Q: “What tips do you have for beach photos? My family is headed to beach and we want to get the kids together for some informal beach pictures. Any basic pointers? Or just shoot away? lol”
A: This is a popular question and chances are you might be headed to the beach this summer too, so here are my top 3 tips for beach photography.
1. It’s all about the light. Are you seeing a theme here? Good lighting is the cornerstone of a good photograph. It doesn’t matter if you’re shooting with your iPhone or a fancy camera. The best time of day for a beach shoot is going to be during “Golden Hour,” right after sunrise or right before sunset. This is when the sun is lower in the sky and will create a beautiful soft golden light without being so harsh and bright that everyone is squinting.
2. Watch your horizon. When you’re at the beach for pictures, of course you want to capture the ocean in your background. Try to avoid shooting with the water horizon line directly behind your subject. The horizon line “chops” your image in half and feels very flat and 2D. Instead, add more depth to your photo by shooting parallel to the water (ie. The water will be to your left or right, not in front of you). This creates a beautiful background as the water, waves and beach blur into the distance.
3. Go Manual. The beach can be a tricky place for a digital camera on automatic mode. By shooting in manual mode, you will have more control over your cameras exposure (how bright or dark). Especially when shooting towards a sunset, its important for you to manually tell your camera how much light to let into the lens. This could mean the creative difference between a dark silhouette in the sunset, or a beautifully lit portrait. The choice is yours when you have control over your cameras manual exposure settings. To learn more about manual exposure and camera settings, check out the Beginners Photography Class!
Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below. I am happy to help!