Making a vacation (especially somewhere as scenic as The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel) isn’t complete until you’ve filled your camera with dozens of photos. Here are five tips for taking great beach pics and capturing plenty of keepers to choose from.
Learn the rule of thirds
The rule of thirds is one of the most important rules of, not only beach photography but photography in general. Picture (see what we did there?) a tic-tac-toe board across your viewfinder. The rule of thirds suggests placing the subject of your photo along one of the four lines or at one of the intersections. Posing the subject directly in the center can be displeasing to the eye but as with any rule it’s okay to break it as you see fit.
Turn your subjects
One of the challenges that beach photographers face is the sun, and not even sunscreen can help. The midday sun creates strong highlights and dark shadows on your subjects, especially faces. So, whenever possible, turn them around and shoot photos with the sun at your back. This may ease some of the problems.
Go for the golden and blue hours
Many beach photographers feel the best time to take photos is when the sun is slightly above or below the horizon. The golden hour, when the sun rests slightly over the horizon, gives the light a softer, red-orange tone. The blue hour, when the sun is below the horizon, delivers a bluer tone to daylight. But hurry, these “hours” only last about twenty minutes.
Lose the color
Now that you’ve taken a few photos of your subjects switch your film or camera settings and take some black and white pics as well. With this simple adjustment, you can change the tone and mood of your photographs immensely. And if the sun decides to hide behind the clouds for a while, a black and white photo can bring life to what might have otherwise made your beach photos look gray and dreary.
Some of the best photos you’ll ever take are those when your subjects have no idea they’re being photographed. Capture these genuine moments as people are acting natural and not feeling put on the spot. A few mini rules for taking candid photos: turn off the flash, have the camera within easy reach, take lots of shots and be patient. We promise the rewards will be worth the wait.