Solo Travel Photography: Tips For Capturing Perfect Memories
One of the best parts of traveling is taking lots of photos and sharing them with your friends and loved ones back home. But this can be a bit trickier when you’re gallivanting around the globe by yourself. Solo travel is a magical experience and something everyone should experience at least once in their lives, but without a travel companion, who’s going to take that pic of you posing in front of the Eiffel Tower? Solo travel doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice photos of you jet setting, but it does mean you need to get creative in order to capture those perfect memories. Ready to learn how? Let’s go.
Say NO to selfie-stick-shame. Don't be ashamed to pull out the selfie stick. Selfie sticks are a great way to get those perfect photos all by yourself. They’re small and lightweight, so they won’t take up too much space in your bag. Gone are the days of feeling embarrassed about pulling out a selfie stick — they’re everywhere these days, so go for it!
Three legs are better than two. We’re talking tripods here. You might think of a tripod as a huge elaborate affair, and sure, you can get ones like that, but you can also find travel-friendly ones. Some fold down small enough to fit into a handbag! They’re generally a standard size, whether you’re looking for one for your phone or a DSLR, but double-check when you’re purchasing to make sure it fits.
Anything’s a tripod if you’re creative. Now, some places don’t actually allow you to use tripods, but you’re not going to let that get in the way of your photo mastery! Well-placed rocks, ledges, plant pots, your backpack on the ground, heck, even your water bottle: all of these things can make convenient purchases to place your camera on or lean your phone against. Please use common sense though and don’t stray too far from your camera… you don’t want it getting snatched.
Don’t try to beat the self-timer. We’ve all done it. You get your shot set up, set the self-timer, then you have a few seconds to race into position and try to look natural. It’s exhausting. Save your breath and sanity and use Burst mode along with the self-timer. It will take multiple pictures, giving you the chance to pose in different ways and even capture an action shot. Go on, do a twirl! Check your camera’s settings to see how it works.
There’s probably an app for that. There are apps for everything, right? Your DSLR camera most likely has an official app that will allow you to connect your camera to your phone and use it as a remote. This means you can check your framing, pose, and overall look before you snap the pic. Using your phone as your camera? Do you have a smartwatch? For example, if you have an Apple Watch, you can use it as a remote for your camera app.
Make new friends. This is the last tip as it’s the most obvious – ask somebody to help. Just be realistic with your expectations – if the person you’re asking is holding a high-tech camera and looks like a pro, then go ahead and be specific with how you would like the pic to look. But otherwise, put your settings on auto, hope for the best, and remember they’re doing you a favor. And you never know – the people you talk to might end up being new friends!
Finally, in that effort to get the most dreamy photo of you looking wistfully at a gorgeous sunset, don’t forget to enjoy the sunset itself. Make sure you spend time away from the camera, and be present on your adventures. Travel is meant to be enjoyed, not just documented, after all!