Tips, deals, and advice on traveling the continent on a budget.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Adventure Overseas Travel 20 Top Tips For Taking Photographs

Buying a Camera

1. With the internet becoming more and more popular you have a chance to shop around and get the best deal possible. However be careful and check where you are buying from, be careful if the product is being shipped from abroad and check it comes with all the cables and the correct power supply! If its sounds too good to be true, it probably is! Unfortunately internet fraud is a growing business.

2. If you are going abroad and will be taking photos of wildlife then get a camera with a decent optical zoom (and I mean optical zoom, not digital zoom). For holidays involving wildlife try and get a camera with 10x optical, otherwise the animals may look like 'pin pricks' when you look at them later.

3. Learn how to use a new camera before you go away. Have a play with the camera and learn about all the functions. Take the manual with you, just incase you need to be reminded.

4. Memory cards are coming down in price now, so by as large as possible. Try not to buy the 256meg cards as you'll spend more time worrying about how many photos you have left and may miss "the perfect photo opportunity".

5. Cameras today still use lots of power (especially if using flash). Take plenty of batteries with you and if possible buy a camera with rechargeable batteries (you'll save money in the long run).


6. Don't always use red eye function on your camera. If you are using a digital camera and it has a function to reduce red eye, DON'T always use it! It will flash a number of times before it takes the photo and will prepare the people for the photo and all you will get are unnatural photos. Also your subject will look away as they think the first flash is the photo and your left with the sides of peoples heads! Use the normal flash and fix the red eye when you get home with your photo editing software.

7. Fill-in-flash. If you're taking photos in bright sunshine then try use a flash. This will help remove the shadows and harsh contrasts.

8. Only use flash indoors if you really have to. Flash has a horrible habit of making the photo look very harsh and flat.


9. When taking a photo don't keep the subject in the middle of the frame. A photo will normally look better if the subject is off-centre.

10. Movement. If for example you are taking a photo of someone on a bicycle then keep a bigger gap on the side of the photo where the person is heading. This will give a sense of movement.

11. Don't zoom in too tight as you may chop off heads and parts of the image you wanted. Instead leave the final editing until you get home.

12. Keep the horizon straight. When taking photos with a horizon, make sure the horizon is horizontal. There's nothing worse than the sea going downhill!

13. When taking photos of animals or people, focus on their eyes.

14. Get on the same level as your subject. If taking a photo of say a child, get on your knee and take the photo at their level. A photo looking down on a child or an animal looks bad!

15. If you have to explain the grey dot is an elephant then the photo probably wasn't worth taking!


16. Make sure you have insurance! Never go away without insurance, if your camera gets stolen or damaged you'll want to replace it ASAP so you don't ruin your holiday. Take a photo of your camera equipment before you go away and leave a copy of the photo and a copy of the insurance policy with your family just in case.

17. Don't risk loosing all your photos! Make a plan to back up your photos as you travel. Maybe visit an internet cafe occasionally and upload your best photos to a site such as (which is free).

18. Don't walk around with your camera round your neck!! Keep it out of sight whenever possible to reduce the risk of crime.

19. Be in some of the photos. Use the self timer or get someone you know to take a photo of you. Your family really wants to see you in some photos having a good time, they don't really care that much about everyone else you meet on your travels!

20. Don't take photos of dull snow or water. Often when taking photos in snow or against the sea, you will often take a photo and then when you view it looks dull and dark. This is caused by the cameras light metre over compensating. To fix this change your light metre (to over expose by +1 to +2 stops), read the manual if you are not sure how to do this. AND DON'T FORGET TO TURN IT OFF AFTERWARDS OTHERWISE ALL THE PHOTOS YOU TAKE AFTER WILL BE OVEREXPOSED!!!

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