Crafting Great Coastal Images

July 11, 2016

Summer may be over, but it’s no reason to avoid the beach. In all weather conditions the beach is a popular photography venue because the scenery is simply breathtaking. In fact, the beach lends itself to photography in the cooler months, with far less intense sunlight and often more dramatic weather.

The ocean offers opportunities perfect for stretching your photographic skills. Whether you’re photographing lighthouse architecture or rocky shores, we have a few tips to help you create captivating results:

Find Your Focal Point: The shores are vast, often swallowing up the frame in such a way that their grandness is difficult to capture. In these cases, it’s often best to find a subject to contrast with the water, such as a rock wall, beach hut, or other structure. Using the rule of thirds, you can position the structure in one section while using the water in the remaining areas. Experiment with positioning and tightening the frame to discover which combination creates the greatest impact.


Play on the Pier: Piers have long been a favorite shooting location for seaside photography. By experimenting from varying perspectives, piers can be powerful positions from which to shoot. Piers also attract fisherman, families and other vacationers, which can add a local interest angle to your images. Remember to include the pier as part of the imagery, shooting from the side at sunset or in landscape to showcase the reach of the woodwork. Let the pier serve multiple roles in the set – it will be well worth the effort.


Shooting in the Sand:  All it takes is just a small wind gust to blow sand into your camera lens, so make sure to keep your camera protected in its bag or covered in a gear wrap in between shooting sessions. For example, the OP/TECH USA soft wrap (from $19.95) is perfect for keeping your camera covered and protected when not in use.


Keeping lenses from scratches is also critical when shooting in sandy and windy conditions. The PROMASTER Digital HGX Protection filter is a crystal clear colorless filter with advanced anti-reflective coatings designed especially for use with digital imaging sensors. There is no effect on the image and its primary purpose is to protect your valuable lens surfaces. One of our most popular accessories and with good reason.


Try Backlight: While backlighting is often a hindrance in photography, causing our subjects to be dark against a brighter background, it can also be a creative tool for shooting on the shore. For example, having children with their backs to the camera and jumping in the waves is one way to add dramatic impact to ocean images. Shooting during sunset can transform an average family beach photo into an artistic photograph ready to be displayed in your home. Remember to stop by michaels so that we can help you with enlargements and framing, all at fantastic prices!

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