If you love taking snapshots of the places you visit you know there are many ways to capture the spirit of a destination: streetscapes, portraits of average people, the typical food eaten, signage, and stunning landscapes.
But if nature photography isn’t already a part of your travel captures, it really should be. There is so much variation in flora and fauna around the world and photos of nature tell a unique story for each destination you visit. And you don’t need to be a naturalist to get the shot! Here are some tips to get started:
Focus on One Category
A cool and easy way to see the variability of nature one place offers is to pick one kind of thing – for example, wildflowers, seashells, leaves, or mushrooms – and take a picture of every one you see. Make sure to get close up to the object and focus on it, not the background. By doing this, you’ll be creating your very own field guide for the location you are in. These kinds of photos look great all together in a collage, on the same page in your photo memory book, or in an Instagram carousel post because it’s easy to spot all the differences between types and species.
Change Your Perspective
A lot of times, our travel photos end up having the same sort of perspective – an eye-level shot, typically of ourselves in front of a famous landmark. But nature is all around us, and taking a flat snapshot from our eye level doesn’t always do it justice. Instead, play around with your perspective. Take photos of trees from down low to show just how towering they are, play with getting down and seeing the world from the perspective of a child or even an ant, and get up close and personal to wildflowers, pretty stones, and insects.
Take Up Birdwatching
When it comes to animals, it isn’t always easy to spot the large mammals or reptiles an area might be known for. For example, you can’t guarantee that you’ll see a moose on your Alaskan cruise or a sloth in Costa Rica. But one kind of animal you see everywhere, sometimes without even realizing it, is birds. And there is a huge variance in the kinds of bird species you’ll see from one region to the next. While it helps to have binoculars and a strong zoom lens on your camera, you don’t need them. Birds that are commonplace in one region (and therefore easy to get a picture of) might be completely foreign to you. If you find yourself interested in learning to identify the different species you see, check out the Merlin Bird ID App for free identification on the go.
Visit a Botanical Garden
Just because you’re taking a city break doesn’t mean you have to forgo nature photography. Most major cities have a botanical garden that showcases local flora. And because plants are typically labeled, it’s easy to caption your photos! Besides, they make for a lovely place to take a walk.
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