• Mark Stevens

Tips for Travelers-Capture your Memories with Pictures

Updated: Oct 27

Singapore in Pictures-Telling your Singapore story with photos


The 3 P’s of Travel and Photography… Planning, Preparation & Patience



In this blog I'm not going to talk about locations and sites to visit in Singapore or which countries to explore in Asia. That is for you the traveler to decide. Instead I'll give you tips to help you create all those beautiful photos that tell your Singapore story, and prepare you for your travels.



THE 3 P’s OF PHOTOGRAPHY

Before we get started let’s talk a bit about the 3 P’s of photography, Planning, Preparation and Patience. I can’t overstate how important each of these aspects are to a successful day of photographing.

Planning: Plan out everything down to the smallest detail, equipment & gear needed, time for the sunrise and sunset.

Preparation: Be sure you have everything you need to successfully complete your photos, Lenses, memory cards, tools for adjusting & setting up your gear, spare batteries and lens cleaning gear… Know your camera and how it works inside & out, learn the menu, settings and functions (You won’t have time to look into the manual when it’s crunch time on your photo shoot). Also it’s a good idea to practice your pano photo sequence a few times the day before, it’ll help the shoot go much smoother with less frustration.

Patience: Don’t rush or you’ll make mistakes, take your time and enjoy your photography. Plus, always remember other people have the right to be doing their thing also. Don’t get frustrated with people getting in the way.


 

To learn more about great locations to discover and photograph in Singapore, please visit our Singapore Street Shots website and read "A Five blog series of “Singapore in Pictures-Telling your Singapore story with photos"


 


Getting Started


You are finally going on that long awaited trip to Singapore and Asia and the excitement level high. Its important to get this trip planned right, because... If we want to discover, experience and photograph as much as we can, we'll have to make the most of everyday.

It seems we always say to ourselves at the end of every trip, "We definitely have to come back again next year". However we rarely do, usually by next year we are off exploring another part of the planet.

Great trips rarely just happen by chance, they have to be well thought out, planned and arranged. Hence, The 3 P’s of Travel and Photography… Planning, Preparation & Patience..

There is so much to think about and do before the trip starts, and you want to capture your memories of Singapore & Asia with stunning photos.

So get every day of your trip thoroughly planned, discover and photograph all you can because odds are you won’t get back anytime soon.



Photo Walks, Tours, Day trips and excursions


You'll experience and learn more about Singapore and Asia if you go on the right Photo Walks, Tours, Day trips and excursions. So it's important to do your homework and be sure the activities you book provide the experience you are looking for, and deliver what they advertise.

I highly recommend working with a specialist or planning your own trip, especially if you want to get off the beaten path to discover & photograph the countryside and small villages.


When you are in the large metropolitan cities be sure and venture out into the outlying neighborhoods, that's where you'll get the photos that really capture the Culture & Color of the Asian people.

That said, don't avoid the touristy sections and miss out on all the incredible sites and experiences these countries and cities have to offer. It’s like visiting Paris and not going to the Eiffel tower because its not off the beaten path, try to manage your time.


TRAVEL TIP: Avoid the big multi-bus day trips as much of your time is wasted waiting for people to return to the buses. Also they mostly take you to places for shopping and subject you to high pressure sales pitch's. Usually you can find these same items as you explore the neighborhoods, and for better prices.

 

Want some help exploring Chinatown, Little India and Kampong Glam


Book a Singapore Street Shots Photo walk and let us help you create stunning photos for your Singapore story.


 


Consider Hiring a Guide

Traveling alone or as a couple or small group anywhere can have its pitfalls, and Asia is no different. If you are carrying thousands of dollars worth of Photography gear you will be much better off traveling with a local, than alone.

So consider hiring an English speaking guide/driver with a car or Mini Van.

Look for a Local guide who also speaks your language, find someone who owns or is willing to rent a vehicle. This works for either a cross country multi-day excursion or only a day trip.

A good local guide can be worth their weight in gold, as they usually have insight about the area few foreigners possess. For instance, high crime areas, congested areas, best time for certain areas, Hotels recommendations and the like. Plus they may also help with carrying some gear.


TRAVEL TIP: One last note, consider getting travel insurance that covers your camera gear, and make sure it’s reliable.

TIP: When hiring a guide be sure and get multiple references (Do your homework).


Its Hot in Asia


Its Hot & Humid in most regions of Asia, especially Southeast Asia like Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Cambodia. However Thailand and points north do have a cool season starting November to February (Research the climate).

For Singapore, Malaysia and much of Indonesia the climate is the same throughout the year, with the exception of a rainy season November to February. (they are on the equator)

So plan for the hot weather, pack light summer cloths and comfortable shoes. Ladies be sure and bring some nice summer dresses for those dinner evenings out on the town.


TIP: If possible start spending more and more time outside in the summer heat starting a few weeks before your trip. That way you'll be sort of climatized and have a more enjoyable trip.




Travel Tips for Day Trips


  • Always get a hotel cards- At the front desk for your wallet and backpack, many taxi drivers in Asia don’t speak English or your language.

  • Meds- Headache tablets, Imodium… Keep important meds split into two separate bags when traveling (A carry on and your main luggage), If your main luggage bag is lost you’ll still have enough until you see a doctor and get more.

  • Pack a change of clothes- Shorts-shirt-sox, and a medium size towel into the bottom of your backpack.

  • Cash- $100 or less in small bills. (Per day)

  • Polarized Sunglasses- I never carry the expensive ones, but the cheap ones break too easily and the polarization is not very good. I go middle of the road $50-70 dollars.

  • A good Hat.

  • Carry a sweat towel- It's hot in Asia.

  • Packs of tissues- You will need them.

  • Batteries- Spares for cameras, power pack for phone, quick charging cable.

  • Hand sanitizer

  • Sweetener, coffee or tea- That you prefer. In many countries all products in stores are not in English.

Photography Tips:


  • When purchasing your first Pro level DSLR or Mirrorless camera- If you’re just starting out with photography don’t buy to much camera, a lower to mid level camera will be better to start with, a flagship camera will likely be to overwhelming and can be discouraging.

  • A better camera won’t give you better photographs- When you’re starting out, only learning about photography and how your camera works as a tool, combined with developing your Artistic style will do that. You will know when you’re ready for that next level camera….

  • If you’re thinking about buying a new camera- Do it 2-4 months before the start of your travels.

  • If you have a new camera- Learn it’s functionality by heart.

  • Start learning Manual shooting- 2-4 months before your trip.

  • Be mindful about traveling with $15-20K worth of camera gear- If you do, please get insurance. Also you don’t have to take it into questionable neighborhoods, consider purchasing a high end Point and Shoot camera for that purpose .

  • Consider getting travel insurance- That covers your camera gear, but make sure it’s reliable…

WHATS IN MY CAMERA BAG


I love Prime lenses, they're Tac-Sharp from edge to edge, lite-weight and inexpensive. That said a great zoom lens really does comes in handy.

In my bag I carry a Wide angle (20mm), Mid range (24-105mm) and a Telephoto long lens (28-300mm), along with my 20, 50, and 85mm Primes.


My cameras are Nikon D600, Nikon D850 and a Sony ZV-1 for video and as a Point & Shoot.

Tripod 1: My carry everywhere tripod- Sirui AM-284 Carbon Fibre Travel Tripod.

Tripod 2: Carbon Fiber INNOREL RT90C Tripod. It's a Professional Heavy Duty Camera Stand with 75mm Bowl Adapter for DSLR Cameras Compatible with Ball Head & Fluid Head, 63 inch, 40mm Tube 40kg Load. (I only bring to specific Shoots)


Is my Bag heavy? Yes, but if you're a photographer or serious shutterbug that's what it takes to get those great shoots.



 

Closing Remarks


Ilonka & Mark



We hope this Blog has been informative & helpful, and you make the most of your visit to Singapore the Lion City. Be sure and enjoy one of our Singapore Street Shots Photo walks.

Folks if Singapore is not on your bucket list you need to add it. No longer is this city just a little Red dot, only to be considered a stop-over when visiting Asia. The Lion city has become one of the worlds top beautiful, modern cities, its a travelers paradise and a photographers dream. Personally I recommend at least a 5-7 day stay or consider planning a Beginning and Ending Stop-over (3-4 day stay as you start and 3-4 days before you end your Asia holiday).


Singapore is well known for it's incredible verity of delicious food from every corner of Asia, and also its awesome nightlife. So do stop at the Hawker centers for lunch and discover the local cuisine, so definitely hit up some of the Roof-top Bars and restaurants in Chinatown and the downtown area's for drinks & dinner.


Don't forget to LIKE & FOLLOW our Facebook page and post some of your stunning Singapore photos along with a short story about your experience on our Singapore Street Shots Facebook Page


Cheers,

Mark Stevens

Business Owner, Photographer & Traveler

Singapore Street Shots Pte. Ltd.


 

SEE ALL OUR BLOGS

At Singapore Street Shots our Blogs are meant to give you tips & advice for exploring Singapore and creating stunning photos. You will discover and photograph more if you do some research and create a good plan.





Singapore in Pictures - Telling your Singapore story with photos.

(A Seven blog series)​

SINGAPORE SHOPHOUSES - Telling your Singapore story with photos.

Singapore Skyline Panorama's - Photograph Singapore's world class Skyline

Singapore's Chinatown - Kreta Ayer - Telok Ayer - Tanjong Pagar - Bukit Pasoh

Singapore's Little India - Culture & Colour

Kampong Glam - Singapore's Arab Quarter

Hawkers & Markets - Flavor the Moment

Singapore - Off the Beaten Path - Discover the Singapore most tourist never see



 


DRESSING FOR SECCESS -Look good and Feel good on your day-trip

Tips for Travelers: Capture your Memories with Pictures

Singapore's MRT & BUS System-Saving you Time and Money using : Utilizing Goggle Maps with the MRT

A Rainy Day Holiday in Singapore - Things to do in Singapore when it's rainy weather

MASTER YOUR CAMERA - Use your camera like a pro

EASY EDITING - Make all your photos pop

Great Singapore Shophouse locations - The best locations for photographing Singapore Shophouses

Temples-Mosques-Churches - Singapores Places of Worship



 

FUTURE BLOGS

(Coming soon)



A Five Blog series

"Discovering Singapores Parks"

Parks:

1st Series: East and West coast parks:

2nd Series: Singapore Botanical Gardens:

3rd Series: Kent Ridge & Hort parks:

4th Series: Fort Canning park:

5th Series: Lakeside Gardens


A Three Blog series

"Photographing Singapores Natural Beauty"

Nature Reserves:

1st Series: Bukit Timah Nature Reserve

2nd Series: MacRitchie Nature Reserve

3rd Series: Singapore Zoo and Singapore Bird Park


 

A Six Blog series

"Photographing Singapores Islands"



Singapore’s islands:

1st Series: Pulau Ubin

2nd Series: Coney Island

3rd Series: Sentosa Island

4th Series: St. John Island

5th Series: Kusu Island

6th Series: Lazarus Island.


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