You’ve chosen the location and bagged the flights in the sale; now it’s time to prepare to capture the local culture and sights on camera. These top city break photography tips from the Jessops Academy team will help you to plan ahead and take photos that you’ll be proud to show off when you return.
Before you arrive in the city, research the best places to visit and top tourist attractions. See how others have captured it before and think how you might like to capture it. Look at the perspectives and angles that have been used and think of those that haven’t. Take a look on Google street view at the surroundings for any potentially unexplored vantage points, roof tops and terraces nearby that you could also capture. Also consider what would be the best time of day to take this photograph. Ask yourself, is it lit beautifully by the setting or rising sun? Or maybe it would look great with the sun bright and high in the sky, casting gorgeous shadows and rays of light.
Master the Rule of Thirds
The ‘rule of thirds’ is a multi-generational tip that will pay dividends for years to come. The secret to mastering this technique is to visualise a grid of lines running horizontally and vertically, breaking the image into thirds. Using the ‘Live View’ shooting screen will allow you to display the ‘Thirds’ grid to aid in visualising and achieving this. Composing your key points of interest in the image by placing them in one of the thirds or intersecting points on the grid will instantly draw attention to them and make the photo pleasing to the eye. Take a few moments before you snap away to consider the composition, lighting and angles before hitting the shutter button
Stabilise your camera with a tripod or support. Tripods today are compact, light and agile so won’t take up precious space in your cabin bag. A tripod will minimise any camera shake which is the most common cause of blurry pictures. Don't forget a tripod’s best friend is a remote release. If you don't have one you could also use the self-timer to trigger your camera, this helps to further eliminate any vibration from pressing the camera’s shutter button.
Including something in your foreground – a statue or monument, a fountain or sun dial, even a steamy coffee while you take five minutes to relax – will add a sense of scale and context. It can also lead the eye into the picture, balance the frame and add a point of interest.