Family Photography at Canon Beach, Oregon

We went to the beach, an annual trip, with one of our kids and his family.  I  hadn’t really done a family session before and wanted to try. The beach is probably not the place to do your first family session. There is light bouncing all over the place.  The sun was getting higher in the sky, the water, the sand, the fog all reflected the light.  I just did it anyway.  They were my family and it was for practice.  Cannon Beach, Oregon is such a perfect place for beach shots, with that big rock right there called the Haystack and with great reflections in the sand.  The fog or mist always seems to be present but it adds such a soft atmosphere to the pictures  a good thing.  I played with lots of presets and always sharpened and web sized with MCP Actions Crystal Clear Web Resize.

You can see how bright the light is there and coming from all directions. I wanted them to wade in the water–but it was too cold on little feet.  I later paid my grandson a dollar to stand in the surf with me.  Once his feet were used to the cold he was in it all the time.

I used a white vignette on this one.  I love how it fades everything out pretty much but the family.

A more retro or vintage look–warm it up a bit.  Almost to bright out for photos and no diffuser big enough to tone it down. The white hair of the kids is hard to get with out  .  The light is behind and to the left of them, but the sand is so reflective that their faces weren’t in the shadows.

The kids are squinting there is so much light and washing out their hair and face.  But still I like the image–It is the beach and it is bright there–it is what it is.

Daddy and Cate playing in the water.

Lovelovelove the reflection in the sand.

Feet shots are always fun.The focus is on the reflections.Looks like she is done with the water and heading for the big sand pile.  Warmed this up a bit.Fascinated by the action of the water. I love the mist hanging low over the water.  That rock gives alot of interest to the image–rather than wide open water.Just candids of the kids playing are great shot to take.This little guy sees a camera and immediately gets his smile on.  With a longer lens I can stay out of the play and capture the moment.  I used s 70-200mm f/1.4 for all of these.Later in the day the sun began to set–I wanted to get some portraits in the golden hour that last bit of sun of the day.  I nearly waited to late and we scrambled to beat the sun. I was in too much of a hurry and didn’t attend to details.  I didn’t pose my people correctly.  The dad should have his other knee up so he is leaning into his wife. This makes for an awkward image.  I didn’t zoom out enough to get the all of their legs–oops.  I found that the more people in the image the rougher it is to get them all to look at the camera at the same time–specially little ones. BUT the light is fabulous, no  shadows and that beautiful golden tone on their faces.

There are the eyes on the camera.

Here it is really evident how awkward it looks with the inside knee up.  If he would have switched knees with the outside knee up –he could easily lean into his wife. BUT the feet are there.

The kids were just wandering around in the grass while the sun was just about behind the last cloud on the horizon.  Mom is trying to coral them to get them to sit in the sand just in front of the grass as the grass is too tall to see then well and I can’t get above them to take a shot–I am on the beach lower than they are.  Even though there is grass blades crossing their faces–it is just a candid shot and they are obviously asking me what in the world are we doing….I  wanted Cate to lean against her brother–but she laid down on him–still so cute.

This is pretty much sooc except I did some MCP Eye Doctor actions on their eyes to pop them out a little and of course MCP Crystal Clear Web Resize action.  These are more relaxed smiles for the kids.

I asked Cate to tell his sister a secret.

Cate giving her brother a kiss.  I just asked them to do these things then shot away hopefully to get a tender image.She is so proud of herself giving her brother a kiss and the kind of cute reaction you would expect from a little girl having just kissed a boy.  And Cole just wants to get away from it.  So very cute.The shots of the kids were taken after the sun disappeared behind the last cloud on the horizon.  Warm glow is gone but the light is still magnificent.  No shadows and just perfect tones.

A whole learning session.  I learned so much and am so indebted to my kids and husband for letting me use them as guinea pigs and being patient with me.  I learned so much about lighting and posing and being sure to get what you want in your image and leave the rest out.  I just shot frame after frame as the kids did their thing and they are the best posers –so natural and fun.  Thanks for stopping by.

About ~ ~ joanne.thomas.photographer~~

I am retired, starting a new career. I love shooting portraits. People are so fun and interesting--I try to bring out there personalities and capture them in images. Children are especially interesting little people, who love to tell you all they know and are so uninhibited. I enjoy shooting weddings to capture all the details and emotions of the day. Between photo sessions I keep shooting --to learn, to experiment--to create art. The industry is ever evolving and I want to give my clients the most exciting and lasting images, full of their love of life expressing their personality.
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1 Response to Family Photography at Canon Beach, Oregon

  1. Sarah says:

    Joanne, the first two images are just stunning! The light is really really nice in these. Also sweet reflections in the sand. Great work on them all. I’m sure your kids are thankful you are a photographer!

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