Let there be light
We are humans, we can’t do anything about that. As a human, we are addicted to sunlight. The beauty of the bright circle in the sky, or better, the loved orange ball at sunset or sunrise makes us happy. But in many cases it is harmful to your photos… That bright spot is difficult to handle, with a white place in the sky as a result, even with the use of graduation filters. The white spot attracts the attention of the eye, away from the other (main) subjects in your image.
Hide the sun
Of course, you can work with direct sunlight. The best example is a foggy morning. Our sun loses a lot of it’s brightness, with nice and balanced colors. Another solution is to hide our sun behind a tree for example. Sometimes (read: mostly) it’s better to deny the sun itself. The light of a low sun is beautiful. The whole landscape bathe in warm light. And because its low position in the sky, you can see every piece of height. So look within a range of 45 till about 120 degrees away from the sun.
You don’t need the sun for taking interesting pictures. Thirty to sixty minutes before sunrise or after sunset the light is incredible beautiful. First the blue colors are dominating, later you can get very nice warm colors. The biggest advantage is the lack of strong contrasts. The exact colors are depending from the weather: amount of clouds and the amount of moisture.
Even cloudy weather results in useful light. Boring grey skies are perfect for black and white photography. And the colors of rainy day are unmatched.
When the darkness falls
Most photographer are going home after sunset. Sin , because then arise just new opportunities. Our cameras are able to catch the blue lights long after sunset. Even the last light will disappear. In The Netherlands we’ve got a lot of light pollution. Therefore we sadly lose a lot of stars in the sky. On the other hand, you can use that orange pollution.
Another interesting source of light is our moon. After the sun, it’s our brightest natural source of light. With a full moon you get shadows, like during daytime. There is one big difference: the shadows (no lighted areas) are very dark, because the sky is dark. The results of moonlight differ a lot with images from daytime.
When there is no interesting light at all, you can take your own light with you. I like to play with a powerful flashlight, especially during nights with some fog. Already before that moment I know where I want to go. It is impossible to look for interesting subjects in the dark.
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Check Bob’s biography in WIKI(cs) and portfolio in SHOWCASE(cs) or Bob’s website
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