A photo outing of any kind can be a lot of fun and a good learning tool as well. Whether the outing is a day trip close to home or a multi-day excursion, it pays to be prepared. This offers the best chance of getting the shots that you want. There is nothing worse than the “I wish I brought my camera !” moment.
Make sure you have everything taken care of, before you leave home. Batteries must be charged, your camera and lenses cleaned. Try to anticipate everything you might need. Unless you need to travel light, it is better to be over prepared. In some cases it is necessary to look beyond the photographic essentials and consider weather and location as well.
When you arrive at the location take a good look around, scouting for different subjects, angles, and foreground interest. In most cases it is helpful NOT to have particular subjects in mind. See what the situation offers. Use viewfinder to compose ….. VISUALIZE how you want each image to look. You might try imagining a particular subject at a different time of day or season. You can always arrange for a return visit.
Break the rules. That’s what they were made for. Make use of the available light. I almost always shoot within an hour of sunset or sunrise, but this is not always possible. Review and refine what you have taken …… experiment. Do not be overly self-critical. A professional photographer will be happy if he gets 1 or 2 good shots from a session, why should you expect every shot you take to be a keeper. I do not waste a lot of time reviewing my images on the tiny screen, I save that for later. You can learn through experimentation, and your mistakes.
If you are well prepared, a photo session can be quite rewarding. Bringing along a fellow photographer, enhances the experience. Be sure to have some cash along, so the drive home can include some coffee and conversation.