For me, and likely many other frequent solo travelers, getting great photos when I'm traveling alone can be quite the task. I'm not one for lugging around a tripod or selfie stick, so I often rely on other travelers to capture my perfect travel shots. I never like taking up too much of their time — they are often tourists themselves who want to get back to doing their own thing — so it's always a much better situation when I'm able to travel with family or a friend. My mom was the best Instagram photographer on our latest trip to India and the Maldives, and I swear, my feed has never looked this good.
Even though those shots taken by strangers can turn out great sometimes, I've also had some beautiful moments that weren't properly documented — and I wasn't able to share them with my family and friends. (It also doesn't help that I'm critical of everything that goes on my Instagram feed.)
My mom was not only one of the best travel partners I've ever had, but she was an incredible personal photographer. I know that I'll be looking back on these pictures and memories for years to come.
My mom has been taking my pictures since day one, so it only makes sense that she's the best person to take my pictures now.
I have a ton of photos that document every lovable — and embarrassing — moment of my childhood, up to now. From dance recitals, to birthday parties, to simple at-home fun, my mom has done an incredible job of taking pictures to help me and my whole family remember every part of our upbringing.
So, when it comes to having my mom take my pictures when we're traveling, there really is no comparison. She has great instincts and a wonderful eye for detail. She's artsy in a way that only a mom can be, and I always trust her to snap the right shot. She knows exactly what's going to look amazing in a photo, and she's patient with me while I adjust myself and get situated. Not to mention, her motherly nature is always a huge help during an impromptu travel photo shoot. She tells me when my hair is messed up, when my dress neckline is falling too low, or when I'm smiling weirdly.
She has a great eye for scoping out the perfect spots to take photos.
I'm very picky about what goes on my Instagram, but luckily, my mom's taste is pretty similar to my own. While I often pick out my own places to snap a photo, some of my favorite shots from this trip were entirely my mom's idea.
She found the perfect framing for my photo in a gazebo at Jai Mahal Palace in Jaipur, India that perfectly captured the character of the architecture and some incredible cloud details in the background. I thought that the image looked straight out of a movie, and couldn't have been more thrilled. Of course, it didn't hurt that the setting itself was beautifully picturesque, but my mom was able to commit it to (digital) film in a way that I will love and cherish forever.
She's also incredibly patient and waits for me to get the shot I'm happy with.
The wonderful thing about traveling with my mom is that she wants me to get a great shot as much as I do. She doesn't mind redoing pictures if I'm not happy with them, and she doesn't mind waiting in line if I'm trying to get a picture in the same spot as other people.
My most-liked picture from the trip was next to the iconic sideways palm tree at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, and we were one of many groups that wanted a picture at that spot. My mom patiently waited while other groups snapped their own photos, and waited even longer to make sure that there weren't any people in the background. We even took three rounds of pictures to get the perfect shot, because I wasn't thrilled with the first two. (It took a lot of work, but we were both extremely proud of the result.)
Not only is she an amazing personal photographer, but she's a wonderful travel companion.
The great thing about traveling with my mom is that, in addition to being a wonderful photographer, my mom is one of the best people in my life to travel with. We were both patient with each other, gave each other enough space when we needed it, and wanted similar things out of the trip. She was happy to go along with everything I wanted to do, and we both were able to experience a ton of new things.
The best part about the whole trip, though, was that everything we did, we did it together. We made a ton of new memories, and did things we always dreamed of doing. My mom has been dreaming of touching the walls of the Taj Mahal since she was a child, and I have been longing to visit the crystal clear waters of the Maldives since I first saw photos online. We were able to check off both of those dreams on this trip.
Regardless of her amazing picture taking skills, I'd be honored to travel with my mom again. (The beautiful photos are just a plus!)