Photoshoot Ideas & Photography Tips for Solo Travelers
We live in the age of the phrase, if there’s no picture, did it ever really happen? If you take a solo vacation, you may feel awkward asking others to take pictures of you or using a selfie stick/self-timer to capture moments. Solo travel no longer means you have to compromise on capturing amazing photos– you really can have it all as a solo traveler.
Below we’ll cover some photography tips for solo travelers, some solo photoshoot ideas, and how to book a local photographer at your destination to capture epic solo travel photos.
Photography Tips for Solo Travelers
Traveling solo can be such a liberating experience. You have more freedom to choose where and when you go and it can often be cheaper too. But how do you capture those memories in photo form like those traveling with other people? Even in the modern craze of the selfie, we can’t always record the true essence of actually being somewhere unless we sacrifice not being in the photo ourselves.
Get a Travel Tripod
Tripods are a must for any photographer. Ensuring your camera is steady makes for the perfect photo.
You might think that dragging along a tripod everywhere will be painful, especially if you are backpacking and are carrying your life on your back. However, tripods have come a long way since the beginning days of photography. There are many lightweight and foldable options out there that are perfect for your own photoshoot as a solo traveler. Our favorite ones are:
- The Pocket Tripod – It fits inside your wallet!
- The Joby Gorillapod – Best all-around travel tripod
- Peak Design Travel Tripod – Great for professional travel photographers with DSLRs
Adding a remote (hopefully wireless) will then make your tripod your new travel bestie as you can set up the backdrop and get into the photo, and with one click on the remote, your perfect shot is taken.
Learn Your Camera’s Settings
There are some amazing features on your camera that I bet you don’t know about. Or you know about them but haven’t spent the time getting to know how to use them.
Before you set off on your solo travels or when you purchase a new camera, practice using the functions and settings before you go. There is nothing worse than being somewhere as spectacular as the Statue of Liberty and then needing to figure out how to set the self-timer. Practice with still and moving objects as well as during different times of the day so you can get to know the settings of your camera in different types of lighting.
A feature that is very useful for solo travelers is the ‘self-timer continuous’ feature. As it states, it is a self-timer, allowing the camera to be set ready for you to jump in the photo. And by adding the continuous burst feature, you can ..literally jump in the photo! A continuous burst tasks 5+ photos in quick succession – then all you need to do is pick the best image.
Or at least do everything in your power to avoid the tourist hot spots when it is crowded. As travelers, we have an ideal image of how we want our vacation photos to look. For most people, we want a physical reminder of being somewhere amazing.
Often those amazing places are THE places to go at your chosen destination, so it is best to plan and research before going. Find out the busiest times of that attraction and avoid that time! As a solo traveler, taking photos can be tricky anyway but if you don’t need to navigate crowds then your photoshoot will be just how you imagined it.
Hire a Local Photographer
Consider hiring a professional photographer in your destination. They will be able to bring all their own gear and can do all the hard work while you enjoy creating those moments. You are guaranteed the image you need as they will work with you to create the perfect photoshoot that will tell the story of your solo travel adventure.
Gain a Friend
By hiring a local photographer, no matter where in the world you are, you’ll essentially have a friend to venture around with for a bit! Your solo photographer will capture any fun, silly, candid, and extraordinary moments– plus, he or she can offer tips for the most picture-perfect memory-making! Use your photographer as a resource to get to know the city you’re visiting even better. Plus, they’ll have some excellent solo photoshoot ideas such as the best photo spots and the poses that work best. They may even have recommendations for local tour guides, pub crawls, etc.
Feel like a Star
Imagine browsing local markets in France, running on the beach in Spain, or simply walking the streets of Manhattan– and having a photographer with ninja-like skills there to capture every moment along the way! It’ll be like having your very own paparazzi– without the fear of being photographed doing something ridiculous, or scandalous even! Your solo photographer won’t impede your space or make you feel awkward– you won’t even have to worry about striking a pose. Just have fun and enjoy your me-time.
Epic Solo Traveler Photos
Hiring a solo photographer is no longer reserved for weddings, bar mitzvahs, or baby showers– now, more and more travelers are hiring photographers for solo photoshoot ideas and to capture moments that they would have otherwise been unable to. You’ll finally return home with epic vacation photos, instead of awkward selfies or poorly framed photos that were taken by a stranger.
Solo Photoshoot Ideas
There’s something about traveling alone that we love – it’s exciting, liberating, and a haven for self-exploration. With no one else to worry about or sync up your schedule with, you are truly free to explore wherever, whenever you’d like! Some may think a downfall to solo travel is that there is no one around to share memories and capture photos with– but that doesn’t have to be the case!
There is no rule that states your whole body or face need to be in your photos. You know what you look like so why not create a memory of you “doing” something rather than an awkward pose or smile.
Think of how you are seeing something through your eyes. As you lift that coffee or wine to your lips, what is the view? Capture that. Laying on a beach? Capture just your feet in the sand.
A great way to take these types of photos is by using a selfie stick. Selfie sticks are not just for mobile phones, with some cameras being able to also use a similar function. Solo travelers can then capture that shot of walking across a famous bridge from behind (think the iconic Brooklyn Bridge) or capture a wider view of a crowded area (think the steps in Times Square). Images of the back of your head can add a dimension to your photos that take you back to that exact moment even years later.
Make it an action shot
Traveling solo? Invest in a GoPro for those adventurous moments. Action shots can really capture emotion and tell a story that a posed photo can’t.
GoPro’s can also up your photo game by allowing you to take underwater photos. They are also a great alternative to a regular camera due to their shockproof features.
Consider taking stills from a video that you can capture with a GoPro too. By using an extender (similar to a selfie stick) you can wander jungles and walk through shallow waters and capture those solo travel moments.
Use reflective surfaces
Not everyone wants to approach a stranger to ask them to take a photo. (FYI – most other travelers LOVE helping solo travelers out). If you are one of those people, then think outside the box and use a reflective surface to add some wow to your photos and capture that moment.
Shop windows in the right light make for great assistants on your solo travels. At the right angle, you can get into the shot with a recognizable building or landmark like the famous Bull of Wall Street. The shot will then have a flair that other people may not have – an especially handy trick if you are planning to create a travel blog or Instagram.
Reflections from water can also be a fun and interesting way to record your memories as a solo traveler.
Hiring a Local Professional Photographer
Book a fun experience with a local professional photographer who knows all the best photo spots, when the best lighting will be, and how to beat the crowds to capture magical moments without tons of other tourists in the background. Not only will they take amazing solo travel photos, but will edit them to be beautiful photo souvenirs you’ll treasure for years to come.
Sometimes solo travel can be the best way to see the world… but it can be hard to capture your trip when traveling alone. Connecting with a local photographer for solo photoshoot ideas can be the solution to your problems! You get to meet a local who’ll help capture your travel memories and offer photography tips. You’ll also get some unique insight into the city you’re visiting that only a local could know.
Check out the best photographers for a solo photoshoot in the top destinations in the world, such as:
- New York City
- Mexico City
- Las Vegas
- The Bahamas
- Maui, Hawaii
- Cabo San Lucas
What’s included in a solo photoshoot package?
With every solo photography package, you’ll get high-resolution photos that are professionally edited and delivered by email in a private online gallery within 5 business days. In your gallery, you will be able to see all the photos from your solo photoshoot and get to download a certain number of your favorites, depending on your package. It also includes:
- one-on-one planning with your photographer
- a private online gallery
- high-resolution photos that are professionally edited
- photos delivered within 5 days
Hiring a vacation photographer for your solo journey doesn’t mean you’re narcissistic– it’s a fun way to document a trip that’s sure to be a memorable one! Local Lens has captured solo vacations in over 100 cities around the world. These photos are great for sharing your trip with friends and family on social media, bloggers, or for updating a dating profile.
How much does a solo photoshoot cost?
Prices vary by city, ensuring you the best rates. High-resolution photos are professionally edited and delivered by email in a private online gallery within 5 business days. Choose between 4 different photo packages:
- 30 minutes – Includes 15 digital photos
- 1 hour – Includes 30 digital photos
- 90 minutes – Includes 45 digital photos
- 2 hours – Includes 60 digital photos