When I’m planning a photography excursion, vacation, or casual travel, I like to book a trip to an urban destination. Why? Because I prefer urban photography shoots including cities and architecture. I especially like taking photos within city parks so that you get some color from the trees and surrounding nature, but also the clean industrial cityscape in the background. I think what draws me to these images are the fine lines and angles you can get with buildings mixed with the abstract of nature or art (like statues or graffiti). This juxtaposition is chaotic and calm, at the same time, and has me reaching for a camera every time.
Though I often find my best shots come from impromptu or just random everyday life, I always try to get a feel for the weather before I step out the door with my camera. How or what I am going to shoot will heavily be influenced by if the day is going to be sunny, overcast, or a downpour. I would say the one thing I ALWAYS make sure to do is pack extra storage and a fully charged spare battery.
Typically, it’s the background of my images that will inspire a photo. It doesn’t matter if I’m shooting a person or animal or whatever, it’s always what’s going on around or behind the subject matter that catches my eye before I point and click. Even if the subject is in full focus and the background is a blur, I still always make sure the colors are what I’m wanting in the background.
I prefer all types of adventures, but I typically find my best inspiration coming from somewhere new…once I get a feel for the area. This might sound like a contradiction, but what I mean is that if I take photos in a place that is local, after I’ve taken so many shots there, I feel like it’s been done. This would then lead to me wanting somewhere new, however, this can be overwhelming, for me, as I always feel like if I settle on one place, I might be missing opportunities to take shots in other places I’m not aware of. I think the ideal location is finding a good middle between these ideas. If I have the opportunity when shooting in a new area, I try to drive around (or even use the walking view of Google Maps) to see what areas might be of interest before I get to the day in which I’m shooting. And if I’m working with others, I try to start us in a location (we’ll say a town or in the heart of a city) so that we can get a variety of different shots within a small walking distance. If you have to get in your car after each series of shots, I’ve found I’ll often feel either rushed OR like I am taking too much time to my job.
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Now I have an important question for you. Where would you go if you had a free ticket to anywhere in the U.S.?