with Courtney Slazinik
Photography Location Ideas

Location, location, location!! We have all heard that saying :O) I think the key to being a good photographer is having an eye to look at something and see a photo-op! I have to admit, I really struggled with this. While I was taking the Finding the Light Workshop offered by Clickinmoms.com, they offered up a challenge. We were to find an interesting, different, cool location and take a backlight photo. I am SUPER competitive so I just had to win (I didn’t, oh well) But this challenge, well challenged me. I was complaining to my sister and a friend, who live here, how hard of a time I was having. They pointed out there were tons of locations and gave me a few ideas.

I am now constantly on the look out for strange and interesting places to take photos. Here are a few of my favorites along with some pullbacks so you can see what the location really looked like. Notice they are fields of weeds (which I got some strange looks when I took these), parking lot pole, alley way, and a restaurant walk-way :O) Look for bold colors, texture, and places no one else would think of.

Above all, you need to have good lighting :O) If you are shooting during full sun make sure your subject is in the shade so your subject is not squinting and you won’t be dealing with harsh light. My favorite time of day is to shoot about 1 hour before sunset like the first one. The other 3 were all shot between 10am-1pm. I love open shade!

I challenge you to go out this week and think outside the box. What is the coolest, most interesting place you can find to take some photos?? I can’t wait to see what y’all come up with on Friday!! If you remember, try and take a pull back so we can see what it “actually” looks like :O)

  • November 15, 2010 at 8:18 AM

    Those are awesome. Great tip.

  • November 15, 2010 at 9:00 AM

    I love this!! I love how bright walls and graffitied areas can turn out some gorgeous photos :)

    • November 24, 2010 at 10:06 PM

      Thank you, Anne Marie!

  • November 15, 2010 at 10:32 AM

    Nicely done! I’m heading to a new location, a historic village, on Tuesday. I had been there when I was in grammer school, so it’s been many years since I have explored this area. I’m hoping to get some new and interesting photos. Thanks for the great tip, I’ll have to look for something a little different.

    • November 24, 2010 at 10:06 PM

      I can’t wait to see some of your photos from your adventure :O)

  • November 15, 2010 at 11:16 AM

    Wonderful tips… love seeing these locations and what you’ve done with them. Splendid!

    • November 24, 2010 at 10:05 PM

      Thank you, Margaret :O)

  • November 15, 2010 at 11:39 AM

    Awesome post, thank you! That shot of Oliver is fantastic.

    • November 24, 2010 at 10:05 PM

      Thanks, isn’t he a character :O)

  • November 16, 2010 at 2:39 AM

    I love the graffiti wall!

    Another good tip I learned from Jasmine Star regarding the right spot. She recommends NOT to start at the location you know you want photos. We all need to warm up a bit so start in your second favorite spot and go from there.

    • November 24, 2010 at 10:04 PM

      That is a great tip Marissa!! Thank you! I used that on my last photo shoot!!

  • November 17, 2010 at 11:32 PM

    Hi – I just wanted to say I’ve just recently found your blog and I love it!! I love the tips and advice and appreciate the time it takes for you to do these posts. I constantly look for ways to improve and enjoy what you share with all of us.
    Hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving –

    • November 24, 2010 at 10:04 PM

      Thanks, Elizabeth! Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  • November 24, 2010 at 3:39 PM

    I’ve taken some great shots at the seawall (pretty much anywhere) and pretty much anywhere out Gate 2 street in the early morning, when the businesses are closed and they have their doors all pulled down. They make great backdrops. You should share exactly where these places are so others (in your area–like me!) can go and see what kind of pics they can get! :)

    • November 24, 2010 at 10:03 PM

      Thanks Erin! The first one is taken in a field of weeds right next to Toguchi Beach. All the other ones were taken next to the sea wall. The orange entry way is Transit Cafe. Would love to see some of your photos on Fridays :O)

  • Heather
    July 22, 2011 at 7:57 AM

    Wow, awesome tip!! I love the idea to look closer and pull out pieces of what could be a good background. Obviously “parking garage” isn’t going to make the cut every time, but a nicely painted pole as a backdrop is perfect! I’m going to be looking closer from now on….

  • May 13, 2012 at 7:18 PM

    Great post! You’ve given me a great idea to try this week, for one of my 365 posts. I also like the back of Depot Island they have shipping containers painted with lots of color they are great to use as your background.

    • Courtney
      May 14, 2012 at 2:12 PM

      Thanks! Yes, American Village has some fantastic spots as well!! Would love to see some of your photos you capture there!

  • June 18, 2013 at 5:12 AM

    Oh my goodness! Are these pictures in Chatan-Cho Okinawa?? I live right around the corner from here (Transit Cafe) and absolutely love taking pictures of this place! Any other good photography locations that I can find out here?

    • Courtney Slazinik
      June 18, 2013 at 2:16 PM

      Hey Dani!

      Yes! We just moved back to the States last summer. You will see lots of Okinawa pictures on here :) There are so many fantastic locations there but I don’t know how to tell you to get there ha ha. You know how it goes when giving directions. Enjoy your time there!

  • May 15, 2014 at 10:21 AM

    How do you go about asking permission to use these locations or is that not necessary to earn money using someone else’s property? I’ve found some really nice locations out in the country (we’re in Indiana) and it’s hard to find out who owns what out there. Also, with abandoned buildings? I’m always afraid the owner will see my pictures on the site/social medias and sue?


  • Christy Houser
    May 15, 2014 at 12:57 PM

    You are really awesome and such a good teacher and an inspirational person. Thank you so much for all the time and effort that you put into this for all of us….

  • May 15, 2014 at 3:54 PM

    I dont know why you didnt win. I absolutely love the orange wall. And the baby in the weeds. Beautiful. Thank you. Linda

  • May 17, 2014 at 8:19 AM

    Thank you so much! Some great ideas there. I am constantly looking for places to take photos too. When I drive anywhere I constantly scan the roadsides for places to photograph, I’m hooked!

  • FG
    August 3, 2015 at 9:53 AM

    Great inspiration for fashion photography, I love your choice of colourful locations!
    Please take a look at my favorite for photoshoot: http://fabricegilbert.com/feature

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