Three Special Things About a Beach Photo Shoot

Family on the ocean

One of Jack Randall Photography’s preferred locations for portraits is Table Rock Beach in Laguna Beach.  Over the years, we have photographed thousands of families there and fielded hundreds of questions about wardrobe and weather.  Before you schedule a beach photo shoot, you should ask yourself a few things about the type of photo you want to create.  A beach setting takes normal outdoor elements and makes them special for photographs : the wind, the sun, the water.

The Wind

Even though Orange County is known for it’s desirable weather, the conditions down by the water can be a little different from what is experienced inland. A slight breeze on the road can be a strong wind on the sand. The wind is something that we can not control and oh! how great it would be if we could. Sometimes, we wish we could modulate it and turn it up for a dramatic whoosh of a sheer dress or veil.  At other times, we wish we could turn it down to blow just a wisp of hair gently across the face. Somedays, there is no wind at all. One thing for certain, it is an unpredictable influence on photographs that we must all agree to work with when we decide to photograph at the beach.  The key is to go with it.  The most beautiful beach sessions are always those where everyone is ready to accept the conditions we discover when we arrive. If you are extremely concerned with keeping your hair from movement, the beach might not be for you.  Beach sessions should be carefree and not overly made up; perfect for families and playful couples.

The Sun

A beach photo session may or may not include full sun. A sunny day without clouds may seem like the perfect day to photography at the beach, but full sun can be problematic in it’s own way with shadows. Surprisingly, a cloudy day affords it’s own special look not found at any other time because the clouds function as a natural light diffuser. Partial clouds can offer their own beautiful look by adding unusual contrasts in the background over the water against a sunset. On the day you schedule your appointment, we can’t predict the type of weather you will have for your beach photo shoot, but if you have an open mind about accepting the beach conditions we discover then your session will be fun and result in unique and beautiful images. Choosing wardrobe can be tricky; are you trying to blend with the elements or stand out? It comes down to your personal preference. Take a look at the family portraits we have taken at the beach and find a style that appeals to you.

The Water

The back drop of the ocean is a grand visual element.  Again, depending on the wind and the sun, the look of the water will reflect certain colors throughout the day.  However, the water is not just a backdrop; it can also be a beautiful prop if you choose to roll up your pant legs and take a walk on the wet sand.  We encourage you to frolic – yes, frolic – for the pictures at the end of your session.  Get wet.  Splash around. This is the grandest of all props that is only found here at a beach photo session.  Bring a towel and don’t miss it!