Adventure Photography: How to Get Started

Photo by Andre Furtado

Having a couple of passions is good. But when you can combine those passions? That’s even better. Bring together two things that you love, and you won’t have to choose between the two when it comes to spending your time. You’ll be able to do both at the same time!

If you love nature and taking photographs, then adventure photography could be just the activity that you’ve been looking for. There’s a stronger entry barrier for this hobby, but once you’re up and running, you’ll find plenty of creative potential. In this post, we’ll run through some handy tips for getting started.

Look For Adventures

It’s recommended to test the waters before you invest in quality — and often expensive — equipment. So your first step will be to go on a few adventures. The best adventure photographs are ones taken in remote, hard-to-access environments, so look at seeking them out. This will require a bit of effort, but those locations are probably closer than you realize. See what nature spots are to be found in your area, and plan a trip. You can take photographs with your smartphone to get started.

Increase the Amount of Time You Spend Outdoors

Take a look at the photographs of the best adventure photographers. You’ll be impressed. But here’s something to remember: those photographs are the culmination of having spent many hours in the great outdoors. You can’t expect to take a great outdoor shot if you’re only spending small amounts of time there. It’s recommended to spend as much time as you can outside. One way to do this is to find an outdoor hobby, such as hiking. You’ll eventually come across a great scene that’s worthwhile shooting, and at that point, it’ll just be a matter of getting out your camera. You’ll find it much easier to get great shots if you’re going on three-day camping trips versus a quick ninety-minute hike.

Photo by Andre Furtado

Take an Online Course

Another word on those world-class adventure photographers: you think they were born with that talent? Think again. While people tend to have an eye for a great photograph, they’re not born with the technical know-how required to take photos outdoors. You can speed up your journey towards taking great photographs by taking an online adventure photography course. There are plenty to choose from, and they’re highly affordable and flexible. By the end, you’ll have learnt plenty of valuable lessons that can help to take your photos to the next level.

Upgrade Your Equipment

You can take decent outdoor photographs using your smartphone, provided you have one of the latest models. However, there’s only so much that those devices can do. To get the best photographs, you’ll need to upgrade your equipment. There are plenty of articles outlining the best camera selections for people interested in outdoor photography, and they don’t have to cost the earth. As well as your camera, it’s recommended to look at investing in other technology that can help you to get great shots — there are DJI drones that are ideal for taking aerial photographs in nature, for instance. Just remember that there’s a higher-than-average chance that the drone will be damaged while on an adventure, so it’s best to take a look at sites https://drdrone.ca/pages/dji-care-refresh that offer coverage against accidental damage. Used correctly, you’ll get some outstanding shots with your drone that would otherwise be impossible to shoot.

And Learn How to Pack It

While you’ll definitely want to invest in some great tools to shoot your adventure photography, it’s also important to keep in mind that you’ll nearly always have to carry that equipment. So it’s best not to go overboard — photography is a hobby where it can be very tempting to buy all the gadgets under the sun, but you’ll only regret it when it comes to packing. Remember that you’ll also have to carry other equipment when out in the wild, such as water, food, and camping supplies. Investing in a quality outdoor backpack that has compartments for your tools will make your life a lot easier.

Find Your Angle

The outdoor world is highly diverse, and there’s no limit to the types of photographs you can take. At the beginning of your journey, you’ll want to shoot as many different subjects as possible unless you’re automatically drawn to a specific one. Over time, you’ll begin to find what you enjoy shooting the most — or which you shoot best. Some people shoot mountains, others shoot wildlife. You may even decide to shoot outdoor activities, such as skiing or mountain biking. Play around and see what works.

Select and Upload 

The internet provides an outstanding platform to get feedback on your shots. Once you’ve edited your snaps, look at uploading them and putting them online. You could use your personal Instagram account to host the photos and get feedback from your followers, but you’ll probably find there’s more value in posting them to photography-specific communities. The people you find there will have an expert eye and will be able to give you valuable feedback on what you can improve.

Make Mistakes 

First of all, when we say make mistakes, we mean with your photographs, not your adventures! There’s not a photo in the world that’s worth putting yourself in harm’s way, so we really do just mean to make mistakes with your photos. Photography is a creative exercise, so it’s worthwhile being experimental and seeing what you can come up with. Some things will work, and some things won’t — and that’s just fine.

Have Fun

Finally, remember to have fun with it. You don’t need to become interested in adventure photography with an eye on making a living from it — in fact, you shouldn’t, since that’s next to impossible. The joy of adventure photography comes from being in the great outdoors and taking shots that you’d happily put on your shelf. Give it your best, and see what you can come up with — if nothing else, you’ll have a fun adventure.

Photos by: Andre Furtado on Pexels


About Author

Jeff to some, Jeffafa to others. I'm a Benoni based coffee-fueled Creative, Foodie, Occasional cyclist and Blogger at ManvsMind.