Shore thing

Nick Davies com­bines his love of coastal pho­tog­ra­phy with fam­ily trips

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I visit Dun­raven Bay at South­ern­down on the South Wales Her­itage Coast reg­u­larly through­out the year. It’s the ideal fam­ily-friendly sea­side lo­ca­tion, with large ex­panses of sandy beach when the tide goes out, pic­turesque walks when the tide is in, and an ice cream shop.

I’m well aware of how the light in the ‘golden hour’ early in the morn­ing can trans­form or­di­nary scenes into mag­i­cal vis­tas. How­ever, with a young fam­ily and a part­ner who doesn’t share my en­thu­si­asm for spend­ing hours set­ting up coastal shots, I’m not able to visit the bay that early. When we visit the sea­side it’s al­ways a bal­anc­ing act be­tween tak­ing pho­tos and spend­ing fun time with the fam­ily, and it’s been a chal­lenge for me to cap­ture in­ter­est­ing shots when the sun is high in the sky.

I’ve had to learn to be cre­ative with my pho­tog­ra­phy, de­pend­ing on what the weather and the tides have in store for me when I’m able to visit. I’ll use a neu­tral den­sity fil­ter for long ex­po­sures to cap­ture move­ment in wa­ter, as in South­ern­down Rocks and Waves [2], or even an in­frared fil­ter for a dif­fer­ent view of the coast­line.

I’ve re­cently started to in­clude more peo­ple in my pic­tures. The On­com­ing Storm [1] shows my son on top of a large rock, look­ing out to sea as a storm de­vel­ops. I had to move quickly to get this shot, as he was run­ning around on the beach play­ing with sticks like a lit­tle Robin­son Cru­soe. I man­aged to con­vince him to stand on the rock as the storm closed in, to give a sense of scale to the var­i­ous el­e­ments.

I can’t think of a bet­ter place to be than at the beach re­lax­ing with the fam­ily – while also tak­ing the oc­ca­sional sneaky snap of the sur­round­ings!

01 The On­com­ing Sto rm Nikon D7100, Nikon AF-S 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR DX, 1/160 sec, f/9, ISO100

02 02 South ern­down Rocks & Waves Nikon D7100, Nikon AF-S 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR DX, 30 secs, f/22, ISO100

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