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Find vantage points

“When I’m in a new city, I like to research ahead of time to find vantage points,” says Michael Sidofsky, a Toronto-based travel photographer who posts creative urban pictures on Instagram under the handle @mindz.eye. Even the most photographed site can look fresh and interesting from the right perspective.

Know your instrument

Get to know all your camera settings and features so you can maximize its capabilities. Watch or read online tutorials to understand which settings work best for which shots. Long-exposures, for instance, are great for capturing a cloudy sky or nighttime shots.

The right light

Avoid shooting in the middle of the day, when the light tends to be too harsh. For the best lighting, “shoot at sunrise, at sunset and a couple of hours around each,” Sidofsky says. But don’t waste your time waiting for this “golden hour.” It never hurts to practise shooting in different lighting.

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Manual mode

Shoot in manual mode. This allows you to have full control over your settings and the overall look and feel of your photos. The manual function will also help you take great pictures in any lighting.

Create a connection

Try to create a connection between the destination and the viewer. Every city has a personality and a soul. Shoot with that in mind: Think about how the city makes you feel and find an image that conveys that.

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