It’s early morning and you awoke to photograph a sunrise or late afternoon and you have settled in to watch another beautiful sunset. It’s a magical time of day. The low angled sun is putting on another awesome light show — pinks, oranges, reds and blues mix in the sky. Watching a sunrise or a sunset can be a magical thing and as landscape photographers it is the time of day that we do most of our work.
But unlike most people, we don’t always look in the direction of the sun. Most of the time we will actually turn our back to the sun and look the other direction. Why? Because the quality of the light that is being cast on the landscape is perfect. Photographers call it the “golden hour” and it can make for a really compelling photograph.
Yes, sometimes the scene calls for us to include the sun in the shot, but most of the time it is the light of sunrise and sunset that we really care about. So, next time you are out shooting at sunrise or sunset, turn the other way. Look at the lighting and go capture a beautiful image.
Here are some examples of photos that were taken at sunrise or sunset that illustrate this principle.