Ways to Take Photographs of People on Your Travels

By on November 29, 2019

Some photographers specialize in portraiture. While traveling, tourists sometimes take wonderful shots of local people that are both compelling and evocative, even if they do not have the proper training in portrait photography. Sometimes the photographer is just lucky. As a woman over 50 traveling in your retirement, if you are interested in taking photographs of people, how do you go about it?

Ways to produce travel portraits

Sometimes the results are better if you take photographs spontaneously rather than posing the subject. Shooting portraits can be a hit and miss if you are a beginner, but you can use the experience to encourage yourself to try again. Taking a portrait is always challenging, according to Austin portrait photographers. And the potential subjects you’ll meet while exploring the place you visit can give you several choices. What you have to take into account are the techniques you have to apply to make your attempts at portrait photography during your travel a success.

natural sunscreen with zinc oxide
  • You can engage a local in conversation. The language barrier is there, but you can hire a local guide or use a phrasebook to start the conversation. Locals are delighted when foreigners attempt to speak their language. When you have established rapport, ask the person if you can take his or her portrait.
  • You can have an organized shoot by hiring locals to pose for the scenario you have in mind. This takes time and some planning and can involve several people. You should be prepared to pay for this type of approach, either in cash or in-kind, to compensate them for their time.
  • This third approach can give mixed results, as you do not have control over the variables. This involves shooting like you’re doing a documentary. Since you are not interacting with the subject, it might be difficult to capture the desired facial expression. 

Important considerations 

Be aware of cultural differences when you are in a foreign country. Show them your respect by interacting with them for some time before taking out your camera and asking them to pose for a photo. Smiles, gestures, asking what some items are called in the local language, observing how children play and what adults do are some of the things you can do to build rapport. 

Posing your subject

It’s essential for your subject to be relaxed, especially if you want to focus on their faces. Look for interesting backgrounds and places to use as locations for a shoot. Consider the ambient light that will allow you to capture an image that is both powerful and artistic. SpotOn Austin Photographers recommend some good posing ideas which include:


  • Leaning or sitting on a surface
  • Interacting with an object that typifies their culture
  • Engaging in a daily activity
  • Showing expressions other than smiling (which is common)
  • Framing the face, such as with a scarf or other objects 
  • Focusing on the eyes for close-ups

Scouting around and observing children and older people will give you plenty of subjects and ideas. Take time and wait for the right moment. Photographers are artists so they are always looking for inspiration. Experts from SpotOnPhotographers.com are able to turn something mundane into an excellent subject, with the application of the basic techniques such as lighting, angle, and composition.


About Living Better

LivingBetter50.com is the No.1 resource and magazine for women over 50 in the world with 500,000+ readers. LivingBetter50.com covers everything for a woman from “Beauty-to-Business” with our primary goal – To encourage women to live better physically, emotionally, financially, and spiritually!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Ways to Take Photographs of People on Your Travels