Print this page

Photography isn’t about how good your camera is

Written by  Dec 21, 2015

This week The Dubrovnik Times caught up with Lisa Michele Burns, a.k.a the wandering lens. This Australian photojournalist has travelled the world with her camera bringing back glorious images. She has worked with some of the most renowned publications in the world including Lonely Planet, The Sunday Times Traveller Magazine and Vogue Australia. Burns is also well-known as an underwater photographer and her photos of Dubrovnik from a marine viewpoint are truly inspiring.

Could you give me some more information about yourself?
I’m an Australian travel and underwater photographer who publishes a guide to photographing the world called The Wandering Lens ( Currently I’m living in France however I regularly travel to different countries to photograph their coastline from the water for my current project ‘The World from the Water’.

Why did you decide to visit Dubrovnik and was this your first visit?
This was my first visit to Dubrovnik and I was putting together a guide to the best photography locations around the old town. I spent five days walking all over Dubrovnik to find the best vantage points both above and below the water. One of the main reasons I chose to compile a guide on Dubrovnik was the opportunity to photograph the city from outside the walls. Being in the water and seeing the clear sea below and stone city walls above was such a special experience.

How would you compare Dubrovnik to other tourist destinations that you have visited?
Dubrovnik surprised me in more ways than one. I’m not exactly sure what I was expecting but having barely looked at any photos before arriving as I wanted to have a fresh perspective. I was blown away by the scenery and blend of medieval architecture with palm trees and islands. Dubrovnik doesn’t compare to any other destination, it’s unique in landscape, culture and history.

Were there any surprises, pleasant or bad, during your time in the country?
I was surprised to see so many tourists in late September but felt it didn’t take too much away from the enchanting old alleys of Dubrovnik. I was very happy to see the water in front of the city walls was really clear which worked well for my collection of underwater photos.

As a freelance travel photographer, how photogenic is Dubrovnik?
Dubrovnik is extremely photogenic. Every angle whether it be within the old town, high up on the city walls or from the sea worked well in photos. The colours of the stone walls, orange roof tops and blue sea and sky looked incredible together. I found it very hard to narrow down the best photo locations for my guide to Dubrovnik!

Can you give our readers a few tips of taking the perfect holiday snap?
When capturing a destination, try to think outside the box and use a little creativity when compositing a photo. Rather than just pointing and photographing straight ahead, look around to see if you can incorporate a building, person or the landscape in the foreground to give your image some perspective and show people just how amazing Dubrovnik is. Photography isn’t about how good your camera is, it’s about seeing the world in your own unique way and interpreting that into an image to share after your trip.

How would you describe Dubrovnik in three words?
Enchanting seaside city.

How did you get started with underwater photography?
I’ve had a dream to photograph the world from the water for a few years now and it started when I lived on a tropical island in Australia surrounded by the Great Barrier Reef. Using the split-level perspective where you can showcase the underwater world and the landscape above is fascinating to me and I doubt I’ll ever get bored of it. It took me a few attempts to get brave enough to put my expensive camera underwater but now I can barely go swimming without having it with me!

Would you come back to Dubrovnik and what will be your lasting memories?
I will absolutely visit Dubrovnik again without a doubt. From this trip I took away memories of sparkling seas, a city filled with hidden gems, charming alleys and friendly people.

Follow Lisa around Dubrovnik
Lisa’s guide to the best photo locations in Dubrovnik
1 – Fort Lovrijenac
2 – Luza Square
3 – Komarda Beach
4 – St. John Fortress
5 – Ploce Gate
6 – Dubrovnik City Walls
7 – Srd Mountain
8 – Buza Bar
9 – Ulica Peline – North City
10 – Ulica od Kastela
Keep in touch with the wandering lens on her website or via her Instagram @the_wanderinglens