 1TB version.
This thing has been rock solid and has worked flawlessly since I picked it up, so in addition to being uber portable (it weighs just about a pound), it offers reliable performance too.
It has WiFi and supports both Ad Hoc and Infra modes. You can wirelessly share your files and synchronize data with another hard drive if you need. You can replace and install a traditional HDD or an SSD if you prefer as well.
It also has a memory card slot that accommodates CompactFlash Type I and has two SDXC slots as well. Add in a USB 2.0 port, and you have tons of options for saving and connecting to other devices.
In other words, this little rig is the ideal travel companion. You can organize, edit, and sync your images, browse and share files, and even recover accidentally deleted files with this backup device. Not bad, right?!
Write Things Down About Your Travels
Part of what makes travel photos so compelling is the story that goes with the images.
That means that as you travel around taking photos, take a few moments to jot down some notes about what you’re photographing.
The more backstory or history you can provide about the people, places, and things you photograph - as well as your experience being there - the more engaging your photos will become.
Get Away From Tourist Hot Spots
There are certainly iconic spots that you have to photograph when you travel. I mean, you can’t go to Venice without getting a shot of the Grand Canal…
But don’t spend all your time jockeying for position with hundreds of other tourists to get that one iconic photo you always see everyone else taking.
Instead, do your best to get those postcard-like shots, and then challenge yourself to get off the beaten path.
Ask locals where some beautiful locations are that tourists might not know about, and dedicate some time to exploring those locations.
After all, you never know when you might stumble upon some off-the-beaten-path location that has all kinds of opportunities for taking breathtaking (and unique) travel photos.