How to photograph landmarks in an original way

Traveling to popular places in the world, I want to take beautiful pictures of them for a long memory. 

How to photograph sights in an original way

How to photograph sights in an original way

We have prepared an article in which we have collected recommendations for high-quality photography of sights. Such tips will help in situations where a tourist place is surrounded by people, something extra has got into the frame, the lighting is weak or at night.

Any, even an unsuccessful picture, can be improved after shooting, using a photo editor. This is an application that helps to fix a littered horizon, improve color and lighting in pictures, erase unnecessary elements, replace the background. 

Following the link you will find a list of photo editing programs – most will suit users with no experience and special skills.

Choose equipment

First of all, we advise you to decide which camera you will use to photograph the area.



How to photograph landmarks in an original way


You don't need to save money for an expensive professional camera to shoot sights: many smartphones (especially flagships) can shoot at a decent level. Such a camera will help you to “fill your hand” in photography, learn how to find interesting viewing angles and build a composition.

If your smartphone has a wide-angle camera, use it to capture large architectural objects. Thanks to this mode, you capture more space, you can convey the scale of the structure by placing both the building and the surrounding landscape in the frame. But with wide-angle shooting, you need to be careful: there is a risk of greatly distorting the perspective and filling up the horizon. You can turn on the grid to align the point of interest in the frame. 

SLR cameras

They have undeniable advantages over mobile phones. They are equipped with optical zoom, not digital, that is, they do not just enlarge the picture, but bring the object closer, while maintaining good detail.

For a DSLR, you can always choose the lens that is suitable for the desired purpose. For example, a telephoto lens will allow you to qualitatively zoom in and shoot distant objects. Photograph noteworthy details at close range. Wide-angle lenses are ideal for shooting buildings in narrow streets, tall buildings, bodies of water, mountains.

How to photograph sights in an original way

photo cameras

When buying a DSLR, understand the basic settings: aperture, ISO sensitivity, exposure and shutter speed.

Find the right time to shoot

The main problem that arises when photographing attractions is that they are always full of tourists. Consequently, crowds of people get into the frame, and this spoils the overall picture, does not allow you to fully enjoy a specific object and panorama.

To beautifully shoot a popular place, come to it early in the morning, while excursion groups and tourists have not yet pulled up -loners. For example, from 6 to 9 am. If it is impossible to wait for the complete absence of people in the frame, approach the situation creatively. For example, a slow shutter speed will create the effect of walking people in the form of blurry spots. 

If strangers are in the frame from the edge, you can use the photo editor and crop the borders. For example, in the PhotoMASTER application, in the “Tools” section, select the “Crop” item and select the area that you want to leave. The excess will be cut from the photo.

As to photograph sights in an original way


How to photograph landmarks in an original way


Use the “golden hour” – the first hour after sunrise and the last hour before sunset. During this period, the sunlight will be soft and calm – ideal for illuminating architecture.

Use a tripod

To avoid image blur due to shaky hands, secure your camera or smartphone on a tripod beforehand. If the camera has a fixed and strong support, it will be easier to catch the focus, which means that you will get good shots from the first attempts. This is especially true when shooting at night and in low light: you can increase the shutter speed to several seconds, set the self-timer and take the desired frame with good detail.

How to photograph sights in an original way


Using a tripod to stabilize your lens can improve your composition, capture a moving subject (such as a bird flying over a landmark) and improve overall image quality.

When traveling, it's convenient to take a portable tripod or a dedicated tripod for your smartphone with you. Now there are very light table tripods that will fit in a bag or backpack.

Look for unusual angles

Try different angles, viewing angles and distances from the subject. Even the Taj Mahal or the Eiffel Tower can be photographed as boring and mundane as on any standard postcard. Another option is to get creative and show a famous landmark from an unusual vantage point.

Position options:

  • Place the landmark off-center frame, capture the general plan, “catch” the atmosphere reigning around;
  • add interesting elements in the foreground to the frame, take into account the surrounding objects: trees, flowers, sea or mountains in the background of the building;
  • < li>choose a non-standard shooting point, do not be afraid to distort the perspective;

  • photograph individual details of the object: arches, window and door openings, trim, part of the roof or gate;
  • if lighting allows, take a photo from the outline of a famous place – it looks spectacular and mysterious.

Photograph skyscrapers and towers from the ground to demonstrate the huge size of the structure.

How to photograph landmarks in an original way

Eiffel Tower with unusual angle

How to photograph landmarks in an original way

Eiffel Tower from a rare angle

Show picturesque castles or an architectural ensemble from above, from a bird's eye view (for this you will have to purchase a quadrocopter). Also, the size of the structure can be emphasized by placing a person in the frame for comparison.

Use the weather conditions

When shooting architectural structures, be sure to capture the sky – this will make the composition more picturesque and complete.

Beautiful and juicy photos are obtained during the day, in sunlight. But if the weather is not good – it's raining, fog or snowing outside – this is also a great chance to get an original atmospheric shot.

How to photograph landmarks in an original way

Eiffel Tower in rain

With PhotoMASTER you can also change the weather conditions. For example, to add sunlight, go to the “Effects” tab, then “Sunburst” and adjust the shine.

How to photograph landmarks in an original way


Convey the atmosphere of the area

Another interesting idea is to convey the local color in the photos. For example, try to capture people in national costumes, local flora and fauna, and souvenir vendors. Unusual shots are obtained if, in addition to the sight itself, people expressing vivid emotions get into the frame.

How to photograph landmarks in an original way

Convey the atmosphere of the area

Another approach is to take the focus off the attraction itself. For example, make it just a background, part of the overall composition, and focus all attention on one detail or a less significant object.

How to photograph sights in an original way

take the focus away from the landmark itself

Don't forget about night views

Evening illumination and lantern light will present famous architectural structures from a new perspective. To get a good photo, adjust the camera settings and use a tripod. If you don't have a tripod handy, find any flat surface to fix your camera on. Do not turn on the built-in flash or night mode – this will whiten the subject and distort the color reproduction.

How to photograph landmarks in an original way

Eiffel Tower moment dusk

Another useful feature is not to shoot in complete darkness, but at the time of twilight. Photos are more expressive, while all objects will be clearly visible. You can stand near a neon sign or a lantern, thereby getting an interesting image with glare, highlights and a special charm.

To avoid unnecessary noise in the picture, adjust the ISO sensitivity setting. The optimal value is 100-200, but not higher than 400.

Shoot in RAW

SLR cameras allow you to shoot JPG and RAW formats. It is better to immediately set RAW as the default. This type of media file stores all data from the camera's matrix. Such a “raw” image is intended for further deep processing. A RAW file weighs a lot, since the information in it is uncompressed. 

However, further processing of RAW images, you will get a better and more detailed picture, with deep contrast and natural color reproduction. A RAW file has more options for artistic photo processing, allows you to correct individual overexposed and darkened areas, remove noise and distortion.

Take care of post-processing and color correction

For example, in the PhotoMASTER application, with one click, you can make a photo mystical and magical. To do this, select the “Effects” tab → “Mystic effect” in the toolbar. 

How to photograph sights in an original way

You can adjust the color balance, saturation, clarity, temperature and other parameters in the “Improvements” section. If the photo was taken in low light, just correct the tone of the image. To do this, move the sliders in the “Exposure” item: to the right to make it lighter, to the left to darken the frame.

How to photograph sights in an original way

When you go to the effects catalog, you will find a lot of filters with which you can turn an ordinary photo into a colorful postcard, film photo or an old photo from a century ago. 

How to photograph sights in an original way

The PhotoMASTER editor also allows you to retouch photos, remove noise and graininess, add vignettes , text inscriptions, frames and stickers.


To take an interesting picture of a famous object, it is not necessary to be a professional photographer.

Just follow these simple tips:

  1. Use a wide-angle or telephoto lens, depending on the distance of the subject.
  2. Look for unusual angles and shooting points.
  3. Capture memorable details , the surrounding world, local residents, conveying national flavor.
  4. Convey the scale and atmosphere in the picture.
  5. Choose a time when there are few tourists around or the object looks most spectacular, catch the “golden hours” for photography.
  6. Use a tripod for shooting at night and in low light.
  7. Take pictures in RAW format.
  8. Improve image quality with post-processing: retouch, crop unnecessary, adjust the balance of light and shadows, add contrast and more.

Don't be afraid to experiment and take hundreds of shots of the same attraction – sooner or later you will get amazing shots that you can brag to your friends, colleagues and subscribers in social networks tyah.

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