Guide: Taking Postcard Photographs
The hope is that photos capture those brief fleeting moments in time that escape reality too quickly. However, often the final product fails to live up to our experience of the beauty or joy of those inspiring moments.
Here are some tips to help portray the essence of the time you spent experiencing something magical. According to Jefferson Graham, travel photographer of USA Today, some simple basics can turn your pictures into quality “postcards”.
First some planning notes: It is very important to be in the right place and at the right time. Light is an essential element of any photograph. Taking pictures in the early morning or evening sunset is ideal time for the light that produces soft colors, depth, and interest. This is quite unlike the mid day sunlight that can create harsh shadows and squinty eyes among the subjects of your photographic interest.
While cell phones today can take a very decent pictures, typically their range it is limited. Therefore it is important to get closer to your subject physically when using a cell phone than with a camera with a zoom lens.
Which gets us into the magical side of photography. Every good picture should tell a story and/or evoke an emotional connection or response. This is what makes pictures memorable and attention grabbing.
For example, what if you spend a day on a photo safari at a local seaside town where you just allow yourself to soak up its ambiance and subtle surprises. Perhaps start with taking pictures of local signs and landmarks the area is known for. Along the way allow the town to reveal itself to you through its people, food, lifestyle, and nature. Be open to opportunities where people are having fun or nature is blessing a scene with light, color, breeze, clouds, wildlife, trees, etc.
Of course composition of the picture is important and should certainly be considered when framing up your shot. What angle can capture more interest or balance the shot in a unique perspective? What is the view of a lighthouse from the perspective of a crab on the beach before an approaching storm? How can you capture the dance of the surf spray reaching to touch the squawk of a seagull sailing above? What is the seaside story of worn cut off jeans and a fishing rod hung on a weathered backyard clothesline? Don’t miss the mischievous cat spying a preoccupied squirrel who is about to chase a bird from a feeder.
Then, if needed turn to technology. There are many photo applications capable of enhancing that brief moment in time the camera does not always comfortably capture. Here is where you can adjust the photo to further seize the moment to share it again and more clearly with others.
Enjoy the adventure and see the world as few know it.