Beach Family Photos: A DIY Guide

There are few places more fun to take beach family photos than in Florida. That’s especially true in the Bradenton area, where the stretches of sand are stunning. Situated on the Gulf of Mexico, these beaches feature spectacular sunsets. There are so many family beach photo ideas when you’ve got so much natural beauty surrounding you!

Of course, taking photos and getting great results are two different things. Practically anyone can point and shoot a camera or smartphone. You need to make plans and prepare to get the best pictures. To help, we’ve put together this quick guide to taking amazing beach family photos! Once you’re done, you’ll be ready to hit the beaches in Bradenton and snap smashing selfies.

The Golden Hours for DIY Beach Family Photos

Here’s an interesting fact; your camera can’t see as much light as your eyes can. Your camera will tend to overexpose certain elements when taking your photos. The best way to reduce this problem is to reduce the amount of light coming into your camera’s lens. The easiest way to do that is to go to a Bradenton beach either early or late in the day. Professional photographers refer to these times of day as the ‘golden hours’. That goes for the beach, or anywhere else you wish to take excellent family photos.

Use a Flash to Fill in Shadows

Taking pictures at the beach during the day is easy! There’s plenty of light, and if you get the right angle, the results should be great! However, you’ll come across a situation where there’s too much shadow on your subjects. (In this instance, your lovely family.) If that’s the case, you can use your camera’s flash to ‘fill in’ the light and remove those silly shadows. Here are the steps to do that:

  1. Take a picture of the background first, without anyone in it.
  2. Next, note the settings like the aperture and shutter speed.
  3. Now set your camera to match those settings.
  4. Setting your camera to use the flash is next.
  5. Bring your family into the picture and take the shot(s).

That’s it! (It’s pretty straightforward.) If you find that the picture is too dark, you can raise the flash’s power to get the best results. 

Coordinating Your Beach Family Photo Outfits

This is where the planning part comes into play. Let’s say you’re taking beach family photos in Bradenton for a specific reason. For example, pics to use in this year’s holiday greeting card or for a family calendar you plan to make. If that’s the case, coordinating your clothing and outfits can make your picture stand out!

Coordinating your clothes doesn’t mean that everyone should wear white t-shirts and jeans. You can do that, but it puts a damper on everyone’s individuality. Instead, pick colors that fit within a certain color scheme. Two or three colors will do so that you all ‘match’ but not perfectly. Patterns can be fun too. For example, everyone can wear something that has a matching pattern. That will add some pizzazz to your pics and make them more memorable too.

Many families who take beach photos in Florida store seasonal clothes in a storage unit. That way, they can get great photos throughout the year every time they visit. (Sweaters are so comfy on the beach in fall!) By the way, we recommend a temperature controlled storage unit for seasonal clothes. It will protect them from Florida’s famous heat and humidity.

If you need inspiration, we’ve created a Pinterest mood board for your beach family photos!

Family Beach Photo DIY Ideas

Not sure what to do to liven up your beach family photos in Bradenton? If the answer is yes, we’ve got a few ideas that will help you make them eye-catching and memorable. Use them as you like to bring your photos to life and make them stand out from the rest!

beach family photo outfits

Family Beach Photo Ideas: Bring Your Family Pet

Does your family have a dog you adore or a cat you cherish? If yes, why not bring them with you to the beach in Bradenton when you take your family beach photos? They are part of the family, after all, and can make your photos extra special. The good news is that, throughout Florida, most beaches allow pets! We also suggest bringing treats to keep your pet focused during the photo shoot.

Family Beach Photo Ideas: Go a Little Crazy

Here’s the thing; most adults want to ‘look good’ in beach family photos, but most kids could care less. To keep them engaged, ask everyone to pose for some photos first (and make sure you like them). Then, let the little ones go a little crazy with some silly, funny poses too! That way can get some candids, and the kids get to have a little fun. It’s a Bradenton beach win-win!

How to Store Seasonal Clothing and Photos

If you’re like us, you have a lot of family photos and photo albums. Digital photos are great, but we still love printed albums the best! Sometimes you can have so many albums they fill your closet at home. The same goes for seasonal clothing, which, in Florida, isn’t necessary except for a few weeks out of the year. That’s why many families rent a storage unit in Bradenton, Florida. Here’s a tip, never store photos in a non-climate controlled unit. Photos are susceptible to humidity. You wouldn’t want to lose those cherished memories!

family playing on the beach during a beach family photoshoot with a beach ball

Ready, Set, Click!

Congratulations, you’re all set to go out and take some great family beach photos! We hope that this quick guide was helpful and that you get some memorable and amazing shots! Enjoy your time in Bradenton and her beautiful beaches!