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Kate Craig Brown

You’ve packed all the essentials from your killer outfits to your travel insurance and you are almost on your way. Travelling, whether it's long term or just a short weekend getaway is exciting and what’s more exciting… capturing all those insta worthy pics to make all your work pals jealous when you return!

Now, there’s no right or wrong way to snapping some great holiday moments. At the end of the day you are just wanting to grab those precious moments to keep forever right? However if you are looking to up your game, I have put together some clever little handy tips for you, so you can nail all those pics for the family album.

Skip ahead to find:

female looking at golden gate bridge

Tips for shooting your images

#1. Location, location, location 

Where you are in your images is so important for your viewers. Set a scene, use objects, buildings or even crowds to make a point of difference and make your image stand out among the rest. You can source great locations before you even reach your next destination by searching relevant hashtags or a quick google search before you leave. If these places are likely to be busy in the middle of the day you can always head there just after sunrise or before sunset to beat the crowds.

Always look for different angles and don’t forget to move around when you get to a desired photo spot. There may be a better image from higher or lower. You can also use objects around you to create an interesting composition or shift the focus for your viewers.

Be different and creative, don’t just copy other people’s shots. However, do call on others images for location inspiration. you never know, someone may lead you to a place that you may not have discovered alone.

#2. Lighting 

It is an unwritten photographers rule that shooting at sunrise and sunsets is the best. That magic golden hour glow will make even start out photographers images come to life. If you are planning to shoot, try and incorporate the start and the end of the day into your itinerary.

#3. Human element 

Photographs have potential to be powerful and help you tell a story from your travels. By incorporating a human element you can bring the image to life. You can also show scale, especially in places like New Zealand. You can maximise how magnificent the land is and how vast the landscape is by using another person. It helps put things into perspective and really wow your audience.

#4. Composition

Trust your gut, when you come upon a photo spot, a view or a moment that makes you want to whip the camera out, trust yourself. Shoot a few different images to ensure you have at least one image you are happy with.

person overlooking lake and mountains

Tips for editing photos

Editing images can be fun and easy. There are a handful of apps available for your phone and also programmes you can download and use on your PC or Mac on the go.

Below are some of the programmes I use past and present. Right now Lightroom is my go-to. It is perfect for editing, creating presets and is a space to get creative. Lightroom presets are now readily available from a whole heap of Instagrammers and bloggers alike. They have spent time perfecting their art and now sell in packages so you can recreate their look. If you’re serious about editing and photography I would suggest watching YouTube tutorials about editing and perfect your own style

Lightroom available on your mac or PC. If you’re serious about photography then make sure you are shooting in Raw to ensure you capture the best quality.

Lightroom for mobile.  A great way to still use Lightroom and perfect your shots, adding those extra little details before you post. The best part, the app is free.

VSCO Cam is another great little app to add some jazz to your images. Again this is a free app with in-app purchases to up your editing game before making the leap to Lightroom.

usa desert road

Great camera accessories

Your camera is obviously your biggest tool. But don’t fret, you do not have to have the best of the best to get those gram worthy shots. With the latest iPhone technology, anyone can become an amateur photographer.

If you are wanting to shoot some couple shots and know there won’t be many people around to ask for help then a tripod will come in handy. You can set it up to capture you and the view. It will also come in handy in low light to avoid any camera shake.

If you are a keen hiker and don’t want to keep diving in your bag for your camera then a camera clip will be beneficial on your travels. Attached to the strap of your backpack, the camera slots in securely making it easy to get and shoot when you want to.

#1. Camera bags/camera cubes

Depending on what other equipment you will be taking with you either a dedicated camera bag or just a cube to slot into your hiking bag will keep your gear accessible and safe during your trip.

#2. Gimbles

If video is your thing then a gimble will ensure you get those silky smooth shots, making post processing a whole lot easier

#3. GoPro/selfie stick

The rise of the GoPro has been exponential in the past few years making it super easy for you to point shoot and create footage that is easily downloadable, ready to edit. They even have a feature on the app called Quik Story that puts your video footage together from the day, edits and publishes a video for you! Amazing!

I love the fact that travel photography is such an accessible hobby to everyone now. Good equipment can be bought new, online or even second hand for an excellent price. Virtually everyone these days has a mobile phone, which also has a camera. Check out these accessories for mobile phone photography.

We take more photographs now than ever before and thanks to the rise in new technologies somewhat on the daily this is only going to increase. Just remember you don’t need to own professional kit to take good photographs. A good eye and great timing is key. Before you know it you will be on a creative path looking to adventure and capture as much as you can.

Enjoy what photography has to offer and embrace the learning process. If you have any specific questions about kit or my style of photography then don’t hesitate to pop into my Instagram inbox! I am always happy to help out a fellow enthusiast!

In the meantime, get a free quote for Cover-More travel insurance. You can protect not only yourself, but also your camera equipment! Find out more about Cover-More's luggage cover.

lakeside dock

Kate Craig Brown is a kiwi photographer from beautiful Queenstown, New Zealand. When she's not out shooting couples and scouting for amazing landscape shots she can be found hiking, waterskiing and hosting guests from all over the world in her Airbnb. You can follow her travel adventures on Instagram and on her website.  

The views, opinions and positions expressed by the author and those providing comments are theirs alone, and are meant as travel inspiration only. They do not reflect the opinions of Cover-More Insurance. You should always read the PDS available from your travel insurance provider to understand the limits, exclusions and conditions of your policy and to ensure any activities you undertake are covered by your policy.