New pan-global* research released today by Sony Mobile has revealed the top 30 most photographed landmarks worldwide – a list topped by The Eiffel Tower and including Alhambra, The Colosseum, The Burj Khalifa and Big Ben.
The #XperiaNewPerspectives research revealed that more than half of the Top 30 landmarks are shot from the same three angles. With 55% of travellers saying they would plan their itinerary based on photography opportunities, it looks like we need to up our holiday photography game to avoid boring our friends as 47% of people said they were bored of seeing the same three shots. Whilst 52% were more likely to ‘like’ an image of a landmark if it was interesting and something they’d not see before.
The Eiffel Tower’s presence at the top of the list may not surprise, but the data that shows 35% of photographs of the landmark were taken from the same three angles is eye-opening. Other notable landmarks that follow this trend include Christ the Redeemer in Brazil where 71% of shots are from the same three angles, Trevi Fountain in Italy (74%), Mount Fiji in Japan (77%) and Machu Picchu where 85% of all Instagrammed images are taken from the same few spots.
|Rank||Landmark||Location||No. of Instagram images||% from top three angles|
|4||Empire State Building||USA||1,570,167||45%|
|6||Notre Dame Cathedral||France||1,330,688||53%|
|7||St Peter’s Basilica||Vatican City||1,131,705||30%|
|11||Statue of Liberty||USA||813,930||74%|
|16||Christ the Redeemer||Brazil||581,523||71%|
|18||Burj Al Arab||UAE||534,562||56%|
|22||Ha Long Bay||Thailand||475,390||57%|
|23||Arc de Triomphe||France||449,856||49%|
|26||Great Wall of China||China||412,603||72%|
|27||Sydney Opera House||Australia||408,919||44%|
|28||Table Mountain||South Africa||386,723||61%|
Research also concluded that half of those surveyed pick their holiday based on others’ holiday snaps and a further 45% look to Instagram for inspiration of where to photograph and visit.
Sony Mobile has partnered with three award-winning travel photographers from across the globe and equipped them with the Sony Xperia XZ to visit some of the leading landmarks and capture them from new perspectives. From low light shots of the Colosseum to blur-free crowds of the Eiffel Tower showing off the capabilities of the Xperia XZ’s camera.
“This research has given us real insight into how important photography has become to our holidays and how the two are inextricably linked, said Christian Haghofer, South Africa Country Manager at Sony Mobile.“Photography has become a vital part of any trip – whether city break, adventure or simply lying on a beach. With the quality of the camera in our Xperia XZ, travellers can experience blur-free images with ‘true-to-life’ colour image capture, and superb low-light capability. We hope to inspire a new generation of photographers to capture a new perspective on their travels.”
Commenting on the fantastic imagery created on Xperia XZ and the New Perspectives report CEO of World Photography Organisation, Scott Gray, said: “The photography landscape has changed dramatically over the past decade and this is ultimately down to the accessibility and quality of cameras. This accessibility is even more pronounced with smartphones, the technology within these camera phones enable people to improve their photography but also, very importantly, have a high enough resolution to be able to actually do something with that image. This ability to capture the spontaneous can really help challenge the photographer’s creativity whilst providing a unique image for the viewer.
It is absolutely fantastic that photographers are using different techniques and filters but these more unique images, whilst they may require editing, should suffice without heavy touching up and therefore produce a more natural photograph.”
Award winning travel photographer, Lluís Salvadó, offers his top tips for capturing photography with a new perspective this summer –
- Play around with colours and brightness, it’s amazing how different one scene can look with some clever camera tricks
- If you’re struggling to get an original shot play around with reflective surfaces, a famous landmark can be transformed by a little water
- Look for beauty in the architecture around you, not just the landmark as a whole. There can be a very artistic quality to structural things
- Try out a new perspective and get some shots from high above or below the subject, don’t be scared to experiment with compositions
- Use people and their silhouettes to give a shot a sense of place and time, and play around with forced perspective too
*A note about the statistics throughout the report
All statistics in the report are not representative of the general population but are of those surveyed. A sample size of 5,352 across four European markets (UK, Germany, France, Spain and UAE) were polled.
About the photographers
Lluís Salvadó (http://lluissalvado.com)
Lluis was born in Granollers, near Barcelona. In 1998 he began learning about photography while studying Audio-visual Communications. After some years working as a sound system technician, he decided to make a radical change in his life and began working as a photographer full time in 2004.
His passion for travelling and capturing stories with a camera led him to co-create Bisual Studio in 2013. Since then, he has not stopped traveling and living great adventures to tell stories that deserve to be told through a lens. In 2016, Lluís won best single image in the ‘Journeys and Adventures Portfolio’ category at the Travel Photographer Of The Year awards.
Lluís photographed Alhambra
Achim Thomae (https://www.achimthomae.photography)
Achim loves and lives for photography, he lives in southeast Munich (Bavaria / Germany) – the perfect location for the short walk to some of the most stunning scenery in Europe. He states that the mountains, lakes and landscapes of Upper Bavaria and the Alps are his ‘preferred “hunting ground” in particular, the special lighting effects’.
Shortlisted in the Sony World Photography Awards competition in the Open Competition for Travel. He now works as a freelance photographer for Getty Images – the world’s leading providers of digital media. To date his Getty Images portfolio has over 800 photos.
Achim photographed the Colosseum
Mikael Buck (http://www.mikaelbuck.com)
Mikael Buck is an editorial photographer based in London, UK and his work focuses on portraiture and travel. He began his career as a photojournalist and has worked on commission for every daily national newspaper in Britain, including, The Times, Guardian, Daily Mirror and The Daily Telegraph as well as being published in countless international publications. Mikael has received critical acclaim for his photographs of iconic landmarks such as St Paul’s cathedral and his landscape work in Iceland and The Isle of Man.
Mikael photographed Big Ben, the Eiffel Tower and Burj Khalifa