I had an interesting dialogue with a fellow traveler the other day. What is a travel photographer and how do I become one? I said as follows..
By continuously improving your methods. I would say that a travel photographer has clear intent on creating travel photography that inspires people to travel and explore. To become a paid travel photographer is more difficult with so much competition. But as a starting point, think about what you want your photos to convey. Methods can be studied and improved on, try to find your own way of expressing ideas with a camera.
Suggestions for continuous photography improvement
Here are five ideas to develop (travel or other) photography further:
- Work with composition. The rule of thirds is a winner. And when you learn how to break that rule, you can create unexpected and eyecatching results.
- Don’t forget the focal point(s). What is it that you want the viewer should notice when they look at your photo? Is there a feeling or a thought you want to convey to the viewer? Remember the rule of thirds.
- Play around with the perspective. Too many take photos from their shoulder height. Crouch down, stand on a bench and tilt your camera as you take a photo around a corner.
- Find patterns in daily life and apply the technique forced perspective for an interesting effect.
- Light is your bright friend, but it has a moody companion Shadow. Find shadows that highlight, or obscure, interesting details. This could make a mundane setting all the more soothing, upsetting, or exciting.
Reading resources to improve your travel photography
Below are a few links that could come in handy to improve your photography. There is no end goal, only the next time the camera shutter button is pressed to create a new photo. Of course, travel photography does not start or begin there. You will benefit from a vision, an idea of what feeling or thought you want to convey. Also, post-processing in your photo editing tool, such as Photoshop, is a big part of it.
So, to call oneself a travel photographer.. Well, focus more on the joy of honing your photography skills, and less on the title while enjoying the process.
By Paul-Christian Markovski