I’ve admired travel photography for several years, even more so since become a traveller myself. In 2016, I saved up my wages and bought my first ever camera, and couldn’t contain my excitement to use it abroad. I spent the following summer snapping away at everything I possibly could whilst on holiday in Greece, and after organising my year away in Australia – the first thing on my mind was upping my photography game.
And that’s exactly what I’ve done. My Instagram looks the best it’s ever been, with a friend recently telling me my page looks like a tourism board, which is great, but maybe travel isn’t all about that. Things began to change around two weeks ago. I recently posted “this post” explaining why there hadn’t been much Sydney content from New Years Eve, which was originally inspired by my mum. But if you’ve been reading my recent posts, you’ll know that during my time in Melbourne, I came across Flow Magazine, which has arguably changed my outlook on pretty much everything, including photography.
Draw Your Travels
The first influence was the article Draw Your Travels. The story follows Caroline Buijs’ discovery of drawing, stating that sometimes a few sketches can be worth more than hundreds of photos – explaining that drawing is a great way to display your favourite moments whilst travelling. Another quote from the article, which I’ve noted before – “constantly using your camera diminishes the power of your memories. It seems you pay less attention when you are counting on your photographs as a memory aid.”
This part of my ‘photography discovery’ blew me away. Textile artist Teresa Lim, uses embroidery to remember her travels as an alternative to taking a photo. In the article, she explained – “like everyone else, I took a lot of photos. And if the storage on my camera or phone was full, I would delete a few of them. Taking a picture feels so rushed; I really want to experience great moments on a deeper level.”
Additionally, choosing embroidery has allowed Teresa to pay close attention to the locations she was in, meaning she was able to notice more things than a quickly snapped photo would.
A New Outlook
Ever since I same across alternative options to document my travels, I’ve noticed how little attention I used to pay to the locations I have previously visited. It’s always been the case of getting my camera out, taking a picture, and leaving. I’m rushing when there isn’t any need to. I have the freedom and time to sit down in a beach for hours and hours if I wanted to, so why am I doing it? Why do I have such an urge to post on my Instagram where I have been that day, when I could’ve taken my time and soaked the experience in.
I haven’t thought about a photography alternative, so I am still snapping away, however I have started to leave my camera behind a lot more. And to no surprise, I’ve started to appreciate travelling a lot more than I did two weeks ago. Memories are incredible to look back on, but I don’t want to be looking back and regretting the choices I’ve made. For me, as a society, we don’t appreciate the moment as much as we should. We are all so quick at getting our phones out to capture something, instead of enjoying the moment.
And the best part is, being creative doesn’t mean it has to be perfect, as long as it reminds you of a certain memory.