me+cacti

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Welcome to my blog. I document my adventures in travel, style, and dating. Enjoy!

7 tips for taking good travel photos of yourself

7 tips for taking good travel photos of yourself

I am not a professional photographer, but I have learned a thing or two just by experimenting with my photos. Here are my top tips for taking good travel photos:

1) Buy a good camera and learn how to personalize your settings (don't use auto!!!)

As mentioned, don't have a lot of experience with professional photography, but the cameras that were recommended to me were Canon EOS Rebel T6 and Sony Alpha 6000 (I use the Sony, currently.) If you want to use a different brand and are having a difficult time deciding, there are tons of video reviews on YouTube that you can watch to help you decide. I used a comparison site when choosing. It's also good to go to a camera store and test out the cameras in-person.

Note: If you don't wanna throw down for a new camera, some smartphones (i.e. iPhone 7+) have pretty good cameras. But if you're planning on uploading your photos to a place other than Instagram (like a website), then the images won't have as high a resolution as photos captured by DSLR. This means they'll look fuzzier, less detailed, and the colors won't look as vibrant.

DSC01409.jpg

2) When taking photos find a way to avoid tourists in your frame

Find places where tourists aren't, if possible. Sometimes it's not. But, if you're really determined to take photos without strangers, think about going to your locations at weird times, (like early in the morning) before everyone else shows up or after they've left. If it's midday, try to wait for a moment when most of the people have walked out of the area that you're photographing. Alternatively, look for unique angles that you know tourists won't be visible in.

Taken by a friend.

Taken by a friend.

3) Take a lot of photos, but not too many

Taking multiple photos of the same thing, but don't overdo it. Otherwise, you will overwhelm yourself later on with too many options.

Taken by a friend.

Taken by a friend.

4) Offer to help someone else take their photo first

Not everyone has a personal photographer boyfriend/girlfriend/friend traveling around with them. That's when other tourists around come in handy. If you see someone taking a selfie, ask if they need help (this works great for couples). Then...

5) Ask a stranger (or friend) to help you out

Once you help someone out first, they'll be more willing to help you. 

Taken by a friend.

Taken by a friend.

6) Don't be afraid to give them some creative direction

I usually take a photo first of my background and show them what that looks like. Then I tell the person where I'd like to be in front of that background (to the left, center, etc.). This turns strangers into pro-photographers instantly. 

Taken by a professional tourist.

Taken by a professional tourist.

7) Buy a travel-sized tripod/ Bluetooth remote

This tripod and remote have helped me SO many times when I've wanted to take a photo of myself and no one was around. It's a good investment and not too expensive. I usually only take photos from my phone with this. For a cheaper option, this tripod and remote set is fine for smartphones only - I would not recommend mounting an expensive camera on this as it's not sturdy. Alternatively, you can use the timer on your camera instead of a remote.

Taken with iPhone, tripod, and remote.

Taken with iPhone, tripod, and remote.

Thanks for reading!

xx Steph

things you can do alone on a solo trip

things you can do alone on a solo trip