Travel Photography Vs Travelling With Camera

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Travel Photography Vs Travelling With Camera

Posted By Admin: 9/24/2011 11:46:33 AM
Posted To Photographers / Photos That Sell

Travel photography is probably one of the most misunderstood fields
of commercial photography. For most photographers, the only requirement
for shooting travel images is for them to be somewhere new, but the
reality is quite different. The good news is, this mass misconception
means there's great opportunity for the photographers who do get it

Travel photography is as commercial as it gets. Travel
photography buyers desire images that actively sell the destination or
the experience. They need the kind of photography that engage the reader
and leave them needing to do it all themselves.

Usually, that means using images of people enjoying the destination or experience.

The difficulty they are facing is most photographers are only going to
be shooting holiday snaps, rather than commercial travel images. Most
photographers think about travel photography simply as images taken on
their own travels, and little thought is given to the end use. They
shoot whatever they see, as they see it, and focus on the physical
features alone.

As a result they're simply documenting their travels, making an
individual record, with very little thought of sharing and selling the
experience itself.

Don't misunderstand me here: the physical record type shots can and do
sell: the iconic landmarks, the famous vistas, the local wildlife, the
buildings, bridges and skylines. There's a definite demand for each one
of them, but when you start researching the market you will soon see
that these only make up a small part of the images used. The great
majority of images used in travel guides and brochures fall into the
travel-lifestyle category: travellers experiencing the destination.

This supply-and-demand problem is compounded by the undeniable fact that
everybody shoots the iconic shots, and they have been shooting them
since cameras were invented. It is also fair to say that most travel
photography publishers are also going to have their own in-house
collection of the iconic shots they use most frequently. So if that is
all you shoot, you are going to face massive competition for a tiny
piece of the potential sales.

So when you start shooting travel stock images that focus on the
visitor-experience, you are targeting a gap in the market with much
lower competition and noticeably higher demand. If you can then create
the types of images that engage the viewer and fire their
imagination... making them want to experience it for themselves then
you're shooting commercial travel photography.

The added bonus of concentrating on the visitor experience is that as soon as people are
included, photo-buyers are going to want current images ... ie images
showing contemporary hairstyles & fashions. So these are the shots
that are always in demand and can't always be found in the in-house

The destination could be a 2000 year old landmark
that's been photographed a million times, but the people viewing it
will need to be contemporary, so there will always be a genuine demand
for fresh new images of the feature.

Most of this is straightforward common-sense, once you take a
Client-centric approach and plan & shoot for your end-user instead
of yourself. Research your destinations, identify the landmarks and
icons, but take a little more time to completely understand the total
experience of the destination and make it your goal to capture &
convety that .

The good news is, most photographers won't do any of this, so any time
you do it, you'll be stepping out from the crowd. And when you create
the kind of travel images that the audience wants to immerse themsevles
in to experience it all for themselves, you will be shooting the sort of
travel images that sells themselves.


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