These days, the beach picture has become the go-to tactic of vacationing Instagrammers who continue to wish to induce envy among their followers long after they’ve returned from vacation. (Chrissy Teigen of all people is spearheading the fight against the post-vacation vacation ‘Gram.) So it follows that the genre has pooled into a literal and metaphorical flex: torsos angled just so to the camera, yachts docked in the distance, an exotic geotag. But Massimo Vitali, Slim Aarons, Joe Szabo, and Martin Parrv — four acclaimed photographers who have strong opinions on the beach pic — are here to show us what the beach really looks like through their eyes. For some, like Vitali, who shoots his famous seaside pictures with a large-format camera from a seagull’s-eye view, see the assembled, unmoving masses as symptoms of a calcified society and an ill leisure industry. […]

Michael Beckert and Fan Zhong, "These Photographers Show Instagram What the Beach Really Looks Like" in W Magazine, July 21, 2019.