10 Travel Photography Tips Every Traveller Should Master!


Neha Raheja

Neha loves exploring off the beaten path places and is an avid reader. When she isn't reading, she is probably cooking while singing, dreaming of food, or playing with her adorable 7 months daughter.

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You’ve often heard that a picture is worth a thousand words. As a photographer, it’s your job to convey those words through your picture! It’s important to use emotion and freeze moments to click great pictures! When you summit the top of the mountain and click that incredible view, the photo should be great enough to gush back all the memories even when you look at the picture years later. Not just that beautiful view you captured, but probably the snowy rocks you crossed on the way, the cold wind splashing water on your face from a nearby waterfall, the gorgeous pine trees, the memories you had with your squad. The photo is powerful enough to tell a story.

You don’t take a photograph, you make it’ –  Ansel Adams

So read on to know some basic tips to capture great pictures!

1. The early bird gets the worm


Yes, you read that right! If you want to capture that amazing unique shot, you better get there before the place is swamped by tourists. The best pictures are captured early in the morning and around sunset. The light is just right to give your pictures the right glow and warmth. Sunsets are also great for photography as the lights are quite eye-pleasing, and the lights around are beginning to turn on. Shooting pictures at noon on a bright sunny day is an absolute NO. Take that time to trek, rest, explore. Leave travel photography for mornings & evenings.

2. Rule of Thirds

This is probably one of the most important tips in mastering travel Photography. This can be easily done by using the grid feature on your camera. Once you turn that on, your screen will break up into thirds, horizontally & vertically. It is important to place the focused object on the grid lines, instead of the plain old boring centre. This will bring life to the image & make the photo interesting. Also, always remember to keep the horizons straight. Never click pictures while you are moving.

3. Lightweight Travel Tripod

This is more important than you can imagine! A Tripod is perfect for those sunrise/sunset shots, low light photography, gushing waterfalls, and panoramic landscapes. With the tripod, you can easily shoot slower shutter speeds and concentrate on the composition of the image rather than worrying about the handshake & blurry images.

4. Experiment with Composition

Never be satisfied with your first idea of a click. Experiment in various ways and then settle with the best output. Try shooting from different angles, but also from different distances. Take that shot standing and the second one may be lying down. Wherever possible, try to include a powerful foreground, midground, and background elements. This gives the viewer a 3D experience.

Take a look at the below picture:

Photo Credit – @arindam_10 (Instagram)

Your attention will be first drawn to the rocks (foreground), the river then (the midground), and then the distant mountain (the background). This makes a normal image exceptional.

5. Human Element is powerful

Do you remember how viral were Murad Osman’s Follow Me Pictures? Reason? Human element. A human element always makes a picture personal. The viewer should be able to relate to that element and think of it as himself. How do you do that? Show the back of the human element, or maybe a silhouette. Or just have the face looking somewhere else. How to make a picture powerful depends on your decisions while clicking.

6. Patience, patience & patience


Dear photographer, always remembers that the secret to great photography is patience. Have you seen the pictures of the northern lights? You can’t even imagine how much the photographer waited to capture that mesmerizing shot. Wait and think before you click that shutter. Are the clouds really in the eye-pleasing position? Will this shot look better if someone passes the road? Will the sunset look better in the next 10 minutes? Photography requires dedication and waiting for the right moment to capture.

7. Use of Colour

Colours opposite on the wheels generally looks amazing together. Thinks sunflowers and blue skies, arid brown mountains and azure water. The combination is important. Colours don’t need to be balanced. Great shots mainly have one colour in the majority and the other supporting colour in minority.

8. Use the manual mode

Modern cameras may be great, but the manual mode is always better. If you adjust aperture manually, you have more control over the depth of field of your picture. When you manually control shutter speed, you are able to capture motion in better and creative ways. When you manually control ISO, you can reduce the noise of your pictures and also handle low lights or tricky lighting situations.

9. Get lost on purpose

You may capture the sunset like everyone else usually does! But that’s not what makes an exceptional picture. Discover new places only if you make an effort to take the route less travelled. Chances are you will stumble upon a splendid view. Always carry a camera with you! Even if you are just stepping out of your hotel for lunch!

10. Location Scouting


Always do your research before you go to the location. You may discover so many hidden places by Instagram photos or your basic google search. Find out all the iconic locations beforehand. You should know what time does a particular attraction opens, what time is the best time to avoid tourists, how to get to a vantage point, and what time is the best view. You can maximize your time by doing some basic research about your location in advance.

Start practicing today to hone your photography skills so your pictures can be powerful & speak a story.

Don’t shoot what it looks like, shoot what it feels like!

About Author

Neha Raheja
Neha loves exploring off the beaten path places and is an avid reader. When she isn't reading, she is probably cooking while singing, dreaming of food, or playing with her adorable 7 months daughter.