Beach Photography Ideas

Vacation time, apart from rest and the possibility of spending it with your loved ones, is also a time of capturing these beautiful moments. However, shooting at the seaside, surrounded by sand and water, is not always as easy as it may seem. Taking photos on the beach also requires fair weather and lighting conditions.

Regardless of whether you are taking photos with the phone or specialized equipment, it is good to know the basic rules regarding composition, light, or the image’s subject for landscape photography. So that after your return, you can proudly show your memories and brag about them on social media, we have prepared some practical tips. Or grab hundreds of likes and new followers by using a few simple tricks to make the perfect beach selfie.

You can photograph creatively and excitingly on the beach, and the sand that penetrates everywhere does not have to destroy our camera. Here are some practical tips that can help you take interesting photos on the beach. See why lousy weather at the seaside is great for a photographer. You can use this photo workshop not only for the beach but for other locations knowing these simple ideas.

General tips for beach shots

Here are a few photo tips that will make your vacation photos look professional.

  1.  Take care of your equipment.

It is probably the essential point. Cameras and lenses don't like sand, so make sure it doesn't get in the vicinity of your photography equipment. A suitable beach bag should also be closed with a zipper, not just with snaps.

  1.  Fight for good exposure.

If you are shooting at the beach on a sunny day and set the camera to auto mode, it may be prone to underexposing your photos. The light meter in the camera selects somewhat averaged parameters, and it usually gives good results. Provided that we photograph an equally average landscape, i.e., some sky, grass, trees, and a man. However, sand reflects much more light than a classic landscape. The camera will receive this light and set an average exposure value to get a slightly darkened photo.

Suppose you're thinking about professional landscape photography master the art of manually adjusting your camera settings. Different cameras have different possibilities, but the general idea is to increase the exposure value (EV) by +1, maybe +2 steps (points). It will certainly be possible in the camera’s manual settings, probably also in the semi-automatic mode.

  1. Watch out for the horizon!

In pictures at the seaside, the horizon is more crucial than usual. Large spaces make any shortcomings more visible. First of all - make sure that the horizon is perfectly horizontal. Try to achieve it in-camera, but if it's skewed, don't worry - it's elementary to fix it afterward while editing. Second - the horizon line should not pass over the head and face. We have an unpleasant feeling subconsciously when viewing such a photo, as if something cuts through the subject's head. Finally, try to stick to the basic rules of composition, including the rule of thirds.

  1. Don't be afraid of the harsh sun.

We often avoid taking beach pictures in direct sunlight. People blink their eyes reflexively, and the shadows and contrasts are too visible. But it also works to our advantage because the color saturation of photos is impressive. Pay attention to the side of the light and position yourself so that it illuminates the heroes of your photos.

  1. Bet on the right time

The sunrise and sunset are great moments for taking pictures on the beach. First of all, you will receive a soft and warm light. Also, there aren't many people on the beach at the beginning and end of the day. Then you can safely photograph your model or capture the beauty of nature.

Creative tips for beach pictures

Vacation trips are a great time to polish up our photographic skills. Therefore, it is worth approaching the subject of holiday photos unconventionally, trying to take pictures different than usual.

  1. Document even ordinary moments

Holidays by the sea are not only fun in the sand or jumping over the waves. It's also a beach lunch (nowhere else do cheese rolls taste so good). So seek out such fleeting moments and capture them in photos!

  1. Reflections in the sand

Wet sand perfectly reflects the contours of the figure. Pay attention to this and try to take these reflections into account when composing your photos.

  1. Don't be afraid of water.

You don't have to be afraid of water either! By stepping into the sea, you give your photos a completely different perspective and point of view.

  1. Focus on what's most important

The photos you bring from your seaside vacation can be simply boring. Beautiful seascapes look unique to the naked eye, but they often lose their value entirely after taking a picture. So instead, try to pay attention to what is most important to you on the beach: people - loved ones, children or sunbathers, or beautiful forms of nature - details, patterns, unique situations. Avoid typical frames and try to capture surprising moments and places.

  1. Remember that bad weather is good.

When there is a storm on the sea, and the wind remained all the beaches is a signal that you have to prepare to capture great staff. Dark clouds, curving trees on the dunes, fluttering flags forbidding bathing, and if you have some happiness is even big waves and storms - these are sensational conditions for climatic photos. But, of course, you must necessarily maintain a healthy sense and security rules during the storm, making beach pictures.

Tips for a perfect beach selfie

Selfies on the beach are a magnet for likes in all possible social networking sites, but taking the perfect shot in these specific conditions can be quite a challenge. With these tricks, you will surely make no mistake.

  • Sunlight is the best friend of any selfie. Make sure, however, that you are not facing the sun - then your silhouette may be almost wholly darkened and the photo unreadable. On the other hand, too much sunlight can make your selfie overexposed without even showing your nose. Remember about the "golden hour.”

  • Background. If you are sitting on the beach, there is a risk of having some children running in the background of your pictures. Removing such unnecessary background elements may not be possible later.

  • Place. A selfie on your towel and in the water is a standard, which, of course, does not hurt trying, but it is also worth thinking about a slightly less obvious spot for a photo. What about a selfie in a beach bar?

  • Filter. Applying a filter can beautify your selfie. Of course, the best part is not having any filter because the human eye likes natural colors best, so remember not to overdo it.

  • Team. Since the famous selfie of movie stars from the Oscars, handheld photos of more people have been a sensation. A selfie on the beach with a group of friends is, of course, the simplest solution.

  • Position. For selfies, the best option is to position the smartphone slightly above eye level so that the face will look better. Do not slouch. Nobody wants a picture with a bloated belly or a double chin! And if you take a full-body photo, beach photo experts say that the best position is recumbent, with one leg bent at the knee, your back straight, and your arms behind you.

  • Clothes. Don't overdo it with nudity. Instead, add a few accessories to your swimsuit.


There are many more such tricks for interesting holiday photos. The subtle play of light, the color of the sea, sand, rocks… sounds lovely, but it looks different in the beach pictures. So it's worth having a good idea for photos. You can visit the Image Select photobank website to get inspired!

(Aug 16, 2021) Alex Seobruv Creativity Inspiration