Photography - Knowledge

Landscapes Photography: Tips to Click Incredible Coastal Landscapes

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One of the favourite locations of photographers is the coastline. Coastal landscapes aren’t only beautiful and serene to look at, they also make for excellent shots. The rough ocean gently caressing the beach as it spreads over the sand in the backdrop of sunlight is the basis of poetry as well as of amazing pictures. Beaches are perfect getaways for holidays. They are also hot-spots for photographers. It is common to find hordes of people with their fancy cameras clicking the coastal landscape in every angle. There are some fine techniques that make plain photographs of the coastline different from awesome ones. We have compiled some solid photography tips for beginners to enable them to capture the ocean and land together in their full grandeur. Let us look at them one by one.

Tips for Seascape and Coastal Landscapes Photography 

Tip #1 Time it Right

An important factor to consider while photographing coastal landscapes is the time of the day. There is no doubt that the beauty of the coastline is worth capturing any time of the day, but most professionals would agree that sunrise and sunset are the best times for the beach photography.

If you want to know how to shoot coastal landscapes, you must make sure that you are at the location well ahead of these times. The bluish-white glow of the early morning sky when the sun is rising is a beautiful partner of the blue sea. Similarly, the golden hue of the sun and the sky at sundown is mesmerizing.

coastal landscape photography
Click during the golden hour- sunrise or sunset (source)

Tip #2 Keep the Camera Stable

Both sunrise and sunset will have a limited amount of light. The surroundings are not very bright at these times of the day. Therefore, you must know how to hold your camera right and thus make sure that your camera doesn’t shake when you click pictures. That’s why most landscape photography tips will tell you to use a tripod for capturing the sea and the sand.This is especially important for people who are just starting with their photography passion.

Tip #3 Use the Right Filter

In a low light condition that is typically encountered by photographers at coastal landscapes, it is important to use the right filter. This enhances the picture quality drastically. One very popular filter used for this purpose is the ND Grad filter. Sometimes, a filter is all that is required to get that perfect shot.

ND filter
Use ND Grad filter for perfect shot 

Tip #4 Understand the Weather

Unlike many other landscapes, coastal landscapes look fabulous in different weather conditions. Whether it is a bright, sunny day or a gloomy, sultry evening, the beauty of the beach will be captivating nonetheless. The only difference that has to be kept in mind is that under different weather conditions, you might have to change the settings of the camera.

Tip #5 Don’t Forget the Foreground

The foreground plays a very important role in making coastal landscape picture stunning. Foreground photography can it be used to enhance the appeal of your landscape photographs. Infact, if you check the photography tips for beginners always stress on using the foreground to add character and beauty to your photographs.

Whether it is a washed off conch shell or a sand castle made by tourists, a little drama can be added to an otherwise plain coastal landscape photograph. Play around with the angle and you will find some really beautiful shots looking right at your camera. Don’t miss them.

coastal landscape
Click from different angle (source)

Tip #6 Useful Camera Settings

One of the important tips for getting started with coastal photography is that some camera settings are more useful than others. Examples include exposure and shutter speed. Sometimes, the impact of a blur in water motion is desired and sometime, you would want everything to be frozen distinctly. Accordingly, you would have to adjust the shutter speed of your camera. If you want a prominent blur, your camera should have a slow shutter speed, and vice versa.

Similarly, the exposure time will decide the brightness and clarity of certain features of the photograph. The time of the day that you shoot and the weather will determine the optimal exposure value.

It is advisable to carry a zoom lens with you when shooting the coastline. This is because some areas of the coast may be too far off from your location.

Tip #7 Look Everywhere Around Coastal Landscapes

It is difficult to ignore the mighty sun at sunset or sunrise. But if you have a good look around in all directions, you might find that one spot where the glory of nature is in full bloom. Sometimes, excellent shots are taken by simply turning back and clicking the areas of optimal lighting.

Many times, you will find an adjoining harbour, fishing nets or boats lined up on the coast. Make full use of these objects by clicking lots of pictures. If you see a lighthouse, you should try to capture a few shots around it because it might make for a great photograph. Similarly, the street lights that light up after sunset could be used to add a dramatic and creative effect in your photograph.

Similarly, you may find an opportunity for getting some added effects in your photographs. For example, if the sun is rising and you see a big boulder, you might try to get a starburst in the photograph. You will find everything you need to know about starburst photography in one of our articles.

You may also make use of the sunlight being reflected across the water surface and creating a silhouette.You never know what creates a dramatic effect after processing.

Tip #8 Black and White

Yes, you can even opt for black and white photography which equally look spellbound. Instead of waiting for the golden hour, you can work on your photos, post-production and bring a magical touch to the otherwise bright coastal photos. We, bet coastal landscapes in black and white will look fabulous. 

coastal landscape- black and white
Bring a new touch during post production 

These are the most important yet very simple tips and tricks that teach you how to shoot coastal landscapes to perfection.

Camera Protection During Coastal Landscape Shooting

One point of caution when you click pictures of the coastline and probably enter the water is to take care of the camera. Water, salt, humidity and sand- these are perfect recipes for disaster if you don’t protect your camera. This is how you can protect your camera and gear from getting damaged while photographing coastal landscapes.

  • When not in use, keep your camera safely in its bag or wrapped in a dry towel.
  • It is better to carry a waterproof cover for your camera and use it before placing it on the beach.
  • Steer clear of sand when possible. Sand is one of the worst enemies of your camera and gear.
  • Avoid salt spray on your gear. 
  • After shooting, don’t forget to wipe everything clean with a damp cloth.
  • Keep an aerosol duster with you when planning a coastline shoot. You never know when you might need it.

Keeping the above-mentioned points in mind will transform your otherwise plain and simple photographs of coastal landscapes into masterpieces. Remember to be patient because there are no shortcuts to any place worth going. The more you practice, the better you will get in photography. All the best.

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