Vacation photo tips for the non-photographer

November 27, 2014 | Our Happily Ever After, Photography, Tips, travel


We are approaching the end of the year AGAIN. Where has time gone? It has been yet another whirlwind year for us. The Bots sure know how to go hard!

Over the past year and a half, I have had an outpour of compliments on my travel photography. A lot of people suggested that I try to make some money off of it – and hey, that day may come!

Until then, I’m here to give you some tips on how to achieve your own vacation/holiday photo greatness. The best part, you don’t need to be a professional photographer to be able to pull these off. You’re welcome.

1. The “wider” the merrier


I know you want that money shot of that landmark but don’t be afraid to open your image to the “bigger picture”. Including the captivating sky will dramatically improve your image. Even a gloomy sky will give your image intense drama.

Unless you plan to do photography for a living, it wouldn’t make sense for you to run out and buy a wide lens. But don’t fret, most point and shoots offer wider angles that will do a decent job. The stock lenses that come with an intro level dslr does decent as well.

2. It’s all in the details

On the flip side to the above, don’t forget the details of your travel. When we’re on travel, we tend to focus on the landmarks and overlook the minor details that make the landmark unique.  Go ahead, get closer. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the images you get out of it!


3. Pano-delic

Practically every photo taking device out there has a panoramic feature. SO WHY AREN’T WE USING IT MORE OFTEN!? They create some of the mesmerizing photos I have seen. And seriously, they are perfect for your facebook cover. Just sayin’.


4. Get up early, stay up late

Sometimes, people just ruin pictures. Especially during peak hours when there are obnoxious amounts of people getting in your way. So get up early and take advantage of the “golden hour” and snap a few pictures before the crowds swarm with their selfie sticks.


Same concept applies to evening time. Bear in mind that you are more likely to run into crowds but sometimes the sunset is worth the effort.

5. Don’t take every photo at eye level.

Try different angles! It’ll make grand seem even grand-er. Have fun with it!


6. Take LOTS of pictures.

You never know what you’ll end up with. Whats the worse that can happen? You run out of space on your card? Those are fairly inexpensive. You really should have extra anyways. You can always weed out the “bad” at the end of the day anyways.

PLUS, you don’t know if the one picture is exactly sharp until you pull it up on your comp so have a couple extra as back up!

7. A massage heat corn bag is your broke-person tri-pod.

Ledges and benches normally aren’t reliable. And there may not be someone around to take it for you. It’s ok, bring a small corn neck warmer/heat massage bag and set your camera on that instead of a big annoying tripod. Voila.

8. Beat the blahs

I am guilty of this on a constant basis. When the horizon line is smack dab in the middle of your picture, it tends to bore your picture down a little. To accentuate your foreground or your sky, situate your horizon above or below the center line and you’ll have a significantly better image.


I hope some of these simple, yet practical tips help you achieve the vacation photos you desire. Don’t forget to hang up your masterpiece. C’mon you worked for it!