Impact of travel photography

Just because you want to take pictures of people and things does not mean that you cannot travel responsibly. In fact, Steve believes that the act of taking a picture can be a great motivator to break down the boundaries and a fantastic excuse to approach people and simply say hello!

Steve actively educates clients of any cultural issues concerning photography in the countries that we are travelling in, and instructs explicitly against 'stealing' pictures of the people they want to photograph. The result is a better experience for both the person taking the picture and the subject of any portrait.

Although counselled against giving money to beggars, clients are informed that sometimes and in some countries a small amount of money is expected if you are going to take someone's picture, and this issue is always discussed on the tours. People are instructed to always act sensitively, with this issue and also when photographing in religious and culturally sensitive places.

Although the group sizes on these tours are never more that 12 people, we also divide this further at sensitive times to make sure that we are not swamping a person or place with too many photographers.

Steve accompanies the tours, and gives clients the benefits of his experience at respecting local cultures, and also seeks to lead by example when it comes to both his photography and interactions with local people.

The over-riding rule on these tours is that it is better not to take a picture than to cause offence when taking it

Steve Davey passionately believes that done properly, travel can have a positive effect on the countries you travel in. Though it is always important to travel sensitively: both toward the environment you are travelling in, and also towards the people and cultures that you encounter.

We are fortunate to be associated with select tour companies who have a comprehensive responsible travel and environmental policy. By virtue of engaging them to provide our land arrangements, we can be sure that we are having a more beneficial effect on the world. We also have our own initiatives, concerning travel photography and the impact of our business on the world.

It would be facile to think that there is not a negative aspect for the environment to travel, or indeed for doing business in general. There are however ways to mitigate these, and these are the ways that we try to do this with the Better Travel Photography range of tours.

1). Engaging a responsible operator for land arrangements: As a very small operator, running only a few tours a year we cannot check all of the hotels and ground arrangements for ourselves. By using Intrepid Travel for our land arrangements we can be confident in their responsible travel and environmental policies. This is expanded upon below.

2). Carbon-balancing all flights taken in the course of these tours: for the new 2010 season, we undertake to carbon balance all of our international and domestic flights through We also encourage clients to carbon balance the flights that they take, whether through the Intrepid Travel Carbon offset initiative, or through a separate scheme.

3). Responsible office policy: a vast amount of carbon emissions come from offices, and we actively seek to minimise these with a comprehensive environmental policy for our office.

Reduced emissions from commuting: both Steve Davey's professional photography and the Better Travel Photography Tours businesses are run from a home office, wiping out commuting emissions at a stroke.

Reduced emissions from heating: running the business from home drastically cuts the extra heating costs arising from having a separate office.

Comprehensive recycling policy: all papers, ink cartridges, electronic goods and other recyclables from the office are recycled using local facilities.

Reducing waste: we have a policy to minimise printing – especially for colour printing of photographs which uses a considerable amount of harmful inks. We favour low voltage light sources and actively switch these off when not in use. We also use individual switching to allow computer and other peripherals to be disconnected when not in use.

All our tour information is supplied digitally, and we don't have a print brochure.

Digital photography: as an comprehensive adopter of digital photography we have drastically cut the pollution associated with film manufacture, processing and printing.

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Website, Images and text Steve Davey/ 1990 - 2019

A bespoke range of photographic tours, designed and led by travel photographer Steve Davey. These tours draw on Steve's years of experience and intimate knowledge of some of the most fascinating and evocative parts of the planet.

More than a holiday, you will benefit from many picture taking opportunities as well as tailored photographic tuition & encouragement.

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