Beside the Seaside - tyneholm
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Beside the Seaside

Assignment L34

Seaside resorts are full of picture potential. Artificial structures-such as harbor walls, piers, marker posts, seafront arcades, and jetties-add interest to the natural beauty of the sea and sand. 

In the summer, resorts tend to be crowded with tourists, making them a tricky place to shoot. However, during wintertime, or in bad weather, coastal resorts tend to be quiet, almost deserted and forlorn. Rough seas and brooding skies can create further interest and atmosphere. Some resorts are particularly colorful, with painted beach huts and illuminated piers just waiting to give your shots immediate impact. 

Set yourself the challenge of shooting a series of six great images in a set time – 30 minutes, for example. Any camera type will do-DSLR, mirrorless, compact, or your smartphone’s camera-the key ingredient will be color and your use of perspective and creativity. Shoot from low angles, go wide, or maybe use a longer lens to isolate just a small area of interest, such as a door handle or keyhole. 

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  • An extreme neutral density (ND) filter, of about 1 0 stops, can be useful when shooting seaside structures such as piers or a row of groynes.
  • In stormy weather, be careful of sea spray-keep a cloth to hand ready to wipe away moisture from lenses and filters.

Special Kit

  • Smartphone app for predicting tide times
  • Extreme neutral density (ND) filters
  • Chamois leather or microfiber cloth

Field Notes

  • Always be aware of tide times when shooting the coast. Download a dedicated tide app on your smartphone so you always have tidal information to hand. For busy coastal resorts it is often best to visit soon after high water, when the tide is receding and the beach is washed clean of ugly footprints.