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PMH Photo Challenge #7 – Seaside

Welcome to the Project Motorhouse Photo Challenge!

Are you 18 or under and living in Thanet? Then you are eligible for the Project MotorHouse Photo Challenges where you could win up to £50 for 1st place, or £25 each for two runners up! August’s theme is SEASIDE LIFE. Follow us on Instagram at @pmhramsgate, and tag your photos with #pmhphotochallenge7 to enter. The deadline for the competition is midnight on Thursday 30th Sept. Photos taken with any type of camera or phone are allowed. We’ll be judging your photos on criteria such as relevance to the theme, creativity, composition, lighting, and so on. (This is a challenge to practice your photography, not your Photoshop skills or crazy filters, so please no excessive post-production). 

Seaside photography: The seaside has always been photographed extensively – from postcards, holiday snaps of our youth, journalism, fashion, nature and landscape – photography at the seaside can take many forms. This month’s challenge is probably one that has the most potential for wildly different approaches – so try and aim for something that isn’t just a boring sunset or boat in the harbour, but that really says something about life here by the sea! 

Here are some tips and ideas to get you started:

TIP #1

1 – CAPTURE ENJOYMENT! – Being at the seaside is all about fun, so try to capture the enjoyment. Get your friends or family to play a game in the sand, run along the shore, win at the arcades or enjoy an ice cream. Use a fast shutter speed or flash to freeze their movement and create an image that radiates joy!

Photo by BARBARA RIBEIRO from Pexels 



TIP #2

2 – SEASIDE DOCUMENTARY – Life by the sea is so full of character and history, it’s a great place to try out documentary photography. Think about something that tells a story about your seaside town. It could be a tourist attraction that’s now abandoned, the smiling faces of visitors arriving on a coach, or volunteers picking up litter on the beach. Tell us a story!

Photo Copyright Tim Topple 


TIP #3

3 – BEACH FASHION/PORTRAIT – You could try a beach fashion shoot with a friend. The best light will be before and after sunrise or sunset, so arrange to meet up beforehand, find the best spot and shoot as if you’re creating a magazine cover or fashion spread. Why not make it even more like a real shoot and bring along someone as stylist to pose your model!

Photo by Melody on a Project Motorhouse photoshoot for POW Thanet. 

TIP #4

4 – SHOOT IN DIFFERENT WEATHER – People may associate the seaside with sunny skies and ice cream, but as locals, we know that it can be just as beautiful in ‘bad’ weather! Heavy clouds, storms, and wind can paint both the sea and sky in beautiful colours and textures – you’ll be sure to get some interesting photos.

Photo by Dziana Hasanbekava from Pexels 

TIP #5

5 – MAKE A ‘POSTCARD’ IMAGE – Seaside postcards really capture a particular mood of holidays in England. If you were a holidaymaker in your town, what is the one image that you think would make a great postcard? Shoot the one thing you think sums up your seaside town and would make people want to visit. 


TIP #6

6 CAPTURE AN ICONIC LANDMARK IN AN UNUSAL WAY – Thanet is full of iconic landmarks – the Turner Gallery, The Lido, Victoria Gardens, Dreamland, Ramsgate Harbour – but they’ve all been photographed to death! Try a new way of photographing one of your favourite iconic places by looking at it from all angles, in reflections or through windows for example.

Photo Copyright Tim Topple 



Most of all, have fun and experiment

Here are some resources to help you:

• Great Tips for Smartphone Photography: https://www.pocket-lint.com/phones/news/120868-10-top-tips-for-better-smartphone-photography

• Martin Parr’s Last Resort:  https://www.magnumphotos.com/arts-culture/society-arts-culture/ martin-parr-the-last-resort

• More seaside documentary, this time from Peter Dench and his Sun, Sea and Covid-19 project: http://www.peterdench.com/sun-sea-covid-19/

• 14 Secrets to getting great photos at the beach https://www.theclickcommunity.com/blog/how-to-take-photographs-at-the-beach-tutorial-byjennifer-dell/