Taking Great Vacation Pictures

fullmoon washington dc Going somewhere on vacation is one of the best opportunities to take wonderful and unusual pictures. Depending on where you go, you might find strange animals, exotic plants, sunny beaches, tall mountains, bustling cities, and of course different people.

Here are ten tips to take great vacation pictures:

  1. First of all, if you are travelling to a different continent where they use different kinds of plugs and current, make sure you or your parents have the right adaptors so that you can charge your camera.
  2. Make sure you bring enough memory for your camera.
  1. Be careful with your equipment! Water and sand can ruin a normal digital camera very easily. If you are going on a beach vacation you might want a waterproof camera that you can take into the sea and which are resistant to sand and dirt. You can get even find cheap disposable waterproof cameras.
  2. Don't just take pictures of people posing for the photograph. Find an interesting subject (e.g. a monument, a mountain, a house, etc.) and try to also take some photos without anyone else in it.
  3. Get close to your subject. Poor vacation pictures often have the subject too far away in the shot.
  1. Be prepared and look for interesting and unusual things you do not find at home. Ask your parents or search on the internet before you leave. Find out what makes the place you are going to different and special. Find out if there are any special events like carnivals or parades.
  1. Have a good look at the background. Ask yourself: what is behind the subject that I am trying to shoot? If a garbage truck is parked behind the statue you are trying to photograph wait until it leaves or try a different angle.
  2. Take lots of pictures and experiment with different kinds of subjects and angles. For example you can snap pictures of the locals, of colorful shop windows, or just interesting landscapes.
  3. Watch the light. Remember, direct and bright light can give poor pictures (see How to Compose Great Photos). If you can, try to take some pictures in the hour before the sun sets or as the sun rises.
  4. Try to let your pictures tell the whole story of the trip, from before you left home and until you return. Later, you can make a nice collection of pictures to show your friends and family.

by Simon James Allanach, edited by Alan Frost
For profiles, see Free Photography Resources