a leave no trace beach session

April 11, 2022

every time I shoot with Katherine from Lake Effect co im reminded of the important of always having a leave no trace photo shoot, especially during our beach sessions. So, I’m going to be sharing with you guys a few of my favorite shots from our most recent airbnb brand session, as well as the film we created (linked at the end!). And I thought I would also share the seven principles on how to make sure you’re always being environmentally responsible during your photo shoots, or adventuring in general.

01. plan ahead.

the easiest way to make sure that you’re leaving no trace and making responsible choices is by planning ahead. going to be snacking / having a meal while adventuring or shooting, bring your own reusable utensils and non paper towels. prepare your food and bring it yourself to try to avoid waste and unnecessary plastic. here’s a link to my favorite reusable grocery produce bags by lake effect!

02. travel and camp on durable surfaces.

this means be very careful when off roading and exploring on your own. when trails and campsites are already established and available, try to stick to them.

03. dispose of waste properly.

this means knowing the general practices of disposing your (human) waste, water waste, and foods within your environment correctly. you can refer to this rei article that also covers the leave no trace principles for more detailed info : linked here!

04. minimize campfire impacts.

this includes making sure you’re using local wood to the area your burning to make sure you don’t bring in any new pests. make sure you’re aware of any permits, rules, and fire regulations for where you’re burning.

05. Leave what you find and bring what you brought.

This means not taking cool rocks, plants, flowers, anything. It seems small, but if everyone who visited that beach, that mountain, that sand dune, took something home with them, there would eventually be nothing left. It also means bringing what you brought, back home with you. Your wrappers, leftover snack waste (yes, even if its compostable, bring it home to compost, don’t leave it behind) trash in general.

06. Respect the wildlife and don’t feed them.

Dolphins, squirrels, birds, fish. They are all very capable of finding their own food. If you fill their bellies with bread and fruit scraps, things they can’t find in their own environments, you don’t know how thats going to effect and potentially harm their bodies. You’re entering their home, so remember to be careful of how you are interacting in their space. This includes making sure things like your sunscreen are reef friendly, the tools you’re using to start a fire are environmentally friendly, and that the overall impact you’re creating is small.

07. be considerate of other visitors.

this ones huge to me personally, especially while hiking. be courteous of others when trail heads become tight, step to the side if needed. keep music to a minimum and let nature be the sound you need, make sure your animals are controlled if off leash, and make sure any breaks you take are off of the trail and give other groups their space.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this over and hopefully learn at least one new thing about having a leave no trace photo shoot! If you’ve been wanting to do an adventure session or elopement, and want more info on how to make sure we stay respectful of our environment, you can contact me by emailing me through my contact form, found here!

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