Over the years I’ve had my share of travel related regrets, but one of my greatest in almost 20 years. Was the decision to not take my SLR camera on a trip to Cuba back in 1999. After carting a cumbersome SLR with a couple of lenses and umpteen rolls of film. Non stop across half the planet over the proceeding 5 years. I just wasn’t up to taking such a big and bulky camera along on this particular trip.
I’ve always been a traveler first and a photographer second, and for this reason. I feel that maybe the decision was also due to a little burnout after many years of travel. In reality I was just fed up with taking pictures.
I Am Always A Traveler First and A Photographer Second
I wrote a post quite some time ago regarding the greatest piece of travel advice that I could offer, and that advice was quite simple. Document everything, or over time your memories will fade and you will forget. I still stand by this 100%, and the theory can be put into practice with my Cuba trip.
Looking through the images from various travels I’ve done, memories still come flooding back. Although when flipping through the thirty odd images I have from Cuba (I only shot one roll of 36 slides), I sometime scratch my head and struggle to remember a great deal about that trip.
Without those images to spark my memories all but the most vivid are starting to fade. I did bring along a small point and shoot film camera, but I’m not sure why as I hardly used it. I did capture one decent image as per what you see above, but I didn’t chase that elusive perfect shot as I usually do whilst traveling today.
Cuba Was One Of The Most Photogenic Countries I’ve Visited
To add further salt to the wound. Cuba was one of the most photogenic countries I have visited to date. The street scenes were timeless and the people were welcoming, which makes it easy to obtain nice portraits. (This is something that I struggle with in my photography due to my introverted personality and subsequent reluctance to approach people to take their photograph).
To consistently capture great images time and time again requires a fair amount of effort. Not only to lug the gear around, but you need to work at photography. At times it’s not easy, although some people make it appear so. I just wasn’t up for it on that particular trip, and still regret it to this day.
Your Thoughts and Comments?
Has anyone out there been through a similar situation? Maybe you’ve had regrets with your travel photography, or maybe with another aspect of travel entirely.