The realities of travel blogging
Travel blogging is something I’ve done a fair bit throughout the years, whether that’s maintaining my blog whilst being abroad or blogging about my travels whilst I’m away, I’ve done both and it’s something I hope to do more of in the future too. With my own travel increasing every year as a result of work and my personal travel plans, and the rise of travel blogging in the last 12 months, travel blogging is something of a zeitgeist for me & the blogging industry right now. I’ve written a couple of tips posts about blogging abroad or maintaining your blog whilst you’re away before on my blog (starting back in 2014 in fact) but today I thought I’d share something a little more raw … Breakdown the glossy highlight real of travel posts and share some humorous and stressful realities about travel blogging.
THE REALITIES OF TRAVEL BLOGGING
That perfect shot
One of the best things about travel is the beautiful and new surroundings to shoot in. When I travel I see it as a huge opportunity to shoot new outfit editorials, create travel guides or photo diaries, and generally to share some new content on my blog. And whilst the features might capture the perfect moment, picture perfect surroundings and the best of what there is to offer … What you don’t see is all the preparation, the organisation and the time spent creating, discovering and capturing the perfect series of images.
Much like propaganda in the old days, what you see is what travel bloggers want to show you (the highlight real), not the likely hoards of tourists around the carefully cropped shot, the dodgy streets that really aren’t Instagram worthy, or the god awful outfit you wore that day. I was talking to a friend the other day and we were laughing about the Instagram portrayal of Santorini, versus the real deal. The realities of travel blogging are that capturing that perfect shot is often slightly more challenging than you might think.
Tackling the climate
Sunset and sunrise make the perfect time of day to shoot pictures on summer holidays in my opinion. Not just for the golden hour sun, they are also the least hot, least sweat inducing and generally the quietest times of day to try and concoct a photo shoot in a foreign country. Because let’s face it, shooting in a hot location looks beautiful, but my GOD the heat!
Sleep? What’s that?
From getting up early to try and shoot features before the day’s activities commence, to staying up late to write editorials in the only spare moment of time you get. The reality of travel blogging isn’t all luxe and fun, it’s tiring and takes some serious organisation and time management. Unless you’re on a trip dedicated to creating blog content (one day), you’re constantly having to squeeze blog work in around your holiday or work plans, and that can be slightly more difficult than you think. In Cannes earlier this year I only managed the time to shoot and create one editorial in the whole week and spent until 2am trying to get it live before travelling to Paris the next morning for work (which inevitably ended up me falling asleep with my laptop on my lap).
The 40 tonne camera
Do you know how heavy a DSLR, laptop, lenses and 25 outfits is. Talk about a pre holiday work out. The reality of my blogging kit is that it can’t be packed in a suitcase, which means juggling a suitcase, laptop case, handbag and camera case on most trips, and carrying a hefty DSLR round all day ready for that perfect shoot. The Olympus pen really is the silver lining to travel blogging, but i still end up carrying my 5D because I mean the photos …
The Instagram husband.
And finally. Talk about friends and family wanting to ditch you after the first 24 hours, ‘oh wait a minute I just want to capture that’, ‘oooh would you mind taking a picture of me here’, ‘oh and again here’, ‘not like that’, ‘try this angle’ … And it goes on. Unless you have the worlds most willing Instagram husband, incredibly patient friends or something seriously good to barter, the reality of getting all those incredible shots is that some poor sod, who is at the point of murder by the end of it, is on the other end of the camera cursing at the bloody blogger who just. won’t. stop. taking. pictures.
Let’s not even talk about breakfast flat lays …
With my work meaning I’m abroad a fair bit for meetings, and my love for travel meaning holidays are a regular occurrence, finding my own travel blogging routine, establishing how to juggle writing my blog with the actual trip I’ve made and generally just working out how to fit everything on is something I’ve had to think about. Over time I’ve managed to find a sweet spot of juggling travel (whether that’s meetings, adventure, or chill time) with maintaining and creating features for my blog and not entirely pissing off my travel buddy’s along the way. It’s by no means easy to juggle, despite how glamorous I know it can look, but I have a few tricks I rely on every trip to help me out which you can read here & here.
Have you travel blogged; what are your tips and tricks & can you relate to these travel blogging realities?