How to plan your photo tour , part 1
good photography relies on storytelling
So, you’re finally ready to do it, to go on your dream photo tour to your chosen exotic destination, to take amazing photographs and come home with a once in a lifetime story. Here’s how to make sure your photo tour is as perfect as it can be.
Decide if you want a guided tour or a self-made tour.
If you are going for a guided tour, I highly suggest not joining a standard photo tour. Even in places like India (where I take many photographic tours with Nomad Photo Expeditions) which is almost always photographically interesting, it won’t get you great photos if you go with a standard tour. Standard tours will not get you away from the tourist areas or show you anything truly interesting or authentic. Get yourself a photographic tour with a good guide who proves they know the area and can get you access to photographically interesting places.
If you want to go self-made, then make sure you figure out what you want to do ahead of time, make calls, and make friends. There are many places in country, take some of the more interesting temples in Varanasi for example, that you can’t get into without proper introductions and politesse.
have an idea of what you want to photograph before you arrive
Have an idea of your narrative.
As so much of good photography relies on storytelling, and following from the point above, have an idea of what you want to photograph before you arrive, or you’ll end up wasting time. I always tell the travelers that come with me on my Pushkar Photo Tour that they’re likely to want to try everything they can once they see the absolute photographic smorgasbord that is India’s famous camel faire. But they need to focus or they won’t walk away with the shots they actually wanted.
Have an idea of what you want to photograph and allot yourself the proper time to take your photos, work with different lenses and expect different lighting in the places you choose.
Make contacts ahead of time whenever possible
Remember that your equipment is heavy, and some places might not allow certain things, such as tripods, flash, etc. Pack the lenses and camera equipment you’re willing to carry on long days, and indispensables you think you can’t live without. Because you’re not in a studio you can’t rely on having all your equipment at hand, but you also need to be ready with enough versatile equipment to tackle low light, different light in different settings, portrait work, or motions shots probably all in one day.