Capturing the Travel Experience While Staying in the Moment

The Road AheadI have spent many trips unprepared to share my experience with the world on social media.  As a photographer, writer, blogger, teacher and adventurer, I’m finding it more and more important to have a plan for the story of my travel adventures.

Online is where it’s at right now, who wants to spend their whole trip blogging?  Have you ever struggled with how much time will be spent on social media, and how much time will be spent enjoying the experience?

As I write this post, I am in the final stages of planning a major international trip to Iceland. We are taking 6 clients to teach photography, share and enlighten them on the beauty and mystery of Iceland.

When you are traveling in an exotic location, how deep do you want to be in to technology?  How much do you want to share with the world and how much do you want to savor for yourself?

Have you ever struggled with taking on too many roles at one time? I have worked with this in the past. I go with the thought of sharing a consistent social media presence, but after a few days into my trip, I lose my momentum and give it up.  But this is an important milestone in our business that I want to document and share with the world as we are experiencing it.

So I have found that the best way to be accountable in this way is to set intentions for my blogging and social media posts. What are my goals for this trip?  Who am I speaking to?  What is my voice?  What are my tools and how will they work for me? My goals are to teach and  share while savoring the experience.

I have decided that the secret to my success (besides documenting with pictures) is to be a copious note taker. (I actually use a note program in my iPhone where I can dictate my thoughts.) These notes consist of what I feel, see, smell, taste and hear as it happens. They will be the basis of my upcoming writing which will eventually turn into a series of blog posts or even possibly a book one day… I have used this method with some success in the past as I am able to document my feelings and observations at the moment and I’m pleasantly surprised at the results when I go back to review.

Here is my process of creating my adventurer voice.

What is the feeling of the experience and the sense of place at the moment?  How do I share my love of nature and the history and mystery of a place?  How do I feel about it and most importantly, how will my clients feel about it.

On this particular trip, we will be in cold and wet conditions photographing ice, waterfalls, glaciers, geothermal activity and much more. These conditions are not conducive to keeping a laptop in prime condition. I am concerned about bringing my piece of technology that keeps me connected to the world on a daily basis into these conditions. So I have decided to use my iPad and travel light and fast and count on wi-if services to keep me connected. We also need to have use of  our cell phones and we have done research to find that when we arrive in country, we can purchase an Iceland SIM card. Then we can use the GPS, maps, and receive email while we are there.

Hopefully, it will all work out as planned, and I am ready to be flexible and flow with whatever is thrown at me for this late winter adventure. One thing I know for sure, I will get some fabulous pictures and bring you back a piece of this adventure in written word, iphone photos, and professional quality photography. So follow my adventures on Facebook and we’ll see how it all turns out!

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Holly Higbee-Jansen

Co-Owner and Workshop Leader at Jansen Photo Expeditions
I am a passionate photographer and workshop leader, and I have been exploring my fascination with light since I was a young child. As a co-owner and guide for, I love taking our small groups of clients to beautiful places to help them explore their photographic creativity. Join us on one of our photographic workshops in the American West, Iceland and Central America: or take one of our online photography classes.  Live life creatively!  Reach me by email at:
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