The Golden Hour: How To Make The Most Out Of It

October 30, 2018

Every photographer dreams of capturing the “perfect shot”. Whether it’s a beautiful sunset, a gorgeous skyline, or a child blowing bubbles, the essence of a good photograph often lies in the light. Apart from technique, skill, and modern gear, many photographers rely on good lighting—nature’s gift to any aesthetic enthusiast. Fortunately, if you have a lot of time on your hands, you can get a hold of the golden hour and achieve magical results.

Most photographers will agree that the golden light enhances the quality of any photo—it’s warm, soft, and dimensional, and it also adds an aspect that can’t be replicated no matter what filter or texture you use. Essentially, shooting in the golden hour gives you a bonus opportunity to take better pictures. If you’ve been thinking of improving the quality of your photos but don’t know how, you can always start with lighting. Here are some tips on how you can find the “right” time to capture the golden light:

Plan your shoots – factor in the weather, location, and your schedule. Make sure to bring the right equipment and be there early so you can determine which angles work best with the light, shadows, and silhouettes.

Gear up – pack light but gear up well. Make sure to choose the right camera and equipment and avoid bringing unnecessary stuff that could make you less mobile. Remember, you care chasing after the golden light and bringing too many things might hinder you from quickly moving from place to place.

Consider the different kinds of lighting – whether it’s backlighting, front lighting, rim lighting, or flare, you can enjoy these varieties according to your photography style.

Create silhouettes – silhouettes are an art form in itself. Although it requires a lot of practice and skill, the golden hour naturally enhances your shoot by providing just the right type of mellow light and color that you need to create a beautiful silhouette.

Capture the early morning mist – if you’re lucky enough to get up before the sunrise, look out for the early morning mist which is beautifully highlighted by the golden hour. Shoot the sun beams splitting the mist and you’ll get that perfect morning shot.

Review your images – while some photographers like to avoid checking their images incessantly, it helps to review your photos once in a while because the golden light changes rapidly. Hence, doing double checks will help you see if you got the light that you wanted.