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 Sinclairification by Grant Sinclair

Staying sharp while traveling is expensive

19 Jun 2008

To travel and take photographs is one of the great joys of life.  If your going far from home, your photographs of the places you’ve been are the most personal souvenir.  Weather traveling to a distant land or taking a road trip, getting out in the world can be a lot of fun.

But with gas at $400,000.00 a gallon, no one’s going anywhere these days.  While, gas for your car is expensive, we’ve also seen a rise in the price of airfare, as fuel for planes causes ticket prices to rise.

What is the eager traveler to do?  If you have the urge to go someplace, or just feel your camera gear is gathering dust, we have a few suggestions on how to get back behind the camera or out of the house.

Yes, gas is expensive.  But don’t let that stop you from seeing things you never see: local attractions. 

Most of us only see the local sights when guests visit from out of town.  Go and see these places for yourself.  Make a day of it and stay longer than you usually would.  Watch how the light changes on subjects as the sun moves across the sky, try different angles or experiment with different camera settings.

If you want to try something different, ditch the car and go for a bicycle ride or a hike.  We notice a lot more when we’re close to it than when we’re driving by at 70 MPH.  Get online and find hiking and bicycle maps.  I found this Web site (you’re welcome, which is a good start if you’re looking to take a ride anywhere in the US or Canada.

If bicycle or hiking aren’t your thing, go downtown.  We take a lot of pictures when we’re out in the world, but it’s best to practice in your own town.  When was the last time you went to Main Street at dark and took pictures?  Have you photographed the more well-known buildings in town?  How about the lesser known buildings?  One well-planned weekend could result in great images of the place you live.

But if you’ve had enough and just want to get out of town, try a road trip – with a few exceptions.  Because gas is so expensive, that cross-country, coast to coast adventure may have to wait.  But if you live near neighboring states or cities, now may be a good time to grab a few friends and hit the road.  You can split the cost of gas and a hotel room and if you’re frugal enough, not spend too much money on your “just out of town” trip.

If you’re the wilderness type, a camping trip may be in order.  You can still camp in most places relatively inexpensively and getting into nature can offer some great opportunities to take pictures and practice photography in a more relaxed environment.  The woods are one place where you can be relatively sure no one is going to try to steal your camera.  Unless it’s with the food.

Hopefully these suggestions will keep you taking pictures and staying sharp until travel becomes affordable again which, according to the news, will either be six month from now, or never.

Have fun!  

© 2008

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