Get the Most Out of Your Action Camera

A few weeks ago I went on a vacation trip to Chiapas, a state in Southern Mexico. What did I shoot with? An action camera! Here’s why.

You can see a video version of this post here.

I had wanted to visit Chiapas for a long time. My siblings went there about 12 years ago, they told me a lot of great stories so I wanted to go. However, many things happen in between, I traveled to other places, relocated… but then the stars aligned and a friend of mine invited me to join her and another friend on a trip to Chiapas.

After we bought our tickets and made all reservations, I started thinking about the images I would make and what I would make them with.

Even though the Fujifilm X-T2 is amazing, I consider it a “work” camera and I didn’t want to risk damaging it while traversing rivers or under a waterfall.

Next one in the list was the Canon EOS M3, which I actually got in order to use while on trips. However, this trip had some elements of adventure, so the M3 might not be tough enough for the trip.

What should I do?

Along came my father, who had been given an action cam as gift from a bank, he realized he wouldn’t use it and gave it to me. Woohoo! I had a camera for my trip!

At first I was a bit hesitant about it, but I decided to give it a try and bring only the action camera to the trip. The end result? I created great images while having a lot of fun! 😀

Action Cam - Sample 1

Action Cam – Sample 1

Action Cam - Sample 2

Action Cam – Sample 2

Based on this trip, I made the following list of tips that may be helpful for you:

  • Test the housing at home. Most action cameras come with a waterproof housing, which is great. However, it’s always a good idea to remove the camera, close the housing and place it in your sink, under the faucet to test the water-proofing. You don’t want to find a defective gasket while on your trip
  • Clean the camera frequently. Even though the camera and housing are tough, it may get dirty while you have fun. So keep an eye on the lens and housing, so you don’t shoot video or photos and realizae later that a bug blocked the camera’s view.
  • Move smoothly when hand-holding. Unless you have a high end action camera, it’s very likely that it won’t have image stabilization, so when shoot video while hand holding it, or holding it on a selfie stick, move smoothly. Otherwise, your audience could get dizzy when watching your footage.
  • Re-charge at night. There’s nothing worse than having to stop shooting because your camera ran out of juice. Make sure you re-charge batteries, both yours and your devices’, at night when you arrive at the hotel.
  • Have fun! Coming back from a trip with great images and videos is awesome, but make sure it’s not only work and make time to play while on vacation.

After this trip I came to realize that action cameras can be a great addition to your toolset, so keep an eye on this blog for any further mentions of action cameras 🙂

Action Cam - Sample 3

Action Cam – Sample 3

Did you like this post? Do you have any more tips for action camera users? Please, share them in the comments section below.

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