Should Stills Photographers Shoot Video for Travel?

March 19, 2023

Breaking wave, Nazare, PortugalBreaking wave, Nazare, Portugal

Breaking wave, Nazare, Portugal. Would a video give this image another dimension? Fujifilm X-H2, 150-600mm lens, f9 @ 1/500 second, ISO 320

Stills and video are very different disciplines. I don’t think it is possible to do both of them easily, but if you’re very comfortable as a stills photographer, I think there’s room to investigate video as a way of sharing your stills photos further or better.

As stills photographers, what we probably don’t want to do is create a documentary masterpiece of our travels. To match the production values of what we find on YouTube (the good ones) can require a lot of effort and I fear that focusing on a video in this way could take us away from our primary goals of capturing stills. It could also take us away from enjoying the travelling – travel photography can include cultural and location experiences as well. Don’t miss out on these by focusing on too much video.

Having said that, being open to capturing certain times and moments with video makes a lot of sense. Some experiences when filmed have a dimension that is not available as a single capture, so if you can capture these moments on video – a calving glacier, a ceremonial dance, an albatross coming into land – what can you do with this material?

One answer is to create a slide show (e.g. for YouTube) and combine your stills with video footage – and maybe a great sound track or even a voice-over. It doesn't have to replace your prints or your photo albums, but it’s another way to share your travel images and your experiences. And one that I think can be a lot of fun.

 


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