Start a Travel Photography Business
Too many people have the idea that being paid to take photographs of exotic
places is the ideal job. It may take years of effort to be paid by magazines
such as the National Geographic, but are there better ways to become a travel
photographer. As most people have more leisure time, more holiday time, and more
disposable income, the demand for travel photographs has increased dramatically.
Not only are they in demand for travel brochures, but they're also used
extensively in other advertising copy.
Images necessary for sale and publication require rather more skill than those
applied to standard holiday snaps. "The real voyage of discovery consists not in
seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." Was a quote by the French novelist
Marcel Proust, and it appears to be of particular use to the travel photographer.
Investigate the possibilities of becoming a contracted photographer at Lonely
Planet Images. Lonely Planet Images is a digital library of travel photography.
They have submission guidelines available for download at their website. They
are a subsidiary of what used to known as the Lonely Planet Guide, and currently
have 400 photographers on contract. You can also increase your chances of
breaking into the very lucrative travel market, by entering competitions such as
the Travel photographer of the Year . There closing date for submissions is
September 5th 2005.
A camera is merely a box, that captures light, and in a studio, it is very easy
to manipulate light. The reality of location photography is that it is generally
expensive; you have the expenses of air tickets, hotels and meals on top of
normal expenses. At the end of the day you are at the mercy of "weather", no one
wants to see their ideal location subject to rain clouds.
When we talk of light in terms of travel photography we are talking about
intensity, as most travel shots are taken outdoors, In general there is harsh
direct sunlight and diffused soft light. Harsh light is when the sun is
directional, and it is great for capturing deep contrasts between light and
shadows. With this type of shot, it is difficult to judge the exposure. If you
direct your exposure towards the light, that will leave your shadows without any
depth or definition. Conversely if you use the correct exposure for shadow, then
the light areas will be without detail, giving a vaguely sinister result to the image.
Unfortunately your drawback here is film, the human eye is capable of registering
contrast to a ratio of 800:1, slide film is capable of only 30:1, which is slightly
improved, by going digital at a ratio of 40:1. Professional photographs have all
passionate views on their favourite brand name of film in this situation, but they
are all in accord that you need a slower speed films, as they record better contrast and grain.
ISO/ASA rating of a hundred is about the fastest film to use. It is important that
you use a good photovoltaic cell (either a separate light meter or one inbuilt into
the camera). Once the light meter has registered the light, the camera is capable of
indicating the aperture opening required, and the shutter speed. The speed of the film
is also taken into this equation. You need to measure the darkest and the lightest areas.