Must-Have Beach Pictures – Tips and Tricks

Must-Have Beach Pictures

Beach vacations are a wonderful opportunity to capture beautiful pictures. The most important factor in doing so is timing!

Sunrise – OK…So you’re on vacation and that means you don’t have to get up early. However, you will find it well worth it to pick at least one day to rise before the sun does. Carry your camera and tripod to the beach and click away as the sun rises to greet you.

Early Morning – Once the sun is up, take advantage of the untouched beach. Search for seashells not  yet carried away by collectors. Direct your camera to the lines in the beach left by the rising and falling tides while still unmarked by feet.

Mid-day – This is your best time to get high-activity pictures. If your hotel has a balcony overlooking the beach, take a wide angle photo capturing the activity below. Be ever watchful of other people, kids, and dogs as the photo opportunities are endless. A good zoom is useful!

Evening – This is a great time to snap pictures of the day coming to an end. Children longing to stay longer; umbrellas being carried off the beach; the aftermath of the sand having been played with throughout the day. Look for the unusual.

Sunset – Again, the sun can have a remarkable color effect on the water. Capture the shadows falling across the beach.

Dark – Try to position yourself where you can see the lights from the boardwalk.

Take the time to capture pictures throughout the day. They will bring you memories to cherish for a life time.

5 Tips for Better Pictures

1. Watch Your Background – Make sure that in the picture, your background items won’t interact negatively with your subject. You don’t want a tree branch sprouting from Uncle Harry’s head!

2. Watch for Shadows – Slight shadows can be more pronounced in the picture. Make sure your subjects don’t have strong shadows against features you want to capture.

3. Get on their Level – Especially for children and animals, take the moment to kneel down in order to take a straight on picture. You’ll not only capture their expressions better but also give them a more inviting feel.

4. Get Close-ups – Eliminate the background by bringing your subject closer. Make it the only focus of your picture and highlight its beauty.

5. Use Flash Outdoors – This can help eliminate shadows on the faces of your subject in high sunlight. Can also brighten them in contrast to the background.

Bonus : How to Email Photos

Pictures taken with cameras that take these huge four, six and eight megapixel images are way too big to email or use on a web site? The problem is that your images are physically too large to use.

You’ll need a program to make them smaller. Photoshop CS or Photoshop Elements will do the job just fine. First you need to open the photo in your software and bring up the image resizing option – in Photoshop CS  you’ll choose Image, Image Size. The numbers you see at the top for the width and height are the current dimensions. As a rough guide, a common computer monitor’s resolution is 1280 x 1024 pixels and you probably have at least double that. A good size photo for a web site is around 600 pixels along its longest size. Click the Resample Image checkbox and the Constrain Proportions check boxes and set the largest of the Width or Height values to 600 pixels (the other setting will alter automatically). Click OK to resize the image. If it seems very small, use the zoom tool to enlarge it until the title bar says it is 100% size. That’s how big it is now.

Choose File, Save for Web, choose JPEG as the format and experiment with various compression values until you get a good compromise between file size and quality. You should be able to reduce each image to less than 30k in size this way.

Remember never to use the Save command by itself or you may end up overwriting (losing) your original picture.

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