Summertime! Days filled with ice cream, tea on the rocks, sprinkler fun, flip-flops, barbecues, family gatherings, and vacations! A time for vacation and travel which generally leads to lots of picture-taking.
Before leaving for your journey, be it a day-trip or a month long international excursion, be sure to have extra batteries for your camera, and also for any external flash units you may have. Additionally have on hand an extra media card or two. Media cards can fail (or fill up faster than you planned), and batteries can drain unexpectedly.
If you purchase a new camera to take with you, have a working knowledge of how it operates before you leave, especially the features you plan to use. For example, if your camera has video capability, it can be quite frustrating to try capturing a fleeting moment when you’re fumbling with unfamiliar controls. Take your camera’s manual or instruction booklet with you in case you need it for troubleshooting.
Make a list of photographic possibilities. By thinking ahead and planning to take certain pictures you will most likely return with many, if not all, of the pictures that you want. Do a little research on your destination to review what landmarks, sights, places of interest, etc. are there. Make note of what you’d like to photograph. If this is a family vacation, get the other members involved, especially the children. Ask them to tell you at least one or two things they‘re really looking forward to, and make a note of it. For example, if part of your trip includes a trip to Disney World, does each child have a favorite Disney character they would like to be photographed with? Capturing those pictures will mean a lot to them now and in the future
Think of your excursion as a story, or a script, with a beginning, middle and end. What is the story that you want to share? Most likely you already have some idea of places you’ll be visiting and the things you’ll be doing. What kind of memories do you want to bring back? Knowing this will help with planning the pictures you will take.