Welcome to Photos at the Beach! Specializing in NC Beach Portraits.

Family portraits on the beaches of Jacksonville, Atlantic Beach, Emerald Isle and other Crystal Coast Locations.
Photos at the Beach specializes in beach portraiture for families, children, teens… pretty much anyone seeking a location portrait on North Carolina’s beautiful beaches.  Located along NC’s Crystal Coast, sometimes also referred to as the Southern Outer Banks, Photos at the Beach serves all the local beach communities.  I also offer location photography in the area’s waterfront communities.  I offer a number of portrait collections with something to fit most budgets.  Family photos made during your vacation make for great memories. Look around, enjoy yourself and check back often.  New pages and information will be added along the way with frequent additions of posts with tips on getting great beach photos and highlighting recent sessions.  Also be sure to stop by my primary website, R. D. Decker Photography

Photos at the Beach serves the following Crystal Coast communities and attractions:

  • Atlantic Beach
  • Pine Knoll Shores
  • Salter Path
  • Indian Beach
  • Emerald Isle
  • Cape Carteret
  • Swansboro
  • Newport
  • Morehead City
  • Beaufort
  • Harkers Island
  • Fort Macon State Park
  • Tideland Trail, Croatan National Forest
  • Cape Lookout National Seashore

2012 Season in Review

I’ve been so busy this summer that my blog has been horribly neglected. I thought I play a bit of catch-up and post a selection of portraits from the beach portrait season.

Beach Portraits on the Southern Outerbanks

Beach Portraits

North Carolina Beach Portraits

Family Portraits on Atlantic Beach

Emerald Isle Beach Portraits

Indian Beach Portraits Crystal Coast Beach Photos

North Carolina Beach Portraits

Photos at the Beach

Family Portraits, Morehead City, NC

Jordan & Josh: Beach Photo Session

Filed under Photographs • Written by admin @ 2:53 pm

I spent Sunday afternoon with Jordan & Josh making some beachside portraits. Such a fun couple!

A couple poses for a portrait along a popular Crystal Coast beach.

Beach Photo Season Starting to Heat Up!

Filed under Photographs • Written by admin @ 8:04 am

With the kids getting out of school for the summer and families arriving at the beach for I’m starting to get busy with beach portrait sessions. Here’s a few shots form recent beach outings.

Beach sessions are about laughing, smiling and having fun!Rock jetties make excellent locations for beach portraits along North Carolina's Outer Banks.

The ramparts of Fort Macon State Park provides great views of Beaufort Inlent, making a great background for vacation pictures.

Love & Romance on the Beach

Filed under Photographs • Written by admin @ 6:35 am

I enjoyed a nice session with Jordan and her fiance’ Devin on Atlantic Beach, here along North Carolina’s Cyrstal Coast.

A romantic moment at sunset on the beach.A little fun in the sun on Atlaintic Beach, a top North Carolina vacation spot.

Devin & Jordan in front of the Oceanic Pier, Atlantic Beach, NC

Near the boardwalk they were having some fun! A romantic walk along one of the Crystal Caosts beautiful beaches.

Family Photos on the Beach: Emerald Isle, North Carolina

Filed under Photographs Tags: , , , , — • Written by admin @ 5:35 pm

The Massey’s were vacationing at Emerald Isle, NC and arranged to have a family portrait session on the beach.


A family photo on one of the Crystal Coast's lovely beaches.

Nicole & Stephen: A North Carolina Beach Engagement Photography Session

Filed under Photographs Tags: , , , — • Written by admin @ 5:31 pm

Nicole recently won a free engagement session in a drawing at one of the area’s Bridal Shows. I had the pleasure of joining her and her fiance Stephen on the beach for a photo session. The skies were dark and moody… the wind was blowing hard… and the surf was rough and choppy but we got the job done. Congrats Nicole and Stephen.


A moody day on a North Carolina beach makes for an interesting engagement photo session.

Photographs of Zack & Tina on Fort Macon’s Beach, Atlantic Beach, NC

Filed under Photographs Tags: , , , , , , — • Written by admin @ 1:14 pm

Had a great time of making some portraits of Zack and Tina at Fort Macon State Park, Atlantic Beach, North Carolina. We took shots both inside the fort and on the beach. I love this location because of the lack of vacation homes and cottages to clutter up the backgrounds.


Barefootin' on the park's beach. High on a dune and nestled in the sea oats, Tina enjoys a day at Atlantic Beach.

Zack and Tina together on a beautiful May afternoon at the sea shore.

Cathy & Caleb Engagement Portraits, Atlantic Beach, North Carolina

Filed under Photographs Tags: , , , , — • Written by admin @ 6:23 am

Congratulations to Cathy and Caleb on their engagement. They’re planning a Spring 2010 wedding. We got together at the beach for a little engagement session.

Cathy & Caleb on Atlantic Beach near the New Bern Street public access area.

HS Senior Photos at the Beach Along NC’s Crystal Coast

Filed under Photographs Tags: , , , , , , — • Written by admin @ 7:49 am

I had the pleasure of shooting Rebecca’s Class of 2010 Senior photos. For her final session we went to the Oceana fishing pier near the Dunes Club, Atlantic Beach, North Carolina.


A casual shoot at the pier. The beach is always a great location for a casual senior photo session.

Fishing piers make a great backdrop for beach portraits.

Tips for Great Beach Photos: What to Wear!

Filed under Information, Photographs Tags: , , , , , , , — • Written by admin @ 4:24 pm

Choosing the right clothes and accessories can greatly improve your beach photos.You’ve carefully planned your Crystal Coast vacation. You’ve made difficult choices like whether to stay near Atlantic Beach, Salter Path or Emerald Isle. You carefully picked a date to have portraits made at the beach and hired a great photographer (hopefully me!) to do the shoot. But what about clothing for your photos? Here’s a few tips on what to wear to make the images from your beach photo session the best the can be.

With the beauty of our North Carolina beaches in mind, a laid-back casual look is probably the best way to go. Many families choose to coordinate their clothing choices for their location portraits. You may want everyone to dress in identical colors, or simply color coordinate the group. Popular color choices include either white or pastel tops with khaki or denim slacks, pants or capri’s. As a general rule it’s best to avoid patterns and bright colors. After all, you want the attention to be on the people in the photos, not their clothing.

A great variation of the classic khaki/white or denim/white beach color scheme might be for the women and girls to wear long, flowing white dresses instead of slacks or capris. A beachy straw hat can be a nice touch for the girls as well. Another option might be for the guys to wear darker tops, like denim shirts or dark polos. Another way to mix things up is if everyone matches colors but with a mix of styles. One guy might wear a light blue polo, another an oxford. This allows everyone to express them self with their own style.

Sleeveless shirts and blouses are usually not the best choice. Wearing either long or short sleeves tends to make more pleasing pictures. While this is especially true for the ladies, it applies to men as well. Generally people don’t like how they look in photographs when wearing shorts or short skirts. You’ll probably be happier with your portraits if you stick to long pants or capri’s. For summer portraits, many families choose for everyone to be barefoot. Of course sandals or flip-flops can be great too, we are at the beach after all!

Makeup should be kept as natural as possible. It is fine to place some emphasis on your eyes and lips. Be careful to not to get too sunburned, it’s not the greatest look for a portrait. A great tan will photograph very warm, but don’t over do that either. While make-up isn’t recommended for men, an evening portrait on one of the Crystal Coast beaches will greatly benefit from a fresh shave! Even with modern image enhancement techniques, removing a five o’clock shadow is almost impossible.

Though you may not normally use hair spray or other products to hold your hair in place, it is a good idea to use something before coming to the beach for your portrait. An afternoon or evening sea breeze is quite normal along North Carolina beaches. Even a slight wind can blow hair in front of eyes and cause people to keep moving their arms and hands to remove it. The best advice is to use some hair product before you arrive or bring it along in case you need it. Hair bands and ponytails are another good alternative.

Young children may have a favorite beach toy that they like. It might make a great shot if they are allowed to hold it. Depending upon the child, it may be the only way to get them to sit still for a shot. Older children may want to bring a surfboard or skim board, or some other favorite beach toy. It all adds to the personality of the shot. It’s always helpful if youngsters are well rested and fed before they arrive for the photo shoot.

So there you go, a few simple suggestions for making your family beach photos look great. Remember, keep it simple and casual… fun and relaxed. You’re on vacation. Have fun!

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