The photo to the left is of the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, taken from the Italian Bridge over the Griboedov Canal in St. Petersburg. This is one of the regular tourist stops for photos of this magnificent church. The church, built between 1883 and 1907, is officially known as The Resurrection of Christ Church and was constructed on the spot that Alexander II was assassinated in 1881. Many tourists photograph the church from this vantage point and if you are travelling with a group tour, this may be the only "at a distance" view you will have the opportunity to get.
We were lucky enough to be exploring St. Petersburg with a guide and driver and on the way past the Field of Mars we saw this view of the Church on Spilled Blood. Screeching to a halt on a busy road, Jan and I rolled out of the car and headed across the park. The angle from there produced a far more pastoral view of the church with trees and grass rather than streets and buildings. Jan and I spent some time moving around the park looking for the best vantage point.
As usual, I used a 24-105 lens while Jan used her favourite 70-300 zoom. Her pictures are my favourites of that day. She was able to frame the church with leaves around the image, giving it a more intimate view than my pictures that included more of the park and sky. Buyers prefer her image as well as it sells many times more often on iStock than mine do.
As I said in our posting about Photography On Sea Days, looking up often will produce a pleasing angle and photo. Sometimes you also need to Get Up Close and Personal with your subject to eliminate the clutter that may surround it. As you encounter locations in your travels that have been photographed a hundred times, take one of two options - move back and around to find a view that includes something new and different in the foreground, or get up close and personal and find the details. If you have the time and flexibility, try both!
These are some of the techniques that we will be practicing during our upcoming photo seminars to bring interest and impact to your photos. We would be happy to explore Alaska with you and your camera!