I am getting ready to spend a week with family on the West coast and there will be at least a little time for photography (I make sure there is always time for photography). I thought it might be nice to spend just a few minutes sharing some of my tips for researching locations.

For the actual planning of where to stay- I used a mix of Hotels.com, AirBnB and Kayak.com.  I will also use Google Maps to search out accommodations.   Once the home away from home is booked I start the serious planning of where I am going to shoot (sometimes I reverse this order – planning where I want to shoot and then booking the accommodations, but when traveling with family I don’t always have the full say 😉


Back to Google Maps for Planning – I use the very nice “My Places” feature to mark the hotel, nearby places to eat and of course potential photo spots.

Switching to Satellite view I start to explore – Google has a a photo layer that can be displayed on the map.   Again I mark interesting locations and I often think about the time of day it would be best to visit.   The Photographers Ephemerisis a great tool for planning the direction of the sun and to give you an idea of the golden hour.   If the trip is going to be along the edge of the ocean checking tide tables is often a good idea too.


An alternative to Google’s photo layer (powered by http://www.panoramio.com/) is Flickr.  Flickr has a map tool that lets you see all of the geolocated photos for a location, Flickr also allows you to sort by recent photos, with a click you can be looking at photos yesterday – which may give you a much better sense of the current conditions for the area.

Anything interesting goes back on the My Places Google Map I started with – this is accessible from my phone and with a few taps I can be following turn by turn directions to choice spots.



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 The Stars above Vis Harbor. I loved the town of Vis and the island of Vis - lovely quiet little place off the coast of Croatia. See more of it including an animation of this star stacking AND one angry hooded crow that really wanted to take out my drone! http://photorec.tv/croatia Captured with the #GH5 and 12-60 f/2.8-4 Lens | 41 exposures of 60 seconds in length - done in camera - the GH5 allows up to 60 second shutter speeds. Nifty!
 Trailer park girls be like… Part of the Sony set for shooting last week at #SonyKandotrip Thanks to @artbyadelaide for being awesome. Captured with the #Sony #a9 and #2470Gmaster
 Sony has announced two new lenses and I have had early access to both, shooting on an a7RII and a9 and have sample photos and thoughts on the Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8 GM and Sony FE 12-24mm F4 G Ultra Wide-angle. Watch by clicking on through my profile link or visiting http://photorec.tv/sonywide

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