If there’s one thing that smartphone cameras have taught us is the fact that having an ‘x’ amount of megapixels doesn’t mean that your photograph is going to be beautiful. While these technologies no longer force us to lug around large camera bags while away on trips, having an iPhone is no guarantee of a good photo when it comes to taking pictures of landmarks or landscapes.
A good photograph, no matter the camera used, needs to be interesting and a little different than the rest. There are dozens of photographs of monuments and landmarks out there, so try to make your images stand out by following some of these tips:
Take advantage of sunsets, sunrises and nature
While they’re a bit of a cliche, rain, fog, sunsets and sunrises make your images better and more interesting, adding an edge to something that might otherwise be already out there. Waking up at the crack of dawn to take some pictures might not sound like the most pleasant thing to do on your vacation, but your photos will be better and you might surprise yourself by enjoying the solitude and the view.
Consider the big monuments but also what surrounds them
Monuments like the Eiffel tower and Notre Dame are gorgeous, but they have been photographed a million times. You should always take pictures of them if you want to, though it’s just as important to focus on the people and the little things that surround them. That way you capture the vibe of the area, making your photo feel more personal and more than stock photography.
Don’t be afraid to fall behind your travel buddies
When traveling with companions and friends, don’t be afraid to fall behind and take some pictures. Landscapes and photographs showing big and beautiful views work well with some people in the frame for scale, adding some texture and making the photos easier to remember in the long run.
Rethink cliché shots
Before you take that photo of the Eiffel tower, try to look up images of it and notice the emerging patterns. What works and what doesn’t? How do you make your photograph more interesting and memorable?
Have a subject
Photographs tend to be more interesting when there’s a subject in them, making them better memories and adding your personal signature. If you’re traveling with friends, take pictures of them, and if you’re traveling alone consider taking selfies or using a timer and a tripod. A selfie stick? I don’t know if anyone could make that work, though.