What Makes the Golden Hour Important in Photography?

If you are in the photography business or are a person who enjoys taking many pictures, you are probably family with the term golden hour. This is not the case for everyone so to others, golden hour is probably something they are not familiar with. Golden hour has been determined to be the perfect time to take pictures. An interesting thing about it is that it does not necessarily have to do with time itself, but rather with the sun. Golden hour occurs twice every day: one hour after sunrise and one hour before sunset. Each of these hour intervals are considered to be the golden hour.

Why is it Golden Hour?

The hour after sunrise and the hour before sunset are considered to be the golden hour for a variety of reasons. The main reason has to do with lighting. Lighting can be challenging to work with, especially when outdoors. It can often over or underexpose parts of the picture. Imagine taking family portraits and seeing one of your family members faces extremely bright in comparison to the others. You would probably not be very content with your portraits. Gold hour helps avoid problems like this. The sunlight during this time is very easy to work with. At either of the two hours, the light from the sun is not its brightest. In other words, the light is “softer”. Even if the sun is shining directly in your face, it will look natural and not overpowering. Additionally, it has a warmer color tone. If you want to highlight warm colors then this is the perfect time to do so. During golden hour the light includes lots of orange, red, and yellow.

How to Make the Most out of Golden Hour?

Like with any photoshoot at any given time, planning is always an important step. The first thing you will want to do is choose the location for your photos. This is important because golden hour will vary depending on the location you pick. In some places it might be earlier, while for others it might be at a later time in the day. You should also be prepared to take lots of pictures. During golden hour the lighting can vary every couple of minutes. Even if you take many pictures with the same pose, the lighting will probably look different and you will have many to choose from. You can also get creative with your photos as there are more options for your photographer. For example, shadows and silhouettes are something that may appeal to certain individuals. If this is the case for you, let your photographer know ahead of time. You might even want to look up some pictures to get ideas. Doing so will make it easy for your photographer to visualize the kind of pictures you want. With golden hour, the sky is the limit. Get out there, have some fun, and take amazing pictures!

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Hector Cavazos