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Sunset and Sunrise Photography Tips

Sunset and Sunrise Photography Tips

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Published by: adrian_caballero_3 on Dec 30, 2010
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Sunset and Sunrise Photography Tips
"Shining Through" captured by Katelyn WallPhotographing sunsets and sunrises can produce some of the most beautiful images you will take.Surprisingly, these wonderful scenes are not that difficult to photograph. This article will give you a few tips to make your sunset and sunrise images the best they can be.First, be aware that you should not look directly at the sun when it is still bright yellow in the sky. This cancause permanent eye damage even when you are looking through the camera view finder. Wait until thesun is close to the horizon with a reddish color when the rays are not as strong. Or take the picture whenthe sun is partially blocked behind an object like a building.
Plan Ahead
Most of the time you will not normally be in the best place to get great shots when the sun is setting orrising. More than likely there will be buildings, wires, poles and other things in the way that would detract
from the picture.Take note of the time the sun sets or rises in your area. Then choose a location and pick aday to go out and take the pictures. Get there early and try to visualize a few shots before the show begins.The most dramatic coloring of the sky and other areas in the scene only lasts about a half hour, but youshould take some shots before and after the sun sets or rises. There will still be some pretty lightingaround.The best places to take the pictures would be beaches, plains, deserts, or anywhere there is lessobstruction of the views. However, you can get great sunset and sunrise pictures anywhere if you arecreative and know a little about picture composition. You might be able to use those ³obstructions´ in yourpicture and wind up with a picture that is more than just the sun on a beach.
The sunlight reflections on clouds can be very dramatic. You never know what cloud formations will be inthe sky from day to day. Sometimes there will be thick clouds, other times wisps of clouds. No matter whattype, when the sun is setting or rising you will see an amazing light show. Take plenty of shots from various views and angles. Remember that in that dramatic half hour or so, the clouds could be moving andthe sun will definitely be sinking or rising, so the tone and amount of light will vary. So don¶t just settle forone or two nice shots. You could be walking away from the best shot ever!"Timeless" captured by ian newton
Try to avoid placing the horizon directly in the middle of the frame. Lowering the horizon to the lowerthird of the frame will emphasize the sky more and make a more pleasing image. If you are at the beachand want to emphasize reflections in the water, then you might want to raise the horizon to the upperthird of the frame to emphasize the water. This is a part of the Rule of Thirds principle. However, just likeany rule, it can be broken.No matter where you place the horizon, try your best to keep it level across the frame of the picture. A horizon that is too slanted wont¶ look natural and can ruin a beautiful picture.Try placing objects in the foreground and use silhouettes. Although the sun and clouds in the sky is a greatstand alone picture, an object such as a tree, a bird, a boat, or a person walking in the foreground canchange the whole perspective of the picture. Also, look behind you,and look to the left and right. Theremight also be some nice scenery around you with beautiful colors. All pictures don¶t have to be take in thedirect path of the sun.
One of the best things about photographing sunsets and sunrises is that there is no ³proper exposure´.First of all, pointing your camera towards the sun will automatically fool your cameras light meter andcause the picture to be underexposed. The good news is that when taking these type pictures it canactually look pretty good when the image is underexposed. Any objects in the foreground will becomesilhouttes, creating another nice effect. However, you will want to have a little more control than havingthe meter continuously underexpose your pictures. If you have a Digital Single Lens Reflex Camera, youcan adjust your aperture and shutter speeds to various settings.

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