Being literally surrounded by water and rugged coastlines, the Isle of Wight offers an incomparable variety of shooting conditions for photographers and filmmakers. Me and my partner Sam love capturing moments by, in, on or above the ocean. It's what inspires us the most, and it's what keeps us on our toes. We even started our own video production company that aims to protect the ocean by sharing its beauty.
We've spent years taking advantage of the islands coastal locations, and always strive for those hard-to-come-by 'perfect conditions'. Capturing special moments, is all about timing and weather, so coming to these spots during the right time of the day is essential.
Below we have listed our favourite images from our favourite locations. Grab a cuppa, (or your camera) and sit back for a dose of the UK's finest wanderlust!
1. Compton Bay, West Coast
Starting the list off strong is our go-to beach for ensuring we get 'that shot'. Compton Bay, during the perfect golden hour, could be mistaken for a California beach. It's great for occasionally catching a wave, but we love it for capturing interesting portraits and product photography. We've taken a lot of our clients down to this beach to show off it's wander. From yoga classes, flask bottles, to mini docs.
We'd recommend this beach at low-tide, just after a winter sun has set and the beach is reflecting the colours of the sky. Park at Compton Farm and scale down the stairs to the best side of the beach.
2. Freshwater Bay
Freshwater is a special place for Sam and I. It has a different look and feel depending on the tides, and there are secret caves. CAVES. We love exploring the chalky cliffs and small 'reef' around the stacks. It looks good from above (especially when we get a few brave surfers out there) and below, so we are regular visitors. We love it so much that we got told off for being there during lockdown!
Sam and I recently shot a drone and underwater sequence here for Isca media and the Driftwood Artist. Can you spot Freshwater in the film below?
We'd recommend visiting Freshwater when the tide is going out, walk around to the big stack and explore the caves. Be careful not to get caught out with tides, you might get wet!
3. The Needles
Nothing is more iconic than this view. It's on every bus on the island and people travel from a far to see its chalky stacks and blue waters. We love coming here to capture a perfect sunset snap but have often found that the more dramatic the weather, the better. When there's wild weather, you can literally see how the Needles stacks are being sculpted by wind, sea and erosion. Just around the corner is Alum Bay, with some of the clearest waters on the island. You don't need to travel far to get so much variety.
We'd recommend walking up to the Needles battery view point to get a birds eye view. If you're lucky enough to get down there on a boat, it's a thrilling ride to get up close to the stacks. There's a beach called Scratchells Bay which is beautifully secluded and only reachable by boat.
4. Newtown Creek
A hidden gem in our eyes, and only 10mins down the road from our base. Newtown Creek has a lot of history but is currently home to a lot of the islands wildlife. There's a lot of birds. There's also many different walks to explore and we'd recommend trekking through the woodland areas for some hidden magic. On a calm day, Newtown is perfect for a paddle boarding or kayaking adventure. You can get lost all day in the small estuaries. It might not be the best place for a beginner paddle-boarded however, the water is muddy and green, watch out!
We'd recommend visiting Newtown at sunrise, when the birds are slowly waking up and the water is still. When the sun is low and rising, the trees look golden and the water twinkles like diamonds.
About the author: Alice Greenfield
Based on the Isle of Wight, Alice is a freelance commercial adventure and lifestyle photographer and filmmaker. Coming from a background in film production, Alice combines film and photos in her storytelling. Alice's love of the natural world and passion to protect it, drives her ever-growing thirst to explore, travel and share positive stories of the great outdoors. Alice is often found close to the coastline, enjoying water sports, and writing about past adventures.
You can find more about Alice, Sam and Adrift Visuals at: www.adriftvisuals.co.uk