Travel photography

What is travel photography?

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Travel photography is a photography genre that is the source of images used in the $1 trillion tourism industry. It includes various materials and subjects such as destination photography for hotels and resorts, tourist attractions, scenic photography, adventure shooting, local events coverage, and much more.

The results can then be used for numerous purposes like advertising, print sales, merchandising, social marketing, etc. Travel photographers need to be familiar with multiple photographic disciplines, be it portraiture, wildlife, landscape, architectural, reporting, or event photography. They have to know it all. So you need to become an all-rounder if you wish to jump the bandwagon! Here are some insights to help you out:

Is Travel Photography Profitable?

Obviously Yes! People have made full careers via travel photography, as it can be very profitable and enjoyable. It is one of those professionals in which you get total freedom to select your path and choose from the numerous income streams.

As you continue shooting, more opportunities will spring up. From image licenses and income from agencies and magazines to hosting workshops and paid sponsorships, there are many ways to earn a decent income.

But for it to work, you need to have a smart business sense. If you are determined to make a living with travel photography, you need to extend beyond passing your time and dive into the world of social media marketing, negotiation, and content development.

How to start?

Take the first step by going out into the world and begin shooting so that you can create a portfolio. You don’t have to travel to create a portfolio. Just select any place within your remits and go. If you can afford to travel, then go to your dream destination and begin there.

Travel photography journey

But do some research beforehand and don’t click like a tourist. Then upload your portfolio on a social media platform, and you are all set!

License your work

Whichever way you are pursuing travel photography, the first thing to do is to license your photos. If you are a beginner, then use sites like 500px to license your work quite quickly. If you already a pro and have a strong portfolio, then apply at Shutterstock, which is very reputable.

Offering Services

Offering photography services can become very profitable as there are many businesses in the tourism industry. You can sell your services to them; for example, if you are going skiing, then get in touch with the local lodges at your selected destination and offer them your service for a free stay or trade a few photos with them fee.

You can even contact the tourism board there and get paid for promoting them. Eventually, these small jobs open up even more work as you get recognized, and your portfolio also gets stronger. So as fame grows up, you will even get training and workshop opportunities.

Selling the Prints

If you have a cohesive collection of images in a specified category, exhibit them in a gallery or online, and you will find some buyers.

If you are a beginner, then online exposure can help a lot, and you can upload your work on print-on-demand websites for print sales, which can establish you and then go for galleries.

Providing Destination Tours

For travel photography, you research thoroughly and learn the ins and outs of a particular destination. This helps you conduct location-specific workshops through which you can not only do your photography but also make a few extra bucks by guiding others.

Become Resilient

You might feel that travel photography is all fun when you see exotic images of fellow photographers, but what you see is not all.

From long-haul flights and jet lags to incompatible surroundings, you can face anything. You might have to spend days in transit, and sometimes you lose your functionality there. So next time you see an extraordinary image, imagine the hard work behind it.

So you have to be resilient as travel photography demands sacrifice. Things like traffic oversold flight language barriers, crowds, bedbugs, grueling treks, and foodborne illnesses can be stressful, so gear up before you step in.

Become Tolerant

The more you travel, the more you will encounter various circumstances. Some will be fun and intriguing, while others can be alienating and dangerous.

So pick up your camera, be ready for anything, and apply tolerance when you come across something that doesn’t go well with you. It is your job as photographers to observe and positively influence others with your images.

Become Flexible

If you want to access more opportunities, you will have to become deeply committed and change your lifestyle according to your photography needs.

You can find a balance between your personal and professional life or become a digital nomad like me who lives with a suitcase and an open mind. Your flexibility can make a monumental difference in your career.

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8 thoughts on “What is travel photography?”

  1. Avatar of Ahearst

    Wow , I have no idea travel can be profitable while being fun at the same time. I might consider this after my stint in college. I can see the world and make money at the same time. Perfect combination. You don’t get this kind of opportunity working in a corporate environment.
    Thanks for the tips

  2. Avatar of Todd P Matthews
    Todd P Matthews

    You know, I would love to get into this. I’m already a writer who has based my settings on the local area in which I live. This viewing area is full of hills, valleys, forests, and lastly, the Ohio River. But there’s more to the Northern West Virginia/Eastern Ohio region than simply the landscape, which is breathtaking all year round. Much more than that.

    It’s located within the Rust Belt, where abandoned steel mills and coal mines tell a story of a time long since lost to history, rusting away as the years fly by. There’s potential here to build a nice portfolio, while also venturing into nearby Pittsburgh (40 miles east), Cleveland (132 miles north), and Columbus (166 miles west), with each area offering a unique form of scenery.

  3. Avatar of Becky Gallegos
    Becky Gallegos

    Hi,do you have all kinds of prints for sale – like maybe for other peoples websites? And where can we buy them or look at some to buy?

  4. Avatar of Andrey

    Dear Marian
    Thank you very much for your fantastic website. It is amazing that you show people where to start and what steps to make towards their amazing, healthy and relaxing hobby – photography.
    I hope more people will know about your website and follow your guidance.
    Kind regards,

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