Thursday, July 11, 2019

Black in Blue and Gold

Landscape photographers (like me) typically favor two periods of beautiful light for outdoor photography:  the "golden hour" and the "blue hour."  Both are related to sunrise and sunset times, and they are each only about 30 minutes long -- sometimes even shorter -- but for reasons I don't know they are still referred to as "hour."

The so-called "golden hour" happens (a) 20-30 minutes before sunset and (b) 20-30 minutes after sunrise, assuming the sun is not obscured.  The low-angle, almost horizontal direct sunlight creates a "warm" (more reddish) and softer (less bright) light than when the sun is higher.

The so-called "blue hour" happens (a) 20-30 minutes after sunset and (b) 20-30 minutes before sunrise, assuming a mostly clear sky.  In those periods, the diffused light of the blue sky lights the landscape evenly and casts a soft blue light on everything.

The light of each period creates a different look and a different mood.  Here's an example of each:

"Blue Hour" light

"Golden Hour" light

Recently my photo buddy, Alan, and I made a couple of trips to photograph one of our favorite landscapes in the badlands of northwest New Mexico -- Georgia O'Keeffe's "Black Place" -- to capture some "blue hour" and "golden hour" images.  We went once at sunrise and once at sunset.

"Blue Hour" pre-dawn:

Blue Hour post-sunset:

Golden Hour pre-sunset:

Golden Hour post-sunrise:

If you would like to see these images (and more) in a larger format, please visit my photography website, Todos Juntos Photography, by clicking here.


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