Photography Travel Tip 03: Watch the Crop!babibubebo | 2 10 2006
This may seem obvious but I see it many times with travel snap shots…especially when I ask some stranger to take a photo of me at (insert famous place here). Pay attention to what is in your frame and don’t crop off half of somebody’s body, or somebody’s feet. Of course there are sometimes when you may want to do this because there is no other way to make the photograph work, but a lot of times body parts are cropped out of the frame for no other reason other than laziness. Take a look at the photos below. Both times there is plenty of space at the top of the frame so my feet could have easily not been cut off had the photographer paid attention.
My advice to you is… look for somebody with a nice camera (like the one I have in the above photos) and ask them to take your photograph! They might not be a good photographer, but there is a better chance that they are!
This applies not only to the photographs with you in it, but also the ones you are taking. When you take a photo quickly scan all 4 edges of the frame to make sure you have your photo cropped the way you want it. Also it is not a bad idea to scan the rest of the area for distracting items such as telephone poles, wires, trash cans or other elements that can take away from the photo. Take a look at the photos of umbrellas below. They are almost the same photo, the one on top has the side of a building sticking into it.
By simply moving my camera just a small amount I was able to crop out that building’s roof that was sticking into my frame and as a result the image is much more clean. Also, it should be noted that what you see through your view finder is usually not exactly what gets photographed. So first, be careful of how you are cropping the subject in the frame, then after (assuming you are shooting digital) take a quick look at your photo to make sure you haven’t accidently cropped something out.
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2012 Cherry Blossom Photo Tour of Japan