Whether you are a beginner or an experienced photographer, you undoubtedly anticipate returning from a vacation with a massive collection of jaw-dropping travel photos. You sincerely hope that these images will either remind you of how wonderful it was to visit new locations or that they will perfectly complement your portfolio and Instagram feed.
Taking into account all of these goals, some photographers bring massive cameras and load up their backpacks with equipment. Others choose mirrorless cameras for convenience, yet a smartphone is more than capable of capturing a dozen artistic, expert-quality trip photos. Why? It turns out that modern smartphones like the iPhones, Google Pixels, and Huawei models are so technologically powerful that you can truly afford to limit your photographic experiments to your phone.
Plan your next trip so that you may attempt each of these travel photography techniques once you are armed with them.
Basic Smartphone Photography Tips For Great Travel Photos
1. Get To Know Your Smartphone
The best thing you can do to snap trip photos like an expert is to familiarise yourself with your smartphone, no matter how unimportant it may appear.
Explore your smartphone’s camera settings before a vacation or if you have a lengthy journey. What variations does it have? Does it provide manual shutter speed and exposure adjustments? Is it possible to take RAW photos? You may get an idea of the types of images that are available without needing to lug along suitcases of equipment thanks to all these options on a smartphone camera.
The majority of the most recent smartphones give you more control over the photos you take and offer settings and capabilities that are comparable to mirrorless or DSLR cameras. If you decide that this is a possibility, you will soon learn when you can travel with confidence and ease using only your smartphone and when you need to carry along more sophisticated shooting equipment.
2. Stabilize Your Smartphone
You may want to use a tripod or smartphone stabilizer for a variety of reasons. The biggest benefit is that it sharpens your photographs. Additionally, it enables fluid movement when capturing panoramic pictures. What’s even more exciting is that you may catch unexpected perspectives and give your vacation photos a more artistic, even cinematic, look by using a tripod or a stabilizer.
The only drawback is having to pack a little bit extra equipment, but with time, you’ll notice a difference between photos taken with a tripod and a smartphone and those without, especially if you’re working in low light.
3. Polish Up The Basic Rules Of Composition
Setting up the camera on your smartphone may seem like the first step in taking beautiful trip shots, but this is only the beginning. You need to perfect the fundamental compositional guidelines if you want to take your travel photography to the next level.
The golden ratio guideline will assist you in choosing a topic, and symmetry will give your artwork elegance and thoughtfulness. The beautiful thing about brushing up on the fundamentals is that you’ll also learn how to bend these guidelines for smartphone photography. The most imaginative travel photos occasionally break all the rules.
4. Use Burst Mode
Pay close attention to your camera’s burst mode. Although it can appear pointless at first, it is the perfect option for travelers who want to get some action photographs.
You can’t be sure that you’ll be able to push the shutter at the exact moment the action takes place when a person, a pet, or any other subject in the picture is moving. You are aware, nevertheless, that you can make this shot. Your only hope in this situation is burst mode. It enables you to shoot a dozen images in a single second and gives you access to a large collection.
5. Clean Your Camera Lens
The most important unwritten rule of photography is to keep your camera lenses clean. Do not utilize a napkin you find on the table or your t-shirt to do that. Purchase a soft wipe that will clean the lens of any debris and enhance the beauty of your pictures.
Every time you want to snap a photo, make it a habit to clean the camera’s lens. Your photographs now have contrast and clarity that they did not have previously.
6. Let Autofocus Be An Advantage
If you’re accustomed to using your DSLR in manual mode, focusing on a smartphone may seem like a drawback. You can, however, always alter your perspective and take advantage of this.
For instance, you may utilize your phone to take creative and odd pictures while it is having problems focusing. When photographing a well-known tourist destination that has been photographed by countless travel photographers from across the world, this may be very helpful. Without a perfect focus, the winking Eiffel Tower could appear twice as attractive. Blurry photographs have their aesthetics. Let the constraints of a smartphone inspire your creativity.
Advanced Photography Tips For Creative Travel Images
1. Get A Different Perspective on Ordinary Things
This advice can be taken in one of two directions. One option is to approach situations literally while experimenting with different perspectives and angles. Bring a drone with you to add vacation photos from above to your portfolio or Instagram feed.
On the other side, you may use your unique perspective to photograph popular tourist spots or unusually capture everyday objects. This implies that if you are stuck in a downpour in the tropics, leave your hotel and embark on an expedition instead. You might be able to get several distinctive images that depict living in a southern locale during a storm. Additionally, you may dispel the myth that it’s always pouring cats and dogs in London by creating a project on the bright weather in the UK.
Regardless of how you interpret this advice, if you just defy convention and opt to be open to possibilities rather than playing it safe, you’ll undoubtedly be able to capture some unique vacation photos on your smartphone.
2. Let The Sun Do Magic
You should undoubtedly schedule some time when traveling for some golden hour photos. It is truly lovely during the first hour of light following sunrise and the final hour before nightfall. You may play with bokeh, backlighting, and other techniques at this hour since the light is softer.
The fact that the light changes every second during the last few hours of daylight outside is one of its great aspects. You will note that you have a distinctive shot with natural lighting in all the colors and hues as you wait, move, focus, and take the photo, especially if you are capturing portraits.
3. Think Twice About Using Flash
Given that there are more individuals opposed to using a flash than supporters, this advice on vacation photography may be the most divisive on the list. Flash, however, may provide new possibilities and enhance your photos. You merely need to be aware of the right time to employ it.
Flash may be used for more than just making items pop out and providing contrast to an image with colors. It will impart a 3D look to the photograph by separating the subject from the background and generating a contrast of light.
Flash is frequently utilized in fashion photography to give pictures a little glitz and assertiveness. If you base your choice on the available light, flash may also be used for vacation photography. You may do this by deciding on a theme for a collection of flash-powered trip photos. For instance, you’ll undoubtedly need to utilize a flash in dimly lit nightclubs or streets if you want to capture the local underground music scene.
4. Find A Theme
Regardless of your views on philosophy, telling a cohesive story with your collection of trip photos is a professional approach to photography, whether you want to share it on Instagram or not. It enables one to create a tale about the adventures they had, the people they met, or the places they went. All the pictures come together beautifully.
Use some of the creative travel suggestions from the points below to help you come up with a photographic topic that interests you.
5. Embrace Creative Travel Photography Ideas
There is little likelihood of creating a brand-new photographic category in a world where practically everything has previously been created, but there is a potential to pioneer a photography style. The greatest course of action in this situation is to embrace creativity and, as we mentioned earlier, adopt a fresh viewpoint on everyday objects.
Are you traveling to Germany? Investigate the origins of the Bauhaus movement while taking some unusual viewpoints on various structures.
Are you going to Georgia? Imagine a collection of sincere close-ups of people and the environment. Photograph the lines that people in mountain towns have, take pictures of the donkeys they feed, and try macro photography of the food or crops they grow. Details occasionally provide more information than any other source. Remember that one of the key visual trends of 2020 is sincere close-ups.
If you are a food enthusiast, you may focus only on food photography and capture pictures of regional foods, beverages, and kitchens.
Do you believe that daytime landscape photography is dull? Take some pictures just before or during the sunset. You may also approach street photography by focusing on individuals rather than structures and creating a unique narrative.
All of these concepts may be expanded upon and turned into a comprehensive trip photography undertaking. Don’t overlook editing and post-production, which are both readily accomplished with the aid of mobile editing tools.
The Power Of Mobile Editing Apps
Even though using a mobile device to take pictures is sometimes seen as cheating, post-production, and editing are still necessary for your shots. In reality, smartphone editing tools like Snapseed and VSCO allow you to significantly alter your original photographs. Using the tools provided by the different applications, they enable both simple editing (change brightness, contrast, saturation, and sharpness) and more complex post-processing of photographs.
We are delighted to dispel the misconception that using a smartphone limits you to simply taking photos for your library or a beginner’s Instagram account in this post. The newest mobile smartphones provide several settings that enable capturing high-quality, professional photos without having to lug about a bulky gear bag.
Save these suggestions for smartphone creative trip photography to produce pictures that are genuine, expert, and distinctive.