“Go Away” and Take Good Photos

  By Dave Chidley


I’ve always marveled at how aspiring photographers create their most creative images when they travel.  I really don’t see it as a big mystery, but a fun observation, that begs the question why? As well, to ask, why don’t we do that at home too?

Photography is really like most activities: the more you do it the better you get. The harder you try, or more dedicated you are, the more creative you will get. The real secret to photography success is “P.P.P.” – simply Practice, Practice, Practice.

When we travel, everything looks different. We SEE with a whole new perspective on our surroundings.  We try to capture that atmosphere, and we try hard to make memorable images full-time every day of our journeys.  That concentrated effort with a camera in our hand every hour of our travels is often much more commitment that we can afford to dedicate at home.

Creativity and bravado while shooting, is so much easier when you are in a strange land and photographing people you will never see again.  Photographers become bold and daring with the images while away.

If you have committed your hard-earned vacation time and money to an adventure, then you will try much harder at your photography. You want to be proud of your images. Photographers have over-exposed egos – we want our images to be the best.

Perhaps you have purchased some new gear for you photo adventure. You don’t expect to play a Stradivarius violin like a master if you have only just taken it out of the box! Why would you think it’s any different with your new top-of-the-line camera? Make the purchase with lots of time to get in plenty of practice, so you know that camera instinctively before you travel.

Don’t forget to R.T.F.M. or Read The Foto Manual, and take it with you on your journey.  The better you know the tool, the better you can create images with it.

I’ve had the pleasure of traveling extensively as a professional photojournalist over the past few decades and for the past 14 years have hosted photography group travel trips on a regular basis.   I’ve seen photographers totally blossom and a few be frustrated by lack of preparation while exploring the world. Be ready, try hard, practice, and you will make the best images you have ever created.

I now have the best job in the world as I’m now full-time hosting photography adventures for Photo Tour Trekkers, heading the brand-new Western Canada Division.  We travel to fantastic destinations, and have fun doing it. www.phototourtrekkers.com

Thanks to The Camera Store for getting behind this new exciting endeavour! I will be regularly writing blog articles here on Travel Photography, ideas and inspiration and photo skills you can practice at home or when you “Go Away.”



Dave Chidley is a long-time photojournalist and travel photographer, having worked for publications in Calgary, Toronto, and London, as well as being a contract freelancer for The Canadian Press. He is now the Director of Photo Tour Trekkers West. www.phototourtrekkers.com