How to Take Beach Portraits: The Ultimate Guide

woman on the beach

There are so many backdrops out there for outdoor portraits, but the beach is one of our favorites. There’s so much you can do with beach portraits, not to mention it is a preferred spot for many clients. So, here are some tips on how to take beach portraits that will knock competitors out of the water!

After you have learned how to take beach portraits, you’ll need to edit them. Perfectly Clear adds up to 40 automatic corrections, and you can try it for free to see for yourself!

5 Tips for How to Take Beach Portraits

1. Pick the Right Time

Speak with your client to see what kind of photos they want. Often, you’ll find that they are looking for great shots at sunrise or sunset! Once you find out, plan accordingly. You’ll want everyone to get there early enough to set up since you’ll probably have a small window to shoot. Depending on the beach, another time you’ll want to keep in mind is the tide. Sometimes, if it is high tide, there will be no beach left to shoot on!

2. Scope out the Perfect Location

When clients hire you for their beach portrait session, they want everything to be perfect. It’s best if you have a part of the beach in mind before you go. This way, you know there will be no trash cans or other unwanted items in the way.

3. Be Aware of the Location of the Sun

This is similar to our first tip, but you need to be aware of the location of the sun no matter what time you shoot. You typically want some side light from the sun, but if you pick the wrong time, this will be nearly impossible. If you have external flash, you’ll be able to have the sun to the side behind your subject.

4. Have a Backup Plan for Bad Weather

Beach shoots are notoriously windy, and you never know when it might rain. While there isn’t much you can do for rain, just check the weather and see when the radar says it’s supposed to stop. Sometimes the most beautiful shoots are right after a storm! As for wind, flyaway hairs are easy to photoshop out, and this is a great time to convince your client to do some fun poses. Poses like walking down the beach or jumping in the air don’t need perfect hair!

5. Have Some Poses Picked

This doesn’t just go for a beach shoot! You should always have some poses picked for your clients; many people get shy as soon as the camera comes out. Research some beach shoots ahead of time for outdoor poses and don’t be afraid to tell someone to bend their knees or move their arms. All they need is a little direction!

Edit Your Photos!

You know how to take beach portraits. You got the perfect pictures. Now it’s time to edit! If you were shooting for an hour or two, you probably took a bunch. That’s okay! Load them into Perfectly Clear for automatic corrections. It will save you from hours of editing!