I really love both of these images. You’ve done a wonderful job on this assignment.
One of the primary features of your first image is the texture. Sand provides such a great opportunity for these shots, but the intensity and direction of lighting is important for you to be able to draw out this element. If you didn’t draw out this texture the sand appear as brown “dead space” or “negative space”, but it wouldn’t have the same dramatic effect that your shot has.
Similarly, the direction of the lighting has cast beautiful dark shadows in the footprints in the sand. Dramatic dark highlights in an otherwise bright and lively photograph give the image a nice tonal highlight.
You’ve also used “leading lines” in the creases of the sand and the water’s edge. These lines, coming in from the bottom right corner, help guide your audience’s eyes into the shot.
Your second image also uses negative space in a very wise way. Without the texture of the dead grass in the background, the image would be over-simplified and possibly even seen as flat or worse; boring. However, because you’ve used the direction of lighting to draw out the textures in the background, it’s truly helps compliment, without overshadowing, your main foreground object.
Again, your color palette is amazing and your ability to limit the color spectrum that makes it into each your compositions doesn’t go unnoticed.