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Photographer's Checklist for family vacations

Updated: Mar 28, 2020

It was 4 am, still dark outside, the car packed to the brim and then, we’d be on our way. My parents would whisk us away on yearly family’s road trips. My brother and I would play our own made-up games in the backseat for hours until we quickly got on each other’s nerves and uttered the familiar “Are we there yet” question?

I loved these vacations and I remember them so clearly; the places we’d see, the adventures we’d go on, the new friends we’d make. My father, armed with his Canon AE1, would document these trips so that we could revisit them for years to come. To this day, I enjoy perusing through these albums everytime I go back home to Montreal


With spring finally here, below are some tips on how to document your own vacations.

1. Plan it right

When I travel, I bring with me only the basic equipment I need. If you’re walking around with a big heavy backpack while fumbling through lenses, you won’t be able to enjoy yourself and neither will your family. Before you travel, do some research and take notes of ideas or shots you’d like to try out.

2. It's time to experiment

Our cell phones are now equipped with powerful little cameras. Experiment and have fun with them! Although they won't give you the same results as your DSLR, cell phone cameras are a great way to easily document your adventures. For less than $20, you can accessorize your cell phones with clip-on Wide-Angle lenses, Fisheye and Macro lenses that can really broaden the camera's potential. Want to easily edit your photos? Look at different editing apps such as VSCO or Snapseed.

3. Get the kids involved!

Before one of our trips last summer, I picked up an Instax Mini 8 Camera so that our kids could participate with taking some photos. Easy to use, they loved being able to see and touch their photos right away! It's been a great addition to our camera bag.

4. Print and do it right away

Digital photography makes it easier for us to take a large amount of photos. Because less is more, when you get home, set some time apart to cull through all the photos and keep only the ones you love the most. While it’s still fresh in your mind, get started on a photobook or prints. They make wonderful keepsakes.

5. Because you were there too

Although photography is your passion, you want to be able to enjoy the moment with your family as well. Make sure you’re not the only one responsible for capturing those souvenirs. Make sure to set time aside to enjoy the inspiration the new scenery brings. It's important for you to appear in photos as well. Your family will love to see you in pictures too!

I hope you found these tips helpful!

Have a great time this telling your vacation stories.

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