Getting close to people at your destination is the best way to get close to their culture. Your camera is one of the best tools to meet people. Everywhere you go, you'll find that there are many who love to have their picture taken. However, there are some secrets to walking away with the best possible portrait photos.
- Take your time and develop a connection with both the area and its people. Your understanding will improve your photos, portraits or landscapes
- Look to document the common experiences such and friends, family, love, death, and celebrations. See how you can capture both the similarities to your own culture and the differences at your location
- Don't hide behind your camera. It should be an extension of your personality. Keep it discreet, talk to people, ask permission each time. This way you can take photos of unposed people and typical settings
- Be polite in their language. A dozen or so words, including 'please' and 'thank you' will suffice, especially combined with a winning smile
- Learn about the local customs, the history, and the people. This way you'll be better prepared to find the good photos, and you'll know when it's acceptable to take pictures and not. If you feel like you're intruding, discreetly leave and move on to the next photographic opportunity
There you are, 5 simple 'secrets' to taking better portraits. Not a single technical aspect among them, as getting close and personal is the first and most important step. Now, please, go out there and practice!
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