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Three Tips for Beautiful Beach Photography

Family at the beach

It’s that time of year again. The beach shorts are dusted off, the slightly outlandish Hawaiian shirts are ironed, and the question of sunscreen factors and their meaning becomes, once again, the main topic of every mall conversation.

Most importantly, however, it is the perfect opportunity to gleam up your Instagram and Facebook profiles with some high quality, jealousy-inducing beach albums. These albums can be a great way to make your feed stand out from the crowd. With gorgeous bright colours and summery selfies, beach photographs are the perfect social media eye catcher, whilst also offering the perfect theme for a summery Instagram photo book.

But is getting beach photos simply a case of marching down to the beach and whipping out your phone, or is there anything you can do to elevate your photography? A day at the beach can be one of the best days of the year, full of tranquil mindsets and positive vibes, but translating those vibes into photographs is not necessarily a given. Here are three things you can do to make your photographs pop.

Focal Points Are A Must

We’ve all been there. You get out of the car, slip on your sandals, complain a bit about how they’re already rubbing your toes, take them off, and then you raise your phone to the gorgeous scenery and take your first snap. 

Ugh. Garbage. But why? The scene looks thrilling enough, with plenty of beach goers bustling about the sand and the glorious blue waves rippling delicately under the sunlight. Surely that makes a perfect photo, right? 

Wrong. Without a focal point, even the most beautiful bit of scenery will end up looking stale. Sure, it might look amazing in person, when you’re actually there and you can feel the vibes that the scenery is radiating. But, if you are making a photobook straight from your Instagram, then those vibes will not be translated and the photobook will be very quick to lose the viewer’s interest. 

This is why a focal point is important. It will tell a story that will grip the viewer and give the photo meaning. Choose a subject and make sure to remember the “rule of thirds”, which will help you find the best composition for a beach snap that is both beautiful and interesting.

Search For the Details

It can be very easy to go to the beach and come away with a load of pictures involving the sand, the sky, and the sea. But while it can be great to really utilise the colour that those landscapes can give you, it is also important to shake it up and look for the other details.

Of all the places to visit, the beach can be the best for finding intricate subjects. Whether it’s paw prints in the sand or sea-life in the rock pools, simple, well-crafted photographs can be found anywhere if you look close enough. Make sure to not only look up, but look down and find a photograph that will balance things out. 

Of course, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still take advantage of those landscapes and seaside selfies, but taking the time to search for more intimate, artistic photographs can be a great way to show off your skills and communicate a story which would not have been told otherwise. 

Use The Unique Scenery as Inspiration

The beach can be both a perfect subject and a great tool for your photography. Try to look out for opportunities to create an interesting, technical photograph, such as taking a picture of a friend in the water, with their reflection mirrored by a brief moment of near-stillness from the water. 

Look for the right composition options. For instance, lowering your phone until it’s a few inches from the sand can allow you to position your friend against the blue sky, whilst also making sure their entire reflected frame is in the scene. 

As well as this, you should try to eke out a few beautiful silhouette photographs. This can give you the best results in the golden hour, when either the sun is rising or just about to fall. Make sure to tap the background to set the correct exposure, place your subject directly in front of the light source and shoot from a low angle to ensure they stand out. If you manage to do all these things, then you will be sure to snap a perfect silhouette against that burning summer sun. Just be sure to stock up on the sunscreen before doing so.


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