Best Utilizing the Golden Hour

We talked here about the Golden Hour and how it’s a magical time that occurs twice per day:

One hour after the sun rises and one hour before the sun sets. Shooting during this time is how you’ll get that ethereal quality to your photos that we all drool over.

Let’s talk about how to best utilize that quickly fleeting hour to get the most out of it:

Typically placing the sun behind your subject is a big no-no…but during the Golden Hour, that rule changes because the sun has lost its intensity. Place the sun behind whomever you’re shooting so the light floods right over them. We promise, it’s gorgeous.

If you find a spot where the sun is shining through the branches of a tree or coming out from beside a building, use it! The sun’s rays will diffuse further and give you a beautifully filtered light. You could even crouch down super low and use tall grass or flowers to disperse the light.

We typically think of reflectors as a professionals-only tool. And though admittedly having one isn’t necessarily a must-have, it definitely takes photos to the next level because it reflects that gorgeous warm glow back onto your subject.

But how on earth do you use it? Head over here and we’ll show you!

Because light bounces so beautifully during the Golden Hour, locations with tall grass, trees, or a dusty path suddenly turn magical. Water also brings even more life to a photo. Whether it’s a hose turned on, puddle jumping, a lake, ocean, stream, or even snow and ice…the way the sun hits during this time will immediately turn a pretty photo into an ethereal one. If you don’t have a water source nearby, think outside the box: dust being kicked up as your child runs, bubbles blowing, or flowing dresses will also add a movement and an impactful glow to your photos.

Use your imagination and think up what your family loves to do… and then do it during this magical hour. If you don’t get it just-right your first time, try again another day! The fun thing about the Golden Hour is the light makes anything beautiful…even if it’s your kids just playing.

The whole point is capturing our families just being themselves. Remember, we don’t want perfect. We want memorable.

But most of all…HAVE FUN with it!

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