Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Travel Studies: Postcard with Photos

It's a snap!

Anne Lamott wrote:
"So I grew up around this man who sat at his desk in the study all day and wrote books and articles about the places and people he had seen and known. He read a lot of poetry. Sometimes he traveled. He could go anyplace he wanted with a sense of purpose. One of the gifts of being a writer is that it gives you an excuse to do things, to go places and explore. Another is that writing motivates you to look closely at life, at life as it lurches by and tramps around." Bird by Bird

I started traveling as a Sherpa. Dee loaded me down with a tripod and camera bag, heavy with interchangeable camera bodies and wide-angle lenses. He needed to be unencumbered, with his hands free to snap fabulous candid shots. His job looked more fun than mine.

A few years ago I got a darling red CoolPix digital camera. I took the instruction book to Kinko's and had it blown up and spiral bound so I could actually see the words and study the illustrations. I experimented with modes and scenes, and figured out it's many features.

It has changed the way I travel! (No longer is shopping the main activity.) I try to capture my experience in photos, and use them to tell stories. For example, the stamp market in Paris didn't hold tons of appeal for me. It was Dee's activity. But with my CoolPix I searched for cool pics and the morning was fascinating.

Luckily with digital cameras, there's no concern about wasting film. Take as many shots as you can to insure you'll get a good one. And remember that even professional photographers have mishaps! Marta gave some great tips for the non-professional photographer the other day. It you missed her post, read it here.

Homework: Do any or all or be inspired:

~Page through a glossy travel magazine. What do you see? Are the pictures taken from unusual angles? Did the photographer use a natural frame such as trees, or a window? Do people in the photo look posed or natural?

~Find photos of a recent trip. Weed out any photos showing people staring stiffly at the camera, the blurry ones, or those taken from so far away that you can't remember what they're of. Choose ten that could be used to tell a story of something you saw or learned. Collage them and frame, make an iPhoto slideshow with an appropriate soundtrack (it's very easy using the iPhoto prompts) or make a scrapbook page.

~Pretend you're writing an article for a travel magazine. Take your camera on a walk through your neighborhood and take pictures to illustrate it in a colorful, positive way. Practice your skills and be ready for your next trip!

*If you do any part of this assignment on your blog, please link it back to TravelinOma and provide proper attribution. Leave a comment here (with a link to your homework if you want to share it) and/or a link to your blog (so we can get to know you.) School Days has open enrollment so join anytime. No make-up work required! If you're new, click here for an orientation.


diane said...

This is something I really need to work on. We have all the equipment I just don't have a clue.

polly said...

the camera I got a year ago is the first one that I know how to use. It is so much fun. A whole new hobby!

Diane said...

Most of my life I've depended on the pictures other people have taken. Sad but true. I need to change that!
wk 8 day2

Diane said...

PS. I love Anne LaMott. I can't always put my finger on why, but I do. She has a fascinating brain.

audrey said...

This was fun! And I got to check this project off my To Do list since I have been meaning to do this anyway.


Allison said...

So funny this comes up as I'm going through my thousands (literally) of photographs -- the digital files -- from my year studying abroad. I've been meaning to go through them and order some to get printed and put an album together since I got back (over 2 years now) and am just now sitting down to do it!

dalene said...

i spent some time searching on the web and found this gem. homework done.

~j. said...

always on my mind.