30 Jan Sunset Photos Photography with Best Friend
Anatomy of light When shooting outdoors,
The sun serves as the main light source, and the atmosphere acts as a giant diffuser, softening the rays passing through it. In the middle of the day, the sun is high and light hits the Earth almost vertically, and scattering is minimal. Therefore, in photographs taken at this time of day, the shadows are harsh and the light is harsh. But in the evening, at sunset, the sun is low above the horizon, its rays travel through the atmosphere longer and scatter more strongly. As a result, shadows and light in the pictures are soft. Obviously, the best for photography will be the hours before / after sunrise and sunset, which are often called the “magic hours”. Magic clock The magic clock consists of the Golden Hour and the Blue Hour. The golden hour comes about 30-60 minutes before sunset. After the sun has disappeared behind the horizon, it is the Blue Hour. The magic hours ends about 30-60 minutes after sunset, which gives us about 1-2 hours of great light.
The golden hour occurs when the sun is 6 degrees above the horizon and ends when it is -4 degrees below the horizon. This time is characterized by soft diffused light, with a warm golden hue, creating long, soft shadows.
Blue hour is the time after sunset when the sun is between -4 and -6 degrees below the horizon. It has darker skies, softer textures, and cool, bluish hues.
The beauty of shooting sunsets is that you can get a lot of different visuals in a very short amount of time because the light is constantly changing. At the same time, this is its complexity, so the photographer must be ready for these changes and be able to adjust the shooting technique depending on the situation.
Shooting Tips Tip # 1: Study the area and subject in advance
Getting ready to shoot is the most important part of the process if you want to shoot a sunset. You won’t have good light for long; lighting conditions change every minute, and there is simply no extra time for experiments and experiments. Therefore, ideally, you should know in advance where you will shoot, when and what exactly.
Best of all, I get photos of a sunset when I have the opportunity to visit the place in advance, in the afternoon. This means that you can calmly, slowly, assess the terrain, present a composition, decide where to put the camera, which lens to choose, focal length, and so on. Often I take a few shots on my cell phone to determine the composition. I use the
Exsate Golden Hour mobile app to determine the trajectory of the sunset and where it will touch the horizon, as well as the start of the Golden Hour and the end of the Blue Hour. I usually arrive at the shooting location an hour and a half before sunset to prepare and set everything up, and leave an hour after it.
Tip # 2: Find Foreground Elements
The sky at sunset is so beautiful, full of color, that it’s easy to forget that beautiful colors alone don’t create a meaningful composition. To do this, you need to find interesting objects, be it a tree, stone, stream or beach, that will create the composition and will be the link between the foreground and background.
Tip # 3: Shoot RAW
This is extremely important. When shooting sunsets, you are faced with a high dynamic range of light; bright areas will be extremely bright and shadows will be very dark. Shooting in RAW format will give you a much better chance of not losing detail and getting a great photo in the end. Plus, when shooting in RAW, you don’t have to think about white balance – everything can be corrected in post-processing.
Tip # 4: Use HDR photography In some cases,
when the dynamic range of the light exceeds the dynamic range of the camera sensor – and this happens quite often – even when shooting in RAW, it will not be possible to capture it in its entirety. In such situations, you should use the HDR technique. Now with the HDR Merge module in Lightroom 6, the process of composing an HDR image is much easier. You don’t need a dedicated HDR program or even Photoshop – you can do everything right in Lightroom.
Tip # 5: Shoot directly into the sun When shooting against the sun, you have to work with the widest dynamic range, and you can easily spoil the frame with unwanted highlights. This is because the camera’s exposure meters cannot cope with too bright light. But if you can learn to shoot against the sun, you can get unique, exceptional shots that are impossible to capture with a simple soap dish or cell phone.
Tip # 6: use the starburst effect Starburst is a shooting technique in which the lowest possible aperture is set and the shot is taken directly against the sun. The minimum aperture makes the sun’s rays more visible. When I shoot against the sun, I start with a normal aperture, take a series of shots, and then f / 20-f / 22 and take a couple of photos with a starburst effect. Then, in post-processing, you can always choose which image suits better – normal or with minimum aperture and the Starburst effect.
Tip # 7: Shoot in Aperture Priority Mode When shooting sunsets, lighting conditions change constantly, most often in the direction of a gradual decrease in light. But when cloudy, the amount of light can fluctuate in waves, so it is very ineffective to constantly change the settings manually. In modern cameras, metering is very accurate and copes with most conditions, so I use the aperture priority mode. I set the ISO to 100, the aperture between f / 9 and f / 11, and let the camera choose the shutter speed automatically.
Tip # 8: use exposure compensation In extreme conditions, exposure metering needs help, and then I use aperture priority mode along with exposure compensation to manually adjust the exposure. For example, when shooting against the sun, the camera may decide the scene is brighter than it actually is and underexpose the footage. To fix this, just set the exposure to +1. The same principle applies when shooting snowy scenes. You know in advance that bright highlights can trick metering, and you simply adjust the exposure.