"You don't have to be an expert photographer to follow these 7 simple tips for better travel photography!"
Here are my favorite ways to add a little pizzaz to your travel pics, whether you're capturing memories with a smartphone, Canon DSLR camera or GoPro.
1. Start with the basics, symmetry.
Symmetry is simple to do. Align your focal point in the center, capture images that have a similar or identical left/right side for a cool framing effect around the central focal point.
2. Shadow & light play
Manipulating shadows and light can highlight certain areas of an image and add drama. Here I featured streaks of light across a mountainside, striking beams of light at night, dark silhouettes with a cityscape and sunrise framed by darkness.
3. Through objects
I love depicting an "inside looking out" vantage point in my travel photography. I do this by capturing landscapes or distant objects inside of things like windows, rails, fences, or even large architectural elements like the aqueduct featured in the far right image above.
4. Foreground objects
There's no better way to add depth to an image than by having an object in the foreground. An image can look flat when everything in the picture is at the same distance. Try blurring objects in the foreground and only focusing on what's further away for even more professional looking photos!
5. Blurred Motion
This is how I depict motion in an image. Most smartphones will do this automatically, or you can use a lower shutter speed on a digital camera. Fountains and waterfalls are the easiest place to start, where everything in the image is in focus and the water blurs. However, I'm a huge fan of standing in the middle of a crowd and using this technique on the passers-by. It's my favorite way to showcase a city in motion!
6. Upward perspective
I find scenes to be more interesting when the camera is at a near perfect straight angle looking up. Especially when there is something interesting, symmetrical, or a cool detail that you otherwise wouldn't have noticed. For example, the palm trees above seem more towering with an upward perspective. Combine this technique with symmetry and you get an image like the La Sagrada Familia staircase I captured above.
7. Minimalism & architecture
I think unique buildings and interesting architecture look best against a monochrome background... making the sky a perfect choice! The eye is forced to look at a building's details when there is nothing else in the image.
Keep these tips in mind to enhance your travel photography, even if you're only using a smartphone. And as always, these are just my opinions and what works for me!