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taking pictures in Europe

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Feb 20th, 2013, 01:52 PM
  #1
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taking pictures in Europe

This may seem like a silly question- but one of my concerns for out trip.

I am a picture junkie and always have my camera ready to take pictures. We have a nice cannon rebel. I am considering buying a smaller digital camera and bring the cannon to our trip to France/Ireland/London.

My concern is usually to get pictures of the two of us together I prop the camera up on a tri-pod and use self timer.

With a lot that I read with theft and pocket pickers in Europe, am I taking a big risk doing this? I want to get shots of everything! But dont want to lose my cannon camera either!

What have people experienced in the past with this topic?
DreamingEurope is offline  
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Feb 20th, 2013, 02:28 PM
  #2
 
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Fundamentally yes. Your options are the obvious, take the photo when no one is about or put your trust in strangers. I'd put it in strangers, they have never (yet) run away with anything and often like being asked. What strangers don't like is being handed an enormous complicated thing and asked to get it right, they just want "push this please".
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Feb 20th, 2013, 02:28 PM
  #3
 
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Find a nice looking tourist and ask them to do it.
I am LOVING my small Pentax Optio. Get a little folding tripod.
Our intrepid poster who recently went to Paris took incredible pictures with her Iphone.
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Feb 20th, 2013, 02:37 PM
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Putting a camera on a tripod and walking away at a major tourist sight is a really TERRIBLE idea. I would suggest it would't last more than a couple of days before both disappear. Plus why haul a tripod aruond with you?

Find some nice tourists nearby - a reliable looking family or couple - and just ask them to take some photos. We have done this for people of many nationalities lots of times in europe (although we don't do it ourselves because I want a picture of where I've been without my head in the middle of it). And we have seen tons of other people do it. And never seen anyone run away with a camera.
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Feb 20th, 2013, 02:39 PM
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Caveat: Do NOT do it if someone offers. Do it only with people you hve picked out yourself.
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Feb 20th, 2013, 02:40 PM
  #6
 
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Better yet, old tourists. That way you can run them down if they try to bugger off with your gear.
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Feb 20th, 2013, 03:07 PM
  #7
 
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I'm with nytraveler and rarely or never do this because everyone knows what we look like, and I focus (no pun intended) on the sight and location.

That said I will sometimes set up my wife and I for a photo at a nice garden, or hotel, or someplace quiet for the required picture of us, using a tripod. Since I've switched to smaller cameras I've also switched to smaller tripods:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

http://www.amazon.com/Joby-GP2-H1EN-...dp/B005HY4U4Q/

Easy to carry and they work surprisingly well.

But I like BigRuss's idea of handing your camera over to someone you can outrun! Maybe that's why people ask me so often ...
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Feb 20th, 2013, 03:14 PM
  #8
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Great!! I felt really stupid asking...but glad I did!!

Thanks soo much!
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Feb 20th, 2013, 03:53 PM
  #9
 
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Yes. Ask other tourists, and offer to take their picture with their camera in return. That way they have to trust you just as much as you trust them. (Pick someone with a good camera... ;-))
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Feb 21st, 2013, 08:58 AM
  #10
 
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You might also consider a Gorilla Pod which you can wrap around a pole or something to hold the camera.

I don't think there is much danger in someone running off with your camera as long as you exercise some judgment. I have volunteered several times to take pictures of couples.

You might remember a commercial years ago where a tourist asks a little Italian boy with a donkey if he will take a picture of him with the boy's donkey. The tourist turns around and the boy has taken off with the camera and left the donkey as a trade with the tourist!
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Feb 21st, 2013, 09:31 AM
  #11
 
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We've used our folding tripod and camera with a self timer for all of our trips. Have never had one problem ever. My husband sets up the shot with me in it and then hops in at the last second. He is literally 20 feet from the camera for 15 seconds. We are always facing the camera so it is never out of our sight. We never do it in big crowds.

We have gotten some really beautiful shots of us with the tripod and timer. We enjoy going off the beaten path so many times there is no one around and we want a pic of the two of us together. We have gotten so good at setting up and taking down the tripod it literally takes 2 minutes for the setup and picture taking.

If there are a lot of people around we usually ask, no one seems to mind. We usually approach a couple taking a picture of each other. We offer to take their picture together if they will take our pic together. They are usually surprised and happy to have a pic together.
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Feb 21st, 2013, 09:40 AM
  #12
 
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Hi Dreaming Europe,

I agree with Bilbo: “What strangers don't like is being handed an enormous complicated thing and asked to get it right, they just want "push this please".

I have accommodated many other tourists on my trips to Europe who have asked me to take a snapshot. Haven’t used a camera myself in years so I warn them that I am not that adept.

Nevertheless, now that I am the proud new owner of an IPhone, I may try my luck with pics when I go to London next summer. I must say that the pictures that my daughter sends me of the kids skiing, at the beach, or whatever from her IPhone are fabulous. (Of course, I am prejudiced.)

Have a great, safe trip…
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Feb 21st, 2013, 10:41 AM
  #13
 
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I have a Rebel also, and get asked to take people's pictures all the time because they a) assume that I won't steal their camera if I have a "fancy" one (it isn't that fancy, but they think it is) and b) they assume I'll know how to work it. I don't mind at all, and tend to look for someone similar to take photos of me and whoever I'm with.

As others have said, if I give my camera to someone else, I make sure to have the settings set already and just tell them which button to push. Sometimes I also have to point out that there's no screen on the back - you have to use the real viewfinder!

latedaytraveler, you'll love that iPhone camera. In certain situations (low light), it takes better pictures than my low-level SLR does. Much more convenient for quick shots as well.
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Feb 22nd, 2013, 02:55 PM
  #14
 
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jent103, thanks for the encouragement. I will try it...
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Feb 23rd, 2013, 07:48 AM
  #15
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I plan to take everyones advice! We will bring our tiny foldable tripod for moments when its not crowded, and use our best judgment on who to ask! I especially like the "find an older person" comment because we can outrun them!

I am SO excited I can barely contain myself until June!!!

Thanks so much!
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Feb 23rd, 2013, 08:11 AM
  #16
 
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I have many family group photos taken last year in Italy by strangers, choose carefully but we had no problems and often returned the favor.
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Feb 23rd, 2013, 08:18 AM
  #17
 
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Asking strangers to take a photo has never been a problem. I usually choose people who themselves have a camera/are taking photos at that time.

Unless you're in a busy congested urban area, I'd also have no problem using a tripod for self-photos, like in parks or gardens or whatever.

All that said, personally I'd leave the fancy camera at home and just travel with the small digital. But that's just me.
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Feb 23rd, 2013, 11:33 AM
  #18
 
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My husband and I each have a small digital camera. We each focus on different things on trips and hated having to share one camera. Best decision we made regarding travel. And fun seeing the other's pics at the end of the day. A different perspective of the same place.
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