Behind the Scenes Erica Reade photographing for Beach Lovers
She has written that the beach is a locale that equalizes people, and perhaps in this there is a purity and authenticity in the interactions within a couple. The images show bodies entwined, hands held, gazes met. People are removing themselves from the routines and stresses of the city, if even for an hour or two.
“We are raw and exposed on the beach, stripped of our clothes, makeup, and our status markers. There is something about being on the beach that emboldens couples to enjoy more affectionate freedom, their inhibitions less hidden than anywhere else I’ve observed in the city.” - Erica Reade
Reade has an ability to capture the spontaneous and authentic interactions between couples. There is joy and happiness within these image frames, along with a sense of curiosity and of glimpsing a moment of someone else's life. Graphically the photographs are also rich in composition considerations that allow the humanity and its messaging, along with the sand, water, and horizon lines, to all intersect and support the framework of the scenes she reveals.
Gulnara Samoilova, founder of Women Street Photographers, contributed an essay for this book and she comments on the unique function of the street photography approach, evident in Reade's work. "So often we are in public going about our day, then we see something so unlikely or strangely moving that it snaps us out of the monotony of the mundane. It doesn’t need to be a “big” moment as a photojournalist would pursue; it’s more about discovering the remarkable beauty that surrounds us, should we choose to look."
Reade writes personally in her essay for the book about her own realizations while shooting this project. "It was only a few years into the series that I admitted to myself that I was also searching for myself in this work. I’d been looking for the very connection that I hoped my photos were communicating to others. It can be easy to get jaded about love and humanity living in New York and this series gave me hope when I didn’t have any."