Vacation Photography Tips – Part 2

Your family timeshare rental vacation is special in many ways, and one way to savor the memories is by taking good pictures. This is the second in our two-part series offering photography tips collected by Douglass Daniel, a writer and editor with the Washington bureau of The Associated Press. Continuing following these tips on good picture-taking and you'll have some real beauties to frame.
  1. Know when to turn the flash off and when to turn it on. "Many people figure if they're outside they don't need the flash," says Baltimore photographer Walter Rowe, editor of the Travel Photographers Network website. "But flash can help lighten up areas in shadow so they don't appear so dark."

    At night, not using the flash in favor of natural light might be the best way to capture an image. But for a longer exposure, the camera will need to be steady to avoid blur caused by movement. "Use the camera's timer to avoid the downward movement that comes with pressing the shutter button," advises Rowe. "Steady yourself against a wall or another stationary object. Try placing the camera on a flat surface, even a drinking glass turned upside down."

  2. Check the edges of the frame as you compose a shot. "Train yourself to look for objects you don't want in the picture. At the beach it might be a trash can; in the city it might be an orange construction barrier. Then reframe accordingly," suggests Daniel.

    "Most people tend to shoot from wherever they're standing and not think about eliminating unwanted information from the edge of the picture," adds Eliot Cohen. "You have to learn to really see all the details as well as the piece you're interested in."

  3. Use a digital camera if at all possible. The great thing about using a digital camera is that you can review all the elements once the picture has been taken. "If a post or a tree is sticking out of someone's head, reshoot. Maybe you can move yourself a little bit," Rowe says, "or move the person a little bit." "Digital cameras don't make you a better photographer, but they do allow for more chances to get it right," says Daniel.

  4. Buy the largest memory card you can afford. And bring extra batteries or the battery charger and an adapter, if needed. "Don't be afraid to take a lot of pictures," Dharapak says. Walsh adds, "You've already paid for those megapixels, so use them."

    Daniel suggests that on a long trip, look for a photo store that can download your pictures to a disk you can pack or even mail back home. "You risk losing all your photos if you drop your camera in a river or if it's misplaced or stolen."
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