How to Infuse Your Travel Photography with Emotion – Part 2

published on May 24, 2013 by

For great photos that truly capture the memories of your timeshare vacation, follow these tips from award-winning travel photographer Andrea Johnson – Part 2.

Ms. Johnson takes us behind the scenes on a recent trip to Australia’s Northern Territory, where she traveled with a group of journalists while testing the newest Canon camera.

Capturing Mood 
The illusion of early morning tranquility in Kakadu National Park was broken as dozens of prehistoric reptiles that lurked underwater silently surfaced.

Close up photos of the crocodiles are menacing but I prefer the feeling the wide-angle image evokes, contrasting the tourist boat with the primordial scene in mysterious dawn glow.

Gesture, Scale and Perspective in Landscape 
It can be difficult to look through a viewfinder directly at the sun so I found the interactive, swivel touch screen of the Canon EOS D650 handy to compose and even shoot these scenes. This screen essentially acts like the touch screen of an iphone, allowing you to zoom, lock focus and exposure, and even shoot with a simple touch of the finger.

The sunset colors add drama to the scene, but it’s the gesture of the people that make the shots come alive.

Power of Play 
I’ve found the easiest way to bring a playful spirit to my work is to find others that share my enthusiasm and make sure they are a part of the adventure.

All three people in this scene are professional photographers: Working together we immersed ourselves in the scene and experimented until we captured a moment where all elements came together.

With this assignment I re-learned my early travel lessons:
 • The importance of recharging your creative batteries by trying something new.
 • Flexibility to allow the place to make its imprint on me instead of trying to manipulate a scene to work for a preconceived idea.
 • Most importantly, coming full circle to my early days of travel, remembering that the experience is more important than the photographs. I photograph to freeze moments, to communicate the nuances I can’t easily put to words, and to respond to emotions I experience but may not immediately comprehend. These images become seared in my mind, and I never feel more alive and in harmony with my surroundings then when I am immersed in a scene working to capture this sense of place in my photographs.

Plan a timeshare rental vacation where you and your family can capture memories of a lifetime in wonderful, emotion-filled, photographs.

For more tips for taking pictures on your vacation see Andrea Johnson’s suggestions in Part 1.

View more photographs from her Australian adventure.

Andrea Johnson is a freelance photographer specializing in adventure travel, food and wine.  She regularly contributes to the industry’s top wine and travel publications and has photographed three wine books.  

Andrea recently won the Gold Award by the Society of American Travel Writers for her work in Vietnam, judged by National Geographic editors and based on her storytelling ability in a photo essay.  She can be reached at