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Quick Photo Tip: A Room with a View.

My view at sunrise.

My view at sunrise.

As I tell my online students with the BPSOP, and in my “Stretching Your Frame of Mind” workshops I conduct around our planet, light is everything and I’m constantly thinking about it.

That said, I’ve been a professional traveler for almost fifty years, and my job has been to take pictures in the best possible light. That’s what I do, and that’s what I think about all the time…especially when I first research then check into a hotel.

The first thing I think about is the view I’m going to get every time I look out the window. I can tell you from experience that some of your best photos can be taken with your pajamas still on…or even if you sleep in “the all together, in the buff, or in the raw” as some call it.

Here’s what I suggest to my fellow photographers that are traveling on business, pleasure, with a group, or just by themselves:

When checking in ask what direction the rooms face. If you’re an early riser by nature, ask for a room that faces East. If you’re not then ask for a room that faces to the West. A suggestion here would be to take an East facing room over one that faces North or South. That way you’ll at last have a choice as to getting up early or not.

Another factor for me when I have a choice in picking a hotel is the number of floors it has. If you’re only interested in seeing the entire city and taking an overall panoramic, then ask for a room close to the top. If you’re interested in seeing more of a close-up, than ask for something closer to the ground floor.

The absolute best advice I can give you is to ask to see the room first. That way even if you get an East or West facing room, you won’t be disappointed when you pull back the curtains only to see the hotel’s roof top parking lot and/or the air-conditioning units.

Depending on the time of year, a North facing window would be my third choice after East and West. The light will be coming in from the side, which can be a great way to show the textures and the three-dimensional qualities of the city.

I can’t suggest strongly enough to set your clock to at last take a look out the window, you can always go back to sleep if nothing interesting happens. If it does and you get something great, going back to sleep is easy even if you’re only wearing a smile.


Visit my website at: www.joebaraban.com, and check out my 2017 workshop schedule at the top of this blog. Come shoot with me sometime.

Don’t forget to send me a photo and question to: AskJoeB@gmail.com, and I’ll create a video critique for you.


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