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Travel: Put the camera down and enjoy the moment


This is the scene at every event these days.

A sea of cellphones, with the owners of the phones viewing the entire event through the 5 inch (or less) lens of gorilla glass. Viewing the experience through this tiny camera means they are not taking in and enjoying the experience. Why? Because you have to focus the camera, make sure objects are framed, ensure objects aren't too dark and most importanly, that no one's head is blocking your camera (while they raise their hands to do the same thing.)

It happened to me last weekend at a steeplechase race when I was leaning on the hedge as the horses charged my way zip-pity fast. As soon as I took the photo I regretted it. 
            A) The picture wasn’t that great 
            B) the first one I took was better
      and C) I know better than to overshoot snapshots
Yes, I had already had the moment captured in my phone ready for social media. I was disappointed in myself because not only did I know before taking the second photo that it wouldn't be better or that much different than what I had, but also I'm the one that made up these rules of limiting your photos. (We'll get to that later.)

At the Queens Cup Steeplechase with Nichelle.

I already had my photo of the moment. It showed off how close I was to the the track. (Right on the hedge!) So it was time to put down the camera and enjoy the experience.


We’re missing the moments, the experiences...we’re missing life looking through our dog-gone cellphones. Just like I missed the rush of 10 thoroughbreds rushing past me as I leaned against the hedge. I missed the thrill of the feeling and seeing it with my own eyes!
  
But how do we update our friends on the cools things we witness and experience without taking photos with our phone? I mean that's the reason why social media is so ingrained in our lives because we as people want to "share."

So how do we solve this?

As a lifestyle and entertainment TV personality I get to be apart of many great things, and part of my job is to update our viewers ( and readers, you) of my experiences through social media. Photos, video, status updates and tweets are required for each story, every event and appearance. But over the years I've come up with a simple formula that I'm going to share with you shortly.
I've been using it for about a year and it works for every outing: concert, family days, concerts, and even vacations. 
The best part is that I get to put my phone down and enjoy the moment.
...but first let me explain one of the main reasons why we like social media

Answer: Likely, your goal is to share the story of your experience. 
"Look what I got to do." "Look what I'm about to eat."

But I say that whether it’s an event or a vacation, you can do that with one good photo.
Turth:  it’s unrealistic to ask you to just take one photo.
So I say take three photos.

The Rule of Three
 
1. At every event I try to limit myself to only three pictures to tell the story.
 (Honestly, sometimes I only need to take one or two pictures!)

You can tell the story of an event: what you ate, what you wore, who was playing, who you went with, it was raining, it was empty, and so on and so on...with only three pictures.

2. Use a frame app to make a collage.
(Search "photo frame" in your app store.)

I use the app then post the one photo to Instagram,
and sync it to a post on Facebook and Twitter with the caption of the event. (You can also tag who you want in Instagram too.)
*it just takes two or three steps to social media an event!

3. Done and Done

Now enjoy the event.

People. It really is that simple and has made my life much more enjoyable. I mean, I really get to enjoy the great stuff I'm invited to.


For travel or vacations...

I’ll compromise that "rule of three" photos, to three pictures per stop. 

Let's say in one day I go to a restaurant, take three photos for the collage. Then next is a shopping adventure, three photos will do; and finally a tour for the day...three photos may be tough, but collage it...drop the phone and jump in the hot springs! You're on vacation! 

Warning: from experience, trying to collage any more than three photos on Instagram makes it hard to see the photos in the collage. If you want to flex more pictures, my recommendation is to just make a new collage.


For me, it's really changed my life without the stress of having to update my status. Now, I'll go to an event and take it in for a moment. Then, I'll assess what three things I think tell the story of it and snap three photos. I make my collage, post it to social media, then pocket my phone and enjoy the event. 

What pictures do I take?
the simple answer...whatever tells the story.

Take a selfie. A photo of yourself (and your crew) with a cool background from the event.

Then take some of the food, the stage, the big crowd, the artwork and decorations. Really...the other photos should be of what stands out.


I can’t stress to you enough that it so worth it. 
 Please, please, please try it!


Here’s some examples of how I do it:
 
At the Latin American Festival with my pal Lisa.


At the NASCAR All Star race with my buddy Jimese.

In Rio de Janerio.


What do you think?
Post on Facebook some of your favorite moments.
And let me know below if it changes your life!
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