Scott Stulberg shares two things that can make a huge difference in the outcome of your travel photographs

In the world of travel photographs you have the good, the bad and the ugly. How do you create shots that neighbors and friends will actually beg you to see? Scott Stulberg shares two of his secrets for getting great travel shots, no matter where he’s visiting.

Perfect Timing

Scott Stulberg: It’s very important to shoot at sunrise and sunset. I know I’m being a little redundant, but most people are complacent about getting out of their hotel, and not getting up at sunrise.

Many of us think about going at sunset, but you really need to be thinking about shooting at sunrise no matter where you are. I don’t care if it’s the Taj Mahal, I don’t care if it’s the Bridge to Nowhere. You need to be thinking about shooting at sunrise and sunset.

If you shot something in your town that’s beautiful, think about, “How can I shoot it in better lighting?” When I shot some travel photographs of the Eiffel Tower, it was absolutely freezing. Gloves, jackets, hats weren’t enough. We were freezing.

Many people think, “Oh, too cold.” The person who I was with who lived in Paris, my friend, she wanted to leave so bad. I said, “You can go. I’ll meet you back at the apartment.”

You have to be there at sunrise if you want to get the beautiful light. If you want to get these great images, if you want to ever get published, get out there more and try to shoot early morning and late afternoon. It’s so important.

Also make sure you’re very comfortable shooting wide open aperture so you know how to blow out the background when shooting people. When you’re shooting at f2.8 or f4, that background is going to go blurry almost no matter what lens you have, but especially with telephoto lenses.

Learn a lot more about getting your f-stop dialed in so that you know when you want to shoot that particular beautiful woman that’s in Argentina at that festival, but the background is either boring or a beautiful glow and you just want to have it blurred.

Learn about shooting your travel photographs at those smaller apertures, like f2.8 or f4. That will really help blow out the background and make that person stand out even more.

In Closing

Want really great travel photographs? Then lighting and aperture are going to play a critical role. Make sure you shoot your travel scenes at sunrise and sunset, and learn to shoot at smaller apertures. It will make all the difference in the quality of your travel photographs.