How to Take Better Summer Vacation Photos
If you don't have an SLR but you rock a point-and-shoot digital camera, here's where you get comfortable with your custom camera modes. Most cameras these days have a little dial you can rotate to take pictures of the sunset, or action shots, or even feeding monkeys underwater on a Tuesday. Use them, and I think you'll be surprised at how it affects the quality of your snapshots.
Some sunny day shots, for your consideration:
The worst thing about traveling in the summer is that everyone else also travels in the summer. Sometimes it's annoying to be trying to take a picture of a beautiful landscape or cool local scene when you can't seem to get a shot without all the tourists swarming around. It's just how life goes sometimes. I say embrace it. Make lemonade and all that. Some of my favorite pictures have been ones where I stopped looking for the distilled shot that perfectly captures the architectural or scenic beauty, and I started looking for interesting people to include. In each one of the following pictures, I was initially kind of annoyed because there were random people "ruining" my shot. And now the thing I like most about these photos are the people. Go figure.
So, there you have it. The basics of good vacation photography: Tell your friends (or kids or husband or sister-in-law or whoever) to stop being afraid of the camera, watch the direction and quality of the available light, and embrace random people in your photos. It might not be poetry, but those are my tips for today.