Tips on Photographing Abstract Subjects while Traveling
Taking pictures is a given when you’re on vacation. Roaming from one place to another creates amazing visual opportunities, and it’s only understandable to want to capture them all. One lesser approached method for this is that of abstract travel photography. It is vastly different from traditional approaches, but the end results can be breathtaking.
Abstract Travel Photography Tips
There are many types of abstract photography, such as black and white, portrait, or landscape. The latter has a lesser discussed subcategory, namely abstract travel photography. This art form might seem hard to emulate when you’re on the road. Fortunately, these five useful tips will help you produce some incredible works during your holiday.
Bring the Right Equipment
It’s no secret that sensible packing is the key to traveling light. Thus, when you want to take abstract photographs on your vacation, you will need to consider this. After all, you wouldn’t want to crowd your luggage with unnecessary gear and paraphernalia that you might end up ignoring for the entirety of the trip. Thus, focusing on what is indispensable is the way to go.
The essential pieces of photographic equipment that you will need for this project consist of two lenses, namely a wide-angle one and a macro. A tripod can also help you out tremendously, as can a polarizing filter and a neutral density one. These simple items won’t take up too much space in your bag, but they will certainly deliver high-quality results.
Play with Distance and Angles
The difference between a stunning abstract photograph and one that is lackluster in terms of creativity consists of what you choose to show from a structure, and what gets eliminated. Any common object, building, or living being can be a great subject for an image, as long as you play with distance and angles while shooting.
Increasing the distance between yourself and the subject of the image diminishes details and creates a nonconcrete array of textures and lines. Aerial photography taken during a flight is perfect for this. On the other end of the spectrum, shooting through a macro lens highlights the minutiae of various items, thus generating an entirely new perspective.
Look for Sharp Lines and Textures
Producing a conceptual image relies on viewing structural elements in a different way. One of the most relevant aspects from this point of view is represented by lines. On the one hand, looking for architectural designs or other objects that contain crisp, strong vertical and horizontal shapes in their assembly creates a brutalist result.
On the other hand, a photograph of soft and curved lines encapsulates an atmosphere of peace and continuity. This works similarly with textures. Pay attention to the details contained by the plumage of a bird, or the petals on a rose. Play around with their sharpness or smoothness and zoom in until you uncover something innovative.
Use Your Surroundings Cleverly
Abstract travel photography is all about viewing landmarks and landscapes in an entirely different way. For example, everyone loves taking sunrise and sunset pictures over the water. This is a traditional image that is easy to conceptualize. Focus on how the fiery rays are reflected in the supple ripples of the ocean, and you will achieve an incredible result that the entire family can enjoy.
What is more, the wet pebbles on the shore are also interesting subjects, as they reflect light beautifully and create a delightful color effect. You need to keep your eyes open and identify those particular things around you that offer abstract opportunities. Once one makes itself noticed, don’t be afraid to whip your camera out and shoot it right then and there.
Choose Times of Day Wisely
The moment of the day during which you choose to shoot is essential as well. The most interesting subjects of travel photography are located outdoors, and you won’t be able to bring any fancy lights with you to emulate new colors and textures. Thus, you will have to make use of natural lighting and tweak the image until you reach the desired result.
Morning light tends to be colder and softer, but by noon the sun is completely up and ready to increase exposure. Sunlight also creates a sharper appearance to any surface, which is something to keep in mind. As evening approaches, you might be able to enjoy the golden hour that anticipates sunset. Finally, nighttime also has its perks as far as photography is concerned.
The Bottom Line
Abstract travel photography gives you the opportunity to view the world in an entirely different way. With the right equipment and angles, as well as a taste for tweaking distance and spotting essential structural elements, you will produce some unforgettable images that both you and your loved ones will certainly enjoy.
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