In preparation for the eleventh Round Of The 12x53 Photo Of The Month Competitions, Your Judge, Sven Schroeter Has Kindly Submitted Some Much Valued Advice About Taking Successful Travel Photographs.
Try and take on board as much of the expert counsel as you can, because as far as this is guidance it might well be what Sven will be looking for in his winning shot too.
Hi all, great to be here and to be given the opportunity to give back to the greater photography community which helped me ask the right questions about my own work and shape my focus.
First and foremost, before we get to the topic of travel photography, lets remind ourselves about the importance of being our own artists. With endless streams of great content being created daily, it is easy to fall in line and take inspiration too literally from social spaces and reproduce content. A point especially relevant to travel and adventure photography (genres which are presently very popular), remember to keep it original and ask yourself how you can do it differently. Don't be better, be different.
Travel is expensive, money is a finite resource, and in my opinion you cant afford to hit the ground blind. Especially if you want to go beyond the postcard photograph of an iconic location. Knowledge is power and even a small amount of research leading up to your departure will arm you with the confidence to execute an original perspective. The clearer your direction before departing, the more focused your body of work will be when you sit behind the computer back home trying to make sense of it all.
Give your senses time to settle upon arriving at a new destination. And depending on the degree of cultural differences to your home town, this process can take a few days. The assault on the senses is the fun part of travel, but also a creative distraction, and depending on your personality type this can be a good or bad thing.
The greatest currency when traveling is your smile (especially when you are battling a language barrier), its hard to say ‘NO!’ to someone smiling. So wear your smile proudly and you might be surprised how may unexpected doors open.
But most of all, have FUN, let loose and don't let the stress of creation tear apart your trip. If you are not looking to bank a cheque at the end of it all, wear your smile with pride and be open to the experience.
Show me something new and expected, this month originality will be rewarded. I am excited to see what you have chosen to place in-front of your camera and your perspective on the developing world around us.