The World Looks Richer If You Use The Right Filter.
No doubt you’re expecting an article about which filters work best with your camera. But surprise…I’m not talking about a photographic accessory here. Instead, consider that “knowledge” is the filter that defines how you view the world; and in turn inspires the photos you take.
1. Start with a little research.
I’ve had the luxury of traveling all over the world. And one thing I always do is spend some time learning about the culture, history, industry, famous people, sights, festivals, and other interesting facts about the places I’m planning to visit. Not only do I feel more connected to my destination when I get there, I have a pre-planned schedule of places I want to see. And armed with a little knowledge, I see things differently than would an uninformed observer. That changes what I photograph as well as how I photograph it. For example, if there is a 13thcentury church that was designed by a famous architect, I’ll look for a shot that prominently features the style of that architect. I’m looking for angles, lighting, and perspective that is significantly more dramatic than just photographing the building exterior or a fresco on an interior wall. Then, when I return home, my travel stories are bigger than just the journey. I’ve captured the essence of the places I’ve been.
2. Get To Know People.
One thing I like to do when I first arrive anywhere, is visit a local café or pub. Not a tourist spot, but rather someplace the locals go. The owners and the people who work there are by nature friendly and outgoing. And with little effort, they’re happy to tell you their favorite places to visit and introduce you to other friends and acquaintances…all of whom have interesting stories to share and enrich your experience. Again, as you learn more about the “personality” of a place, you’ll recognize and be inspired to take photographs that reflect that personality. Your photos and stories will be richer for the experience.
3. Don’t Overfill Your Itinerary
Unless you’re retired, and even if you are, most people’s trips last just a couple of weeks. And because there’s usually so much to see and do, there’s little time for random walks, time to talk with the locals, time to explore, or time to discover things that weren’t on the original schedule. So start every day early. End every day late. Experience as many people, places, food and drink, theatre and festivals as possible…But do leave time to sometimes do nothing but sit and watch the ebb and flow of the place you are. You’ll see…your most memorable experiences will be the ones unplanned. Which is why you shouldn’t feel compelled to adhere to a rigid and intense itinerary. When all’s said and done, the photos you treasure most will be the ones that were simply random.
4. Let Your Photos Tell Your Story
In the “old” days, we used to make slides of our vacations and then invite the whole family over for a slide show. Mostly those get togethers were boring, because really, the photos were boring. But when you have interesting stories to share, the photos that captured those moments make your journey more interesting and engaging. At least that’s been my experience and why after each trip, I’d choose a few of the most interesting shots and order larger prints I could display on the walls of my home and office. Along the way, I discovered the beauty, durability and uniqueness of producing these photographs on acrylic metal. The presentation is just better than other formats…and I was so inspired by this that I thought people might enjoy having some of my photographs reproduced in this format to decorate their home of office. I invite you to explore my portfolio and purchase any of the images that capture your imagination.