Some of the top globetrotting photographers are often asked what kind of cameras they own. But ironically, a writer is never asked what kind of writing tool he or she uses. “It’s not about the camera or equipment used, what matters is the image,” says John Rapisardi, a 26-year-old photographer and real estate professional.
Having self-learned the art of photography, the young photographer preaches and abides by the idea that one does not necessarily need an expensive camera to seize moments that please – instead, they can be captured on a smartphone as well. As for him, he began his journey to pursue his hobby five years back, and since then, he has spent the majority of his time traveling across in countries such as Malta, Grenada, Italy, Lebanon, and Canada whilst building a strong photography portfolio. On other days that do not involve traveling, Rapisardi shifts his focus towards his portrait and fashion photography business, through which, he has had the chance to shoot models from agencies such as Wilhelmina and EMG to date.
To assist aspirants who are looking to make a living with travel photography, Rapisardi shares 3 pro-tips that are certain to work well.
“It is perhaps fair to say that I’ve hardly ever been one of life’s planners but when we talk about travel photography, there is a lot of value in forward-thinking,” shares Rapisardi. He advises travel photographers to run an internet search for location recommendations well in advance so that there’s a wealth of information and the shoot can be planned accordingly. Having gained the benefit of the first-hand experience, Rapisardi suggests that if one hopes to visit the best photo spots, the photographer will probably have to research manually, in the old-fashioned way. He also adds to this, “The best approach to location scouting is to just look at where other travel photographers have taken good shots. The aim of photo research should be to find new, unexplored destinations that will encourage you to create something unique and not recreate the existing pretty pictures.”
View the World in 360 Degrees
As a travel enthusiast and photographer, Rapisardi is always finding perspectives that might not be noticed by the untrained eye. To the ones who are venturing in the world of photography, he suggests to look beyond the obvious angle. He also urges photographers to keep their thoughts open and eyes open wider. “Always remind yourself to look around when exploring a new destination, location, or building. Needless to say, you’ll always find a new and unique perspective to capturing a view,” adds Rapisardi.
Create your Own Niche
With the world of Instagram creating an endless pool of content, finding a niche and standing out as a travel photographer is of utmost importance, believes Rapisardi. He says that creating a niche need not be about risking our lives to be the only one doing so, it is more so about maintaining a consistency within our respective portfolios. In Rapisardi’s view, creating a niche is nothing other than developing a vision that displays our view of the surroundings. He further adds, “One may be known for his or her drone aerials while the other may excel at travel portraits – whatever the style, it’s important to find a way to stand apart within the arena. After all, we would all like people to see our photos and say, ‘I know the artist behind this creation.’ The process of discovering and developing a niche is a matter of trial and error.”
Rapisardi, who comes from a family of writers, photographers, poets, and intellectuals, has had to cross the rough way by himself to becoming a travel photographer, and hence, as a piece of advice, he encourages fellow photographers to not give up on their dreams just because the road seems long, uncertain, and frustrating.