Individual photos are okay, but a photo diary of your entire trip is more fun for your friends and a much better way to preserve your memories. "It was incredible. You should have seen it!" How many times have you heard this from divers expounding on the exploits of their last dive trip? They had some great pictures to show, but they really didn't tell the whole story. Sure, there were some fantastic underwater pictures of a cuttlefish, but when you asked about the resort, they didn't have a single picture. It's really too bad when these dive travelers spend thousands of dollars on a trip and then don't keep more of a visual record. They were having so much fun they thought they would never forget. Yet, with time their memories slowly fade.
Easy Equipment >> Cameras today are compact and their versatility makes them easy to take everywhere. You can get great quality images from point-and-shoot cameras small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. In fact, you can often find professional photographers taking along a compact point-and-shoot camera so they can capture fun photos for their personal scrapbook in-between their work assignments. Best of all, if you don't like a picture, simply press a button and it's gone. So now there is no excuse for not taking a camera with you wherever you go.
Look for Photo Ops >> You don't have to make a professional production of visual story telling, just grab shots when you can. If you can't capture everything, don't worry about it. No one is going to grade you afterwards. The idea is to have fun, and let your photo collection reinforce all your incredible moments. Take a picture at the airport, maybe one while on the plane, another shot of your dive buddy struggling with the luggage and, of course, one where you all are collapsed after a hard day. You get the idea, right?
Experiment >> Don't be afraid to take more than one photo of a situation. Try different angles; wide angle, distance shots and close-ups. Include funny signs, flowers, unique foods, crazy people, your room, parties and scenes aboard the dive boat. All these photos will later help remind you of all the fun. Extend this storytelling attitude into your underwater pictures. Don't take all close-up animal pictures or all wide-angle reef pictures. People want to see how the underwater world looks and live your whole dive experience. Show giant stride entries, shooting from the boat and from the water. Get your dive group and your animal encounter. And save a few frames for the safety stop. This is frequently where the funniest moments happen.
Making It Make Sense >> Now you have returned from your trip and need to organize your photos. Be selective; you don't have to include every photo you took. You need to view it as a visual diary. That said, you should also be flexible. Some pictures won't conform to a strict chronological format. That's okay. Use them where they make the most sense to you, or where they are the funniest. You may even want to create a photo scrapbook of all your outtakes — nothing but goofiness!
By taking a bit more time to document your vacation of a lifetime, you will now have mementos. No longer will you will have to say, I guess you had to be there. Now you can say, Let me show you!