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Travel Photography Tips for Breathtaking Shots of Cebu

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Capture mesmerizing moments in Cebu through travel photography.

Photos are a way for us to look back on memories, and we all want our memories to look good. Traveling around the world is an experience everyone wants to remember, so travel photography is a pretty neat skill to learn. 

Pictures also get us excited to return to and experience cherished moments once more. They are a reminder of the good old days, especially when it comes to celebrating friendship, family, and camaraderie.

In Cebu, it’s common to see foreigners and locals take selfies, group shots, and landscape photos of the different Cebu tourist spots. Some would even post them on social media, inviting more people to experience the island’s mountains, beaches, waterfalls, and historical landmarks

You definitely don’t want to take boring shots when you travel. You can think outside of the box and create mesmerizing photos you will never get tired of looking at. 

Even photography enthusiasts try to find a vision or style to improve their travel photography skills. 

That being said, here are a few things you can do to take great photos.

1. BE FAMILIAR WITH YOUR GEAR.

Biker driving through the Iron Man Course in Lapu-Lapu

Knowing how to use your camera gear is essential if you want to take great photos.

You may have your own camera gear that you bring around on trips. Familiarizing yourself with the different features will improve your travel photography skills drastically.

The best camera is the one that you have with you at the moment, so no matter what device you prefer taking photos on, you will be assured of pretty decent quality. Technology has improved so much that even the cheapest devices can give you wonderful results. 

If you’re a seasoned photographer, don’t forget to bring your go-to DSLR or mirrorless camera for trips. You can bring more lenses to give your photos different perspectives. 

If you don’t have the budget to buy a high-end camera, you can always use your phone, since mobile photography has improved so much that they can at times take on-par shots with digital cameras.

Taxi passing by the Ayala Central Bloc

Android and iPhone photography have improved so much throughout the years.

Apple users may already be familiar with the power of iPhone photography, and Google Play Store has many editing apps that help Android users create dazzling photos. There are even cellphone lenses online that give your phoneography a lot more versatility. 

Each camera type has its strengths and weaknesses, but you can be sure that your photos will be good enough mementos of your trip to Cebu.

2. USE DRONES AND ACTION CAMERAS.

Drone shots are useful to have a bird’s-eye view of the best Cebu tourist spots.

If you have the budget, you can upgrade to drones and action cameras. The island is filled with a dozen locations that look ten times better in photos when taken from above or even underwater.  

Drones are perfect for mountainous areas such as the Cebu Transcentral Highway, with its view of the city being the selling point of its many tourist spots. You can take wide shots of the city’s infrastructure and remote islands. 

Do note that the Philippines has some strict laws when it comes to flying drones, so you might have to deal with that first before taking photos.

On the other hand, action cameras are perfect for those who love diving into the deep blue seas of the island. GoPros are pocketable devices that can record videos underwater.

Some oceanographers use large underwater rigs that allow digital cameras to take photos, but these are more expensive and heavier to carry around. 

3. USE UNIQUE COMPOSITIONS.

Composition is key in travel photography. You can edit all the photos you want, but these will look supremely better when you have a well-thought-out plan to compose your shot. 

Make sure to look at the frame and see if the photo is balanced, and edit its scale if you find a spot that is askew. This is easier to achieve if you take simpler, more minimalistic photos.

The Rule of Thirds is one of the most common shot compositions, which consist of a shot being divided into nine boxes, with the subject placed on the intersecting lines. This is perfect for focusing on a specific object. 

Leading lines are perfect for areas like parks with impressive walkways. These photos will look more interesting if the aisle goes in different directions or has objects surrounding it. 

For food photography, you can change your perspective by avoiding the typical overhead shot you may have seen in blogs and advertisements. Try zooming into different details to give your food shots a more enticing look. 

You can also look around the area and find things you can frame your subject into. This provides a more creative angle to separate your shots from typical tourist photos

Mastering these compositions will help you stand out from other photographers and make all your shots unique from the rest.

4. ALWAYS CHECK THE WEATHER.

The weather is an important factor in travel photography.

The weather can drastically change the look and aesthetic of your photos, so take note of the best times and days of the year to take photos during your trip. 

It’s best to have photoshoots outside when the skies are clear to take advantage of the bright background. You can also wait to take photos of the mesmerizing sunset. Fair weather also makes flying drones easier since you won’t be dealing with strong winds. 

You should definitely take photos in the morning around either the blue or golden hours to make the most of your shots. This is the best time to take photos since they bring out the most color. 

If you want a specific shot, you should also consider the climate of the country. The Philippines has a dry and wet season, with the wet season usually met with rain and poor weather conditions. 

It may be best to take photos during the summertime when the sun is out and there is barely any rain. This usually starts around March and ends in June.

5. RESEARCH ABOUT THE MOST PHOTOGENIC TOURIST SPOTS.

Sometimes, you don’t really need to think too much when taking a photo. Some places have mesmerizing aesthetics that would look good no matter what composition you decide to use

The Temple of Leah and Taoist Temple look stunning because of the architecture and design, while botanical gardens use their flowers to create a gorgeous color palette.

Some places are even notable for the history behind them, like the Magellan’s Cross and the Mactan Shrine. Selfies and landscape shots of these areas give you a reminder of your time stepping foot into history. 

Research can also help in knowing if a particular location is accessible or if taking photos is allowed. If you research even more, you may discover places that not many people know about yet.

6. GET THE LOCALS INVOLVED.

Filipinos are some of the friendliest people in the world, and in many cases, they may ask to have their photo taken if they see that you’re bringing a camera.  

You can always ask for their permission to take some wonderful shots. They can become wonderful subjects that give your photos a story. You may even learn about their culture and lifestyle if you talk to them for a while. 

They’re probably the best people to ask about the best places to go to in any area. It also helps if you’ve already met a friend who can guide you to the different spots on the island. 

Travel photography may seem easy, but standing out is much different. These tips can help any photographer, whether you’re a beginner or hobbyist. With this skill, you can take photos that you’ll cherish for a lifetime. 

By learning more about travel photography, you can create a style that will make your photos truly your own. You don’t even need to follow the rules, as you can create original content based on your skills and budget. 

Whether it’s going to the must-see locations or looking for new places to visit in Cebu, taking the right shots can make your stay unforgettable, especially since you’ll enjoy gazing at these wonderful shots anytime, anywhere. 

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