Tag Archives: Travel photographer

10 Steps To Getting Your Travel Photographs Noticed and Published

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“I take great pictures, how can I get my photos published?”

I picked up my first professional camera – the Nikon D90 – in November of 2008. The same month I packed my bags and went to Jamaica on sabbatical.

My first “major” publication came 8 months later, in the UK Guardian. And I wasn’t even pitching hard or living and breathing publication yet before that.

Three and a half years, lots of self- teaching and practice, one class and several publications and paid assignments later – I’ve learned a ton about this profession. And I still continue to learn.

For starters, let’s be clear – vacation photos are not the same as publication-worthy travel photographs. (I know. I had to say it.)

Seriously, if I had a penny for every person who thinks his or her photos are ready for publication I would be on a round-the-world trip right now. Nothing wrong with confidence but in this field, as in most, a blend of knowledge, hard work and realism will get you farther every time.

What was the one best thing I did from the start, besides learning and practice? I shared my work online. I had no strategy at first. I was just sharing my passion for travel, culture and music. I had always posted my vacation photos before, but when I went on sabbatical in 2008, it felt different. I was now documenting life in another country and traveling long-term, and I wanted others to learn and live through my photos.  Your objective may be another, but in the end, it comes down to sharing your particular message.

Below are basic guidelines for those who have a growing passion in travel photography and want to take it to the next level.

Ten tips and steps to getting started with “exposing” your work. Because that’s what you have to do first, for it to lead to publication and opportunities. It’s what I did and it worked for me.

1. Master the nuts and bolts of photography

There are no corners to cut – you have to learn and understand the basics of photography first. And after you learn, keep mastering them. Shoot every day if you can.

Yes, it takes just a little time to understand shutter speed, aperture, ISO and other important aspects. Growing pains, people. You simply must have a good grasp on the technical side if you want to go places in the publication world. Learn why some shots attract the eye more than others, how to avoid blown out photos, how to capture action and movement, and low light. You can >> Continue reading »

Posted in PHOTO TIPS, TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHER | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , 8 Comments

S&S ABROAD with Brendan Van Son – Travel Writer, Photographer & Editor

The life of an expat is fascinating – to pack up, move away from “home” and make a new life is no small feat. It’s an experience available to the few of us in the world who have the privilege of freedom and choice.

Over the past few years I’ve met some incredible expats, both on the road and from connecting to an amazing network of travelers in person and online. People like you and me, who took a chance to create a new life, through travel. They moved away from their “patria” for reasons as wide as the universe –  a better chance at success in their fields,  more quality of life, or to satisfy their need to explore. Some are nomads, others picked a new country and called it home. They all have one thing in common: the courage to pursue their dreams.

Though this “Abroad” series, I will profile some of these unique individuals. They’re willing to let me peek into their lives abroad – why they moved, what they do and how travel has transformed them beyond work. My goal is to continue to inspire through my blog, and what’s more inspiring than knowing that anyone can press the redirect button on life?

They are writers, teachers, photographers, computer nerds and much more.

Meeting them fuels me and I hope it does the same for you, whether you wish to live abroad or not. (Plus you get to read about someone other than me!)

For the first profile in this “Abroad” series, I’m happy to introduce writer, photographer and travel-entrepreneur Brendan Van Son. I first heard of Brendan when I stumbled on a post he wrote, ranking travel blogs into a Top 100 list. I sent him an email to introduce myself (hello, what about me?!) and he was quick to respond, inviting me to submit my work for his new digital magazine, Vagabundo, which aims to showcase the sea of fresh talent that’s out there. I loved his down-to-earth, tell-it-like-it-is personality. Plus, he’s managed to turn travel into work – through publications of his own and through his blog.  I’ll stop now – read on to find out more!


NAME: Brendan Van Son

PATRIA: Canada

OCCUPATION:  Photographer, Author, Editor



Brendan, you’re originally from Canada. Where are you currently living and how long will you be there?

Yes, I’m from a small town called Rocky Mountain House, Alberta, but I’ve been on the road for 3 years now.  I don’t actually live anywhere.  I’m a nomad of sorts, a week here, a couple days there.  At this exact moment I’ve just arrived in Madrid, Spain.

What triggered your desire to leave home and travel the world?

I decided to start travelling once I realized that all my career ambitions revolved around which job would allow me the most opportunity to travel. I gave up a lot of “good” career options to seek out my own career discovering the world.

What’s your travel style, do you structure your time in any way in each destination?

I’m a backpacker, and not a long-stay traveller at all.  Since I work from the road I stay a little bit longer than most tourists, but not much. Generally I stay 3-5 days somewhere >> Continue reading »

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