Holiday photos and videos exposed with our guide to taking images that friends and family want to see, plus how to ensure your pics aren’t getting you into trouble
• Three reasons to be wary of posting holiday snaps on social media
• Find out how you can use an app to sell your holiday photographs
• Don’t lose friends on Facebook – we reveal the snaps people hate
• Learn how to use your mobile apps to create a digital make-over
Whether you’re on holiday or back the UK, here’s a selection of suggestions to help harness your photographic output. From making sure you’re not inviting a visit from burglars to new and innovative hardware to create must-see photos and videos, we’ve got it all right here…
1) DON’T SNAP AND SHARE FROM THE BEACH
We reveal how share-happy holidaymakers can end up in trouble from three direction. Find out more here…
It’s not just your friends paying close attention to your holiday snaps
Flooding Facebook with holiday images from the beach might seem the ideal way to impress followers while simultaneously finding a bullet-proof repository for your photos should your mobile fall down the loo – but we’d read on before hitting that share button…
REASONS NOT TO SHARE FROM THE BEACH: Facebook and Twitter will happily gorge on your images, but they’re not the only ones filling their boots. Burglars, insurers and phone companies could also be devouring your output. Here’s how sharing that innocent beach photo could cost you dear…
Burglars: They might be eager to browse your stream – but they’re not your friend! Posting photos on social media will let the bad guys know you’re away. Twitter is especially risky as most streams have no privacy restrictions in place – and you can search for keywords such as ‘holiday’. You can restrict your Facebook stream to family and friends, but just how well do you know all of your virtual aquaintances? Even if you don’t post pics, many social media sites use GPS to locate where you post an update. Make sure location services are switched off before posting anything.
See how crooks use social media: Click below for full infographic
Insurance companies: In the same way burglars employ your holiday selfies to rob you, your insurance company will also be scouring your FB timeline and Twitter stream… The Financial Ombudsman has warned that sharing holiday photos could give your insurer a legitimate reason to refuse compensation should your neighbourhood burglar pay a visit during your absence. Most home insurance policies have T&Cs that state ‘reasonable care’ must be taken to secure your possessions. Giving crooks access to your itinerary may not be seen as such – leaving you out of the pocket and the insurance company smiling.
Phone companies: So, you still want to share your holiday photos? Make sure you’re aware of how much you could be charged for uploading images while abroad. Fortunately, the risk of receiving a bill for £1000s is virtually non-existent, but you can still spend more than you planned.
Here’s how major UK phone providers charge for using data while abroad…
Three: Click here to see data charges
Three: Click here to see data charges The folks at Three operate a worldwide data roaming cap of £41.29 per month. Once you reach this limit you can contact the operator and discuss ways to increase this limit by clicking here.
EE: Click here to see data charges
EE:Click here to see data charges
There’s no cap for EE because customers can’t use overseas data roaming without buying a special add-on package. The company will tell you when the bolt-on is about to run out and offer you the chance to buy another – protecting you from the risk of building up a huge bill.
O2: Click here to see data charges
O2:Click here to see data charges
Travellers inside the EU will see data capped at £48, while usage in other parts of the world will be reined in at £40 per month. This limit can be increased to £120 per month by texting DATALIMIT200 to 23336. Be careful with your management of data-munching apps – see our guide – or this will soon be used up.
Vodafone: Click here to see data charges
Vodafone:Click here to see data charges
Customers of this operator are automatically opted into a monthly data limit of £41.30 when they travel inside and outside the EU. Users can opt out of this cap by texting UNCAP to 40209, but we’d advise extreme caution when doing this as background apps – and watching episodes of EastEnders – could result in huge bills. Bolt-ons are available, like the World Traveller deal that lets you take your UK allowances with you for an extra £5 a day. You’ll get a text when approaching your limits so pay attention to messages. Get details here.
Virgin media: Click here to see data charges
Virgin media:Click here to see data charges
The company caps data at around £42 (including VAT) in Europe and around £50 on data used outside of the EU. This is for data only and does not include calls or texts. You can buy travel passes for Europe – These are available in 10MB, 50MB and 250MB denominations and are priced £1.50, £6 and £20 respectively – while will users receive text messages when approaching the cap outside of the EU. Virgin will tell you how to keep spending in the messages once you approach the limit – but won’t let you run up bill without you agreeing to opt out of the cap.
2) SELL YOUR HOLIDAY PHOTOS
Put those stunning holiday photos to work and earn some cash… we show you how to sell your snaps from apps
Earn cash from your holiday snaps… here’s how
Got some amazing, original photos from your holiday? Then why not put them on the open market and raise some cash for your next international jaunt. Here’s our guide to selling your smartphone travel photos…
Are they original: It’s unlikely that selfie with the Eiffel Tower is going to be all that unique, whereas a panda playing with its cub while completing the Times crossword is likely to arouse slightly more commercial interest. However, everyday photos of people going about their business in far-off places can also be of interest. Think cooking, washing, working, fishing… Just be as creative as you want. Avoid photographic cliches is the maxim here.
Are they high-quality: Fast-moving news events won’t need pictures to be pin-sharp or perfectly constructed, but most other photos will need to be in a hi-res format and in focus!
Don’t think Instagram: If you want to sell your holiday snaps then stay away from filters and don’t attempt post-production to ‘tidy up’ the image. Anyone with a commercial interest will leave that to professionals with software slightly more sophisticated than a few pre-set filters on your £1.99 photo editing app.
Where to put them up for offer: If you’re ready to sell, the following providers have apps for smartphone users to upload photos and offer them for sale. Here’s how they work…
WHERE TO SELL YOUR PICS Foap for Android users: Upload images from your phone and apps like Instagram and Flickr. Brands such Mastercard and Absolut Vodka have been known to purchase photos through the site, so your holiday snaps could hit the big time. Foap is free to use and photos are sold for $10 (£7 approx) with $5 going to the photographer. Download Foap here
Stockimo for iPhone users: Simply upload your pics straight from the phone. Stockimo is looking for ‘inspiration’ and ‘innovation’ so take pretty much anything you like. You can also send breaking news photos. All photos are rated by professionals, so if approved there’s a good chance you’ll earn some cash. Your photos will be sold on www.alamy.com, which is a large picture agency that supplies some of the world’s biggest media organisation. As a rule, photos used for adverts command around $500 (£325), web use $20 (£13) and $150 (£98) for books.The average sale price on Alamy is $90 (around £60) with photographers getting around 20% of the fee. Download Stockimo and get selling iPhoners
3) FREE THE PIXELS
Don’t leave your photos stagnating in pixellated limbo… we reveal how to make them real
Create something real to remember your holiday
It’s time to liberate your holiday photos and create something physical that can be shared with family and friends. Apps such as Photobox can do this direct from your mobile. Here’s a selection of what Photobox can offer…
Returning home and grabbing your smartphone to relive heady days of beach-bound Utopia can be a letdown when drab images fail to convey the magic of your holiday hotspot. Not a problem, it’s time to get creative with post-production and sprinkle a little sparkle over your snaps. Here we check out a few of the apps available to tickle you pixels…
Hipstomatic: Give your pics some old-school cool and romance with Hipstomatic. It uses filters to add tone and atmosphere to the flattest of photos. It’s easy to share results on social media, too. Here are some results we achieved by pushing random buttons.
Snapseed: If you want add warmth to photos that might be a little cold, this app will do just that with handy swipe actions on the screen. It’s so simple to use you’ll be up and running within minutes. Here’s our image: Where: Download the app here Android iOS
VCSO Cam: Use this app to edit and bring life to photos using various ready-made filters that you can play around with and adjust how much of the effect is applied. Our before and after photo was a little disappointing, but we’re sure that given more time it could become a useful editor. See the results of our test here: Where:Download the app here
Photoshop Express: It’s the daddy of the desktop and we reckon it keeps its crown when transferred to your mobile. With a raft of tools and intuitive interface, it’s our top-scoring tool for giving bland holiday snaps the boost they deserve. You’ve been Photoshopped here:
VERDICT: With hundreds of free or reasonably priced apps on the market, there’s no need to let a poor drab photo detract from your holiday memories. Play around with a few and see what suits you best.
5) GIVE YOURSELF A DIGITAL MAKEOVER
It’s not just your beachscape that might need a little digital magic, you can also feed your virtual vanity by employing one of the many phone apps available to give your pixels a pampering. We put our model Colin under the digital scalpel to see if he can switch from average Joe to tanned and toned beach hunk. Here are the results…
Colin and the various stages of his app-powered smartphone makeover
1: Colin… the real deal Here’s Colin as he really looks. Let’s find out how his smartphone can give him the edge in his attempt to sharpen up his body…
2: Bulking up Colin thinks he looks a little less than ‘stacked’, so he’s decided to use ‘Weight Loss’ app to not lose weight, but add 9lb to his frame. Here’s how his photo looks after the app has added bulk. Get the app here
3: Get the tan
Colin’s far too sensible to be exposing his pale skin tone to damaging UV rays, so he needs a quick fix to get that golden kissed complexion that’s sure to grab attention. Here’s how he looks after a session in the smartphone tanning parlour. Get the app here
4: Get the abs
It’s Colin’s killer move… these new abs give Colin the look he’s after to woo his Facebook fans Get the app here
1: Colin… the real deal
Colin in natural state
Here’s Colin as he really looks. Let’s find out how his smartphone can give him the edge…
2: Bulking up
Colin with 9lb added
Colin thinks he looks a little less than ‘stacked’, so he’s decided to use ‘Weight Loss’ app to not lose weight, but add 9lb to his frame. Here’s how his photo looks after the app has added bulk. Get the app here
3: Get the tan
Colin uses app to add a tan
Colin’s far too sensible to be exposing his pale skin tone to damaging UV rays, so he needs a quick fix to get that golden kissed complexion that’s sure to grab attention. Here’s how he looks after a session in the smartphone tanning parlour.
It’s Colin’s killer move… check out those new ab. Get the app
6) CREATE MUST-SEE PHOTOS AND VIDEO
Want to take holiday snaps that get noticed? Many digital images will simply end up lingering on the internal memory of long-since upgraded mobile phones – but it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some innovative ways to create must-see photos and videos that’ll have viewers coming back for more.
360° panorama video
Use the Fly360 to produce unmissable 360-degree holiday videos
Create a 360° panorama video: Instead of the camera operator deciding what you want to watch, create a full 360° video instead. Here’s just one of the cams on offer 360Fly: This camera is already available and will cost around £260. It’s the device that misses nothing; allowing you to record HD video, edit it and then share instantly from your mobile phone. Add this feature to your photographic arsenal and you’ll soon be creating must-watch holiday vids.
Click below to see the camera in action – and remember to drag the image
Take perfect panoramic stills with the smart Panono
Take a panoramic image: Bring life and depth to your digital images by creating a photo that shows the whole picture. Here’s an example of hardware on offer. Panono Bublcam: There are plenty of apps for creating panoramic images, but if you want a solution that provides images that can be viewed with inducing a migraine – the Panono camera is the ideal option. Simply throw the ball in the air or hold on the end of a unipod for stunning 360° images. There is just one problem – it’ll cost in the region of £1000.
Click below to see the camera in action – and remember to drag the image
Drone video: It’s the camera technology that everyone’s talking about and a sure-fire winner for beating the Joneses into second place when it comes to holiday videos. Filming the footage just got a whole lot easier, too, with a drone that flies itself. Lily Cam: The problem with drones was you needed to be able fly them. Fortunately, the Lily Cam removes this hurdle as the smart drone does the job for you. Simply put a small tracking device in your pocket or in a wrist-mounted holder, throw the drone in the air and it’ll stay on your tail while simultaneously collecting jaw-dropping footage. Great for activity holidays such as skiing, cycling and sailing. It films in HD, has a 20-minute flight time and simply lands on your hand when you’ve finished filming. Various flight modes are available, too, including follow, lead and loop.
Click below to see the camera in action: The drone that flies itself
Timelapse photo:Capture that stunning sunrise or sunset from your hotel balcony with a cheap, yet high-quality app for your phone. Here’s our favourite… Lapse It: Simply enter a few settings – such as the interval between image captures – set the camera in the right position, press go and leave Lapse It to do the rest. Create hypnotic timelapse videos as you sit back and enjoy the view. Download the £1.99 Pro version for all the features. How much: £1.99 for the fully featured pro version Where: Download for Android and iOS using the following links Android iOS
7) CREATE THE PERFECT SELFIE
If you can’t beat them, you might as well join them with the best picture possible. Follow our selfie beauty guide…
Have you given in to the craze of creating a ‘photograph of oneself, taken by oneself’? If so, don’t spoil your holiday selfie with an image that fails to flatter. Here are seven steps to ensure you tickle the pixels and create a perfect shot by subtly ignoring the odd cosmetic imperfection….
Find your best side
Find your best side: Everyone has a good side, so make sure you take advantage of your flattering features by always making this the dominant side in all selfies. Shooting your photo from slightly above – with the camera tilted at 45-degrees will have the effect of making your face look slimmer. If you are including your torso, then push your neck out a little, which will help hide the small bulge beneath your chin. Never consider taking the photo from below your eye line, this will add pound and make your face look artificially bloated.
Lighting: Never take a selfie using a built in flash – it’s sure to end in tears. Instead, always attempt to use natural light. Standing next to a window will give your selfie a soft and natural look, while eliminating darks shadows – like the ones under your eyes.
Filters: For those taking selfies on a smartphone – and most will be – harness the power of photo editing apps such as Instagram to add filters. These can add softness to photos that will ease harsh lighting and even improve your skin complexion – giving it a warm, smoothing glow. They will also help give a natural ‘cool’ ambience – because trying too hard when the shutter clicks will always result in the very ‘uncool’.
Top tip 1: Swerve the Instagram crowd and its overused filters by looking at photo editing apps such as Photo FX and Photoshop Touch for the iPhone. Top tip 2: Filters can be fun, but if your selfie starts to look like it’s employed the special effects techniques used by a 1970s episode of Doctor Who, you’ll know it’s time to hit delete and use a little restraint.
Seriously uncool: Gazing demurely into the great blue yonder really won’t make you look cool. Selfies should always look like you just grabbed your phone, aimed it at your face and clicked the shutter. You’ll take many you hate, but more often than not, you’ll snap the perfect picture that encapsulates the moment and the location and you – in a way that a soulless, carefully posed shot never could. Don’t take yourself too seriously – it’s meant to be fun.
Background checks: It’s true that selfies are supposed to be about ‘the moment’, but confusing banality with spontaneity will leave you with little selfie-respect. You might be having a great hair day that needs to be shared with your devoted followers, but reaching for the camera and self-snapping your do with a backdrop of crumpled used pants on the bathroom floor will seriously diminish the glamour. Don’t try too hard to find amazing backgrounds – it’ll make your shots look contrived, but make sure you do consider what’s lurking behind as you snap away.
Composition, composition, composition
Composition, composition, composition Framing a selfie with your face slap bang in the middle of the frame looks a little uninspiring, which is why photographic boffins came up with the ‘rule of thirds’ to add tension and drama to photos. It’s particularly useful for holiday selfies where stunning backgrounds can help make a great photo. Here is how it’s explained by Wikipedia…
The rule of thirds is a “rule of thumb” or guideline which applies to the process of composing visual images such as designs, films, paintings, and photographs. The guideline proposes that an image should be imagined as divided into nine equal parts by two equally spaced horizontal lines and two equally spaced vertical lines, and that important compositional elements should be placed along these lines or their intersections. Proponents of the technique claim that aligning a subject with these points creates more tension, energy and interest in the composition than simply centring the subject would.
Here is an example of what it means
Rule of thirds grid – use iPhone settings to turn on the grid on your phone: image and credit
Top tip: If you’ve got an iPhone, the standard camera app has a feature that lets you turn on a rule of thirds grid – helping you compose great selfies and photos in general. Here’s how to turn it on…
1) Launch the Settings app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
2) Scroll down and tap on Photos & Camera.
3) Scroll down to the bottom of the page and under the Camera section, there is an option for Grid. Turn the feature on by tapping on the slider.
Tell a story
Tell a story: Great composition or a pretty face won’t make a great selfie. We love photos that tell a story… be it part of a journey, holiday or event, make the photo work to capture the atmosphere and the moment. Remember, if life’s a little dull, taking a picture and sharing it will only spread the tedium.
Can I bring my selfie stick?
Did you know selfie sticks are banned at Disneyland and many other tourist hotspots around the world? Use this website to see if you’re likely to get yours confiscated.
Here are the facts and figures you need to know when it comes to selfies…
Graphic by Liz Winstone
Dying to take a selfie?
It should also be pointed out that taking a selfie has now become more deadly than shark attacks, according to tech site Mashable. It’s claimed at least 12 people have died while taking the snaps this year, whereas eight people have been killed by sharks in the same period.
8) HOLIDAY SNAPS TO AVOID – HOW TO NOT LOSE FRIENDS
Warning… taking photos can seriously damage your popularity. Here’s how to swerve a starring role in photos people really hate…
Swerve the ‘unfriend’ button by reading this
The type of photos you take on holiday and how many you share when you get home will have a big impact on personal popularity with friends and loved ones according to a poll from AttractionTix.co.uk. Posting more than three pics from your travels could result in family and friends ‘unfriending’ you on social networks. Seeing your holiday snaps while ‘stuck in the office’ suffering from a ‘low bank balance’, and enduring ‘dark mornings’ were cited as the top reasons for cutting virtual ties with share-happy friends and relatives.
Click below for the holiday photos we hate the most…
Photos you take on your holidays can sersiously antagonise online chums, with a survey by the MailOnline identifying 10 poses that are sure to offend those left at home.
Click here to reveal the holiday photos we really hate: See them here
Hotdog legs: A fave for many women around the world, but not such a tasty treat for those at home.
Temperature envy: Do you really think sharing a snapshot of balmy beach temperatures is going to win friends back in drizzly Milton Keynes? Take a guess.
The hand-heart: It might be favourite for Instagrammers and the likes of pop queen Taylor Swift, but most of us certainly don’t ‘heart’ it.
Sexy bikini selfie: Another boastful and irritating holiday photo that’s likely to result in ‘unfriending’ according to the survey.
Meditation snap: Creating an illusion of spirituality doesn’t impress anyone. Avoid this annoying pose and swerve the ‘bad karma’ of social rejection.
The happy hour snap: Cocktails on the beach… have a drink to absent (former) friends.
Paddleboard Yoga: Exercise is to be encouraged – with one exception: Paddleboard Yoga has been named the most annoying fitness trend to populate the planet’s pixels.
Wistful gazing: Photographs of the subject staring pensively out to sea or over a mountain range are highly likely to offend… ponder on that, mate!
Message in the sand: Do we love to see cutesy messages written in the sand? Try writing a big ‘N’ and ‘O’ on your beach! .
9) BECOME A DIGITAL DETECTIVE… EXPLORE THAT PHOTO
Reveal secrets behind images
Ever wondered how some people get the perfect holiday photo – or where that crystal clear cove is located? Wonder no longer – it’s time to expose the not-so-hidden world of EXIF data…
What is EXIF: This is data contained within a photo you’re viewing or one you’ve just taken. In most cases, it’ll reveal huge amounts of information that can help you take better photos, or find when and where a photo was taken. Here’s some of the detail you can find…
Location: If the photo was taken by a smartphone or digital camera with GPS capabilities, it’s likely to include the exact location where it was taken. Many EXIF readers provide a link to the location on a Google map. Great for finding locations of photos you see on the web, or take a snap of that remote cove you stumbled on to ensure you’ll always be able to find your way back.
Date and time: Along with location, the EXIF data is also likely to include the date and time a photo was taken – helping you log your collection. Just make sure your device is set to the right time and year.
Hardware: See what camera and lens were used to take a photo. It’s all useful information when learning to create better photos and understand how to create certain effects.
Settings: Along with physical aspects of the shot, you’ll also see the settings employed by the original snapper. Check everything from exposure times to whether a flash was used.
We’re going back in time to when holiday photos were the life and soul of the party. It’s our retro photo guide…
Digital photography has brought affordable, high-quality equipment to all… but have your holiday photos lost their soul? Reclaim the excitement and head back to the ’70s and ’80s with an old-school holiday photo party. Here’s what you’ll need.
1) 110 Instamtic camera: The trailblazing camera that brought photography to the masses. Tourists loved its cheap, point-and-shoot, pocket-sized snappery – and the innovative plastic film cartridges that could be fitted in bright daylight. The small size of the film stock makes photos rather grainy and far from sharp, but that just heightens the retro atmosphere. Buy a 110 camera: Find a used 110 camera on sites such as eBay for around £10 Browse cameras here Buy 110 film cartridge: While the film stock was originally discontinued in 2002, it’s now back on sale due to popular demand. It’ll cost from £6.90 a cartridge Get your film here: Yes it’s making a comeback so buy yours here
2) Carousel slide projector: With your 110 snaps developed and rendered as slides, it’s time to crank up the carousel projector and breathe deep on the heady smell of burning dust and slowly roasting electrics. Head to eBay and browse the extensive collection of slide projectors to suit all budgets. Expect to pay anything from £5 to £100+. Buy your slide projector here:Find out what’s on offer today here
3) Home projection screen: Forget your 48-inch LCD TV screens, they’ve nothing on old-school projection screens that regularly boasted dimensions of 8ft wide x 5ft high. Once again, head to eBay and expect to pay anything from £10. Buy your home projection screen here:Click here to get browsing
4) Cine camera: If moving pictures are more your thing, then inject a heady shot of atmosphere by swapping your HD video for super-cool cine film. The surreal colours and tonal film stock will bring a long-forgotten charm back to any holiday footage. Expect to pay upwards of £10 for the camera, but around £41 (including processing) for the Super 8 film catridge.. Buy your Super 8 cine camera here:Buy your cine camera here Buy your Super 8 cine film here:Find out more here
5) Cine projector: Bag your Super 8 cine projector and experience your holiday films with all the magic of visiting a pre-digital cinema. Expect to pay from £20 for a working example. Buy your cine projector here:Head to eBay right here
6) Cine movie editor: In the days before Final Cut and other digital video editing software, home editors were forced to physically cut the film and stick it back together in the right order. Create your holiday blockbuster the old way with a Super 8 editor. Expect to pay from £5. Buy your cine movie editor here:Find an array of cine editors here