Everybody wants to explore the world, sample exotic cuisines, meet different people of various ethnicities, and explore different cultures. Sadly, travelling seems impossible for some since it can get expensive and time-consuming. But when you do get the chance, make sure you immortalize those precious, once-in-a-lifetime moments by taking lots and lots of pictures that can encapsulate the stunning beauty you see and experience in your wanderings.

Truth be told, you don’t need an expensive camera or a DSLR to capture those moments. Why carry a heavy piece of equipment on your trip when all you need is that little device that you use for calling, texting, checking your emails, navigation, and so on. Yes, your smartphone can be a great tool for capturing great quality pictures, and if used correctly, it can be better than a fancy camera.

Smartphones are easy to use and convenient—carrying a DLSR when travelling is not so practical anymore. Also, with smartphones, you can edit and share instantly. That is perfect for when you are wandering through stunning camera-worthy sights. With a few extra efforts and tips, you can easily snap aesthetic and detailed photos of your trip. To help you improve with your travel photography and maximize your device, here are some tips:

1. Focus

With smartphones, focusing on your subject is quite simple. Position your smartphone to the subject and tap the phone’s screen to that element that you want to focus on. Doing so will auto adjust the lights and focal point, giving your image the best quality. Even if the focus on the smartphone does not work the same way as a DSLR does, it does an outstanding job of creating aesthetically stunning results. 

One other huge benefit of the autofocus on the smartphone is that it doesn’t need any additional hardware or software, making it more affordable and easy to implement.

travel photography smartphone

2. Use the flash sparingly

When travelling, try to take advantage of the natural light on your surroundings as much as possible. The built-in flash found in most cellphones always produces harsh-looking and oddly-coloured photos since you have no control over its direction. Take photos with your subject moving towards or facing the natural light of the environment.

3. Minimize zooming in on a subject

For those who are not aware, the cameras’ megapixels (16MP, 20MP, 40MP, etc.) don’t define the sharpness and quality of an image, but instead, the more details the camera can capture. Zooming in a higher megapixel camera will still retain the image’s sharpness, but it is different from smartphones. What you can do better is to zoom in with your feet to have a closer look, or you can take the snap from a distance and crop it afterward. Zooming in using your smartphone would only reduce the quality of the image and ultimately blur the photo.

travel photography smartphone
View of Seattle from Kerry Park, Saettle Washington, USA

4. Keep the lens clean

Make sure that your lens is wiped clean as much as possible. Have you ever noticed that your photos are still blurry even with a stabilized shot? In most cases, you only need a clean lens to be able to capture a good photo. Your phone comes across dust and wind when you travel, so it is only normal that dust particles get attached to it. Carry a cotton swab, microfiber cloth, or any other cleaning wipes and mix it with distilled water to remove the dirt and grime.

Regardless of what device you are using, the key element in taking stunning travel photos is to have and never stop exploring. Snap at every good subject you see, click all types of shots, experiment with lighting and angles, try cold and warm colours, and learn new things. Make every shot as interesting as possible. 

If you are looking to learn more about travel photography with a smartphone in London, get in touch with us today to see how we can help.