Capturing images of well visited travel sites around Europe can seem repetitive and lack creativity very quickly. To learn how to capture unique travel photos that don’t match everyone else’s Instagram feed, I have come up with a few simple tips.
1. Don’t take the photo everyone else is taking
When you initially walk up to a tourist spot, don’t necessarily whip out your phone or camera and start taking the same photo the 10 people lined up next to you are also taking. Instead, take in the view for a second, and look around you. From there, you can wander around and see if you can capture the spot from another angle or get a view without a million tourists.
2. Find unique angles
Taking everything at eye level can become boring to look at, and does not give a lot of unique dimension to the photo. Instead, try to crouch lower and take the photo at an upwards angle. You can also find a window, doorway, or even grates in the fence to take the photo through. Adding things into the foreground can make the subject you actually want to take a photo of look even cooler.
3. Capture the small details
Everywhere you go, you can choose to capture the common tourist sites. While that is great, it can be even better to find beauty in the simplicity of things. Capturing the culture and normality of immersing yourself in the city can lead to amazing photos. If you walk passed a bike propped up against the building, take a photo. If you see an elderly lady smoking a cigarette and enjoying the view from her balcony, take a photo. These are the people, and that is the culture which makes the city beautiful.
This photo was taken in Pisa right next to the leaning tower, but I’m guessing not many people would know that from seeing the photo. It is so common to take your “hold the tower up” photo, that nobody stops to take photos of the beautiful duomo next to it. I’m not saying you shouldn’t take a photo with the tower, heck I sure did, but make sure you take some photos of the underrated parts of the city as well.
Don’t take the photo everyone else is. To create a unique perspective of this commonly photographed building in the city center of Genova, I placed a bush in the foreground of my photo. Not only did this create depth, but it also covered up the herd of tourists in the background!
Finding unique angles can be difficult. This photo was taken in Berlin, Germany along the river that runs through the city. We were on a bridge that had so many cute locks with names written on them. When I crouched down to read them, I realized what an amazing shot it could be of the water through the bridge architecture.
Finding unique angles can be hard. In this photo, my cute roomie Ady happened to be standing in the right spot on our roof for me to capture her with the roof between us. Putting objects in the foreground is always one of my favorite ways to take portraits.
I absolutely love photographing landscapes through holes in the wall, windows, or doorways. It can really showcase to the viewer how you are seeing the city from your perspective as well.
Sami is a Summer 2019 Florence student from University of Nebraska- Lincoln.