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Day one in a new place

Take time to acclimatise


The sights, smells and sounds of a foreign place can be exciting, but you don't need to take pictures of everything on your first day.
The sights, smells and sounds of a foreign place can be exciting, but you don't need to take pictures of everything on your first day.

If you are new to travel or just new to the place you are visiting, you may tend to try to fit your whole visit and much of your photography into your first day. That’s understandable, due to the excitement and sense of adventure you will have, but it's not wise. You are not there to take a photographic inventory of the place and there’s no point trying to photograph everything you can in one day in as many sites of interest as you can get to.

Take the time to let the atmosphere and feel of the place sink in. You could even (dare we say it?) leave your camera in your hotel room during your first walk-about, taking note of scenes you’d like to return to photograph. You may be amazed later to realize that you didn’t return to many of the places you would have shot if you’d had your camera with you on day one because better opportunities and scenes came up. And you’ll be glad you didn’t waste your film on first impressions.


Of course, if you are only in the place for a day, or you will be visiting a nearby attraction that you won't be returning to later, bring your camera and capture scenes that interest you.

Take your camera for an early evening stroll on day one after you've settled in a bit. You’ll probably be more relaxed, feel more a part of the place, and be more selective in terms of subject matter, ready to capture exotic pictures that convey a true feel of the place, not just first impressions.

From then on, once you have a feel for the area and the kinds of scenes you can expect to encounter, carry your camera with you at all times. You will return home with a selection of interesting pictures that show thought rather than mere quantity.

Take your time, and size up a new place first. Wait for the weather to change, if necessary, then take pictures that will be keepers.
Take your time, and size up a new place first. Wait for the weather to change, if necessary, then take pictures that will be keepers.

A quick snapshot on arrival  (left) does not portray Manila's ancient <i>intramures</i> walls as well as a carefully-considered photographic composition (right).
A quick snapshot on arrival (left) does not portray Manila's ancient intramures walls as well as a carefully-considered photographic composition (right).



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Don't rush your picture-taking