What makes our jobs at Lobster so enjoyable is seeing all the daily content that our Lobster community post – we get serious travel envy from the places you visit and the people you meet.
But one thing that we thought was topical at the moment, considering its well into summer here in the northern hemisphere of the world, is traveling which acknowledges, promotes and respects different cultures from around the world.
There have been many examples of how picture takers have made once secret or locally known wonders, sites of mass tourism (read here). And while photographers, in general, get a bad rep for this reason, it’s definitely possible to do it the right way! In many places, the exposure that photography gives an area can have many positives (money, development, aid), but it’s important that we stay aware of our individual and collective impact in cultural sights and spots.
Here’s a few things to keep in mind when taking pictures of your travels:
- Research it
We have the internet for a reason, so use it! Do your homework about the places you are trying to visit. Be aware of where you’re going and what is appropriate to do when you get there. Make sure to judge whether your presence will provide a positive impact and therefore if it would be appropriate for you to go.
The additional information you can prepare with is:
- How shall I dress when visiting
- Basic phrases in the language
- Cultural traditions you should be aware of
- Aware of it
Be aware of your surroundings. Take it in through your eyes, not just your camera lens.
- Respect it
With the knowledge you will have gained from 1 and 2, it’s important that any place you visit of a cultural significance, you remember you are in someone else’s place of tradition/home. Respect it the way you’d respect staying in anyone’s house.
Similarly, disrespecting or altering any of your surroundings just ‘for the gram’ is not the best way to go. We see this happening in many places that have become popular to tourists, so use this to set yourself apart from the basic Instagram users.
- Get permission for it
While taking photographs or videos, make sure that what you’re doing has permission from the subjects or the organisers – some people don’t like or want to be photographed and that’s ok too.
- Be the best version of yourself!
Remember to do your best and represent yourself in a way that you’d be happy to be perceived. Photographers have the enriching chance to spread awareness and emotion through their work, so make the most of your opportunity!