Coastal photography is one of the most interesting disciplines in landscape photography. The sea is always on the move and offers photographers who are not afraid to get wet, numerous creative possibilities. But at the beginning it is not easy to take advantage of these opportunities. Only when you are familiar with your equipment should you venture into the waves. Camera operation should be routine for you so that you can focus your attention on the sea. Because the waves hit the beach evenly in one moment, the surf can be unpredictable in the next moment. Coastal photography is exciting. You never know exactly what kind of photos you end up with. The structures created in the photo by the movement of the water are a little different each time. A beach can offer new motifs every day when the tide changes or a storm exposes rocks that enable new compositions. Despite or perhaps because of this inconsistency, the right timing is crucial for a convincing coastal photo. Many factors play a role: from the season to the tide, the weather, the time of day and the moment when you press the trigger.
Season and weather
As in landscape photography, the season and weather have a huge impact on which photos you can take by the sea. Should it be dramatic photos with breaking waves? Or would you prefer the postcard motif with calm, turquoise water? Would you like to have the sun in the photo? Or golden sidelights? The more specific your wishes are, the smaller the time window for the implementation of a certain photo becomes. With apps like PhotoPills You can, among other things, predict the position of the sun very precisely and set your tour to the appropriate date.
The weather is much more difficult to plan, and forecasts are often unreliable. Nevertheless, you should pay attention to annually recurring weather events when planning a trip. Examples are the hurricane season in the Caribbean between June and December, the peak time for typhoons in the Pacific between July and November or the winter storms on the Atlantic coast of Europe. While the storms that hit mainland Europe bring dramatic and exciting conditions for coastal photos, hurricanes and typhoons are better avoided.
- Access to all heise + content
- exclusive tests, guides & backgrounds: independent, critically sound
- Read c’t, iX, Technology Review, Mac & i, Make, c’t photography directly in the browser
- register once – read on all devices – cancel monthly
- first month free, then monthly € 9.95
- Weekly newsletter with personal reading recommendations from the editor-in-chief
Start FREE month
Start FREE month now
already subscribed to heise +?
Sign up and read
Register now and read the article immediately
More information about heise +