You have the right photography skills. You’re desperate to explore, but your shoestring budget as an aspiring creator and photographer doesn’t allow it.
So, how do you click the best photos? You find unique shoot locations in your city!
Why is finding the right photoshoot location essential?
No matter how excellent your photography skills are, most people will always ask you, “Where did you click this photo?” Your chosen photoshoot location can inspire others and make them say “wow” instantly.
Moreover, the theme or event can dictate the photoshoot location. If you are searching for a pre-wedding shoot, then the location will require a lot of research. You’ll need to find the spots with the best scenery and views. For modelling projects, on the other hand, even a rental studio would do.
In a gist? Finding the perfect photoshoot location is as crucial as equipment selection. After all, nobody wants the background of their photos to be just meh!
Tips to easily find photoshoot locations right in your city
Scouting unique locations to shoot is like finding a needle in a haystack. After all, as a photographer, you always want to explore places where no one has ever been. But that’s tricky sometimes. So, let’s unwrap how to find the hidden gems in your city.
1. Decide on the theme
The journey of finding the right locations starts by deciding on your theme. What type of photoshoot location are you looking for? Is it for a pre-wedding shoot? Or a modelling assignment? Remember, don’t mix things here and there. A location for a pre-wedding shoot most likely won’t work for a model shoot.
Let’s say you want a vintage theme. In that case, a background like a museum, historical building, or garden makes sense. So, once you know the photoshoot’s theme, it’s easy to find a location that complements it.
2. Leave your car at home
While travelling in a car is a great time-saver, you are most likely to miss great places to shoot in your area. Drivers on roads are a hair’s width away from rage and don’t appreciate you stopping in the middle to admire a building or a lane.
Walk around your area, neighbourhood, or city, so you can scoop out the secret spots and vantage points. However, if walking is not an option, consider riding your bike or cycling.
3. Leverage the power of Instagram
Besides being the favourite social media platform, Instagram is also the best source to scout new shooting locations in your city. Type “location” or “address” into the Instagram search bar and see what landmarks pop up. Click on the results, and you’ll end up with great ideas for shooting locations in and around your city.
It can also offer insight into what angle is best for photography at that particular location. Instagram is also an excellent platform to look for events happening in your city. Use them as your next photoshoot location.
4. Ask for recommendations
Nothing beats a personal recommendation. So ask around. From clients to colleagues, find the favourite spots of people you know around town. Another kicka$$ way is to reach out to the local photographers.
5. Try old locations with a new perspective
Capturing a new perspective means trying unusual angles to get amazing pictures of the places you have already clicked. For example, you can invest in a drone and try aerial photography of a location in your city that you love. Try capturing images in different weather conditions and unusual times. The key here is to focus on the core details of the location.
6. Download a map
One of the simplest ways to find hidden gems in your city is to download a map and look for open spaces such as parks, gardens, and other green areas. So, when you are travelling in a car, always open your map and scout locations for your shoot. And if you can, visit them at different times of the day to understand the lighting.
7. Browse Google street view
When you don’t have the time to visit different locations in your city, Google Street View becomes your saviour. On Google Maps, click on the yellow pegman in your screen’s right bottom corner, and then tap “show imagery” (the photo icon next to the pegman).
A ticker will pop up with different landmarks, hotels and locations in your city. Pick one and explore!
8. Use your home
If you struggle to find shooting locations in your city, you can start with whatever you have available. Of course, your ‘home sweet home.’ The trend for indoor photography is on the rise, and it’s not going anywhere soon.
Moreover, people are more comfortable at home than at any outdoor shooting location (no matter how beautiful the location is). Once they are comfortable, you can easily capture their images. However, if shooting in your home is not an option, you can explore your nearby apartments to find a place to rent hourly.
Make a list of all the photoshoot locations in your city
Once you have found some unique locations, it is always a great idea to create a list of them and use them for future photography assignments. For example, if you discover a unique place with beautiful sunset views, you can use that location for model assignments or pre-wedding shoots.
How do you keep the information handy? Use a Google Docs spreadsheet. Since it’s on the cloud, you can always access it by logging into your email. Another method to store the information is to use Google Maps. You can log in to your Gmail account and create your own map. After each outing, you can add pins to locations, name them as per your choice, and add notes.
Now, go forth and explore. Because the first step to finding photoshoot locations in your city!