Coromandel Peak Couple - Renee Roaming

Couple Travel Photography Tips & Hacks

How to Take Stunning Travel Photos as a Couple

These tips have massively helped my husband and I over the years when capturing travel moments. I love being able to look back and reminisce on our adventures and have those memories to keep for years to come. In this article I’ll share with you our best tricks for taking stunning travel photos as a couple!

Cypress Tree Tunnel - Renee Roaming

INVEST IN A TRIPOD

Nearly every photo you see in this article has been taken with a tripod. My husband and I are often the only people around when we travel, particularly if it’s at sunrise or sunset. We simply set our tripod up at the distance and height we want to capture, attach our camera and snap away. Using a tripod also means you can take the exact photo you want and don’t have to rely on a stranger getting it wrong. We typically use this tripod or this one, with a Really Right Stuff ball head. You can certainly use a smaller/lighter tripod but it might not get as much range.

Kitchen Hut - Renee Roaming

USE A SELF TIMER

Most cameras these days have a self timer function. We often set ours for 10 seconds and then run into the frame (with our camera set up on our tripod). You can also ask a stranger or friend to press the button if the shot is being taken from further away.

Coromandel Peak New Zealand - Renee Roaming

USE A WIRELESS REMOTE CONTROL

My husband and I often take photos from quite far away and quickly realized how exhausting it is running from the camera and back with a 10 second timer! A wireless remote control shutter release like this one is the perfect solution (make sure you buy one that works with your camera brand and model). These allow you to click the remote when you are in position for a photo, rather than running back and forth.

Spirit Island Canoe Canada - Renee Roaming

Photo credit – Christian Schaffer

 

ASK SOMEONE TO TAKE THE PHOTO

We don’t often do this but sometimes we find ourselves without a tripod and no other option. Ask someone who looks like they know how to operate a camera, explain the basics, take a photo to show them how you want the image framed and then cross your fingers! Obviously use common sense and be careful who you give your gear to. Better yet, travel with photographer friend like Christian Schaffer and get killer images like the one above!

Wind River Range Arrowhead Lake - Renee Roaming

Use a drone

Drone’s are expensive but they will take your photography and video game to the next level. When an aerial shot is taken from far away you often can’t tell the “pilot” is holding a controller. My husband and I plan to take more footage with our drone this year, including some selfies! We own this drone.

Cradle Mountain Mt Campbell - Renee Roamin

SET UP A KILLER COMPOSITION

Usually either my husband or I will stand in the frame while the other person sets up the shot. There is often lots of “move to your left, no not that much, step back” … but it’s worth it to get an amazing composition! Make sure you are the focus of the image and that you stand out against the background. We often position ourselves to be standing out against a lake or the sky so that detail isn’t lost to a busy background. Try to be as realistic as possible and capture the candid moment that happened just before the photo was taken.

Grampians Boroka Lookout - Renee Roaming

WORK WITH THE LIGHT

Our preferred time of day to shoot is ‘golden hour’ – the hour or so just after sunrise and before sunset. Everybody and everything looks better in this soft golden light! Tourist attractions are usually much less busy at this time of day too – bonus!

Moke Lake Campground - Renee Roaming

MIX THINGS UP

It’s nice to have a variety of photos, especially if you are making an album and you don’t want them all to look the same. Here are some ideas for photo compositions and posing:

  • Get a candid walking or hiking shot. Set the tripod up and literally walk past to get a realistic shot of what you are doing. You can stand there and pretend walk if you want a really sharp image
  • If you hike or drive a long way for a specific view, when you first arrive you stand there and take it all in together… right? So capture that moment!
  • Get a photo of you inside or near your accommodation. This works particularly well with camping photos as they are way more interesting with people in the shot!
  • Try different angles of the same photo. Does it look better from lower down or closer up?
  • Try a #followmeto style photo (guy holds girl’s hand from behind the camera)
  • Stand next to each other a small distance apart and hold hands. You can look at the camera or at each other, or even be facing away from the camera. This pose is kind of corny but definitely a cute memory.
  • Be cheesy and give each other a big smooch!!

The Balconies at Grampians National Park - Renee Roaming

TAKE YOUR TIME & DON’T BE EMBARRASSED

My husband and I often get people stare at us, comment or ask questions when we’re taking photos. It can be embarrassing at times but I just remind myself that they are strangers and I shouldn’t care what they think. People often say things like “wow, that’s such a cool memory to have” and I couldn’t agree more! Take your time getting photos, try different angles and review your images before heading off.

Trolltunga Norway Couple - Renee Roaming

BE YOURSELVES & HAVE A LAUGH

You can totally tell in photos if people are having a good time! My husband and I are often laughing at ourselves and enjoying our time together, which I think shows through in our captures.  Try not to take yourselves too seriously and cherish the moment!

 

PIN THIS!

Couple Travel Photos Tips & Tricks - Renee Roaming

 

Want to read about my tips for traveling with a loved one and not killing each other?  Check the post out here: 

Tips For Traveling As A Couple - Renee Roaming

 

All images in this post were taken by myself or Matthew Hahnel, unless otherwise mentioned

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Comments (78)

  1. This is PERFECT! Great ideas and I really appreciate all the explanation…and the tips to not let people looking at you funny stop you from getting that perfect photo. I mean, it’s your memory. Seriously awesome. Thanks 🙂

  2. Wow, I am in love with your photography! As a landscape photographer, I rarely take photos of me in them. This blog makes me want to change that! Thanks for the tips!

    1. Thanks Kimberly. You totally should! It’s now your challenge for next time you are shooting landscapes 😉 My husband and I often have our tripods set up taking nature/landscape photos and then one or two of us will run into frame and get a portrait shot too!

  3. Hi Renee!

    I was so glad I found your blog last year. Love the new update! One thing that your blog stood out to me the most was the simplicity and a sense of peace when I read your blog. Love all your tips and especially this one! I remember asking you about the Norway picture and how you were able to capture a picture so far away. What I enjoy most about your blog is your focus on travel. Whenever I read your content it makes me feel like you value travel above all, and your passion seeps through your words to your readers and as one of many, I appreciate that. Thank you Renee for the tips and inspiring pictures. Can’t wait for more of my own. =)

  4. What an awesome post! Thanks so much for sharing your tips! May I ask, what are your tips to focusing on the right spot (where you will be) when you are setting up the shot? This is one thing I have really been struggling with!

    1. That’s a tricky one. Usually my husband or myself run into the frame so that we can focus the image on one of us before taking the shot together. If you are taking solo photos then I would use manual focus and focus on something that is the same distance from the camera to where you will be standing. This might be the ground or a tree right next to where you will be, as long as it’s the same distance from the camera. I hope that makes sense!

  5. Great tips! My husband and I have been traveling with our baby, so usually it’s only one of us in the picture, or one of us with our son. It would be nice to have a few more pictures as a family or even as a couple! We’ll have to start thinking about when it will be convenient to bring along a tripod. And it’s nice to know that I’m not the only one that feels super awkward sometimes taking a picture, even when we don’t have a tripod!

    1. Thanks for reading! You’re right, pretty much all of these tips apply to traveling families as well as couples. It can definitely be embarrassing at times but totally worth it for some nice memories 🙂

  6. Hi Renee!

    I was wondering how you folks took those insanely beautiful pics at Boroka Lookout! Then I stumbled onto this post and it all made sense!

    I’m a budding (no sorry, fumbling) photographer and I’ve really been struggling with composition. You’ve made this so easy to understand so now I can go ahead and practice that. You’ve made me fall even more in love with photography. Hopefully I can fall in love with my photos soon.

    Thanks,
    Astrid
    Astrid recently posted…Best Canned Food for SurvivalMy Profile

  7. This is such a great article. I’m always battling to get good pictures with the two of us in it, I dont know why I never thought of a tripod. I am using my phone to take the pictures though, do you know of any good tripods for phones?

  8. Hi Renee! Stunning images and good blog. I was just wondering what camera and lens do you usually bring especially those places that need hiking and trekking?