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How to Take Kids Beach Photos

We all want gorgeous photos of our children, and your summer beach vacation is an ideal setting to get those adorable kid beach photos. The sunsets, sand dunes and waves all scream beautiful photos to be had! But its not always realistic to hire a photographer. It can get expensive or hard to squeeze into the vacation schedule. I typically only do an official family photoshoot once a year and then take my own photos of the kiddos throughout the year. And of course just when I had mastered taking beach photos of Jake, we had Max. Two wild ones to manage!

After a few go’s we got some great kid beach photos on our last beach vacation and I thought I would share a few tips on how we got there. All of these have not been photoshopped yet so they will only get better, ha!Kids Running on BeachKid Beach PhotosTiming is everything. Timing at the beach can be a bit tricky. At the time of day when kids are playing and having a great time it can be really bright out and not the sunset images you had in mind. Wait too long and while the sunset may be totally gorge, kids are exhausted and cranky. On the day you plan on taking photos, bring everyone in a little earlier for showering, dinner and a rest. Then get everyone dressed and say that its time to go, “run or play on the beach and look for crabs.” Trust me, that goes over WAY better than photo taking! Everyone will be fresh and happy for photos!

Kid Beach PhotosMake it a Game. Maybe other kids are a little more compliant about photo taking but my two aren’t exactly thrilled. One way to lure out happy little photo takers is to make it a game. Literally. For this round I brought out the velcro catch game that they had never played. Pictures of smiling kids, even with a bright tennis ball in hand, is better than sobbing on the beach. One trick I do is to keep a smile plastered on my face the entire time and then swing the kids around. That way I don’t get the perfect photo of them and a serious expression on my own!

BoardwalkCoordinate the Clothing. Ok yes, matching clothes can be a little cheesy. But coordinating styles or colors can make for a more stylized photo. If adults are in the photo I try to just make sure that the colors don’t clash and work well together. But if its just kids a more overt approach can work. For these I splurged on Janie and Jack madras shorts and polo shirts. What says beach more than madras and sandy bare feet? Just make sure you love the look and that its comfortable enough that everyone is carefree and happy.

Beach Baby FeetOh and don’t forget a snap of those adorable little sandy toes!

With August coming up, I’m sure many of you have your own beach trips in the works. Have a blast, take some photos and soak up the sun together!


  1. All the pictures are great and your boys are so cute. I’m wondering if you are a professional photographer. I bet these are useful for many parents including me. Thanks for sharing your useful tips

    • My husband is a professional news cameraman but not a professional when it comes to taking photos, especially of kids. We’ve had to learn a lot of tips along the way to get them to cooperate, ha!

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